In reference to Steve - 27 May 2012
Thank you for your words. I do understand the sadness of being rejected for even mentioning animal concerns even when it is not done in a preachy way. I remember a bunch of years ago when there was a recall of dog food from China that had killed a number of animals. Three of us from my church were together, all of us living with companion animals, and 2 of us were discussing how terrible it was. But one person got angry at the 2 of us for speaking of this as an outrage because we should not be wasting time on animal concerns when thousands of people were dying in Iraq. I was truly shocked that someone would react that way, someone who was an extremely caring and compassionate person and who was one of my best friends. I said that concern for animals in no way required one to care less about Iraq war victims. This wasn't even a vegetarian issue. Lots of meat eaters love their companion animals. But she was angry at us and then I felt anger that she cared so little for the suffering of companion animals when she had a dog herself. I recently got a very similar reaction from an evangelical friend who is opposed to abortion as I am and who accused me of not caring about the unborn because I expressed concern about cruelty to animals. I said to her that caring about one doesn't mean I don't care about the other also. I realize people here likely differ on issues like war and abortion, but my point is that from both the liberal and the conservative side, I was accused by Christians of having bad priorities simply because I expressed concern for the suffering of animals, like that meant I didn't care about anyone else.
I continue to be astounded and frustrated that suggesting people make a fairly easy for most lifestyle change is seen as such a terrible thing. Most people like far more veggie foods than I do as a picky eater and would not have a hard time abstaining from flesh foods, but they won't even try. When we have Creation Care discussions at church and people go on about the light bulbs and the evils of fossil fuels and all of that, I mention how 18% of greenhouse gases come from animal agriculture, and much of the water pollution. There is an awkward silence and then they return to telling us about the importance of lifestyle changes to save the planet, ignoring the lifestyle change of giving up meat.
Do I contradict myself?
Very well then I contradict myself,
(I am large, I contain multitudes.) ~~~ Walt Whitman