Become a vegan. Even though I was raised on meat and two veg and therefore it is deeply embedded in my psyche, I am gradually tearing myself away from that state of mind. This picture is mind bending. It gave me goose bumps. It pushed me one more step towards veganism. It was captured by the photojournalists of We Animals Media. It is on Twitter and it is a horror. It is mesmerising for all the wrong reasons.
I see a human in the image of this terrified pig. A human with a pig’s distinctive snout. It screams human. Strange. But because of that impression, the sentience of this pig is thrown in my face. We need to see animals as feeling beings and not objects to provide ‘meat’, a word created to make the often disreputable husbandry of farm livestock acceptable. Meat is flesh, more specifically mainly muscle.
Can you imagine going into a butchers and the butcher saying “What kind of flesh would you like today?” The word ‘butcher’ for me conjures up mass murders of humans such as ‘The Butcher of Delhi’ or ‘The Shankill Butchers (an Ulster loyalist gang).
The more you move away from eating the flesh of animals, the more you see meat as flesh and bone. You see blood and muscle as if you are seeing an X-rated film in which there is extreme violence.
And when you walk past a butcher’s shop you see dead bodies hanging up on hooks in the window as if you are looking at the end result of the mass slaying and dismemberment of humans by a psychopathic serial killer.
That’s how the mind alters. Your perceptions change and you become far more sensitive to the indiscretions of humankind in their relationship with animals.
Below are links to two posts. One concerns compassion and the other is about sentience.