Is your meat craving really worth this suffering?
Wouldn’t it sadden your heart if cats and dogs were subjected to routine animal farming practices? Have you ever wondered how if killing a dog for food feels so wrong, how does killing a chicken or pig not feel just as cruel?
We love dogs and cats but categorise farmed animals such as cows, pigs, and chickens as food. If this isn’t the most pervasive form of speciesism, what is?
Animals that are subject to animal husbandry are relentlessly tortured in farms across the globe. And for what? To satisfy our desperate habit of meat consumption. According to the UN, the number of industrial livestock sent to slaughter each year is equivalent to 8 times the human population on planet Earth. Yes, 8 times! Historically, this suffering and loss of animal life is completely unprecedented.
Most factory-farmed animals are genetically manipulated to grow larger or to produce more milk or eggs than they naturally can. These processes expose them to immense pain and suffering. To maximise profit, the killing and disassembling of these animals needs to be carried out quickly. Thus, animals end up being conscious through much of this cruelty. All of this is deliberately hidden from us. And we continue eating animals in blissful ignorance of the merciless torture that is a nightmare for the helpless animals.
Mercy For Animals’ investigations show how testicles of male piglets are violently ripped out, and their sensitive tails are cut off without painkillers to remove ‘boar taint’, an unpleasant taste in meat from unaltered male pigs. Mother pigs are crammed into small, filthy gestation crates where they are unable to lie down comfortably or even turn around for their entire lives, trapped by metal bars on all sides.
Cows are treated as mere milk-producing machines. They are tortured throughout pregnancy, birth, and milked until their bodies give up. Calves are ripped away from their mothers, locked in crates, and are used as veal. To add anguish to the cruelty, they are fed a low-iron milk substitute that makes them anaemic.
Egg-laying hens are kept in small cages. Some chickens grow so unnaturally large that their legs are unable to support their outsized bodies. Hence, they suffer from starvation or dehydration when they can’t walk to reach the necessary food and water.
Chickens are packed in boxes and sent to fattening farms. They live for 42 days and then sent to the slaughterhouse. Their sensitive beaks are seared off without painkillers, all to prevent the animals from pecking each other to death. With little hope of surviving in the first place, weak chicks are thrown directly into the trash bins and are either suffocated or crushed with clubs.
Fishes aren’t forgiven from this human cruelty either. They are suffocated, skinned, and dismembered while they are still conscious. Fishes suffer from intense confinement in the factory farms. The conditions spur injuries and illness, which can often make the fish lose their eyesight or become infected with parasites. Fish are skinned while they writhe in pain on the cutting table as workers tear their heads off, just like that.
As humans, we cannot even begin to imagine the suffering these animals go through because we cannot hear them voice their pain. While we ensure no human faces unjust violence, why do we turn a blind eye when it comes to the rights of these animals? Why do we allow this heartless torture to continue? When will we learn that coexisting is the only way to bring peace and harmony to our lives?
Is the craving really worth the suffering? The decision, as always, is yours.
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