Time to End All Slavery
Animals: Tradition - Philosophy - Religion Article from All-Creatures.org


Jenny Moxham
January 2016

As the great Albert Schweitzer wisely said, "The thinking man must oppose all cruel customs no matter how deeply rooted in tradition or surrounded by a halo."

Recently we learned that the Japanese government has apologized and offered compensation to the Korean women who were kidnapped and used as sex slaves for the Japanese military in World War II.

It's pleasing that, after 70 years, the government has finally acknowledged responsibility for this cruel enslavement of females but there is slavery of a different kind that needs to be acknowledged too - and the majority of us are complicit in it. I'm referring to the enslavement of animals on our farms.

How long will it be before we recognize that enslaving other life-loving sentient beings merely to satisfy our own personal desires is likewise cruel and unjustifiable?

The injustice of it didn't escape Dr. Martin Luther King Junior who wrote:

One day the absurdity of the almost universal human belief in the slavery of other animals will be palpable. We shall then have discovered our souls and become worthier of sharing this planet with them.

Leonardo da Vinci also recognized that the enslavement and killing of animals was wrong. A quote attributed to him is: "The time will come when men such as I will look upon the murder of animals as they now look upon the murder of men."

Thomas Edison also got it. He said, “Non-violence leads to the highest ethics, which is the goal of all evolution. Until we stop harming all other living beings, we are still savages.”

So why don't we all get it?

In a word - speciesism.

Speciesism is defined as discrimination against other beings solely on account of their species.

rom childhood we are brainwashed into believing that because other species are different from us, we have a right to enslave and kill them. And those who are are in the business of making money from exploiting animals make sure that we continue to think this way.

We are constantly bombarded with advertisements urging us to eat more meat but we are never shown pictures of the hapless animals being reared or killed.
We never see photos of the grim, sunless factory farms where the majority of chickens, turkeys and pigs are compelled to live out their sad, short, painful lives. We never see photos taken inside our blood soaked killing factories - unless some extremely brave and dedicated animal activists have been able to get inside and obtain  undercover footage.

Most meat eaters remain blissfully ignorant of the enormous suffering endured by these animals and most are happy to have it this way.

Isn't it time for some serious debate and honest exchange of views on this important topic? Will it take a further 70 years for us to acknowledge that what we did to these innocent and inoffensive individuals was totally unjustifiable?

As the great Albert Schweitzer wisely said, "The thinking man must oppose all cruel customs no matter how deeply rooted in tradition or surrounded by a halo."

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