August 29, 2007

August was the cruelest month…

Posted in Uncategorized at 12:53 am by nevavegan

Well, not really, but I like to misquote Elliot whenever I get the chance.

I’m taking a couple days off from work to get my head on straight again and maybe do some hardcore cleaning.

I feel like lately all I have are thoughts bouncing around in my head and nothing focused for a post.

After nearly losing two of our rescued cats earlier in the month, I could escape the evidence of cruelty in my own neighborhood.

Months ago someone had murdered the beautiful heron that frequented our tiny litter-filled park. Stumbling on his body, just too late to help, was a terrible thing. Knowing that someone purposefully killed this beautiful creature was worse.

More recently walking the dogs I found a beheaded robin and a beheaded starling, but all around me my neighbors were planting flowers and setting up bird feeders. It seemed incongruous, this stuff going on while older women in bright sun dresses put up signs saying “welcome to granny’s garden.”

The cat poisonings stopped as mysteriously as they began. Possibly because Sean had given our prime suspect a firm talking too and our neighbor Stuart was observed saying loudly outside that if he figured out who was doing it he wasn’t going to bother with any cops.

Then the other day, walking the dogs, Stuart came out to tell me that somehow one of the male ferals looked burned and he was worried someone had done it on purpose. The good news is the cat, now named Shorty, is living on Stuart’s porch now and is all healed up. We don’t know what happened. It could have been anything, but with the attacks on wildlife, I do wonder. In a neighborhood of mostly nice people, one sociopathic individual can still wreak havoc.

Yesterday walking the dogs Stuart came out to talk to me again, mainly to ask me if I’d feed some of the ferals over the weekend since he’d be out of town. Then he wanted to talk about Michael Vick. He said “Neva, I know you’re a vegan (he pronounced it vaaaaay-gun) and I read Courtland Milloy comparing dog fighting to eating meat, but it ain’t the same, it just ain’t the same. Somethings wrong with someone who could do that to dogs.”

I couldn’t disagree with him on that point, there’s something deeply wrong with someone who can kill animals and take pleasure in fighting them and hurting them. But I couldn’t get too in depth with the topic since he then said that “the skeeters were eating him alive so he had to get inside.”

But maybe there’s also something wrong in a world where so many of us are so blind to so much pain all around us. There are sociopaths and then there are people who care but turn it off in various ways because caring hurts too much. I can turn it off to some extent as well naturally. To not do so is to become completely overwhelmed. But at some point I hope more of us can wake up and start making changes. Most people, my co-workers, my neighbors, abhor cruelty. They think less of people who are purposefully cruel, yet through their buying habits they support cruelty. How do we bridge the disconnect? Keep reminding them? Bring them vegan cupcakes on holidays?


1 Comment »

  1. joel said,

    I agree completely. Comparisons of sadistic behavior have to be undertaken very carefully.

    There is a distinction between killing “for food,” which suggests necessity, and killing for the fun of killing, then eating (i.e., sport hunting) or killing for the fun of eating (i.e. boiling a live lobster).

    Most people think mental state matters for ethical culpability. For example, most people think that the malicious motive, such that pleasure is derived from another’s pain, is a more culpable mental state than knowingly causing pain because of auxillary benefits, despite the “incidental” pain.

    For most people then, there is a distinction between the sadist and the omnivore because (perhaps) the omnivore wishes the pain didn’t happen. Or at worst is apathetic.

    more here:

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