In Light of Recent Extinctions, U.S. Adopts Bald Beagle as National Icon

Western Plastic, Wyoming, May 30, 2141 -- The United States Office of Patriotism-Enhancing Symbolism announced today that the nation, by executive order and congressional nod, has officially adopted the graceful and majestic bald beagle as its new national symbol, replacing the lamentably extinct bald eagle.

New Presidential Seal Featuring the Bald BeagleNew Presidential Seal Featuring the Bald Beagle

A spokesman for the office said the decision had been taken after "an exhaustive search for the plant or animal most representative of our proud nation resulted in only three remotely viable alternatives, of which the bald beagle was the best one."

Iconographic images of the bald beagle will shortly replace bald eagle images on the nation's currency, federal logos, southern license plates and anywhere else they occur, with the replacement process being overseen by several divisions from the heavily-armed Patriot Compliance Corps.

"It was truly a difficult decision, and a sad one, to renounce our treasured bald eagle symbol, but our responsibilities must not be subservient to the denial of potentially uncomfortable realities," Pooter Shinblade, a spokesman for the Patriotism-Enhancing Symbolism Office, said.

"Global climate change, rampant sale and destruction of federally-protected habitats and unfettered hunting and commercial exploitation put the final nails into the bald eagle's feathery coffin over nine decades ago, along with the other 93.7% of our ecosystem that has vanished in the past century. And no one wants a national symbol that does nothing but remind us how good things might have been for our great grandparents. We want something that tells us how good things still are today, really, if you look at them from a certain perspective, like from the perspective of our still-unborn great grandchildren, poor suckers."

The bald beagle, a mutated form of the more traditional "haired beagle" that spontaneously evolved from the sulfur clouds of the Texas toxic zones after the third serial nuclear meltdown of 2109, has long been revered for its unassuming, confident facial expression, its vestigial wings and trumpet snout, its practical seven-legged gait, and its ability, unique among known mammals, to reproduce asexually.

A recent poll of surviving Americans indicated overwhelming support for the slippery canine, with 17% expressing "strong appreciation", 63% expressing "cannot read question" and the remainder expiring from obesity torpor or lead poisoning during the polling process.

The other two options for national symbol explored by the USOPES were mega-resistant genetically-modified popcorn, the unfortunately inedible but no less scientifically and commercially dazzling ready-to-eat processed food crop that independently eradicated all other forms of vegetation in the Northern Hemisphere in 2126; and the saber-toothed glowworm, the massive snake-like reptilian behemoths that currently rule most areas of the American Midwest.

The bald beagle was chosen in favor of both due to its more endearing and graphically appealing qualities, and due to the fact that a spokesworm for the Saber-toothed Glowworm Alliance has asserted that glowworms would unconditionally devour one large urban center for each instance in which their likeness was exploited by the federal government for self-serving purposes.

The three remaining bald beagles in the continental United States will now be rounded up, the spokesman said, and photographed for use in the preparation of bald beagle-based national patriotic symbols, a procedure that is, unfortunately, invariably fatal due to the bald beagle's highly delicate and unstable photosensitive metabolism.

By Ion Zwitter, Avant News Editor

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