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Animal Cruelty: Who is to Blame?

Animal Cruelty: Who is to Blame?
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For many of us who are aware of the multitude of ways that animals suffer at the hands of humans around the world, this ubiquitous cruelty is the most pressing social justice issue of them all. From declawing to debeaking, ear clipping to tail docking, the suffering that human beings inflict on animals being used for food, clothing, research, ‘pets’ and entertainment appears to know no bounds, and the many brutal ways in which we force animals to succumb to our desires appear to be limited only by the scope of our imaginations.

But why does all this cruelty take place? And what can we do about this horrifying brutality as individuals? Itís easy to point the finger at the direct perpetrators of animal cruelty as being villains who need to be brought to justice. Itís much harder Ė and yet much more significant Ė to turn that critical eye inward and ask oneself, ‘What am I doing to contribute to this?’ But it is only by asking that question that the path toward emancipation from barbaric injustice becomes clear.

The vast majority of the time, money and effort of animal welfare organizations goes toward trying to develop new laws and regulations to address the many separate issues relating to animal cruelty, while at the same time trying to force the industry to adhere to those currently in place.† As explained in Are Anti-Cruelty Campaigns Really Effective?, these efforts consistently fail to create any significant improvement for animals.

Behind these campaigns lies a hidden assumption that the animal industry is responsible for animal cruelty. But is this assumption warranted? Isnít industry simply a middle agent put in place to do the dirty deeds requested by consumers of animal products? Although itís true that the animal industry is an eager and aggressive middle agent, its role is only that of middle agent. As such, while institutionalized exploiters certainly have a lot to answer for, it is consumers who are primarily responsible for animal cruelty through their purchases of animal products.


Image: Daniel St.Pierre /

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6:04AM PDT on Jul 8, 2013

do you need to ask?*some called humans*of course.thank you for sharing 8/7

11:50AM PDT on Apr 19, 2013

The cruelty falls squarely on our shoulders. Least cruelty possible, not perfect. Justifications="Why keep looking for the right way to do the wrong thing?"

6:20AM PDT on Mar 29, 2013

No one but ourselves to be blamed

3:59PM PST on Nov 19, 2012

Thank you for sharing.

7:16AM PDT on Oct 19, 2012

We, and all living beings, eat for nourishment, to stay healthy and alive.

Eating to feed a political ideal or philosophy does not nourish the body.

People are all different and have different nutritional requirements and people must eat what their own bodies require.

6:51AM PDT on Oct 19, 2012

It's sad to see so many people getting so defensive whenever the topic is Veganism. And it's sadder still to see so many people still ignore what veganism is and base their opinion about it on ignorance and prejudice. Veganism is the politics of non-oppression. That is the definition as said by the founder of the Vegan Society, Donald Watson. Veganism means recognizing that animals' lives are their own, not ours for whatever purposes, and that therefore they are not and must not be considered property or commodities. What society does to animals is slavery, it is oppression, there's no way around it.

Yes, it's true that even vegans are guilty of using some things that contain ingredients that come from animals, like tires, computers, etc., but so far there isn't much of a choice if we want to move from place to place and communicate with more people. Eventually, there will be, because the rise of veganism will demand it.

When people come here and say that "God gave us animals to eat", all I can say is: you don't know that. You can believe that, but you have no way of being sure. And if your faith is responsible for justifying your lack of empathy, your selfishness and cumplicity in causing suffering, then what kind of perverse faith is that? What kind of sick deity would create animals and give them the capacity to feel and to be conscious just so human animals could enslave and murder them without any need to do so? There is NO difference between cruelty and needless

9:12AM PDT on Oct 18, 2012

Yes, Laureen....that's why there is no such thing as a vegan. At best, there are people who are vegan-by-diet.

What we have to do is stop the cruelty of factory farming, by eating less meat, and finding sources for humanely raised meat that isn't contaminated by antibiotics, hormones and synthetic supplements that are at the root of the health problems of those people who don't understand the concept of 'eating in moderation'.
There are EXCESSES that are responsible for most of the diseases....and eating a nutritionally balanced diet is healthiest....especially if what you're eating isn't already contaminated.
So organic is important!

7:22AM PDT on Oct 18, 2012

It is pretty tough to avoid animal byproducts. It is in everything from toothpaste to auto tires. I could not believe that there are animal byproducts in tires of all things! Animals have been used for testing in hair colourants, shampoos, etc. Everywhere you turn, there it is! It is gross.

4:01PM PDT on Sep 7, 2012

You seem to miss that there is a difference between killing and cruelty. God gave us meats to eat, and what meats not to eat. I believe in God and eat meat with no apologies, except for those raising and processing the meats that God set before us.
I do what I can to stop that treatment. I try not to waste what I do buy, I am conscious of what industries are cruel and won't buy from that store that sells it,
As far as cloths go, it could be said that the materials we make today no longer give us the need for hides and furs, but the reality is, they are full of chemicals, and a big part of a poisonous industry spilling into out water ways, and land fills.
There are hardly any seeds you are planting at home, that have not already been chemically altered at this point.
So Who is to blame for cruelty? Those who do not raise animals in proper natural environments or kill cleanly, but cruelly takes lives do to laziness, cost effect, and basic humanity.
Death is and will always be a product of life. We need to enforce the laws that exist, and having a register of people AND Company's that are "convicted of cruelty to animals" is a great start. Many don't have any idea how their meat gets to market, but they're learning thanks to protest, articles, and hidden filming... It's people like "Angle" that draw attention to the problem, rather you "fully" agree with her beliefs or not. As long as their is attention to the problem, their will be progress.

10:14PM PDT on May 15, 2012

Wow, another sermon from "our" Angel. How typical and the usual YES, jibber-jabber that she writes in absolutely every Care.2 article I've ever seen in here. They're all basically the same.

Beth, may I ask why you were so rude to Marilyn and attacked her in such a hostile manner? She said NOTHING personal to you, was commenting on how we all can do our part to abolish or at least lessen animal cruelty, and I've read her comment three times. It certainly was NOT an "all or nothing" implication. She was saying that not a single person can state that they do everything possible to eliminate all animal cruelty, and we each can do only what we can.

As for the article, itself, I didn't see a single new comment from Angel, just the usual rhetoric. We've all read it dozens of times and been down the road before as to where she thinks everyone needs to go. Personally, "her" road has no interest whatsoever for me. I'd rather spend my energies to adopt/rescue homesless and needy animals, volunteer in shelters, sign petitions when they are justified and grow my own food as much as possible, and that which I can't, do my homework and purchase only from local, humanely raised and processed sources.

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