Stephanie Ernst on AnimalRights.Change.org
Prepare yourselves for the frustrating, fellow animal advocates. The spoof music video here is being circulated as a promo for an effort called "I Want a Goat." (The only words more frequent in the music video than "I want a goat" are "motherfucker" and "motherfucking.") The video features two groups who deserve our consideration: villagers from eastern India who are living in poverty and sweet-faced young goats, who the lyrics shout will bring in "all those profits when [villagers] sell [their] kin." Indeed, there's a graphic depicting the goats reproducing more and more babies, all to be sold.
The person behind the project, which encourages people to donate money to buy these goats for the village, explains, "Families who breed goats can earn a good profit selling the kids in the local market." In other words, the goats are merely baby-producing machines in this misguided plan. The mothers give birth, the babies whom they love -- love -- are taken away to be cruelly slaughtered for meat, and the milk meant for the babies is consumed or sold by humans, and the cycle repeats, until the mother wears out and is slaughtered too. The whole premise of this project and those like it -- which mirror the larger dairy-industry system that impregnates goats and cows, kills and sells their babies as "lamb" and "veal," and steals the milk -- is to benefit human families by outright tormenting nonhuman families.
Our fellow humans absolutely deserve our consideration and help, but these practices aren't humane whether they're happening on U.S. farms or being set up in other nations, and whether they are even sustainable and good for humans is highly questionable (see next paragraph). The intentions may be good, but the reality is cruel. We can help our fellow humans without using our fellow animals like tools, without depending on a cycle of torment and killing for mothers and their babies.
For more, on the issues and alternatives, see Don't Gift a Goat from Animal Place and the following related post here from last year: Really Want to Help People? Trash the Send-an-Animal Catalogs. See also why the World Land Trust opposes goat-giving schemes.
VegFam and HIPPO (Help International Plant Protein Organisation) are some additional humane non-animal programs to which you can consider donating. I want to say there is another significant, well-established program in this category, but if so, its name is eluding me, and digging around online hasn't helped so far. So readers, if you have other suggestions, please leave them in the comments.
And if you want to help world hunger in general, please remember that our insistence on eating animals and animal products is contributing significantly to the hunger crisis:
- Want to Stop World Hunger? Stop Eating Animals
- Plant-Based Hunger Solutions: Feeding More With Less, Part 1
- Plant-Based Hunger Solutions: Feeding More With Less, Part 2--Scarcity and Distribution
For more information and resources, see The Heifer Project: Animal Gifting: Inhumanity in the Name of Humanity.
Donations to these organizations provide LIFE to people!