Humans are an amazing species. Of all God's creatures in the animal kingdom we possess a better ability to improvise adapt and overcome than any other beast.
Consider. The human body can withstand and thrive at temperature ranges from -40 in the Arctic to 120 degrees in the equatorial regions. We can live in the swamps, the deserts, the mountains, the plains, the frozen tundra and the forests.
Humans can eat a variety of foods. We can survive on meat or veggies. We can digest a variety of foodstuffs.
Humans are not the fastest of hunters. A cheetah can run us down in a flash. Many in the animal kingdom are bigger, stronger and faster. We cannot fly, cannot stay under water for long periods. yet we can swim. The human body has evolved into a distance running machine. A human can walk a horse to ground. It can run most prey to a quivering exhausted bundle of meat.
Most importantly we are smarter than any other animal. We are tops in the food chain because we learned to use tools and weapons. An ancient mastodon was far larger, but pointed spears, slings and arrows brought down the beast for early human dinners. We alone have learned to create fire.
Koko the ape supposedly understands some 2,00 words. She cannot speak, only respond. Your average three year old human surpasses that feat, plus can communicate. Humans can read, write and do complex mathematics. A raven uses tools, an otter uses tools, but none have developed true weapons. The songbird can sing, the whale can make noise, the lion roar. The human can whistle, sing and communicate.
Some claim our development is simply an accident of mutating genes over eons. Some believe the Hidden hand of God created us. My God is so powerful he created us and gave us the ability to adapt, to survive. Tyrannosaurus Rex was bigger, stronger, faster, more ferocious by far, but those itty-bity arms precluded typing on a keyboard. You don't see old dinosaur Rex on Facebook do you?
Man is capable of unspeakable cruelty. We condemn the fox killing indiscriminately in the hen house, put down dogs and bears and tigers when they develop the habit of killing just to kill, but that trait is strong in the human animal. We have slaughtered each other in numbers that are truly astonishing.
We did not develop wings to fly, yet found a way to conquer the skies and space. We cannot swim for long distance, but developed ships and submarines to conquer the oceans of the Earth. We lack the claws of a mole yet can mine miles beneath the surface of the planet.
Celebrate! there is no species like you. You are special. You are so far at the top of the food chain the other beast of the planet combined cannot reach your accomplishments. Use those opposable thumbs to lift up a toast to that first homo sapiens. Smarter than the average bear indeed.
So the next time some jackass proposes a butterfly is more important than a power plant, a snail trumps your ability to build a house, a fish is more important than growing food you know better. I will recognize "animal rights" when that beast of the field, sky or stream can write a document as beautiful and simple as the Declaration of Independence. I will pay attention when the monkey can speak with the elegance of a Patrick Henry, when the lowly cardinal can sing like Aretha. Until that point in time, animals are just meat, plants are just food.
I am man, and I rule the Earthly kingdom.