I like alligators. I respect alligators. After seeing how they surround our national government, however, how they are up to our President’s knees at times, don’t ask me to befriend them. To make friends with alligators at the same time I keep my distance from them seems to be an impractical relationship.
Alligators lurk in many places. Once they showed up in a church that I served. Circling, menacing, snapping . . . They hissed falsehoods and sang old songs no one knew. They are kin to crocodiles, and some might mistake one breed for the other. Both are dangerous to keep around as pets. When they are let loose in a congregation, the dangers last long after their audition, and leave their wounds, which then leave scars, and then bad memories. When they began to circle me, I tried to play nice, say kind words to them, and pet their knobby heads. Almost lost a few fingers with that last attempt.
It’s best to avoid alligators in churches. There they tend to be even more deadly, and can destroy everyone who is present. My own efforts to befriend them resulted in their becoming even more destructive. I learned finally to get out of there and find safe haven elsewhere. The ancient church alligator grinned a huge toothy smile of joy upon my departure. I later learned that it consequently attacked the congregation, with the help of a bevy of younger beasts. Stay away from churches that nurture alligators. They are bad news.
As for alligators in swamps, when they remain in their natural habitats I have no complaints.