In his Feb. 3 letter, “Too magnificent to slaughter,” Bob Poulson says whales should not be killed because they’re “magnificent, intelligent animals.” He goes on to say: “Don’t even try to compare whales to cows. No one goes on cow-watching tours.”
How right he is, and how sad it is! Have you ever looked at (or even into) a cow’s eyes? They are stunningly beautiful. And what do we do with these peaceful, gentle creatures? We raise them in inhumane conditions, for slaughter, so that we can stick a piece of meat in our mouth, unaware of their prolonged suffering. Self-congratulatory “intelligent” humans use “intelligence” as a yardstick for what should live and what should die (e.g., “intelligent” whale vs. “stupid” cow).
Imagine you had a puppy and the dog grew up and wasn’t that smart. Would you sell it to the butcher? Of course not. You love it because it’s emotionally pure and natural. You wouldn’t want it to feel fear, pain or loneliness, regardless of its IQ! The only difference between animals we humans have selected for food consumption and the animals we keep as pets is LOVE. We deny it to the first and give it to the second.
Watch Japanese celebrities go to a petting zoo and coo “kawaii” when touching a calf, only to gorge themselves afterward at a yakiniku restaurant! We have to start seeing connections, work on compassion with other living creatures, and say “no” to the meat industry and their product. Let’s take two of Gandhi’s seven deadly sins — commerce without morality and science without humanity — as our guide.