Posted by: Lucy | 2008/01/14

Cruelty to animals depressing me

My life has been turned upside down. I never gave much thought to oppression/tyrany until I read 'Night', about an Auschwitz survivor. It got me thinking: if Nazis could get away with those things 'cause the world was blissfully unaware, what do scientists that experiment on animals get away with in the privacy of their labs?

Then started visiting the PETA website and read a book called 'Animal Liberation'. I learnt about the most inexcusible cruelty that goes on in factory farms, slaughterhouses and 'science' labs every day. God. The world is in such denial. And these creatures can't protest for themselves like oppressed people in history have done. They suffer in silence.

I've made it a priority to open my eyes to animal activism but I also feel like I'm drowning. Change is slow and the law isn't designed to protect animals; the goverment refuses to acknowledge them as sentient beings worthy of protection by humans.

I've never felt so helpless and chronically sad in my life and my rose-coloured view of the world has been replaced by the reality of human nature and the prevalence of evil.

How can I maintain balance? How can I fight for such a disturbing cause without losing all the joy in my life? Can people who fight against oppression of any type ever live a truly peaceful life themselves?

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Our expert says:
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Part of the horror of the Nazi era ( and other especially ugly parts of history ) is that the world was DELIBERATELY "blissfully aware", choosing to ignore clear evidence of the horrors of what was going on.
I too am very concerned about the welfare of animals, and dislike any form of needless cruelty towards them. But I am concerned about PETA, and indeed some "animal rights" groups are frankly terrorists, and act very irrresponsibly, as well as wildly exaggerating the situations they complain of. Maybe the situation ought to continue to be improved, but there are checks and balances in place to help protecty animals used in experiments, and the situation is far more controlled than it was decades or even a few years ago.
The website you visited, and the book, are propaganda, leaving out much relevant fact and designed entirely to push you to agree with them, rather than to understand the broader picture.
And one has to think through the realities of the choices to be made. If your baby was dying --- would you refuse a life-saving antibiotic because it was tested on animals to ensure that it would be safe and effective for your child ? Indeed, if your cat or dog was sick, would you want to refuse them treatments that had been similarly tested ? Without such testing ( which if done properly NEEDS to treat animals humanely, for the results to be of any value at all ) every time any animal or human took any medicine would be a dangerous experiment.
anon, who warms my heart by quoting my old friend Dr Viktor Frankl, also makes a perfect example regarding whales, highly intelligent mammals. The sick obsession of the Japanese people and government with killing whales is highly disturbing, and their flimsy pretense that they are doing "research" is frankly disgusting --- NOTHING of the faintest value to anyone has come of all the phony "research" they pretend to be doing in order to get to slaughter more whales.
In this they Japanese whalers remind me very much of Mngele and other grisly nazis who pretended to be doing "research" --- when not only was their work outrageously inhumane, but rotten science, too. You may be interested in the book written by another friend of mine, Robert Jay Lifton, about the Nazi Doctors, seeking to understand how they could do what they did.

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Our users say:
Posted by: Tango | 2008/01/15

Yes, I agree fully with you all. If I feel overwhelmed by any injustice I just focus on the fact that what you give and do comes back. You hurt and cause pain - you to shall receive it. You try to love and spread joy - that should be your reward.

All each of us can do - is our little bit. Good luck.

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Posted by: DJ | 2008/01/15

There is unfortunatley much cruelty in this world. Animals as well as people are treated terribly. Sometimes one feels inclined to think: How can God let these things happen? I think that God may not have an influence but I do believe that the wheel turns and the perpetrators will get whats coming to them

Reply to DJ
Posted by: Hope* | 2008/01/15

How sad and cruel. How sad is it that there are voices that cant be heard, if animals could talk.  What goes on behind closed doors, if abused children's voices could be heard. What a sad, sad, sorry world. 

Reply to Hope*
Posted by: anon | 2008/01/14

I feel the same way you do about animals. I am a vegetarian and do not eat meat. Also cannot tolerate any animal abuse.

About the Nazi concentration camps, Dr Victor Frankl comes to mind, if you haven't read his book Man's Search For Meaning. He observed people who had nothing to live for, and how they coped in the concentration camps.

Dr Victory Frankl developed Logotherapy & was put to a severe test in a very personal way between 1942 and 1945, when Dr. Frankl was committed to Nazi concentration camps. His experience and observation supported the main thesis of Logotherapy: " This was the lesson I had to learn in three years spent in Auschwitz and Dachau: those most apt to survive the camps were those oriented toward the future, toward a meaning to be fulfilled by them in the future ".

His experience in Nazi camps was recorded in his book Man's Search for Meaning and his personal triumph over unimaginable trauma has been the most compelling testimony to Logotherapy. There are no other psychotherapists whose life and work are as inseperable as Dr. Frankl's, nonetheless ... He is Logotherapy, and vice versa.

If you want to read more about Dr Frankl, google Victor Frankl or go to www dot lifeforums dot co dot za

Remember you can't change the world but you can be the change that you want the world to see. It is very sad that animals who have no voice have to suffer so much at the hands of human beings, who think they are far above animals.

My heart bleeds when I think of all those whales being slaughtered for instance. When is it going to stop. You only have to watch them in the sea, what magnificent creatures. I think humans can learn a lot from animals, yes they are sentinent beings.

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