A Very Proper Gander This piece by James Thurber is satirizing groundless and preposterous nationalism or even jingoism. He is satirizing the, accuse and destroy, ask questions later attitude of the government or people within the Government. The Other animals mishearing something said about the gander get into and uproar and whip them selves into a frenzy about how the gander is against the "Flag" and the "bomb" and anything involving their way of life and government. So they set about to destroy or at least banish the Gander with out checking to see if what was said was accurate or legitimate.
To make these animals the negative end he paints them as irrational and paranoid. In the first few lines when someone says "He is a very proper Gander" and the other animal mishears and hears propaganda and then jumps to all these conclusions about the evils of the Gander, It's absurd.
It is used over and over again. Like when the Mob of animals go to drive the gander out is completely absurd. It almost sound like the villagers with torches going to drive out the monster. To show the ignorance of the animals he also uses animals that are not known for their intelligence, the chicken, the duck, the hen, not exactly the exactly the thinkers of the animal kingdom. There is also a big sarcastic line in the end, "Anybody who you and your wife thinks is going to overthrow the government by violence must be driven out of the country." I think this is incredibly valid especially today in the wake of 9-11. There are lots of instances around the country of people going, "You're Muslim you are going to destroy our way of life, so you must die!" It is ridiculous. Like that guy who drove his car into the masque. No foundation other then, I heardÃ¢ÂÂ¦. I was involved in a church event that was trying to educate Catholics about Islam. A couple actually thought the point of the meeting was to demonize Islam and ban them from the neighborhood, which needless to say it wasn't it was o do the exact opposite. It shows how frighteningly close this mentality can come.