Perhaps my logic isn’t as good as it should be, but I’m having a bit of trouble understanding something, so I decided to share it here in the hope of summoning the collective mental processing power of the commenters.

In a local Ann Arbor park which is frequented by dog owners, someone — most likely an angry anti-dog person — created and printed out this scolding reminder directed at irresponsible dog owners:


Whoever “posted” it went to a lot of trouble, for each one was reinforced by black construction paper, and put in a plastic sleeve. There were at least a dozen of them, and each one was rudely fastened to a tree, not by staples, but by ordinary construction nails driven right into the trees! So, I’m guessing that the dogshit hater was no tree lover, and certainly not motivated entirely out of concern for the natural environment. Not only do multiple posters like that ruin the natural beauty of the park, but driving nails into trees is not good for trees:

When hammering a nail into a tree, you penetrate the bark which opens the door to pathogenic fungi which may invade and damage or even kill the tree. If an insect bites a hole in the bark, that is also dangerous, but unless it is a borer, the wound is shallow and can be healed quickly. A fungal infection of a shallow wound may be counteracted by the tree, which forms chemicals to block the growth of the fungus. The actual nail may act as a syringe, inoculating pathogens deep into the tree. If the pathogenic fungus can reach the xylem, the water transporting canals, it may use these as elevator shafts for quickly invading the tree.

When you prune a tree, you cut a living branch. The wound may invite pathogenic fungi, but by making a clean cut with a saw (not a machete) near the base of the branch, you allow the tree to swiftly cover the wound with new tissue. It is important not to damage the main trunk, for example by sawing from the top and then let the branch fall down by its own weight, ripping the bark of the main trunk. An infection of the main trunk due to careless pruning or nails may kill or seriously distort the shape of the tree.

The metals of the actual nail may also affect the tree. When the nail corrodes, dissolved metals may toxify it. A tree in a weakened stage may die from other stress such as drought.

Infections may or may not happen due to the wound. The tree may very well overcome the nail and survive, but when the sign falls down, the secondary growth of the tree trunk will embed the nail inside the tree. If the nail does not corrode, somebody using a chainsaw in the future may hit the nail and have an unpleasant surprise.

Lovely. So the anonymous dogshit hater is doing harm to the environment — ostensibly for the purpose of helping the environment. As to whether the scolding message will have any positive effect, he or she has probably not stopped to consider that the sort of people who don’t pick up after their dogs are inherently irresponsible scofflaw types who give other dog owners (like yours truly) a bad name. Laws already require picking up after one’s dogs in city parks (or anywhere else), and these intractable people are not obeying them. I agree with the sentiment that they are in fact asses.

But since when would an ass heed an anonymous command not to be an ass?

That’s not my only logical problem. My attention was drawn to the silhouette. Donald Trump, no doubt about it. He’s got the no symbol circle around him, which means…. What? Is this a double message, unrelated to dogshit? Trump is bad and should be banned? And by the way pick up after your dog? Or is there some tie-in, as if to say if you don’t pick up after your dog, you are being like Trump? Might they think that because almost everyone in Ann Arbor hates Trump, comparing irresponsible dog owners to him will shame them into submission?

But just how valid is this comparison? There’s no way to make a logical connection between Trump and dogshit or between Trump and irresponsible dog owners, because Trump is not a dog owner, and is said not to like dogs.

William McKinley is the last president to not have a dog, though he had other pets.

But Trump’s legacy, other than the occasional dog-related insult, may exclude the beloved canines, after all.

“Donald was not a dog fan,” Ivana Trump wrote about her former husband in her memoir, Raising Trump. When she brought a poodle named Chappy into their home, Trump fought back. But Ivana’s love of dogs would not be quashed: “It’s me and Chappy or no one!” she told him. And he eventually acquiesced—but never seemed to grow all that fond of that poodle.

The feeling was mutual: When the president went near Ivana’s closet, “Chappy would bark at him territorially,” she wrote.

But for now, “There are no plans” to add a pet to the household, a White House spokesperson told CNN.

Got that? Trump does not like dogs, so for that reason alone it would follow that he doesn’t like dogshit. But in addition, the man is reported to be a germophobe — so much so that he doesn’t even like shaking hands. Simple logic would dictate that a man like that would absolutely loathe dog feces.

Which means that he almost certainly shares the same sentiment as whoever is putting up those posters.

So, in the interest of more complete accuracy, I offer this accurately cleaned up version of the poster.


That will be at least as effective, right?