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I Love My Pets, But Still Eat Meat. What’s Wrong with That?

May 9, 2016
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Wikimedia Commons

Wikimedia Commons

Source Free From Harm
By Robert Grillo

Have you ever heard someone exclaim, “I love my pets, but still eat meat. What’s wrong with that?” or “There’s nothing wrong with that!” So what is wrong with differentiating the animals we claim to love from the ones we stick forks into because we like the way they taste?

Our culturally-engrained assumptions
The statement or question itself reveals a lifetime of cultural conditioning that promotes the view of chickens, turkeys, cows and pigs as worthy of a far inferior standard of treatment and use when compared with our companion animals, as if raising and eating farmed animals were a foregone conclusion rather than a conscious, daily choice. But anyone who claims to give farmed animals even the slightest moral consideration must first admit that we are all products of this cultural conditioning which perpetuates the myth that they are worth nothing more than the products derived from their flesh and secretions. Many of the most influential narratives in popular films, novels, TV shows and food brands we grew up with reinforce this same message. And, as adults, we are rarely, if ever, challenged to think critically about those assumptions. The first step in taking the issue of eating meat seriously is to question what we’ve been taught.

Farmed animals are fundamentally like cats and dogs
Anyone who has spent some time with a farmed animal on a sanctuary or with caregivers who value their animals as companions rather than commodities can plainly see that there is fundamentally nothing different about these relationships with chickens, turkeys, cows or pigs than with the relationships most of us have with our traditional cat and dog companions. All species of domesticated animals, by virtue of their total dependence on us, rely on our good will to properly care for them. And if properly cared for, they often respond by bonding with their caregivers, seeking their affection, attention and recognition. Regardless of what we think about a species or an individual member of a species, each individual animal — including each individual chicken, turkey, cow and pig— cares about what happens to them. All birds, mammals, and fish (and various other marine animals) are highly sentient and socially-complex beings, with a strong sense of self, will to live and an equally strong aversion to suffering and death. They will fight for their lives as vociferously as would our cats and dogs. And beyond basic sentience, farmed animals have individual personalities just like our cats and dogs. So there is no moral justification for treating them differently.

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in some cultures dogs
and cats are food
yes, we all think
that is beyond rude.
but cows are sacred
in other cultures too.
so eating them?
the wrong thing
to do.
please extend your
love to all species
of animals on earth
in the eyes of
the creator…
they are all precious
and of equal worth!

Karen Lyons Kalmenson

 

8 Comments leave one →
  1. May 9, 2016 8:25 am

    Reblogged this on Spiritual challenges .

    Liked by 1 person

  2. karenlyonskalmenson permalink
    May 9, 2016 8:36 am

    in some cultures dogs
    and cats are food
    yes, we all think
    that is beyond rude.
    but cows are sacred
    in other cultures too.
    so eating them?
    the wrong thing
    to do.
    please extend your
    love to all species
    of animals on earth
    in the eyes of
    the creator…
    they are all precious
    and of equal worth!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. May 9, 2016 9:27 am

    There is no difference between a cow or a cat, between a chicken or a dog… (and with you I dare say there isn’t no difference between a human being or any other animal!!!) 🙂 I just started my fasting programm, this time based only on vegetable soups… in 10 days I’ll feel like reborn. My husband and I we do that since 6-7 years and each time is a wonderful feeling!
    Take care :-)c

    Liked by 1 person

    • May 10, 2016 6:56 am

      Thank you so much for your comments, my dear, there really is no difference. I wouldn’t eat a cow just like I wouldn’t eat a cat, all are equal and deserving of compassion, respect, and care!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. May 10, 2016 6:45 am

    Thank you for this! This is an issue I will never comprehend!!

    Liked by 2 people

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