Minneapolis, MN - In the wake of the killing of George Floyd by the Minneapolis Police, the City Council says it now has the votes to override Mayor Frey and defund the police department entirely. But how to handle future crimes is the big question going forward.
"Kittens!" explains city councilwoman, Tammy Hugglesworth, "Lots and lots and lots of kittens! Kittens for everyone!" Whenever there is a 911 call that would normally be handled by the police, a community relations 'hugger' will show up in a pink van with between one to five kittens. One kitten, if it were a minor traffic accident or a petty shoplifting case, let's say. And maybe as many as five kittens for something real real bad, like a homicide or a sexual assault or something. But let's not talk about all that icky, nasty stuff—let's talk about kittens!"
Fair enough. But it was the icky, nasty stuff that we thought was at the heart of the matter. What about a mass shooting? we asked Ms. Hugglesworth.
"Oh, jeez, eh? I hadn't really thought about that? That would be a lot of kittens, I suppose. I guess it would be five kittens for everyone that was killed, so if twenty people got shot, that would be... (long pause for doing math on her fingers) ...oh boy, that's a hundred kittens! That's a lot of kittens. But just think how cute would that be. A hundred cute little cuddly kittens jumping all over each other, and play-fighting and chasing a ball of wool all over the place. Who could feel bad after watching that? I'm sure that grumpy ole mass shooter would feel mighty silly after he saw all those kittens!"
Others on the city council weren't quite as excited about the kitten strategy as Ms. Hugglesworth, but combined with other ideas floating around, like free ice cream trucks constantly circling the city, and mini parachutes with candy floating down all over town, we were starting to see a Minneapolis with a bright and cheery future.
"And you just wait for the 4th of July fireworks display!" chimed in Pete Kaboomski. "Betcha never seen a big 'Fountain of Stars' finale raining down $100 bills on a crowd before!"
Ummm...but when we questioned whether the money would be on fire, the council people just scratched their heads and looked at us like we were the biggest party poopers in the world.
"I know!" interjected Ms. Hugglesworth again, "we'll make it rain kittens!"
So, maybe the whole idea of defunding the Minneapolis Police Department has a little ironing out to do, but for a person of color, being splattered with some kitten guts on the Fourth of July might just be a better alternative than having your throat stepped on for 9 minutes.
"Oh, for sure, you betcha it is!" agreed Ms. Hugglesworth. "....Wait, what?!"