We are constantly exposed to several issues revolving animals today; a sign that the society is improving from only caring for human to sustaining harmonious mutualism with animals in our lives.
However, are we exposed well or wise enough to tell what is from what was told?
I'm talking about the difference between upholding:
a- animal rights.
b- animal welfare.
By definition from the excerpt of PETA: Supporters of animal rights believe that animals have an inherent worth—a value completely separate from their usefulness to humans. We believe that every creature with a will to live has a right to live free from pain and suffering. Animal rights is not just a philosophy—it is a social movement that challenges society’s traditional view that all nonhuman animals exist solely for human use. As PETA founder Ingrid Newkirk has said, “When it comes to pain, love, joy, loneliness, and fear, a rat is a pig is a dog is a boy. Each one values his or her life and fights the knife.”
Meaning, animals to these group of ideologists are like human. They are not source of food, down, entertainment, companion, research subjects or abused in any ways.
Pretty general right?
By definition from the excerpt of AVMA : Ensuring animal welfare is a human responsibility that includes consideration for all aspects of animal well-being, including proper housing, management, nutrition, disease prevention and treatment, responsible care, humane handling, and, when necessary, humane euthanasia.
So which stand are you in?
Vegans have approached and preached than as technology advances, animal based protein source no longer deem relevant in our society today. Protein shakes to soya bean could easily replace all the protein source we require; without meat, dairy or poultry in the whole picture.
Apart from that, animal based protein too have been noted to impose a highly acidic pH in our body leading to several diseases, especially cancer due to the high consumption rate. Plant based protein wouldn't have that problem as anatomically our dental origins serve us to feed off berries, nuts and fruits.
What's worse is the production system lodging unnecessary stress, pain and harm to the animals farmed, leaving them scarred with fear for life and no freedom or space to live in the nature.
As so they have been debated.
I will be a veterinarian in 2.5 years time. I have the duty to sustain all life, animals and humans alike bound by the oath I will be taking by using all my knowledge:
1- to serve the welfare of the public
2- protection of animal and livestock resources
3- prevention of animal cruelty
1 and 2- Vegans have arrogantly, in my opinion, preached that technological advancement should replace animal based protein with plant based protein. They are arrogant because they have access to such protein, while the poverty in poor demographics doesn't. An egg would just cost 15 cents to feed one person; how much would the protein powder cost? Soya bean based products cost probably at least twice of that an egg could source the protein to the family.
You probably would ask, what about other vegetables? Don't they have protein too? We are simple gastric animals meaning we only have a single chambered stomach. We do not possess microbes or enzymes like cattle or sheep to fermentate complex plant carbohydrates into protein for maximal utilization in our bodies. Hence, how would a kangkung compare to an egg of its protein nutrition?
I rest my case.
3- PETA is has a loud audacity in promoting animal rights against livestock production when amplifying the horrors they see in farms. Livestocks are recorded being abused physically with punches on their faces, skinning alive, and the latest, abuse during the dewool process in sheeps.
Animal welfare has provided a simple guideline for farmers and people of the animal industry with:
1- Freedom from thirst and hunger
2- Freedom from pain, diseases and injuries
3- Freedom for discomfort
4- Freedom from fear and distress
5- Freedom to express most of the normal behavior.
Incorporating these in the farm husbandry will deem a farm's credentials in upholding the animal welfare while raring the animals humanely for the consumption of the public. PETA, by magnifying ONE farm doesn't mean all other farms are discredited for the welfare they have been upholding to preserve the sanctity of animal welfare.
My job is to prevent animal cruelty. In events which I know of the farmers are abusing the animals physically or mentally I can actually sound them or even lodge a report to restrict the production sales of the farm. So rightists can be sure that I would stand against animal cruelty.
So the whole dilemma and question comes in:
1- aren't you supposed to care for all animals? Why are you supporting livestock when slaughtering is involved?
I care for animals to their background. Every animal living in close proximity to humans are of a purpose; companion animals as companions, livestock as food, horses for racing or companionship, zoo as rescue centers or used to be exhibitions. Livestock is rared for the vision to provided animal protein; why should I please refer to the paragraph above. As long as the animals are raised humanely before slaughtering, its purpose is deemed justified.
2- aren't you a buddhist? Why are you promoting killing the life of another animal for food?
Because I'm a Buddhist, I understand this:
- we are all part of a vicious cycle named Samsara, the suffering.
- we are all also a part of a vicious cycle named the Food Chain. Consuming other beings for food is part of the cycle. It is just what it is.
- we can choose not to eat, but we chose to not because we wish to see the animals suffer during slaughtering; because we need the nutrient to live.
- it is all a process if which, you can see its part of the grand design in the life cycle of organisms.
- karma is all about the intention of wishing others to be ill or suffering for our pleasure; as long as the animals are humanely slaughtered with minimal suffering, I wish no further harm for the animal apart from it being a source of my survival.
There are, and will be several questions to be thrown upon this post's publication. I do welcome criticism and discussion. You may do it in the comment or through my email: firstname.lastname@example.org
My stand, animal welfare. Because animal rightists are extremists to me. You can live your life as you wish, but I need you not rub it into my face or preach to me because my stand and believe is firm and truthful.