Once drones lawyered up by the thousands. It was just a precaution, they responded, when questions about the large number of them feeling the need to seek legal representation began to be asked. Unaccustomed to “invasive queries” regarding what role drones actually played in the day-to-day workings of a bee colony or whether the burgeoning increase in their numbers and their correspondingly mounting demands for privileged consideration might ultimately prove a drain upon the resources of the hive and trigger a catastrophic colony collapse, the drones preferred to leave to counsel any defense of their “inherent rights” and the life of luxury they’d come to enjoy. Plus any decisions on filing multiple suits for defamation of character against all and sundry who had the audacity to object to the place of drones in the status quo. “Our clients take deep offense at the suggestion their behavior represents any drain whatsoever on the well-being of the hive!” the lawyers declared in unison. “On the contrary, without the superior and important role played by drones above, none of the worker bees below would prosper,” the lawyers continued, again in unison. To the overwhelming majority of these worker bees toiling to meet the hive’s every physical need and to safeguard its very survival, such a claim might have been dismissed as a bad joke, were they not too busy at their tasks for even a forced smile. And few found the strength at the end of a long day’s toil so the likes of drones could carry on with the sweet lives they led to find much at all about the situation amusing. The strain of holding an entire life system together while nonstop demands of “Work harder! Increase productivity!” showered down from the drones rendered sleep a brief yet welcome respite. In their dreams, not a few worker bees built a different hive. One where their communal efforts were more appreciated in their own right and not dismissed as a sign of personal limitation or low ambition. A world of cooperation where sacrifice by equal for equal replaced competition like that between queen bee types engaged in lethal attacks upon other queen bee types in their struggle to get to the top and devoid as well of pampered drones with their incessant calls for more and more sacrifice from worker bees and less and less from drones “or else the consequences would surely be horrendous for the hive.” “What consequences?” a slumbering worker bee might now and then be heard to murmur. “The doom of the entire hive! Doom!” the ever-vigilant lawyers for the drones would immediately declare in a chorus as though the answer was self-evident. “Oh really?” all worker bees might shrug as one. “Without fail! Absent the drones, there’d be no production of easy flowing honey whatsoever!” “That old con again?” each worker bee might then smile to itself while falling back into a snooze for a precious minute or two more before their life of toil resumed. “As if drones don’t owe everything to us. As if they create anything themselves beyond self-indulgence, more self-promotion to protect their prideful place, and more of us to deal with the consequences.” And then it was time for the worker bees to rise and get back to the real business of the hive yet again.
Copyright © 2020 by Geoffrey Grosshans