Helium, News

Dose of History: The War of the Bunnies

By Alexandra Wenger ‘21, Features Editor

There are some stories from U.S. history that are just never spoken about: Lincoln created the Secret Service the day he was assassinated, Paul Revere never shouted “The British are coming,” and the government poisoned alcohol during prohibition. However, the story that is certainly the least told is the story of John Paul Rabbit and The War of the Bunnies.

You may have heard of John Paul Rabbit, a man who was at the height of his success as a carrot farmer in January of 1950, but let me refresh your memory. Rabbit was a carrot farmer with several acres of land in California, the state which produces over 85 percent of all carrots grown in the United States. He came from a long line of Rabbits, tracing all the way back to Mary Rabbit, who came off the Mayflower. Each and every one of his ancestors was a carrot farmer.

Rabbit, in addition to being a lover of his crop, was also a lover of bunnies. Beginning at age five, he would receive a bunny every year on his birthday. He loved each and every bunny equally and very much. He loved his bunnies too much, to the point where he would refuse marriage so he could focus on his carrot farm and tend to his bunnies. “Women,” he was known to say, “have nothing on small mammals in the family Leporidae of the order Lagomorpha. They are my bushy-tailed babes.”

When John Paul Rabbit turned 60, he had a collection of 55 bunnies. Their longevity was remarkable, but Rabbit felt he needed more bunnies. Life on his carrot farm was getting lonely. He had no friends, no wife, and no children. So he drove to the market and brought home 55 more bunnies to join his current 55.

This was the most foolish thing he could have ever done. Rabbit, despite owning bunnies for the vast majority of his life, did not anticipate nor understand their territorial and defensive nature. The original 55 bunnies attacked the new 55. The conflict resulted in The War of the Bunnies, fought primarily on Rabbit’s acres of carrot farmland. They decimated his land, pounding it to death with their paws. In the end, all 110 bunnies perished. 

Let this be a warning, not only to all bunny-lovers, but also to all pet owners: all animals, especially your small, fluffy, big-eyed ones, are demons, and they should never be trusted.

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