Sunday, December 19, 2010

From the Horse’s Mouth-December 2010 edition (The Trumpet)

“If slaughterhouses had glass walls, everyone would be a vegetarian.”

~Paul McCartney

It’s official. The world is gradually yet steadily morphing into a more vegan oriented society. What better news to take with us into the New Year? I promote veganism, because it is not only the MOST compassionate choice to make in the coming year, but also the healthiest. And in your heart of hearts you know it too.

It’s been proclaimed for years – a full-fledged vegetarian diet is the most beneficial for the human system. Dr Hean Yee, Head, Cardiovascular Medicine at Alexandria Hospital in Singapore was quoted to have said, “Humans are natural herbivores: we get heart disease when we eat meat.”

Crisp and lucid.

Dr Baxter Montgomery, a leading cardiologist in Houston, also strongly promotes the health benefits of a vegan diet. “By getting a patient on a plant-based diet and getting her completely off animal flesh, it was possible to reverse her Type 2 diabetes,” Montgomery says, speaking of one of the many patients he has treated for diabetes in a similar way. “Eventually even insulin injections were no longer needed.”

Meanwhile, reviews for Melanie Joy’s latest book “Why We Love Dogs, Eat Pigs, and Wear Cows: An Introduction to Carnism” are out. And they’re vibrant with praise.

Says one editorial review “She uses her factory farm–to–table narrative to buttress her real thesis: meat-eating or carnism, is an oppressive ideology as noxious as racism. Joy casts meat eating as genocide, comparable to the Holocaust, and factory farming on a par with the American enslavement of Africans.”

And the sad part is that factory farming is actually ‘intensive animal agriculture’ – a system of livestock production and slaughter, rife with cruelty that most of us are not only ignorant about, but also incapable of witnessing. Dairy production, the meat industry and poultry farming are all blatant examples of human exploitation at its most extreme.

Take the time out to rethink your lifestyle. Think about the origins of the milk you drink, the meat you consume and the eggs you devour. And if you still can’t grasp the gravity of the situation, put yourself in the place of a chicken about to be killed brutally after being debeaked, defeathered and skinned alive.

For the benefit of all and sundry, the Vegetarian Society of Singapore, along with fellow animal welfare organizations, have shared with us a video on ‘The Intelligence and Emotions of our Fellow Animals’ which was also shown at the recently concluded India, South and West Asia Vegetarian Congress held at Bangalore, from 30 October-1 November. The link to the video: . Seeing the video may help you to understand our fellow animals better and have a glimpse of their complex emotional states too.

Spread the word. Animals are not ours to exploit. They are living beings in their own right and deserve to be appreciated and respected, not beaten, skinned, scalded, slashed, experimented on, eaten or worn. Make a statement in the coming year. Take a stand. And don’t hesitate to share this with your friends and family. Even one changed heart in ten, calls for a celebration.

I sincerely hope you have had a compassion-filled, cruelty-free 2010. If you have, then be assured that the blessings of all the animals you have supported are with you. I also pray that 2011 is equally enlightening, healthy and animal friendly for you.

Happy holidays and a very happy New Year too.

For Thane S.P.C.A.,

Shreyasi Majumdar

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