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All Animals Are Equal. Not.

Updated on November 19, 2008
Cattle are food and provide leather
Cattle are food and provide leather

Which animals are "better"?

Why are dogs better than donkeys? Whales better than prairie dogs? Cats better than rats? Why are eagles better than cormorants? Why is it ok to eat pigs in America but not dogs? To eat ducks but not parakeets? To eat cows but not horses?

Why do pro-animal people want to protect minks and their fur more than cows and their hides?

Remember reading Animal Farm by George Orwell? One of the big takeaways was "All animals are equal, but some are more equal than others." This was on a comment on the hypocrisy of governments that proclaim equality, but don't treat everyone equally. I think we have that same hypocrisy in America regarding our attitude toward animals.

I am honestly puzzled by how we in America have made decisions about which animals deserve our affection and care (even to the extent we help them breed) and which animals can be eaten or considered expendable.

Do cuter animals deserve more care and protection? Domesticated animals like cats and dogs? Useful animals like police dogs and Grand Canyon donkeys? Good tasting animals? Big animals like elephants? Sports quarries like big horn sheep and pheasants?

Is it an accident of history and power that Western influences are prevailing in the world and gradually making the (public) eating of cats and dogs taboo versus, say, an Indian taboo of eating cows?

If I think too hard about this, I could become a vegetarian. Instead, I think I'll go out and order a hamburger and fries.

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    • profile image

      Theresa 

      7 years ago

      All animals can be remembered and honored with cremation jewelry. A matter of personal preference which kind of animal you prefer.

      http://www.jewelrykeepsakes.com/

    • Lady Luv profile image

      Lady Luv 

      7 years ago from Webster, MA, USA

      For every animal vegans don't eat, I vow to eat 3. I love your article. I have been wondering this very same thing myself.

      A question I like to present to people;

      If you were eating a delicious meal, the most tender, mouth-watering, succulent meat ever, and found out the meat was once a Saint Bernard...what would you do?

    • profile image

      Adam Weissman 

      8 years ago

      Pro-animal people aren't more concerned about mink than cows. Lots of animal activists campaign against leather:

      http://www.cowsarecool.com/

      Animal activists have focused on fur over leather largely for one one reason: people (incorrectly) rationalize that leather is a by-product of meat. This is often untrue -- many cattle are bred specifically for their skins, particularly in countries like India, a major supplier to the global leather trade. However, people associate cattle with beef, milk, and veal and are reluctant to acknowledge that something might be wrong with killing the animals they enjoy eating. Thus, they are more resistant to being told to give up leather than. Many animal activists believe in working towards the incremental abolition of animal industries. These advocates believe that the public may not be willing to give up all uses of animals at once, but it is important to work for the total abolition of industries where public support exists while ultimately working to convince people to support the abolition of other industries and practices. Some of these advocates view abolishing the fur industry as a stepping stone towards abolishing the meat, dairy, and leather industries. Others disagree with separating them in this manner and feel that animal advocates should put their energies into promoting a vegan lifestyle (http://www.veganoutreach.org/whyvegan/).

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