Companion Vs. Other Animals
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Companion Vs. Other Animals
Comments by Erin - 3 Aug 2007
Alicia, I have sheep and goats, animals that are typically used for meat, they are my pets and raised as such, they are no different than my cats and dogs. They snuggle me, they love to be loved, they know my voice, they trust me. Pigs, cows, ANY animal will be loved and be a "pet" if allowed to be. They are no different than any domesticated animal. WE are the ones that label them as "non-domestic", which, for some reason makes people feel "better" about killing them and eating them.
I live in a heavily farmed area and have two good friends who raise animals for meat and/or milk. They know how I feel and we don't talk about it much but when the subject comes up, it always comes down to this- they have to consciously make an effort to keep distanced from these animals that they will eventually eat. They don't name them, they don't pet them, they have to "work" at seeing them only as a "product".
This proves to me that it is not natural for us to eat animals. It is "natural" for us to want to love them... and to me, there is something terribly wrong with forcing yourself to look at an animal in a certain way in order to be able to kill it and eat it. It's cowardly.
God did not plan it this way. I don't like the fact that they also teach their kids to "not get attached", this is the 4H philosophy. Stay distanced so when you kill it and eat it you don't feel so guilty. What a crock, is what I say.
When I have in depth conversations with my friends about this the truth always comes out. 99% of people could never kill an animal to eat it and if they had to they would be vegetarian. They don't want to know how the killing is done, they don't want to know about the suffering, ignorance is bliss, so they say. They just want their filet mignon, guilt-free. Such a copout. It's like animals that are raised for testing...as if the fact that this is "specifically" what they were raised for makes a bit of difference to them!!! Same with meat animals, "this is what they are raised for".....again, another way for people to make themselves feel better. I know my friends feel bad when they hear the horrors about factory farming, it makes them uncomfortable... surprisingly they bring the subject up occasionally and ask me for more information which leads me to believe that they "think" about it....some of them have stopped eating veal....that's not so hard....but to give meat up completey...now, that's just asking way too much.
So, in the end, in order to make ourselves feel better we "categorize" animals...those that are pets, those that are meat. Interestingly, different cultures view animals and their "purpose" differently. Proves the point I made earlier. So, if you're a cow and live in India, you're a lucky cow. If you're a cow and live in the US, not so lucky....it's all about our own selfish comfort, turn a blind eye, don't tell me how they're killed and how they suffer, just put it on my plate so I can enjoy it with no guilt.
To answer your question, we should regard all animal life the same because they are all the same. They feel emotion, love, pain, fear, familial instincts. Just because one is raised in a barn or in a cage in a laboratory and one is raised in the warmth and security of a loving home, we cannot assume that they "feel" any different. They don't. A cow on it's way to the slaughterhouse wants to live and be loved just as badly as the family pet. There is no difference here. WE create the difference in our own minds just to ease the guilt...bottom line.
Have a good day everyone.......
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