ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Bullied Lobsters

Updated on March 5, 2013

It’s the beginning of my annual “Meatless March,” a month I dedicate to acknowledging the suffering and sacrifice of animals. It’s a month where I face the inherent contradiction between referring to myself as an animal lover and my love for eating them. It’s a month where I try to raise awareness of the need to find ways to minimize the suffering of the living creatures we use to satisfy our appetites. I’m not ready to give up eating meat, and I imagine most people won’t, but I think we would like animals raised and killed as humanely as possible. There are those that believe that from the animal’s point of view, there is no humane way—just as we humans likely believe there would be no “animanely” way for animals to raise and slaughter us. I can’t argue with them other than to say that some positive change is better than none.

What has this got to do with bullying? Bullying comes from a perception of difference, a misuse of power, and an absence of empathy. People who are bullied (both children and adults) are perceived to be different in some odd or unpopular way. Victims of bullying are vulnerable, and the people who bully them cruelly exercise power. And, it is only possible to bully someone if the bully is able to detach emotionally from the experience of the victim. That’s why empathy training in schools for children has been so successful in preventing bullying. If you feel the feelings of people, you won’t bully them, because if you did, you would feel their pain, fear, and degradation.

Consider the lobster and our ability to eat it after it has been boiled alive. It takes the average lobster 2-3 minutes to die. The only way we can enjoy eating it is by detaching ourselves from its experience. Its difference from us makes it easier for us to do so. We can accentuate the difference by focusing on the oddness of its appearance (based, of course, on the template of us being the perfect standard). It helps to tell ourselves comforting stories about the differences in our respective nervous systems, just as was done in the days of vivisection to justify dissecting live animals such as dogs without anesthetic. We can get away with this terrible cruelty because lobsters are vulnerable and it’s easy to exercise power over them. (Imagine wrestling a person-sized lobster into a boiling pot and you’ll get the picture.)

But what if we didn’t? What if we took a stand against suffering of any kind, by any being, no matter how small, vulnerable, or different? What if we didn’t cloak experience in terms such as “harassment” and “bullying” but went to the heart of it and called it “pain” instead? What if we built a society where every being, no matter how small, no matter how different, had a right to the absence of pain, fear, and degradation? What if we fostered empathy for all the beings that we share the world with, and they didn’t have to justify receiving our mercy by looking or acting like us, or being our friend, or being related, or wagging a tail, or carrying us over jumps, or purring? What if we adults modeled universal empathy to the children we admonish to not bully? I think bullying rates would drop dramatically, don’t you?

So next time you’re in Red Lobster and you’re considering eating that sweet tender meat, ask them if the lobster would be bullied…er…boiled alive. Tell them you will only eat it if it’s been killed humanely. Tell them about the “Crustastun”: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/foodanddrink/recipes/4581872/A-humane-way-to-cook-lobster.html and insist they buy and use it if they want your lobster-eating business. Do your part to end bullying; one lobster at a time.

Source

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)