Sunday, February 9, 2014

It's Time to "Cull" Surplus Zookeepers

   I'm often told (not asked) by non-vegans, "Well, zoos are okay. They're for education. Every kid goes to the zoo." Well, some kids in Denmark got a special education recently when the zoo killed an 2-year old giraffe with a bolt gun and tore open the body to then feed the body parts to other animals. I'm not exaggerating here; the zoo encouraged children to watch the whole thing.

   Here's the article:

   Now, this is where I get heated and pissy. Let's start by saying that there's really no way around it: anyone involved in this act is a straight-up piece of shit who deserves to be mauled to death in the most torturous way possible by the animals that are in captivity at that zoo.

   Now that I've gotten that out of my system, let me tell you in a more specific way why this is so disturbing. 
   In no particular order:

  • The zoo uses the term "culling" and says-- in fact-- that it "culls" 20 or 30 animals a year. Yep, don't need the animals YOU chose to breed and then hold in captivity? Just kill them...
  • And be sure to use a bolt gun because you've got to preserve that meat for all the other animals. Who cares if the bolt gun is a brutal weapon? And who cares if the giraffe is forced to endure such pain?
  • Let me go back to point #1 and elaborate. PETA has a saying/mission which begins with the words "Animals Are Not Ours..." If only the zoo-- which is supposed to be a place that's kind to and good to animals-- understood this. In this case, a living being's life was seen as a commodity-- yes, at a ZOO. That poor giraffe should have been born in Africa-- living life as intended. Not in some fucked-up "zoo" that traps it in an enclosure and then decides the giraffe's life must end because they have "surplus" giraffes. This is where the non-vegans will say, "But at least he had a good life in the zoo. He would have been killed in Africa." Yeah, people, Africa is real life. It's evolution. Whether the giraffe got eaten the day after he was born or lived for years, he would have lived life as it should be lived. Not as the property of sociopathic zookeepers. 
  • By the way, I wonder how much money the zoo makes for this international breeding program? Money ALWAYS fucks animals.
  • Why wouldn't the zoo allow the giraffe to be sterilized?
           "If we just sterilize him, he will take up space for more genetically valuable giraffes," Holst (the zoo representative) answered. 

           People: do you hear the insanity? LISTEN to what you're saying. How do you justify that? How do you make your sick, twisted mind believe the garbage you spout?
  • I'm all for educating kids about the realities of animal abuse. They need to know what goes on. But this just teaches kids that it's okay to discard ... also known as KILL... unwanted animals. What kind of sick lesson is that for kids?
   I just don't get it. I'm not a religious person, but I often hope that animals like this giraffe go to heaven or some sort of better place-- where their lives are valuable and can be lived joyously. And I'm pretty sure there's a hell for all the people who cause so much of it for animals here.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Sea World's Sham

   The fall-out from Blackfish heats up! And today, Sea World placed ads in newspapers -- which garnered it even more attention from other media nationwide-- in which it tries to justify itself. 
   The first thing you'll notice that's missing is any admission that holding wild animals captive in tanks and forcing them to entertain people is fundamentally wrong. I get it-- their business model is based on this cruelty. 
   The remaining assertions are either debatable, lacking context, or irrelevant to the question of whether these poor animals should be forced to take part in this sick display of capitalism (whenever it involves money, the animals ALWAYS get fucked-- mark my words).

Sea World Assertion #1: SeaWorld does not capture killer whales in the wild.

THE TRUTH: IF that's true, it's because Sea World purchased Tilicum from Sealand (which stole him from the sea in 1983 when he was only two years old) in 1992. Worse yet, Sea World, your employees jack off Tilicum so that you can inseminate female whales-- many of them-- to get the "cute baby whales" you need. I guess buying captured whales from third parties and jacking off your whales is morally acceptable? 

By the way, the film never asserts that Sea World still captures whales.

Sea World Assertion #2: We do not separate killer whale moms and calves... Whales are only moved to maintain a healthy social structure.

THE TRUTH: Sea World HAS separated calves (old or young) from mothers. It's a widely-known practice, as admitted by former trainers (and not just one with an ax to grind-- several former trainers).

The definition of "calves" is debatable. Sea World chooses to define it as a whale still nursing to minimize the appearance of wrong-doing when the truth is that whales create highly social family units in which members stay together for life. So, regardless of the definition, it's wrong to separate any calf from its family.

Sea World Assertion #3: SeaWorld invests millions of dollars in the care of our killer whales.

THE TRUTH: There are two important words in this sentence. INVEST and CARE. Those words don't go together. Sea World invests in the infrastructure needed to sustain the cruelty and maximize profits. Plain and simple. Sea World does not CARE about these animals. If it did, it would not treat animals so inhumanely. 

Sea World Assertion #4: SeaWorld’s killer whales’ life spans are equivalent with those in the wild.

THE TRUTH: This is one point of contention with importance I fail to see. The whale can either live 30 years or 60 years (or anything in-between), but if it's in captivity, it's not a life worth living.Regardless, numerous scientific organizations (and that does NOT include Sea World) believe whales in the wild live several years longer than those in captivity. Incidentally, Sea World's clueless employees used to say that whales at Sea World lived longer than those in the wild because of the excellent "care." Now, Sea World appears to have revised this line of bullshit to say the lifespan of their whales is "equivalent" to whales in the wild.

Sea World Assertion #5: The killer whales in our care benefit those in the wild.

THE TRUTH: This is a classic case of "the ends justify the means." I am SO fucking sick of this argument with Sea World and every other person who choose to abuse and exploit animals. Do we go around telling people we're going to research rare diseases by forcing patients to stay in research labs against their will, while also forcing them perform for our entertainment and our profit? Nope, we wouldn't do that to humans. So, why would we do it to one of the (other) most intelligent animals on Earth?

And how exactly is imprisoning these animals and forcing them to entertain people helping advance science? Could you elaborate, Sea World?

Besides, do you think the people who own and profit from Sea World really give two shits about those animals or any other animals? I think not.

Sea World Assertion #6: SeaWorld is a world leader in animal rescue.

THE TRUTH: See above. Same excuse. And why does Sea World-- a for-profit company traded on the NASDAQ-- do this rescue work? It is NOT out of the kindness of the management's heart. It's a PR sham- nothing more. It's a small INVESTMENT to get dumb people to think that Sea World is a caring advocate for animals. 

Which we know could not be further from the truth.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Just Pick a Fucking Dog! (or Cat)

   One of my favorite shows is Pit Bulls & Parolees. Pit bulls are so misunderstood (perhaps a topic for another blog entry) and I think the show does an admirable job of dispelling myths and restoring dignity to this breed.
   BUT it perpetuates the idea of dogs as commodities. The episode I watched today featured a guy dying from cancer and a statement was made that the dog he was adopting was sent here (I'm paraphrasing, but believe this is roughly how it was described) to help/love this guy. Fuck that! Let's take the argument of spirits and souls and all that out for a second. Even IF you believe that a higher power might play a role in some relationships, to suggest that the only purpose in life for that dog is to be this guy's bitch (tee-hee) is so wrong. That dog is NOT a commodity and is not some tool used by a higher power. A statement like this is just another example of speciesism. Oh, we're THAT important that this dog's sole defining attribute is to take care of a dying cancer patient? Get over yourself!
   In another episode, a family is trying to decide which dog they want to adopt. They went back and forth... and talked about "feeling it." The same ethereal bullshit I've heard clueless people spout before. The same people who go to animal shelters filled with hundreds of animals that are about to get killed and say they just didn't make a connection with the right animal. "Oh, I just wasn't feeling it." "She didn't seem very loving." "He didn't seem to want to be petted." Guess what, people-- animals who are in a strange, scary environment where their friends are getting gassed or injected to death every day are NOT going to bend over and kiss your ass. They are scared. They have never met you before. Many have been abused or otherwise treated like shit. And they all deserve homes. They do not need to be cast aside because they don't stroke your ego enough. Just pick a fucking animal and give it a good home. It's NOT that hard.

Horn-Honkers and Dissenters

   A few weeks ago, I attended a fantastic protest at Sea World. "Fantastic" in the sense that the turn-out was great and some of my favorite peeps were there. Most protests are fairly routine. Part of the routine is horn-honkers and dissenters... both of which I'm about to put in their place. Or maybe his place. Forgive the grammatical uncertainty.
   The horn-honkers are sometimes honking because our signs ask them to honk if they support us. But I'm not dumb; I know some of them are really just honking for fun. And still others-- the ones that grate on my nerves-- are the horn-honkers who roll down their windows and give us some show of support like a "thumbs up" or a verbal compliment. isn't that nice? Our response is often, "Join us." At which they look at us with a quizzical look and wait for the light to change. Or shrug their shoulders and give an excuse.
  These people are just so annoying. Your words of support mean nothing to the animals getting tortured. Rather than hiding in your car, grow a set of balls and share your voice. There is power in numbers and we need every voice to be part our collective. What's the key to getting more people engaged in their world and fighting for something? Why do some people prefer to stand on the sidelines and watch the tragedies unfold while being grateful for others who are trying to prevent such tragedies?
   One step below the horn-honker is the dissenter. The dissenter is-- in a nutshell-- a vapid, shit-brained asshole who thinks it's fun to try to get a rise out of us. Newsflash, asshole: your middle finger and your incoherent words you're shouting out of the window as you drive off mean nothing to me. Go choke on a hamburger. 

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Watery Eyes

   The eyes are the window to the soul, so they say. This week, I had two powerful encounters with the eyes.

   First was a conversation that almost turned into a crying session with a co-worker. This co-worker has told me that she would like to go vegetarian, but she'd miss cheese. And bacon. And... basically every part of an animal. At the same time, she claims to be an animal lover. And in some ways, she appears to be. I've made it a goal to talk openly about veganism and to convert her! But of course, at work, I'm careful with my approach. A few weeks ago, I was cleaning out a drawer and found a Mercy for Animals pamphlet about going vegetarian... and I left it on her desk. She told me later that day she was fine until she started seeing the pictures of the animals (in slaughterhouses). Of course! Then, this week, I was going to show her the picture of the rat tortured by the NFL (it was on my Facebook page) and as I was just barely describing what she would see, she started tearing up. A lot. I had never seen her eyes so full of tears. I immediately backed off. But this is her behavior: she is such a lover of animals that she does not want to see the reality of their torture. And she does not want to see how HER behaviors are a part of it. CAUSE it. How do we reach people like her who basically have a good heart and-- if they ever decided to actually see the truth-- might actually become vegan for good? What will it take? At what point does someone call her on her bullshit? I felt kind of bad for her when she got teary-eyed, but I also rolled my eyes in disgust.

   The other "eye encounter" came when I saw such a sad picture on Facebook: a baby elephant allegedly almost killed by his mother twice. The picture is described as showing the elephant crying (apparently wailing and literally shedding tears, as a human would do) for several minutes after its "keepers" separated it from its mother for good. On top of the situation itself being so sad, how do non-vegans see the sheer, raw emotion of this animal, but then disregard the sadness inflicted upon so many other animals-- like other elephants killed for their ivory, cows, chickens, turkeys, alligators... The list goes on and on. I have similar feelings when I see animals that look particularly like us. Chimps, for example, look so human-like. How do people not see this? How do they not feel some sense of duty to treat animals (which are like us in SO many ways and which we "evolved" from) as equals?

   My eyes cry for these animals often. But not only tears of sadness. Tears of joy for the lives I save because I refuse to take part in the world's systematic killing and abuse of innocent creatures.

Disconnecting "Disconnected"

   I know I harp a lot on the psyche of non-vegans. "How can they do that? What are they thinking?" I ask as I see all these awful things that are done to animals. I think I'm so obsessed with it because I'm looking for some logical, clear, understandable reason people make the choice to ignore all the suffering and to actually take part in it. The mental process of non-vegans is just a sad mystery and I'm always hoping for answers.

   Well, I still quite understand them. But I do have a new realization. I've used the word "disconnect" before to describe the relationship most people have with animals. But I'm really beginning to think that word is a glossing-over of people's willful participation in the cruelty. It's more than a "disconnect"; it's a thought-out choice to not change one's lifestyle and eating habits... or to intentionally inflict harm on animals. It's a choice to not care or to care so little that you don't feel a change in behavior is necessary.

   This week, PETA (related note: not every animal rights supporter is a member of PETA and not every one agrees with every tactic of PETA) released pictures (and video, I think) of animals being tortured by the NFL's experiments to learn more about concussions. [On a side note, here's what the NFL will find: concussions are bad and helmets should be stronger... or people should stop colliding into each other to entertain the public at large.] Anyway... what I specifically saw was a still picture of a rat (alive, I think) with a large metal pole of some kind smashing down into its head, trapping it in place against a metal table or apparatus of some kind. Apparently, this is just one of numerous animals injured or killed for this "experiment." Just like using live animals in crash tests for cars. WTF?

   This is NOT a "disconnect." This is a consortium of sick fucks who choose to torture animals and either get some sort of pleasure from it or decide their monetary gain from the experiments is worth more than the lives of other living, breathing animals. Do we go around describing serial killers as having a "disconnect" and simply shrugging our shoulders? No. We imprison them or fry them. As we should do with anyone who conducts "experiments" like this.
   So, I've decided that I will not use the word "disconnected" as a way of giving non-vegans a "get out of jail free" card. They deserve to be called what they are: cowards.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Jack Hannah's a Bitch

   Often on weekend mornings, I'll see one of those kids' shows with Jack Hannah. The one that where he goes around the world and shows animals to viewers, etc. For kids, but good background noise for housecleaning.
   That is... until I remember how much of a hypocrite this guy is. Jack Hannah is a bitch. He makes money off of advocating captivity of animals. Plain and simple.

"Trust Me..."

   Today, I will explore the idea of trust.
   Recently, there's been quite the controversy re: our local municipal animal shelter. The usual stuff which might surprise or shock the clueless, but things like the wrong animals being euthanized, a dog's eyelids getting accidentally shaved off by a shelter worker, and an overall sense that not enough is being done to help these poor animals.
   I've remained on the sidelines for the most part, largely because I feel so many of the critics (whose hearts are very much in the right place) have a pretty unfocused goal and some of them are even so out of touch as to believe euthanasia should be stopped and is avoidable. Get real, people! Keep dreaming. In time, yes, but right now? We simply have too many animals and too few good homes. The key is education and educating the masses takes a loooooong while.
   As this drama has played out, I've given a lot of thought to the plight of all animals, but particularly domesticated animals. The bottom is this: we bred them over many years to trust us. And now, we're betraying that trust. When a stray cat roams the street at night looking for food and shelter-- and trying not to get killed by another animal, a car, or a fucked-up human being, that cat is on its own, despite years and years of dependence on human beings. Because we made that cat need our help. Then, we turned our backs on that cat.
   Obviously, I think all animals can suffer at the hands of humans, but there's something just so much sicker about what we do to dogs, cats, and other animals where we've manipulated nature to make fit into our lives and make our lives better, only to do things like not feed them, chain them, or dump them off at shelters to die. Just as bothersome is what this breaking of trust says about how we treat each other. Will you break my trust, too?

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Tastes Like... Petri Dish

   Vegan or not, I hate the idea of cloned meat. No matter what it is, it just seems so... dirty from the ethical standpoint. Who has the right to clone meat? What will get cloned next? How can we be sure we're not eating cloned meat if we don't choose to? How can we be sure cloned foods of any kind are truly the same in all ways as the real food they were cloned from? Meaning... who's responsible for the welfare of consumers and responsible for regulating this highly litigious industry? Oh... That's right. The FDA. The same FDA that's already approved cloned animal products and has revealed such products may already be in the food supply. So much for that.

   My interest in this issue comes in light of the recent news that "researchers" have come up with a new, lab-grown "beef patty." Of course, the first question all the meat lovers have to know: Does it taste as good as the real thing? Why worry about the bigger issues? (the answer: the patty is alleged to taste not quite as good as the real thing and not be as juicy, but "scientists" should be able to make the cloned meat taste more appealing in due time).

   Some vegans hail this as a wonderful development-- hoping that the cloned meat will someday mean no more animals are commodities killed for their meat. Even a hard-core bitch like me gets that. I understand the appeal. And if this hope turns to reality one day, I'll celebrate it.

   But this whole thing is seriously jacked.

   First, I have news for you, people: the "meat" was cloned using muscle cells from a live cow. To my fellow vegans: if you really believe what you espouse, you cannot claim to be a vegan and support this, given that even a single animal was used for this experiment. And by the way, if you think only one animal was used by these "researchers" who care nothing about the animals' lives and care only about their egos and profit, you are dumber than Ted Nugent.

   Second, let me re-iterate a point I've made before. We humans need to fucking get over ourselves! Why do we think we have the moral right to take stem cells from cows and create this faux meat? Who made us God? There might be some benevolent motives here, but let's face it-- when it comes to industry making animals ... or their stem cells... a commodity, the animal always loses. Instead, human selfishness and profit wins. Every time. No exceptions. Anytime humans interfere with animals' lives for their own gain, the animals always get fucked. Will we clone dog meat in China next? Will we clone entire animals to eat, to entertain us, to use in research, etc.? Oops-- forgot. We already have. Talk about fucked up. Maybe cloned humans are next...

   So, here's my idea, assholes: stop feeling entitled to eat meat. You're not. If you really want to eat something like meat, eat the numerous alternatives. Or if you can't find or don't want to pay for meat alternatives, just deal. Eat beans. Eat nuts. Eat something else. Stop contributing to the torture of animals and stop giving ill-willed "scientists" reason to fuck with animals. Your taste buds will adjust. Your heart will grow. The animals will be happy.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Tastes Like Chicken... and Stupidity

   I'm a little delayed with this, but want to comment on the woman who complained after finding a chicken foot in her package of chicken from Safeway. She told Safeway via Twitter, "I'm vomiting."
   For once, I'm not quite sure what to write. This woman has me enraged. So, instead of writing anything particularly thoughtful or mature, I will instead revert to my potty mouth and write...
   What a stupid, delusional, ignorant, nasty bitch. Where the fuck do you think your pre-processed, skinless, boneless chicken breasts come from, you dumb whore? How DARE there be any indication that those slabs of meat actually came from an animal that wow... actually lived... and could walk?!?!?
   And you want to vomit? How sad. The chicken wasn't feeling so well, either, I can assure you, when it was stuck in shit and piss and unable to move more than a few inches as it was being fed an unhealthy diet so that it could be scalded alive and chopped up into pieces so that you and your dumb-ass family could eat it.
   Even most meat-eaters aren't this fucking ignorant.
   Well, she got her 15 minutes of fame, just as she was hoping. Luckily, though, I don't think she guessed that so many people would see her as the complete piece of shit -- CHICKEN shit-- she is. 
   Is there any hope for the world?