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Animals In Print
The On-Line Newsletter

16 September 2001 Issue


nl-16sep2001-remember.jpg (14461 bytes)nl-16sep2001-remember.jpg (4134 bytes)Editorial

SEPTEMBER 11, 2001

Today's issue of Animals In Print will not contain the usual AR articles.  I feel compelled to discuss the horrific tragedy that has befallen our nation, our people, and the other innocent creatures that share our homeland.

First I would like to take a few minutes to express my feelings of empathy and to offer my sympathies and support to any of our readers that suffered a personal loss.

nl-16sep2001angelFF.jpg (34073 bytes)I have had a hard time trying to actually articulate my feelings.  Our world as we know it has changed. How we will live in the future very much depends on how we now handle this outrage.  What was once normal will never be again?

As I was struggling with how to articulate this special issue I heard a song on the radio, the lyrics went something like this:

"I was young, He was old, We were the same age.  We played fetch, He licked my face, He was my best friend ....  Then it goes on to say he knew his friend would leave him someday and when his beloved friend, his companion dog passed away he felt pain for the first time.

That song just broke me up...  I felt the pain of losing one's innocence.   I felt this pain for all living sentient beings.  I felt the suffering of the victims of this damnable attack on the helpless.

In a previous issue of Animals In Print, "Standing Tall or Falling Down." I said:

"Humans do not see that rather than being the pinnacle of living creatures, we are unfortunately the most shameless, vain, greedy, power happy, destructive life force to ever inhabit this world we call earth.  If we do not end the rape of this planet and its inhabitants we will destroy our planet."

I didn't realize how close to this future reality I had ventured.

How did this all happen and how did it happen here?

How could we, the most powerful nation in the world, become so vulnerable?

The answer is easy, the casual use and acceptance of "Violence."

No one is immune to violence.  From the beginning of our collective histories people have used violence to obtain their goals.  We can start with caveman and move forward.  As separate peoples and nations we have evolved and emerged into many cultures and lifestyles, all of these obtained through violent acts, the most common being wars.

Violence is so ingrained in our very way of life we actually ignore and accept most of it.  We live our pleasant fantasy while hideous violence surrounds us.   Blinding and not so secret "hiddey" holes where atrocities take place daily are ignored.

Look at how we live, all of us.  Our food, the meat that sits on many tables.   How did it get there? VIOLENCE.

The clothes, shoes and accessories we wear and use, such as leather and fur, VIOLENCE.

Look at the entertainment we enjoy, the circus, the zoos, rodeos, bullfights, dog races, horseraces, etc., VIOLENCE.

Look at the products we buy in the store, the medicines we use, all tested on live helpless animals, VIOLENCE.

Look at the companion animals that are disposable or used as breeding machines, VIOLENCE.

VIOLENCE is everywhere, we cannot conduct our lives without seeing its presence, yet we really don't see the suffering.

We live our lives scorning others different from us, race, religion, ethnic backgrounds are prime targets.

We ridicule other humans that look different from what we feel is perfect in our eyes.  We destroy others souls, their very life's essence with this ridicule.   Sometimes these people strike back, once again VIOLENCE.

Turn on the TV, what news stories make the headlines?  Once again VIOLENCE.

We've been feeding on this mindset from the beginning of time.  Can we really be that shocked that it finally revisited our safe haven?  I don't think so.

nl-16sep2001-beijing.jpg (13324 bytes)nl-16sep2001-india.jpg (17707 bytes)All over the world people mourned and expressed their sorrow over the terrorist attack and the loss of human life. (in Beijing-left and in India-right)

On September 11, 2001, I watched all the events unfold before my eyes.  As I watched, I noticed as people rallied to help each other, there was no prejudices, no whites, no blacks, no different races, just humans coming together to help.

That it took this vicious act to make us embrace and care for each other is sad.   Yet out of the stench of this violent attack we have risen together as one people, working unselfishly to help and ease the suffering of the victims.

nl-16sep2001soccer_germany.jpg (15287 bytes)nl-16sep2001-kosovo.jpg (23989 bytes)The German Soccer Team refused to play when they heard the news - left, and in Kosovo they mourned behind our flag - right. 

Today we are one body, one people.  We cry together for the loss of our people and the agonies of their families.  We have found the beauty inside our souls. This glorious embrace of compassion and kindness radiates throughout our country.  We are at our best: giving, caring, gentle beings with our injured and vulnerable peers.   Fierce protectors of the helpless and proud supporters of those that now act unselfishly to find and save any survivors.

nl-16spe2001-dresden.jpg (17033 bytes)nl-16sep2001-jakarta.jpg (28946 bytes)The face of sorrow in Dresden - left, and expressions of sympathy at the U. S. Embassy in Jakarta - right, and even the kremlin flew their flags at half mast - below right

Now as we rise to these higher planes of thinking and respecting each other, we must act cautiously. We indeed need and must stop these acts of terrorism, not just upon humans, but also the other creatures that share this earth.  nl-16sep2001-kremlin.jpg (8261 bytes)I hope as we come together as one people, we recognize also the suffering of all the innocents, that we can move forward to stop the abuse and exploitation of all creatures.  Take this wonderful compassion we now feel and spread it around.  Life is a gift and its very miracle must be shared with all living beings.  We must learn to share our space, to delight in other life forms, let love be our driving force.  Not love of power, money nor self, but love of all kindred souls.  This earth can be Eden or it can be "Enden".  Chose now to be vulnerable, to reach out, to speak out in compassion, to live to love and respect our precious earth and fellow beings and creatures.

Let's pray that one day people will mourn over the animals in this same way!

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