11-year-old protests prairie dog extermination at Lakewood city council

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LAKEWOOD, Colo. -- On Sunday she laid down crosses in an open space to protest the extermination of prairie dogs in her Lakewood neighborhood. On Monday, 11-year-old Cymbre Smith took her protest to a city council meeting.

Smith's protest began after awakening over the weekend to find a colony of prairie dogs near her home had been exterminated due to a request from a group of protesting neighborhoods.

Though many of the rodents are indeed disease investing, Smith conceded, there are ways to remove them from sensitive areas that don't involved execution.

In addition to the processes of fencing and introducing hawks to areas where prairie dogs are not wanted, Smith offered the following suggestion to the Lakewood City Council:

“If all else fails, relocation can solve all your problems,” she said, reading from a script. “And it is really easy to contact some prairie-dog-loving volunteers and get them to relocate.”

While good-natured, Cymbre acknowledged that her suggestions “may be greatly flawed.” She also acknowledged that at 11 years old, she might not be the most-qualified to offer public policy ideas.

But she did not offer an apology or acknowledgement before issuing a simple question as part of her concluding statement:

“Is it really too much to ask for a short period of public comment before killing the human-like rodent that prairie dogs are?”