I know, the title contains a bad word. Sometimes, it has to be said.
It staggers me that despite our allegedly big brains, and our drive to make them bigger, better, last longer, be grand poobahs of the world or whatever it is we’re doing, we still don’t get that we shouldn’t be treating other living things as if they were garbage.
Here’s what triggered me this time. There’s a reason this blog used to be called “ecoquisitive.” I’m very inquisitive as to why we allow this to happen:
I realize quotes are often taken out of context. I also realize we like to hold animals to lower standards than we’d allow ourselves, most of the time; it’s very easy to think something doesn’t or shouldn’t feel if it can’t express itself the way we’re accustomed to, and plenty of people will argue that animals aren’t capable of the heights we can reach.*
If this is what the heights give us, give me the depths. I don’t see how this picture is anything other than what it is: The confines your food has been kept in, nearly immobilized, and unable to feel, breathe, react, thrive the way it naturally should. Because somewhere along the way, somebody thought it would be a great idea to pack living beings in coffins before they were killed, for that bigger, better, stronger output called money. And other people agreed, or turned a blind eye and let it happen.
I don’t pretend to have all the answers. I’m not here to tell you what YOU should do. I’m also just as guilty of ignorance, inconsistency, and of turning a blind eye. I’m still a meat-eater, despite my attempts vegetarian-wise.
Yet things like this get me that much closer to ditching the meat entirely, because until and unless organic or proper free-range animals are the norm instead of the exception (for unfortunately, money is still a factor), I’m paying for an animal that’s been treated like this. I’m ingesting an animal that’s gone through a living hell.
Animals have less choices than we do, less ways to protest, less ways to “speak” their pain. Looking at this picture sickens me, yet it’s one of the milder ones, and nothing compared to what this pig, other pigs, and other animals are going through.
And I don’t want that kind of pain in my body.
*From above: Of course this goes for all animals–children with autism, persons with dementia, others who are nonverbal–it’s too easy to bundle the situation away instead of taking the time needed to help someone express herself or figure out what they need. But all this deserves its own post.
ETA: A mild antidote–it never does to forget there are awesome people in the world (short video): https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=450381551648588