Eat or not eat meat – an ethical consideration.
Being in the USA, I am learning more about factory animals here; I am sure the situation must be same elsewhere too. I am not a daily meat-eater; I eat twice or thrice a week. And I love the taste of it. Over last few months, every time I have eaten meat, I ended up reading articles and videos about the ethical reasons to not eat farm animal meat. I don’t think I am going to stop eating meat anytime soon but here is the story of Wilbur and I will remember Wilbur every time I have meat on my plate from here on.
Hi, how are you doing? I am a factory animal. My name is Wilbur.
My entire life, I’m kept in a meadow gestation crate in half darkness, on a graded concrete floor.
I can’t even turn around. Confined and unable to engage in any of my natural behaviors, I suffer depression, frustration, and neurotic behaviors. Sometimes screaming, and biting at the bars that surround me. My limbs are swollen, I have open wounds and I am lying in my own excrement.
After giving birth from being forcibly impregnated, my babies are taken away from me. And I’m slaughtered at the age of only three to five years old.
We pigs, like the other animals in factory farms are supposed to be stunned into unconsciousness before being killed. But many of us are still alive as we are hoisted upside down, our throat slit, and we are lowered into boiling water to remove our hair.
But did you know? I have a sense of self, just like you. I am more intelligent than a dog or a cat and even a three-year old child. I am a highly social creature, intuitive and emotional, just like you. I have memories, and I can recognize myself in a mirror, just like you. And I love to play just like you.
I care for my young with a bond that’s as strong as any human mother, even singing to my babies during nursing.
I am not something; I am someone.
I am not pork. I am not bacon; I am a living, feeling being, just like you.
All animals have the will to live, the capacity to suffer and are equally capable of receiving our love.
Credit: Wilbur's story is an excerpt from a TEDx talk by Dr. Joanne Kong. Images are from various sites trying to raise awareness about how factory animals are being treated.