There was a news item the other evening that concerned the disgusting, cruel and depraved conditions at a particular poultry slaughtering outfit in eastern Canada. I chose to not watch it. I cannot stand footage showing animals suffering or being expedited with brutality.
In that context I can be a bit hopeless with National Geographic wildlife specials that show some hapless little quivering wildebeest fawn (or whatever they’re called) in a scene in which a leopard is stealthily approaching. I mean, I know it’s what life is like in the wild, but I don’t want to watch. We all use our toilets every day, but I don’t want to watch that, either. But honestly I’d be less distressed watching somebody poop rather than watch an animal be taken out.
There was a bit of an irony in the chicken savagery news report as in, guess what we were having for dinner that night? I know that is how meat gets on the table, but I like to think any slaughtered animal I consume was lulled to a sleep state by some sort of hypnosis rather than being savagely butchered.
Aha, I can hear you say (I can, really) if you are so damn sensitive, why don’t you turn vegetarian? Well, I would, but – you know – I have this carnivore aspect to me that tells me a salad is largely a garnish, not ‘real’ food. All I am saying is don’t involve me in the process, and do it as humanely as possible, you abattoir folks.
And about the news clip, I am glad they run them on the news. Such essays may serve to smarten the operators up a little bit.
I find that as I have gotten older I have grow increasingly sensitive to the wants, needs and comfort of animals. When I was a kid and kept chickens I could expedite them easily for the table. Today I could not dream of such a thing and when, at a later date, I kept chickens again, they comfortably died of old age.
I have noticed lately that they have begun handing out some fairly reasonable jail sentences for animal abusers. This is a good thing, and it should always be the case. Hurt an animal = Do time.
Abusing animals of any kind should also mean a lifetime ban on ever owning a pet. Not five years or ten years, but for keeps.
Now, I am only looking for the time when it becomes a capital offence.