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A Matter of Life and Death

A Matter of Life and Death
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In recent years, the debate about the welfare of animals has centralized around specific cases of egregious suffering, with a strong focus on certain practices and procedures perceived to cause extreme harm, including intensive confinement, bodily mutilations, and physical and psychological torture.

This focus on specific welfare violations has led to an interesting phenomenon: The public’s attention has been sidetracked from the primary issue involved with economic exploitation of sentient beings, which is the commodification of their very lives.

In other words, the current direction of the debate has obscured from view the fundamental question of whether it is unethical, or morally indefensible, to take the life of another sentient being for any reason other than self-defense or compassion toward an individual who is severely suffering from a terminal illness or fatal injury.

This is the reason that the animal industry now markets itself as a stronghold of ‘ethical death and dismemberment‘. In this new territory of animal slavery double-speak, consumers are actually expected to believe the ever-more-frequent and increasingly perverse accounts of ‘happy farming‘; the proliferation of animal exploitation sites where the victims are so content with their circumstances that they happily offer the products of their bodies, then go gladly to their deaths at the side of kindly oppressors whom they trust unconditionally.

But doesn’t this absurd marketing scheme fundamentally betray something that is firmly secured inside each one of us – the knowledge that other animals, just like human animals, care about their lives and don’t want to die?

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200 comments

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6:52AM PDT on Jun 12, 2013

Thank you Angel, for Sharing this!

7:02PM PDT on Apr 20, 2013

Excellent post. Thank you.

11:56AM PDT on Apr 19, 2013

Thank you for the article. The continual justifications remind me of the question, "Why keep looking for the right way to do the wrong thing?" Please keep it up the thought provoking work.

1:38AM PST on Feb 6, 2012

Franco, you are still as out of line as ever. You're now referring to a comment made by Kye a month ago? I don't have a clue what on earth she's even talking about. What private e-mail, and if she was sending it privately to you, as it sounds like she's saying she did, there is no way it would be posted publically. Nobody ever "slandered" anyone, unless it's Kye, who was blocked by me from sending ME personal messages in Care.2 well over a year ago, as many of us resorted to doing for the same reasons.......receiving nasty, personal messages. Of course, you wouldn't know anything about sending nasty, personal messages, would you?

10:38PM PST on Feb 5, 2012

I was reading the comments and don't really want to join this slugfest; just wanted to thank Angel for your article. You articulated what I have been feeling for a long time; that animals have a right to live, no matter what. I am so tired of people justifying killing animals for whatever reason because they consider them "lesser beings".

7:18AM PST on Feb 5, 2012

Kye, don't feed the trolls. She will never stop. She is a nuisance but she is part of the community and the less we feed into her insecurities the better off the rest of us all are. I don't communicate with her in any way any longer.
Franco

8:00PM PST on Feb 4, 2012

So very true Emma.

6:50AM PST on Jan 20, 2012

our attitude towards animals illustrates our attitude towards life, towards sentience, towards phenomenal reality as we perceive - and create - it, and towards existence in general.

2:56AM PST on Jan 10, 2012

interesting article, thanks for sharing

11:13PM PST on Jan 9, 2012

I agree. Corporations use "happy" language to get humans to ignore the real facts -- that animals are sentient beings, as we humans are, and that their place on earth is just as valid as ours.

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