current | archives | profile | notes | guestbook | photos | rings | contact | host

Perching here and gathering my thoughts ...

Of pigs and mice

04 February 2010 ~ 11:09

With animal rights, for every step forward, it sometimes seems as if there are two steps backwards.

I was enthused when Conservative Parliamentary candidate Zac Goldsmith, known for his environmental campaigning, championed a campaign for better labelling of meat products in the UK. .

At present, meat can be labelled as ‘British’ just because it was packaged in the UK, even if the animals were reared and killed abroad. This has resulted in encouraging bad welfare standards. Cruel pig farming methods are outlawed in the UK, so consumers who buy pork products labelled British might think there was no cruelty involved in its production. Unfortunately this is not true as the pigs could have been subject to very inhumane conditions on a foreign farm and the meat simply imported into the UK. Correct labelling stating the true origin of the meat would enable welfare-savy customers to buy with confidence. Zac Goldsmith has been joined by several celebrities in his campaign, so kudos to him.

A film entitled Pig Business, which Zac has highlighted, exposes the sham of so-called high British welfare standards. Importing foreign meat is also demoralising for British farmers who adhere to much stricter standards than their foreign counterparts. Of course what we need is an EU wide ruling on animal welfare standards for farmed animals. Indeed I’d like to see the whole world signed up to such a charter, but that isn’t going to happen any time soon, so the best we can hope for is an EU ‘gold standard.’.

As I said, with every step forward there seems to be two backwards. Currently these two would seem to include the exposing of horrific ‘experiments’ on pigs by the Ministry of Defence here in the UK. LIVE, yes, live pigs were BLOWN UP to simulate explosions against the allied military in Iraq & Afghanistan in the hope of perfecting body armour. Very sick. I don’t think the so-called saving of lives (which I doubt anyway given that pigs have very different anatomy and posture to human being) justifies this horrific treatment of sentient, intelligent beings. That’s the same argument used by those who justify torturing terror suspects: ‘well it’ll save innocent lives.’.

Also, the Iranians have supposedly joined the space program by blasting worms, a mouse and two turtles into space. It’s unbelievable cruel. How terrified that poor mouse and the turtles must be. And obviously they won’t be coming back.

All we can do in the war against animal cruelty is keep trying. But sometimes it is very hard and upsetting.

Stored nuts | Future acorns