They'll probably think "Goat Boy" is the team mascot.

My fellow Missourians, we have an image problem here. If you happen to be visiting folks in the U.K. soon, don't be surprised if they hustle Sparky out of sight as soon as you enter the door. And don't bother mentioning that one of our proudest civic attractions is our world-famous St. Louis Zoo.

We need an animal-decency crusade, and we need it now.

Maybe this is a job for the Post-Dispatch. After all, the paper sank to a new low in the history of metropolitan American journalism when it devoted the entire front page of Saturday's tabloid edition to the breaking story "Raja Breaks in New Digs at Zoo." All that was missing was the sign "Welcome to St. Louis: Population 237."

But at least no one can deny the zoo-friendliness of our hometown paper. Now all we need to do is to frame the need for bestiality legislation in terms of a fight to protect the honor of Raja (an excellent elephant) and other sexually unprotected animals like him, and we'll have a series of "Imagine St. Louis" sections beating the drums for reform.

And I'll be right there with the Post for this campaign.

This is one time I'm for old-fashioned, decent American family values.

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