As published in River Chronicle
April 18, 2015
Letter from Roberta about a Child Being Joyous about Killing a Fish
Your large photo on the cover of the issue of April 17-23
Is, to me, disturbing and sad. To see a young child smiling and appearing to take such joy from just having killed a fish shows the disregard that our culture has for the suffering of animals. Yes, fish are sentient beings, they enjoy a natural life and, yes, they do feel pain. Yes, we have a long history of catching fish both with hooks and nets and, yes, it is a family bonding activity. It is so omnipresent that most people might share in the child’s happiness just by viewing this photo. Some of us have looked at the way animals are used and have decided that, as Alice Walker wrote:
The animals of the world exist for their own reasons. They were not made for humans any more than black people were made for white, or women created for men.
Would you have published a photo of a child holding a chicken that she had just killed? Ten billion land animals are killed for food each year and an unknown number of fish. This adds up to the massive cruelty of our factory farming practices, great environmental damage and serious health consequences.
Children are not born wanting to harm animals – they are
taught. I hope that the River Chronicle will look at these activities
through a more sensitive lens and decide that they ought not to be glorified
or encouraged. There are many activities for children here in the Hudson
Valley that can be featured in your pages.
Coordinator, Mid-Hudson Vegetarian Society & Hudson Valley Vegans
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