Saturday, June 24, 2017

Waking Up to Who We Really Are

Guy with his 12 year old granddaughter. They are going to the zoo today; they go regularly. Without going in to details, I am in a situation of being restricted on offering personal feelings or opinions…
So (and I absolutely swear I am not exaggerating one bit) this little girl says that a few years ago the zoo had an elephant who “wouldn’t eat.”
They went back a few months later and she remembered to ask about the elephant…she was told they had to “put him down” because he got so sick.
So they have another elephant. She says “I rode on the elephant, I sat in the front and I tried to pet him but I couldn’t reach from the seat.” She goes on to tell me this elephant was “fine” and “not sick at all” but they went back once again a few months later and that elephant had died too.
She is very interested in the animals, she shows me she has pictures of a pig with her babies on her phone.
She is sad about the elephant and states “she wasn’t very old either…?”
I stand there almost sick. I feel like that was me. We didn’t have phones of course when I was growing up, but I have always felt protective and loving towards animals. I am sad for her. I say something like, “Yes, I know they do not do very well in captivity”…
I wish someone had *saved* me back then…
There is a local sanctuary for farm animals – ironically in the same town as said zoo. I vaguely say “I have never been there [that zoo], but I have been to the farm sanctuary that is in the same town.”
He asks me about it.
She loves animals and he is interested. I give him the name.
I hope someday she understands who she is inside and rejects the societal conditioning that deadens our hearts to causing these wonderful animals to suffer so much for our claims of “love” for them.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

All Nonvegan Choices Cause Suffering

Dog fighters, trophy hunters, those who eat dogs and cats, people who wear fur, people who run puppy mills, slaughterhouse workers, etc., these actions are all the same as the nonvegans actions most of us encounter every day…the reasoning and results are not different. In all of these actions fellow sentient beings suffer greatly and usually die a horrible death for self-serving *pleasure* when we could easily choose otherwise.

The only people who recognize sentience in entirety are vegans, otherwise people are selectively choosing which individuals they *recognize* (love/protect) and which ones are *unworthy* (kill, abuse, harm, exploit, enslave). When looked at objectively this is clearly discrimination based on irrelevant criteria and societal conditioning.

Speciesism is a form of discrimination. For people to believe there is any difference in the mass barbaric slaughter of billions (yes, billions) of animals just because they are (or aren’t) a dog or a cat is absolutely asinine. We send people to jail for doing to dogs and cats what is routine and legal and completely dismissed (and paid for) by the public on *farms* every day. Only because people have been told by good advertising (which they choose to continue to believe rather than consider actual facts) that a cow’s pain and suffering does not matter. Or a chicken. Pig. Some places even a dog. Cat. Whale. Etc.

What is being done to our fellow earthlings is completely unacceptable and immoral, and somewhere inside we all know it. The decent among us, anyways. This is why few can actually watch what they are willing to pay for…which one would think would be a giant *red flag* that we actually do not consider these acts moral. But they simply keep it out of their sight. The intense suffering they inflict without thought…the weak write-off to “everyone does it.” A denial of all that is rational. Things we easily knew as children become unrecognizable as adults. Further indoctrinating children to practices they would be psychologically harmed to witness; that will likely negatively affect their health; that will harm the planet they live on, the air they breathe, the water they drink…all based only on long-standing myths that are generally accepted as true but are simply NOT true.

Nonvegans actions not only fund/support appalling depravity, but often they are also avid defenders and rationalizers. They turn their backs on their own participation but are quick to point fingers at one who kills a lion or a gorilla, abuses a dog, wears a fur coat, etc. Selective speciesism. A failure to recognize one’s own participation and bias.

It is ALL unnecessary cruelty and the infliction of avoidable suffering. To understand I am *right* all I have to do is glance over at my dog. I wouldn’t hurt her for all the money in the world. To harm her, to stab her to eat her/use her/exploit her would not be rational to me, nor within my moral framework. But somehow nonvegans think another’s sentience is different? Pick and choose who we inflict pain upon today? Whose life doesn’t matter? Donate to a shelter but pay to abuse a pig? How to do you speak rationally to things so preposterous? How do you explain to those who insist on normalized lies that the human body gets virtually no benefit from eating animals and are more likely to make them sick? Facts are lost in the visceral defense mechanism employed by many of those affected [cognitive dissonance] and the conversation frequently turns to cavemen or deserted island scenarios (e.g. pure silliness). How do you reason with blind entrenchment?

I guess you really do have to *wake up* for yourself, but jeez, once you can *see* clearly it is hard to even fathom how damn ridiculous and ignorant I once was. I didn’t think I was cruel to others or exploited them. I actually thought my body required animal proteins to live. I didn’t think I was a violent animal abuser – I thought I loved animals! And I guess I must have believed in *humane slaughter* at one time because I certainly never questioned it. I had fully accepted the lies too. But when someone finally told me the truth? When someone was KIND enough to me to tell me what I was doing? The shock of reality after doing some basic research? As awful as it was to *find out* the truth of what I had been supporting, it allowed me to truly choose the kind of ethical, decent human I want to be and I am forever grateful for that.

I was not an ethical person when participating in such things. Period. No excuses. It isn’t possible because what I know to be true is absolutely terrible and unethical to support in any way, shape, or form. Ignorance is no longer a valid excuse in our information age. There is simply no excuse to behave so badly and I do not try to justify my previous adherence to societal groupthink and lack of thinking for myself. While veganism is NOT about me, I am thankful every single moment of every single day that veganism has allowed me to be a better person, to live the life I would have ALWAYS chosen if the truth hadn’t been hidden from me.

I glance over at my beloved dog as I type…and I know without a fraction of doubt what is *good* and *right* and *just*. I am her guardian, her protector, but she does not belong to me. Her life is her own and there will never be another like her. Every sentient being is an irreplaceable individual with a life and personality exclusive to them, and their suffering is just as significant. I am unequivocally certain that veganism is the moral baseline for how we should treat the other equally sentient beings we share this planet with.

Nonvegan choices are all equal in the choice to harm someone. If you are not vegan please go vegan today.