• DAY 197: A (slightly later) HALF YEAR REVIEW – part 2

    Apr 10th

    Continued from the previous blog post – this is a review of  my last six months saving animals.

     

    meat

    4. DO I STILL EAT MEAT?

    Much less than before, but I still do.

    Why the heck have’t I stopped?!!

    I’ve had lots of logical reasons to stop meat consumption (vegetarians rule!) and I’ve cut down a fair amount but I still eat the odd steak. Not much bacon any more.

    Why?

    As foolish as it sounds, I don’t want to stop eating meat purely because my head says it is wrong, I want my heart to get there too. Sorry Peter Singer, logic is not my main guide.

    Emotional lessons are our best teachers. It’s possible to continue smoking even though you know it causes cancer but much harder when you see your grandmother die of it. Perhaps my upcoming work on farming and slaugherhouses will get me there but right now there is a still a small disconnect between my heart and head. I want to be honest about that.

     

    cat

    5. EVEN THOUGH I’VE BEEN HELPING WILD DOGS WHY AM I STILL SUCH A SCAREDY-CAT?

    After all this time I still find it hard to follow my convinctions about animal welfare.

    Being animal rightsy, as mainstream as that is now, still requires a strength of character that is far harder to come by than a packet of cheap bacon. Hence the reason pigs suffer and some people still think animal rights activists all have dreadlocks and go on hunt sabs.

    For my own part, I still find it hard to argue for animal rights amongst (my very liberal) friends and family. Sometimes I would rather put a steak in my mouth that let the truth come out of it.

    But this is telling.

    If cultural norms are this strong in a reasonably inquisitive person like me who lives in a reasonably open and compassionate environment like mine, then they are likely far stronger elsewhere.

    When one grows up with a feminist mother in a household that reads the Guardian newspaper with friends of all races and sexual orientation one sort of assumes that rights and wrongs have been worked out. It seems extraordinary that animal rights lags so far behind.

     

     

    This is meant to be an emotionally damaged person but personally I'd quite like to hang out with her.

    This is meant to be an emotionally vulnerable person but personally I think she looks pretty sorted

    6. DO YOU NEED TO BE EMOTIONALLY VULNERABLE TO HELP ANIMALS?

    No, but it might help.

    You might ask the same question of powerful politicians or successful businessman. Are they running towards a goal or away from a fear? 

    Thee stereotype of the old woman who loves cats but hates her neighbours is a flimsy one but there is something to be said for having a personal history of vulnerability if you want to care about animals.

    I am driven on by my own demons: by a feeling of insecurity and muteness that goes way back. I had a great upbringing with loving parents but I was a sensitive child that ran from shadows and words and feeling dammed up inside me. I can’t bear to see that vulnerability and muteness in other’s – especially those who can’t speak back.

    But while a proportion of people I have met in this movement have also suffered depression (some have had breakdowns or are recovering from addiction) others seem as solid as oak trees.

    As much as I would like to present a pattern, there is no clear analysis. In a way this is a relief. Animal welfare should must not be denigrated to the extremes. There is not WRONG with having immense compassion for animals, just as there is nothing wrong with having a flair for business. But you might find extra motivation from your own fears in both realms.



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    2 Responses to “DAY 197: A (slightly later) HALF YEAR REVIEW – part 2”

    1. I abhor cruelty of any distinction to animals, for some reason, that above cruelty to man affects me so deep in my core.

      There are some amazingly kind people out there but there are also some first class a*holes, be they the poachers, the ones that kill or maim for fun or glory, puppy farmers, the Taiji Dolphin Killers, the list is endless and thats why I am driven to act. Admittedly, I dont do much but I do what I can. I have tried several times to become a vegeterian but i really struggle with it, I think the dairy trade is horrific, as is the egg trade and actually if I were to become a vegeterian again, permenantly then I would have to become vegan but it is so much harder than words. So, in that respect I do what I can, nowadays we dont eat much meat but we do eat meat that is either organic/free range or comes from small holdings where the slaughter process is totally transparent. I try to eggs from friends with chickens and if not, again, they are free range eggs from small holdings.

      Anyway – my point is, you do what you can and you’re doing something. So kudos to you, dont beat yourself up for what you havent done – take pride in what you have.

      Try watching Earthlings, I cant quite pluck up the courage. Watch Steve Tristers selfie video on youtube, he’s an inspirational man, who watched the film and posted his immediate thoughts on it – I defy anyone not to shed a tear as he speaks completely from the heart.

      Best of luck in the slaughterhouse, you’re braver than me.

    2. hi Caroline

      thanks for the heartfelt words. I very much appreciate your honesty. You also stay true to your heart and do what you can.

      I very much want to watch Earthlings and will watch Steve Tristers too

      thanks

      Martin

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