Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Meanwhile a football star is in trouble for dogfighting.

"I want to apologize to the court, my family, and to all the kids who looked up to me as a role model," Vick told the judge. - AP

I love dogs as I do any animals. But why are they afforded the "luxury" of animal cruelty laws while the 300 million turkeys mentioned in the post below do not?

They aren't supposed to be "cute animal cruelty laws" or "domesticated animal cruelty laws" but ANIMAL cruelty laws, no hyphen necessary.

I often hear from meat eaters how it is disgusting that other countries eat dogs, cats, etc, but they see no issue with eating cows, pigs, etc. Is there not some fundamental issue here that needs to be dealt with? Any adult is intelligent enough to see (as long as they choose to) that meat is meat, no matter what animal it comes from. Nonsense.

A slap in the fucking face to 300 million turkeys (and anyone who cares about living creatures)

So President Bush continued the tradition of pardoning a turkey on Thanksgiving. His kind heart actually pardoned two turkeys. Lucky birds, huh?
I find this an absolutely appalling practice. Of course I am glad to see these two turkeys live through the only holiday when people eat the fucking mascot, but it is disgusting to see them put these two beautiful birds before the public in a nonsense ceremony while they will all be going back to the dinner table and feasting on the slaughtered bodies of the same birds. I absolutely don't fucking get it. It's not funny, it's not cute, it is sickening.

Meanwhile, the turkey pictured above, "Pumpkin," will be made the grand marshall of the Thanksgiving parade in Disneyland. Speaking as someone who worked in a Disney Theme Park, that is absolutely pathetic and hypocritical. Disney sells thousands upon thousands of turkey legs a year, from birds that are horribly altered to produce huge legs. The great majority of turkeys raised in the United States are pumped with so many drugs and genetically altered that they normally cannot stand up under their own weight. They're so heavy that their legs break under the strain.

To try to put it in context, we, in popular culture theory, celebrate Thanksgiving as the time the pilgrims and Indians came together and shared a meal. Of course, we slaughtered most of them, and put the rest on reservations. We raise millions of turkeys a year, only to slaughter them and make a holiday out of it. Wouldn't it be similar if, before driving the Indians from the land, the president would have pardoned two of them? Not because they committed any crime, but simply because they were Indians?

300 million turkeys slaughtered for no other reason than people get pleasure out of eating their flesh. 300 MILLION FUCKING TURKEYS that can feel pain.

300 million.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Excuses for Eating Meat #4 - I was raised eating meat

So was I.

I was also raised Catholic.

Now I am a vegan atheist. Go figure.

Next please....

Monday, November 17, 2008

I love Cattle Decapitation!!!

For those of you unfamiliar with vegetarian death metal, I highly suggest going to check out Cattle Decapitation.
They're on Metal Blade records and have been going strong for over a decade. Social consciousness is not something normally related to genres such as death metal, and i'm sure most of their listeners still eat meat. However, it's absolutely fantastic shit. The lyrics usually deal with topics such as treating humans how we treat animals, which means like shit. They have a new record coming out next January called "The Harvest Floor" which features artwork of humans being herded into a slaughterhouse:
That makes me happy.

Cattle Decapitation interview on PETA2

Friday, November 14, 2008

But cheese is okay...wait, what is "rennet" ?

While I no longer eat it, cheese kept me from being a vegan for many years. I had given up all other animal products, but as a midwestern boy with an Italian mother and grandma, I was raised on it, and found it the most difficult thing to give up. I figured it was alright since nothing had to die to make it...then I found out about rennet.

"Rennet is an extract from the fourth stomach of young ruminants, such as cows, goats, and sheep. This extract contains a number of enzymes which are designed to help these animals digest their mother's milk, and when added to milk, rennet will cause the milk to coagulate, forming the curds and whey which are so essential in the cheesemaking process." -

These stomachs are the by-product of making veal, which comes from slaughtered baby cows, sometimes only days old, depending on the type of veal. Yup, like these little guys -
Unfortunately, most cheese is produced in this method, thus most cheese could not be made without slaughtering baby cows. That was enough to get me to stop eating it...well, and the fact that cow's milk is in no way fit for human consumption.

BUT, cheese lovers do not despair. If you can't get yourself to give up cheese, at least do the baby cows (and yourself) a favor by purchasing cheese made without stomach rennet.
Here is a solid listing of cheeses made with vegetarian rennet. I know the Whole Foods by me has their cheeses labeled as either "traditional" or "vegetarian" rennet. Of course it would be more truthful if it was "dead baby cow stomach" rennet, but oh well.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Anyone who calls themselves "pro-life" is a vegetarian!!! (Or a liar).

In the spree to demonize things we do not like, words are changed or substituted in order to either put down an opponent, or make yourself feel better. Thus, dead cow flesh becomes "steak," and dead pig flesh "pork." Likewise, if you're against abortion you become "pro-life" and if you're for abortion in any fashion, you are "pro-choice." Of course, both of these are nonsense terms.

This is not trying to open any debate on abortion in any manner, just to show the nonsense of labels and point out more positives for our animal friends and more negatives for our human actions.

So, it seems to me that if you are calling yourself "pro-life" you would have to be a vegetarian. There is no way around it. If you eat meat, you are agreeing to the butchering of innocent creatures, and in no way could this practice be defined as "pro-life." However, i doubt many in the pro-life movement see it this way, so these ones are outright liars. (Somehow animals aren't really alive...well, you know, unless they live in our houses and do cute things).

This does not put the "pro-choice" crowd off the hook, however. (Well, I guess it does for eating meat, as I can't find a way to tie them together at the moment, but...) If you call yourself "pro-choice" and say things such as "it's a woman's choice to do with her body as she wants," then she should be able to legally choose to do drugs and put any substance she wants into her body. It's her choice.

Personally, I'm a big fan of choice and believe we should be able to do whatever we want as long as it does not interfere with the right of anyone else to do exactly the same thing. Thus, if you want to shoot heroin into your eyeballs, go for it. In a truly free society you should be able to do as you please as long as you do not physically hurt the person or property of another.

So, if you call yourself "pro-choice" but are for drug prohibition, you're a liar. Both sides lose with their inflammatory labels.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Hooray for California and Massachusetts!

local government is a wonderful thing.
let me preface this by saying i am a classic liberal (something which most people who call themselves "liberals" cannot properly define) and so believe action like this must be taken at the state level, leaving the federal government to respect the constitution and only exercise the powers legally given to it. thus, actions such as these can only properly be taken at the state level, UNLESS the constitution is amended.

It is time to celebrate!
First, Massachusetts voters passed Question 3, better known as the Greyhound protection act, with 56% of the vote. The act effectively shuts down greyhound racing in Massachusetts, with violations bringing at least $20,000 in fines. Animals are not here for us to make money off of in this manner. Advocates against the ban argue the dogs are well treated, but in reality they are often raced to death, and when no longer useful, killed outright. Today the doggies have a victory, thanks to the voters.

And over in California, voters passed Proposition 2, better known as the Standards for Confining Farm Animals.
Those against the ban say it will be horribly destructive on the economy, but we shouldn't have an economy based on the suffering of innocent creatures. There is absolutely NO REASON we need to consume animal products to survive anymore. We are intelligent enough to have learned that we can be much healthier by NOT eating animals and their byproducts. If these farmers who are complaining were to use their land to harvest other non-animal commodities, it would make for a healthier populace and they wouldn't have to worry about treating animals better before slaughtering them.

So exactly what crazy measures does this act force upon farmers? It
"prohibits the confinement of farm animals in a manner that does not allow them to turn around freely, lie down, stand up, and fully extend their limbs." Oh FUCK! You're right, that's fucking ridiculous. How dare these living creatures be able to lay down. Goodness. The Libertarian Party of California opposed the measure, and so here i must break with the party.

Will the measure hurt the profits of these farmers? Most likely. BUT, to me it is sick to make your living off of raising beautiful creatures only to stun them with a bolt to the head and then gut them, sometimes while they're still alive. Hens will no longer be able to be confined to small, battery cages. Often, egg laying hens have their beaks sliced off when they're still chicks, because if they didn't they would peck each other to death from being confined so close. Go figure.

Hooray for California and Massachusetts! The animals have a friend in you.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

How to get people to eat less meat #1 - menu pictures

So the question arises, how do you get people to eat less meat?
My first suggestion is to add pictures to all menus showing how each food item gets to your plate.
For example, you're in a fancy restaurant, glancing at the menu. You come across a veal dish. Beside it would be a series of photographs, beginning with a calf being born. Then the baby cow seen immediately taken from its mother, and slaughtered when only a few days old. Next a photo of the butchered body, then the final dish.

Meanwhile, I glance over to a pasta dish, and see images of grains in the field being cut down, and made into pasta. Then tomatoes are ripped from the vine and smashed to make sauce. Finally, a photo of the finished product.

I would have no problem whatsoever with seeing what it takes to produce my pasta. However, it seems likely that most people would have issues with the veal. If you can look at the pure, unnecessary gore it took to produce your food, then by all means, feel free to eat it. But if you have any issues with this, then you shouldn't eat it.

Just a suggestion.