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Happy day-after-Easter, kids!

I wanted to share my Easter-day musings with you, and I’d appreciate a few minutes of your time.

You’ll be happy to know I caught — but didn’t kill — the Easter Bunny. I caught it red-handed as it ravaged my garden eating most of my ready-to-harvest organic carrots. I interrogated Mr. Bunny and asked if its corporate contract fulfilled its purpose as a living organism. All I got from my interrogation were a few blinks and a twitch of the nose. Cute as it was, I wanted answers, which I didn’t receive. So I cut off one its feet and tucked it in my pocket for good luck. Some day I hope to reap the rewards of my new trophy.

The Easter Bunny epitomizes the conflict between consumerism and religion. The battle holds firm ground; the war has raged since the birth of this nation. While there is a war going on between church and state, with both sides firing heavy artillery rounds into the minds of the masses, we consumers have a choice against the politicos in charge: either rise up against these dictators or blindly follow.

As I held my eyes shut Sunday on Easter morning wanting-and-willing myself back to sleep, my cerebral orb flooded with childhood memories that kept me from enjoying the one day on which I can sleep past 6 a.m. I grabbed a pen and pad to jot down my wonder-year recollections. I remember Easter-egg painting parties where purple, green and blue dye stained the table, but mom didn’t care because Christ was going to rise again. I remember morning Easter-egg hunts (with real eggs, not the crappy twist-and-turn plastic ones), with nickels and dimes rewarded for each found egg. And of course, I remember morning mass, when my two sisters and I would head out for a morning sip from the cup of Christ, thinking all the while it was his blood, never suspecting it was actually an early Franzia tottie.

Needless to say, today, I find myself caught in the middle of a religious/corporate tug-of-war. On one side, Jesus Christ fervently pulls with help from his Father, and on the other side the Easter Bunny silently gnaws with help from its two, large-but-handy buckteeth.

How in God’s good name did the Easter Bunny hop its way into society? If you’re from Australia, you’d call it the “Easter Bilby,” named after the country’s desert-dwelling marsupial. In Afghanistan, you could be stoned for worshipping the cute lil’ critter. Europeans show their love for the rabbit by worshipping the beauty of its egg — and last I’d checked, rabbits don’t lay eggs (silly foreigners, Trix are for kids). The list could go on and on I’m sure, but in consideration for both my time and the paper’s print space, I’ll finish the origin of easter tour right here in the good ol’ U.S. of A.

This year I attended Easter service in Atascadero. (I don’t have to call it “mass” anymore because I waved bye-bye to the soft, caressing touch of the Catholic priests years ago.) And sorry, but, too many Jack-and-Cokes leave my memory jarred, and I can’t remember where I spent last Easter. However, in Sunken Gardens downtown A-town is where this year’s sha-bang took place. While the free pancake breakfast filled my belly, so did Pastor Steve’s sermon.

Steve stressed that faith is more than saying one prayer then expecting a return; and one doesn’t have to be religious to say a “prayer;” it just doesn’t work that way. Asking for a little help from whoever or whatever is the name of the praying game, no matter which side — church or state — you play for. The pastor’s message resonated under the cloudy sky and provided some clarity to my hectic, first week back in school. What’s even nicer is while sitting in the crowd among the hundred-or-so cattle, I had a choice to take away or discard his wisdom, which was mixture of Bible prophecy and life experience. As I sat there blocking the bullshit, but soaking Steve’s finer points, the Easter Bunny casually skipped through my wavering thoughts.

Why the obsession with the Easter hare? The answer is simple: Because rabbits are prolific maters in the animal kingdom and the world likes sex; so, naturally, on arguably the most important Christian holiday, why not present a dual kingship: one to the Lord and the other to the world’s greatest sex addict.

First, a brief mating overview. Does (female rabbits) are induced ovulates, meaning they release eggs when bucks (male rabbits) strut their stuff, so to speak; and what a feat, to become so aroused at the presence of the opposite sex! Without going into detail, that’s where the term, “he or she has sex like a rabbit” comes from. These little puffs of fur reproduce like it’s their job and they don’t have to wait until their “time of the month” to produce little babies. The catch is, rabbits don’t need money to survive, unlike homo sapiens, a species that depends on it as both a status symbol and necessary evil. So, one could say that rabbits are good at what they do — the best, in fact, and that makes them professionals. And professionalism makes the world go round, right?

Coming full circle to the meat of this opined preacher’s tale: The Easter Bunny encompasses the world’s obsession with sex and money in one tiny — sometimes large — cuddly animal. Corporate entities make millions off its image: marshmallow Peeps, Cadbury eggs, life-size bunny suits for those who have Furry Fandom fetishes. Fur trappers thrive in near-death writhes of the little jumpers caught by their necks in hoop-snare traps waiting to be skinned, only to be sold to the highest bidder — the clothing companies which buy the stolen fur should edure the same horrors, then thrust by a spear in the rib cage as retribution for their sin. Last but not least on the list of inhumanity, cosmetic agencies use rabbits and other fauna as, for lack of a better term, guinea pigs, when testing their latest eye goop or skin cream, often smearing or dripping such products in the poor animal’s eye in the name of “science” and profitabilty.

So, yeah, I caught the Easter Bunny, but it didn’t tell me squat; it blinked and winked and chewed my carrots, as if laughing in my face without cracking a smile, without an understanding of the problems between Church and State. Bunnies don’t care for money or for sex; for their purpose stems from instinct, which, unfortunately for us, said hi-bye in the garden of Eden.

There is only one solution: Rebuke, and let’s move to Mars, where we can plant a sapling and start all over again.

Realistically, the the move to Mars is not viable, I know that; plus, nurturing a plant of any kind on a planet with no life — and only “traces” of water — will not suffice. So, I’ll entertain my second solution, which includes sewing seeds in the youth of our red, white and blue nation.

The problem with the Easter Bunny is it has no relation to religion whatsoever; it is not REAL and, technically speaking, neither Jesus Christ nor his Christian-based fellowhip are real either (and this applies to all religions). But with events such as “The Egg-mazing Race” and “Egg-stravaganza,” what message are we sending to those who lack the ability to read between the lines? Are we setting the table for a dinner which will never take place?

Faith is a concept that puts trust in something or someone, and, if we put our faith in an imaginary ideal, such as an animal that acts apart from it original intent, then what else can we do but wake up on Easter morning and hunt for eggs purchased from a corporate entity. Do we fix something that appears to be working? Do we revert to living as our ancestors did? No.

That’s why I say we start from the bottom and build our way up, like the Tower of Babel, only this time, instead of arguing and forming clans based on language and beliefs, we come together in unison and save what is left of our tattered society.

So here’s to you Mr. Bunny, keep your head up and your ass down … er, your ass up and head down – whatever. Your existence depends on it. And don’t let anybody tell you that religion is against having sex, because nowhere does it frown upon such an act. Keep doing what you are doing and leave the political bullshit to our entrusted leaders. Guess we’ll just have to keep our fingers crossed and hope someone or someting comes along and saves us from ourselves.

Anthony Pannone is an agricultural sciences senior and Mustang Daily reporter.

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