Feeding Monkeys Drugs: A Good Or Bad Idea?
Reports circulated today that Travis, the former-TV-star chimp that mauled a Connecticut woman, was on the anti-depressant Xanax at the time of the attack, which aligns with one of the medication's known potential side effects, "going into a rage and attacking people".
Despite warnings from health officials to be particularly mindful of apes on dangerous or even benign chemicals, some believe that chimps should be able to use drugs if they so choose.
"Holy shit, I wish I had a stoned monkey," said a Chapel Hill resident and University of North Carolina student who is also named Travis. "That would be fucking sweet. I'd take bong rips, blow it in its face, and be like, 'What's up, monkey? What's up, monkey? Want to go outside and throw the fris[bee]?'"
"That would rule," he clarified.
The government's official position on stoned monkeys states that they can become withdrawn from society, eventually choosing lives of crime, or even returning to the jungle and preventing humans from seeing their hilarious antics. Critics say that such a position only encourages more owners to experiment with their chimps.
"You know why [owners] do it [feed drugs to their monkey or monkeys], don't you?" asked crisis counselor Don Brasuinas. "It's because it's become so stigmatized by our society that it now has a certain allure to it. Who isn't a little intrigued by the idea of sharing some of your Vicodin with your monkey to see what happens -- especially knowing that you're discouraged from doing so?"
"If the government would just turn a blind eye to something for once," Brasuinas continued, "then there wouldn't be a problem. Instead, they freak out when papers run headlines like 'Hallucinating Chimp Captured in All-Girls Catholic School Locker Room' and 'Junky Apes Overrun 6-Year Old's Birthday Party', and before you know it, we won't even be able to have chimpanzees smoke cigarettes, which is basically the oldest, best visual gag in existence."
Other groups, including the movie and television industries, have lobbied heavily for the government to refrain from involving itself in the habits of its actors that happen to be brachiating mammals.
"We regret the massive injuries inflicted on the innocent victim of this attack," said Career Builder spokesperson Mark Antograst. "However, this one isolated incident is not typical of the behavior of our quadrumanous actors, who, to no harm to anyone but themselves, are sometimes seen sharing a joint or Valium to calm their nerves before the next scene. To crack down on their access to stimulants might jeopardize an entire industry that is based on putting monkeys in commercials, and they can sell anything!"
Antograst says that marijuana and other anxiolytic chemicals help the chimps get into character and prepares them to be anthropomorphized into professors, layers and humanoids that can operate heavy machinery.
"Not an easy gig to handle sober," added Antograst.
Monkey owners who casually give their chimp-companions over-the-counter medications, anti-depressants or psychotropic substances were hoping that President Obama would ease the restrictions put in place by the Bush Administration that made it a crime to deliberately get an animal high (i.e., by hotboxing it in your car or mixing pills in with Snausages). The new administration, however, has been slow to change the government's policy on the legality of chimpanzees on mind-altering substances.
"When it's not even legal to own a monkey with drugs in its bloodstream, it's a sad day for our legal system," stated Petco CEO James Myers. "Pretty soon, they'll be arresting anyone who takes their alligator out for a walk, or lets their exotic pet bobcat off its leash for a quick run through the park. So much for 'hope' and 'change'."