Jacqui (jacqui) wrote,

The Plague On Your Plate

God I'm so upset, I just wrote the longest, most impassioned post, about how angry and upset I feel about the slaughter of so many animals suspected of having even the remotest possible chance of having come into contact with hoof and mouth disease. As usual I got signed off and hadn't saved it. I don't want to go over all of this again, it's so upsetting to me. Well, I guess I have to surrender to the fact that it wasn't meant to be, and that whatever I write now will be better. Could it be that it wasn't wise to say that if animals on my farm were targeted, I would erect barricades and wait by my post with a shotgun? Well, I would.

My heart just goes out to these poor terrified animals, and whatever owners are unwilling to cooperate with this evil, that decides to round them all up and "cull" them by fire. Can you imagine being rounded up with other people and burned alive? Do people think animals suffer less than we do? Do they have less right to life than we, that we can do this to them? Don't answer that, I'll simply hate you for it, and don't quote the Bible at me because I don't believe in a book that subjugates one form of life for the benefit of another.

This is a Fucking hellish nightmare! Are you people watching this? Have you seen the images of cows lying dead, their legs in the air, fire all around them? Have you seen the sweet innocent sheep being led away from their farms? Do you know that hundreds of thousands of animals have been slaughtered but that 95 percent of the animals infected recover within weeks? Are you aware that a vaccine exists that would substantially reduce the incidence of this disease but that it's use was discontinued for purely economic reasons? I guess I shouldn't be any more upset that animals are being killed over a disease than I am that they are killed for consumption. There just aren't enough antidepressants available for me to dull the pain I feel over this.

What about confinement and quarantine? What about humane methods of killing the sick animals. Fire? Are we seriously watching this on television and then going on with our lives, as if this is a necessary evil, as if it won't happen here, as if this doesn't matter because it isn't happening to us? Would you let them do this to your pets, to your dogs and cats? What's the difference? Cows, and sheep, and pigs are just as capable of feeling, just as deserving of compassion as a cat or a dog. Do you think they suffer any less, feel any less love for their young? If you do you would be wrong, way wrong. It's all in how people frame it because they don't want to feel guilty. They aren't clean enough for you to have in your homes but you'll put their very flesh in your mouths. Anyone see the contradiction in that? It's like the stupid vain women who still wear fur, saying mink are mean little animals, when they aren't. Mean enough to kill, but not mean enough to wear as a symbol of status and prestige, a mean little mink fur coat. Imagine an ad campaign based around that. How about an image of a sexy woman in a garter belt and heels French kissing a cow? Does that make you yearn for a steak?

I guess because people eat cows and pigs and sheep it makes it easier to look the other way when they are being slaughtered for another reason. We don't even call flesh by it's proper name, that's how detached we've become. Bloody ground up cow is so much more palatable when it's called steak and hamburger, blood and fat sounds so much better as gravy, dead pigs are pork, and suffering, anemic, bottle-fed baby cows, who were taken away from the comfort of their mother's at birth, and forced to live their lives, too weak to stand, in shit-filled crates, are veal. People who eat veal make me sick. Take your names off my friend's list over this, I don't care.

Have you looked into a cows eyes lately, a sweet, grass-eating cow's eyes? They're huge and round and they have big long lashes. Have you pet one lately? Their fur is soft, and if they trust you, they'll lick you like a cat. No wonder people don't mind that they're being burned alive in Europe, they're going to be slaughtered anyway for tonight's TV dinner. Here, have a cow with one of your stupid sitcoms, pat yourself on the back while you watch some nature program or something on Animal Planet. After all you didn't kill it, you didn't create the consumer demand for it, it was just there at the restaurant or the market. You didn't even see the blood when it was cooked, or if you did you looked the other way. Oh was that a bit of gristle you bit into, a bit of bone, that's okay, it's just a big, beautiful, vegetarian cow, whose miserable shortened life, spent in a crowded enclosure, while it fed on the cheapest possible combination of hormones and bone meal, made from other slaughtered cows, while waiting to be shot in the head with a bolt that may or may have not stunned it enough for it to not feel the adrenaline rush of terror and pain, while having it's throat slit, and then being strung up by it's hoof to bleed to death, as it moved along a conveyor belt, you are not personally fucking responsible for.

My friend Esther told me that her Mother used to tell her about a time in Mexico in the 1940s when a disease had been found, miles and miles away in another city. Government officials came to her little pueblo and told all of the people that they were going to confiscate and slaughter their animals as there was a likelihood that some of them might have contracted the disease as well. They offered to give them money in exchange, but many of the people objected and hid their cows, pigs and sheep in the milpas, the cornfields. One of the town's most popular animals, a favored cow, who was allowed to wander freely, was spared in this way. Her owner hid with her in the fields until the circling helicopters went away and the fires died down. A neighbor who reluctantly sold her pig to the men in the trucks, was overjoyed to find her scratching at the door a day later. This friendly little pig who had been treated as a favored pet, had dug her way out of the temporary enclosure, and run all the way home, a journey she had never taken before. Of course none of the animals who had been hidden and spared ever came down with this disease.

How can we send a Fucking orbiting space craft, on a rocket, to Mars, for two hundred and ninety-seven million dollars, but not be able to find a less devastating and more humane way to deal with this disease?!? It's about the money. It always is. Come on?!? Do you trust your government? Do you believe what the agriculture officials and the media are saying?

Do you know that on the basis of hysteria and hunches, we are killing animals here in the US right now, and not one single one of them has had the disease? It's like a Goddamned witch hunt, "We'll just throw her in the river and see if she floats. Oops, she sunk, so sorry." Who ordered this scorched earth animal slaughter policy? Do you think people aren't fighting this in Europe? Of course they are, but our media don't see fit to show it to us, burning cows laying dead in fields sure, but suffering farmers trying to hold off the people who have come to kill their animals? I only heard one tiny piece of news about it and that was on the radio.

All I have left to say is don't come near my home, because life is life for me, my animals are my family, and I won't roll over and allow anyone to harm them. I don't hold with, for the good of the many the sake of the few, our government is rife with stupidity, deceit, self preservation, corporate greed, and self interest, in a world where it is legal to take the head off of one monkey and sew it onto the body of another monkey, it would take more than an edict handed down from on high to make me willingly surrender anyone I love.

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