Animal Rights/Animal Cruelty
Karin wrote at 2013-06-24 00:05:09
Animal cruelty is, by definition, the deliberate acts of allowing an animal to suffer for an extended period of time, from negligence of providing food, shelter, water and appropriate health care, to deliberate abuse that negatively affects an animal's physical, psychological and sociological well-being. It doesn't have to be a farmer performing dehorning or castrating procedures on his animals, that in itself is not animal cruelty (nor abuse), it can be the actions of an organization that operate in the "best interests" of the animals as they see fit, which often is the exact opposite of being "in the best interests of the animals." An example of real animal cruelty is people from the Animal Liberation Front freeing foxes that have been kept in cages all their lives. These people from this ALF organization are not giving these foxes their freedom, but rather subjecting these animals to a death sentence since they do not know how to look after themselves--from hunting food to finding shelter--in the wild.
Animal cruelty has no place in society, but then again ignorance of what is really natural and "okay" in Nature shouldn't be acceptable either. To say that animals are our "brothers and sisters, genetically" is just an example of that ignorance, as is "we should...never talk their right to life away. Killing anything is wrong...every life has a purpose." If every life has a purpose, then why does PeTA condone service animals that are trained to help those who cannot help, feed or care for themselves? Why is the "expert" here saying that "killing anything is wrong" when, in Nature, that rabbit has a purpose in life of giving up its life to feed that lynx or coyote? Why is it so natural for a he-bear to kill and eat bear cubs that might be of his own? Is that not taking the right for that rabbit or those cubs to life away?
Animal cruelty is more of a concern because more people are ruled by their emotions rather than by logic. This is where animal rights beliefs stem from and thus the belief that "it is morally, ethically and spiritually wrong to hurt anything that cannot defend itself, especially one that cannot speak for itself and one that wants to live as badly as we do." Though this does not, yet again, answer the question, it covers only the belief that ARAs have to "stand up for the animals." Ultimately, it is merely from an emotional stand-point that animal cruelty is made more prevalent than ever before. People love animals and find a more deeper emotional attachment to them because they feel they can relate to them on a "human-to-human" basis. The fact that more animals are seen as human-like creatures is the reason for this concern. Unrelated to this topic, it is also the reason why more people are getting bit by dogs than in the past.
Animal rights is merely the belief that all animals should live their lives independent of humans, or that they are entitled to the possession of their own lives. It in no way mentions anything about how animals should be better cared for by humans while retaining their purpose in life of however they will be used--as food, for sport, as service animals, or as a part of a human family. That is "animal welfare," not animal rights. So no, I don't believe that animals should have rights, because often a lot of animals that are in possession of their own lives suffer worse than those who are under the care (and use) of compassionate humans. Sadly, our "expert" failed to answer this question of yours, avoiding it entirely with a more hypocritical answer that "all domestic animals have rights" and yet turning around to say that all food animals (which are domesticated animals) have none. Ironic, no?
Karin wrote at 2013-06-24 02:07:10
"How many cases of animal abuse do you see each day?"
The fact that Tina Volpe did not directly answer this question, as she had on several others, calls into question her integrity. The blatant lies and libelous activity she has written here makes me question her honesty. Just because someone has written a couple of books to get out the message of "peace, kindness and love of each life" does not make them smart or truly an expert in regards to the lives and the welfare of animals. I myself have written no books, never been on a talk show, nor have done anything else to make myself heard--something I find very typical of animal rights activists--but have more education and more experience in this very field than she can ever hope for. I think having personal experience in agriculture and a BSc in Agriculture majoring in Animal Science should give me enough power to fight against her views and point out what is a lie and what is truth.
This brings me to the answer she has made to this question, which, as mentioned previously, she failed to directly answer. What she says she sees isn't literally what she sees, SoEun. It would only be through media like YouTube videos, videos posted by PeTA and HSUS, blog posts by fellow activists, and videos posted by undercover investigators of those few farms that have been caught and convicted with animal cruelty, but rarely anything she has seen with her own eyes.
1) "I see baby cows just born and ripped from their mothers so that humans can drink her milk. Babies only hours old - put on a pile to die, alone, scared and hungry."
Calves--not "baby cows"--are often on their mothers for a day or two after birth before they are taken away. This is because for the first day or two the cow is producing colostrum, a type of milk crucial to the calf's health and immune system. The cow is put into the milking system a couple days after birth, until her milk has become normal again. Calves are not put on a pile to die, either. They are put in a separate feeding area where they are bottle-fed milk-replacer for a few months before being sold as veal calves. This goes for bull calves too. Heifer calves are needed for the operation--they cannot be put on a pile to die either--since they are replacements for the dairy cows that get culled.
The reality most people--especially ARAs and vegans--don't get is that newborn calves cannot be made into veal because there's not enough muscle tissue on them. They have to be a few months old before they can be slaughtered. But no, ARAs don't want us to know that part.
2) "I see pigs in crates so tiny they cannot even move, turn over or stretch their legs. Their babies are on the outside of this crate and they aren't allowed to nurture and love them. Infants!"
Farrowing crates are a necessary evil. It reduces the incidences of sows cannibalizing their own young and piglet deaths of sows laying on them by accident. New mother pigs that have poor mothering ability and have no idea of what these living things that came out of them are may think of them as food instead of little lives that need their nurturing. When those sows think of their piglets as food, it can be a real blood-bath, something that is far more brutal and crueler than ARAs facts about how farrowing crates are cruel and inhumane. At least the sow has enough room to lay down and feed her young.
3) "I see so many chickens, shoved into tiny cages they go insane, crowded like sardines so that people can eat their eggs - eggs that were meant to be their babies."
It's ironic that Tina says they are "shoved" into tiny cages when these chickens have actually been in and lived in these cages all their lives. They weren't simply picked up as adults and stuffed in these cages being "crowded like sardines." These cages are all they know and what they've been used to. And the reason they are "crowded" in these cages is so that it makes it that much easier to collect their eggs--one doesn't have to go on a search or a wild-goose chase to hunt down where these chickens like to lay their eggs in.
Also, it's also ironic to say that these eggs were meant to be their babies. A chicken lays an egg that does not have a chick enclosed in it. The egg is primarily yolk and albumin, or "egg white". The tiny white dot on the yolk is where the embryo begins to form, and will only form if the egg is incubated for several weeks. Without opportunity to incubate these eggs, these eggs these hens lay can never become their "babies."
4) "Baby lambs being pulled from their mothers so that people can eat 'rack of lamb' never considering that these infants need their mommies as much as we do. I see so much that my heart breaks regularly."
I found this to be the biggest lie of all, one above the one posted on 1). Lambs that are slaughtered for meat have been weaned even before they have been fed to be slaughtered. A lamb is weaned anywhere from 2 to 6 months of age, and lambs are marketed (NOT slaughtered) anywhere from 2 to 14 months of age. At this age, these lambs are far from being considered "infants," and therefore have no need for their "mommies."