MEAT IS MURDER, FOR THE ANIMALS, THE ENVIRONMENT AND THE CLIMATE
When I first stopped eating meat in 1982 it was for two reasons; partly because I didn’t like the factory farming system and also because it felt ethically and morally wrong to slaughter sentient mammals and birds for food when there were alternatives.
In those days climate change wasn’t on the agenda and carbon dioxide emissions weren’t considered crucial. Yet the UN asked us over two years ago to move towards a meat and dairy product free diet to save the world from the worst effects of global warming.
How many people do you know that listened to this advice?
Perhaps you never read about it at the time? Well I’m telling you now – meat is murder, for the animals, environment and the climate.
Professor Edgar Hertwich, the lead author of the report, said, “Animal products cause more damage than producing construction minerals such as sand or cement, plastics or metals. Biomass and crops for animals are as damaging as burning fossil fuels.”
As I learned more about farming methods I became more and more sure it was the right decision, especially when the Thatcher government allowed farmers to feed rendered carcasses of dead animals to cows to save money and increase profits. This terrible policy, for which I believe nobody was prosecuted or even censured, led to the deaths of over four and half million cattle in the UK alone and 200 humans globally.
Bovine spongiform encephalopathy or BSE was popularly known as Mad Cow Disease and led to British beef being banned for export to the EU for a decade.
It seems to me that this disease is indicative of all that is wrong with the present economic system. Profits come first, before health, happiness or morality. A small group, either farmers or capitalists, make decisions that affect millions or billions of others without caring for the outcomes and with the masses treated like farm animals.
As George Orwell showed in Animal Farm, we are living on a huge factory farm where we are the animals – our worth is measured by how much work we can do for the system and when we are no longer economically productive we’re put out to pasture in old folk’s homes, or left to rot on inadequate pensions. Those with disabilities have their benefits cut, even when it’s obvious these people cannot get jobs, while the media push propaganda that the poor are little better than wild animals that have no value to society and therefore can be safely ignored.
Well over 200 years ago, Jonathan Swift – the greatest satirist these islands has produced, wrote his ‘Modest Proposal’ which suggested poor folk’s children should be fattened up and sold as food for the rich.
It caused a great controversy then, but really, what’s all the fuss about? 30,000 kids die each and every day – that in itself shows we don’t give a shit about human life or we’d all be up in arms and most people don’t even mention it. People in this country are more concerned that some so-called princess’s tits are shown in a foreign magazine. Remember, tits evolved for feeding babies, not for selling newspapers and magazines.
So what’s the difference between eating humans and pigs, cows and sheep? It cannot be solely down to intelligence because it’s clear mammals are highly aware beings that feel pain and become upset when their young are taken away from them. If birds, fish and other animals are highly intelligent and resourceful, as recent studies have amply shown, then nobody could argue pigs are stupid enough to be slaughtered willy-nilly.
In this country we don’t eat horses, cats and dogs – why? In France folk feast on horsemeat and in parts of Asia dog is considered to be very tasty. Click here for online store. Only last week I had a conversation with a chap who told me that dog meat is quite sweet and unlike other more commonly devoured animals.
Apologists for meat eating claim they couldn’t live without regular helpings of flesh and that it is a viable, humane industry. Whenever I hear the word ‘humane’ I cringe. If bestiality is so bad then killing and eating must be much worse – especially as there are alternatives. How can slaughtering millions of chickens, cows, pigs and sheep be anything other than a continuing massacre?
Have you ever been to a chicken factory farm? Go to one then see if you can still stomach your cheap poultry from Tesco. Perhaps you like your animals killed ritualistically by a rabbi or imam? Would you like your throat cut while hanging upside down? If carnivorous aliens landed and fancied a bit of you, would you still think it okay to eat other animals, or would you say, “Hold on, God created us special…”
If you claim to be ‘spiritually inclined’ how can you accept so much suffering to consume your steak, chop and quarter-pounders or watch children eat shit like chicken nuggets?
Humans are animals and most of us care deeply about our fellow beings, whatever species they are.
So when are the majority of our fellow humans going to wake up and treat other animals with the same respect?