The Tortoise and the Hare – The Real Moral


Everyone knows the story of the tortoise and the hare. The hare mocks the slow-moving tortoise for, you know, being a slow-moving tortoise. The tortoise announces that he will be able to best the hare in a race because of his determination. The hare laughs and accepts the challenge and then it’s go time. After the race begins, the tortoise plods along doggedly and the hare bolts on ahead. He gets so far ahead, he takes a nap. He falls asleep too long and then awakes to see that the tortoise is crossing the finish line. Oh noes!

The moral we are given is that “Slow and steady wins the race.” The implications of the fable are all over the place, actually. It teaches children not to be braggarts, that they can accomplish anything if they set their minds to it, hard work can take you as far as raw skill, etc. etc. But if you read the fable as written (which is essentially the same as my summary above, and just about the same length), the moral should really be adjusted. I propose the following:

That’s what you get for being a douchebag.

Let’s be honest here, the tortoise should never have won that race. The story makes abundantly clear the hare was going to DESTROY the tortoise. He took a NAP in the middle of the race. Slow and steady wasn’t going to win jack. Slow and steady got beaten like a kid with no arms in a tetherball tournament. Slow and steady didn’t win that race, douchebaggery lost it. It may be a harsher lesson for kids to learn, but it’s still pretty valuable. They need to learn that the path of the douche is the road to a slapdown.

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  1. #1 by Trent Kuzman on August 12, 2009 - 11:36 AM

    I always preferred the Looney Toons telling of the tale. Hares are doucebags and tortoises are damn dirty cheaters.

  2. #2 by Alishia on August 11, 2013 - 7:06 PM

    This explanation made me throw up… You’re ridiculous!
    The story teaches slow and steady wins the race, but in reality the rabbit still won. The tortoise was focused on only one goal, while the rabbit went around doing his thing… The rabbit actually enjoyed life and noticed the little things in life.

    • #3 by cece on November 4, 2013 - 1:00 PM

      Are you foreign to English or just a horrible bad troll? That’s what you got out of that story? Which one did you read, some watered down Disney Princess version? The hare made fun of the tortoise pretty hard for being so slow and that’s why the race even started. The fact is, if the hare never stopped to take a nap for a few hours because he tired himself out trying to show off his top speed and wear himself down he would have been at the finish line wayyyyyyyy before tortoise even got there.

      Stop trolling, honestly

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