Bats are not people

10:15 pm:  See UPDATE, below.


When the government of Rwanda directed the mass murder of 800,000 people in 1994, that was genocide.

When Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge killed 1.7 million people in Cambodia in the 1970s, that was genocide.

When Adolf Hitler led the systematic, state-sponsored murder of six million Jews, that was genocide.

But when a fungus causes a massive die-off of bats? That’s not genocide. That’s a fungus causing a massive die-off of bats.

Why does National Geographic choose to blur the line that separates human beings from the rest of the animal kingdom? One day we’ll ask John.


UPDATE:  7 January 2011, 10:15 pm

We posted this item earlier today…
and moments ago an alert reader told us that National Geographic corrected the error,
three weeks after it initially appeared on NG’s site.
Thanks for responding, NG Web Team!
Don’t forget to post a correction note, too. That’s what the pros do.

(The original cached version of the error is here.)

Next up: Expunging the mistake from Google:

January 7, 2011 @ 10:10pm

NO NEW POSTS will be published here after February 6, 2014. THIS IS WHY.