“Every time you buy an animal-based product you are paying someone to torture animals”.
This is a line from “Speciesism”, the movie we saw last night. In one brief moment of stunning clarity I knew this to be the absolute truth.
And then I felt like this:
Because some things, once you know, you can’t unknow. And I feel sad and ashamed and sick to my stomach because on some level I “knew” but didn’t want to “know” about this. Well no more.
The truth is that in factory farms in our country every single second of every single day animals are tortured, maimed and mistreated in some of the most horrific ways imaginable. It is an ongoing and never-ending state of affairs. This inhumane treatment is so barbaric it makes me want to scream or cry or do something to make it stop. The fact is that factory farms supply us with nearly every animal-based product we consume. So unless you are vegan or have some chickens and cows wandering around your property you are actively contributing to this hellacious problem–just like I did .
Speciesism refers to humans seeing themselves as a superior species to other animal species. And it is what allows for the rationalization and justification of endless torture and inhumane treatment. I think it’s time to ask ourselves if we are “Speciesists”.
Do you have a dog or cat? A cherished pet, a companion? Would you allow your pet to be brutally spayed/neutered with no anesthesia? Of course not. Utterly inhumane, unacceptable and barbaric. But animals in these factories (baby pigs were featured in this movie) are brutally castrated with no anesthesia. I still can’t get the sound of their screams out of my head. This is NOT okay with me. Is it okay with you?
Science is very clear that animals feel pain like we do. According to the scientists in this movie animals’ pain is likely more acute than ours because they have no ability to cognitively help themselves. Would it bother you to know that chickens and turkeys are fattened up so fast that their legs can no longer support them? That their beaks are sliced off so they don’t peck each other to death in too crammed unsanitary cages? This is the reality in factory egg farms.
I could go on and on but I’m sure (or I fervently hope) that you get the point.
I’m not sure where I go from here in terms of activism (the answer to the question in the title is “yes”) but I know that the most impactful thing I can do NOW is be done with all of it. Vegan all the way. I will not knowingly contribute one more cent to the senseless torture of animals. I don’t need the bacon, the celebratory filet mignon, the gooey pizza or my morning coffee with milk in it.
Maya Angelou often said, “When you know better, you do better”. I invite you to know better.