Reports of mice losing lives or limbs in what are called “mouse trays” containing delicious food had increased to alarming levels. It became the subject of intense controversy, leading to a conference of concerned mice.

The mice have been told by other trusted mice that the trays offer a unique opportunity to obtain nutritious food – the daily challenge of all mice – without need of night-time searches or having to gnaw through packaging or shells and without the risk of cats, owls, foxes, and the discomforts of cold weather. The trays, they said, were a path to a long and healthy mouse life. 

Escaping that drudgery and struggle is the dream of every mouse. They heard that the “smart” mice were taking advantage of the trays. Their plump size and beautiful teeth showing no signs of gnawing were proof of the trays’ benefits. 

Regarding those that reportedly died or were injured, the mice are informed they are only the greedy mice who misuse the trays, grabbing the food carelessly. Others don’t take time to learn the tray “system.” They didn’t follow the simple rules. They mistreated the trays as get-food-quick.

Others were said to make little or no effort. Also, the mice are told, the reports of death and injury are not verified. They were reassured that any mouse that truly tries and follows the tray rules properly can succeed

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Big Lie, Say Critics; Call for Agenda Change

A small group of mice said they had done independent research. They called the whole story of mouse “trays” a Big Lie. They said it’s common sense that humans don’t offer free food to mice. They said it was pointless to speak about types of trays. All the trays were identical, just with different colors or shapes, and using varieties of foods. 

The critics made the incredible charge that the trays were not food trays at all but carefully engineered traps intended to harm mice. They said the word “mouse tray” was part of the Lie.  The correct term was “mouse trap.” The food is not for mouse nutrition. It is just bait!  Those who say they are “trays” are either in denial or delusional or are just lying like rats. 

They asked that the mouse conference agenda be changed to focus only on one question: Are the trays mouse trays or mouse traps?

The critics made one other incredible claim. They said that those plump and happy looking mice who promote the trays are actually getting their food, not on the trays, but served on human plates as a reward for getting other mice to use the deadly trays. They are selling out their own family and friends.

Mickey Mouse as Proof

Many mice find these claims impossible to believe. They personally know some mice who promote the trays. They are trusted friends, even cousins. They also believe the humans who set out the trays must be kind and generous because they love Mickey Mouse! They wear Mickey Mouse images on tee-shirts. They watch Mickey in movies. 

Mickey Mouse is the ultimate role model of mice. He is wholesome, healthy, and happy.  He and Minnie have a great marriage. They seem to have it all.

Most mice also believe that if the trays are intended to harm mice, human authorities would classify them illegal as “animal cruelty.”  But there is no such declaration and the trays have been around for a long time, so the trays must be legitimate, they reason. One other thing leads the mice to trust the trays. There is real food on them, the types consumed by humans, dogs and even cats!

This all made the story of “traps” seem unimaginable. And, finally, it was pointed out that the vast majority of mice did not complain about the trays. 

The exasperated critics cried out that the reason there was little complaint was that the mice who had never encountered a tray couldn’t know, and most of those who had encountered them were dead! Many others who know the truth are understandably silent because they want to be seen as “good” mice and not get criticized or shunned.

The critics asked that the conference take one of the traps apart. They said an examination clearly reveals a trigger right where the food is placed that sets off a powerful spring connected to a bar that slams down on the mouse’s neck. It’s not a mouse’s fault if they get injured or killed. The traps are elegantly designed killing machines.

Conference planners rejected the requests. The agenda remained unchanged: 

  • Studies of mice psychology: why some mice are attracted by the trays and others not.
  • Why the trays are especially attractive to female mice.
  • A report on new places the trays are being placed to attract more and more mice. 
  • A study on whether the trays could be a partial food source, supplementing traditional foraging?
  • New types of foods being offered on the trays
  • Exaggerated claims about the quality of the food on the trays 
  • Misleading claims that it is easy to locate the trays and get free food 
  • The complexity of animal cruelty rules, and why the mice are not currently protected.

Critics Banned 

Just before the conference was to begin, several of the critics were banned from participating. Organizers said they had gone too far! The final straw was when they published the extraordinary and dangerous claim that Mickey Mouse, the model of all good mice, was not real! 

These radical critics claimed Mickey was invented, a fiction, a myth, and he was being used to fool mice into thinking humans cared about mouse welfare and happiness. Mickey Mouse was part of the Big Lie!