Todd Hartley: I’m With Stupid |

Todd Hartley: I’m With Stupid

Todd Hartley
The Aspen Times
Aspen, CO, Colorado

I’ve always thought Mitt Romney’s name sounds like a way in which you would order wiener schnitzel at a German restaurant – “Can I get mine mitt romney? Danke schoen!” – as if romney were a sort of smelly purple cabbage that came on the side. So I actually went to the trouble of looking up what “Mitt Romney” means in German. Turns out it means Mitt Romney, but mit romme, which is awfully close, means something like “with rummy,” as in the card game rummy.

So what have we learned here today? Nothing, clearly, but I do want to take this opportunity to talk some more about Mitt Romney, with a particular focus on his mistreatment of our four-legged friends.

By now, Romney’s infamous family trip to Canada with the dog in a crate on the roof of the car is well-chronicled, but for those of you who haven’t heard about it, I’ll recap: In 1983, the Romney family made a 12-hour drive to Canada with the family dog, an Irish setter named Seamus, in a crate strapped to the roof of the car. The reason I’m bringing it up now is because “Crategate,” as it has been dubbed, has bubbled back up to the surface recently in light of new conjecture regarding Seamus’ fate.

According to Romney, Seamus enjoyed riding on the roof of the car. During that 1983 trip, he apparently enjoyed it so much that he pooped himself in fear, an incident that came to the attention of the Romney kids when they saw poop dripping down the windows. Mitt responded by hosing Seamus down at a rest stop and placing him back in the crate for a few more terrifying hours on the roof. Following the trip, Seamus was reportedly given to Romney’s sister and lived out his days on a bucolic farm, or so Mitt would have us believe. The truth, however, may be a different story.

According to a writer for the New York Observer, who cited two of Romney’s sons, what really happened is that Seamus ran away once the Romneys reached their destination in Canada. Can’t say I blame him. I probably would have run away, too. Hopefully, Seamus found himself a more caring family up in the Great White North.

This startling revelation has evidently caused quite an uproar in the canine community, as a group calling itself Dogs Against Romney has recently ramped up its efforts to derail the Republican presidential candidate’s campaign. Amazingly, considering it’s ostensibly run by creatures without thumbs, Dogs Against Romney has a sophisticated website and was able to organize a protest last week to coincide with the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show at Madison Square Garden.

Predictably, given that dogs can’t tell time or read maps, the event was not very well-attended. Only a handful of dogs showed up, and all of them arrived late. Sure, there were about a dozen people on hand, but that’s not really Dogs Against Romney, is it?

(OK, so the protest might have fizzled a little, but Dogs Against Romney’s Facebook page does have 27,000 likes, for whatever that’s worth.)

But let’s examine the charges against candidate Mitt, shall we? He stands accused of cruelty to animals, and certainly, a dog that pooped itself and then ran away probably regarded its treatment as cruel, but Romney might have really thought he was doing something nice for Seamus. We may never know.

The bottom line, though, is: Does this make Mitt Romney a bad person? Well, it might. To be honest, I’ve never met the man. For all I know he could be an absolute monster. I kind of doubt it, given the reputation most Mormons have, but being cruel to a dog is a pretty big strike against anyone.

A potentially bigger question, however, is how this will affect Mitt Romney as an adult? Kids who are mean to pets end up getting arrested for violent crimes at an alarming rate. For all we know, when Mitt Romney grows up, he could turn out to be a serial killer. Is that what we want in the White House?

I would be inclined to say no, but I don’t really know much about politics. And, to tell the truth, a lot of people in America probably wouldn’t care that much if the President were a serial killer, provided the people being killed all lived in the Middle East, the way the people we’re killing now do.