As our world progresses and becomes ever more fast-moving, things keep taking a turn for the worse. Our relationships suffer, and our relationships with the community suffer too. We seem to be getting more and more insensitive. Crimes are not just increasing but are becoming crueler with each passing day.
One of the most disastrous impacts of this is on our surroundings and the non-human lives we stay with. What I’m talking about here is – Animal Cruelty. All of us have seen those occasional viral videos of stray dogs being beaten or of horses and elephants being tortured to perform for entertainment.
But do we ever feel more than a momentary burst of angst and turmoil about it? More often than not, all we do is talk about it passionately, share WhatsApp forwards, and then forget about it. Is doing this much enough? It’s not.
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Let’s See Some Data: Animal Cruelty Facts:
- Every 60 seconds, an animal gets abused.
- Mice, rabbits, pigs, rats, dogs, cats, monkeys, birds, and many others- around 115 million animals get killed in experiments in laboratories throughout the world for chemical, drug, food, and cosmetics testing every year.
- The exotic pet trade is a multi-billion-dollar industry. Some are bred in captivity, but a lot of them are taken away from their homes. Most of them die because of the stress caused by such violent upheaval.
- 90% of broiler chickens, i.e., the ones bred for eating – are genetically modified to have more meat and have trouble walking.
The list will go on because there is no end to the cruelty towards animals that is happening in our world today in infinite ways.
Definition of Animal Cruelty:
The problem lies in a lot of issues. One of them being that people don’t always understand they are cruel to an animal. Animal cruelty, as obvious as it may sound, is sadly a vague concept to many. So, let’s have a look at the definition of animal cruelty:
The meaning of animal cruelty is simple. The abuse or neglect of an animal is animal cruelty. An action tantamount to abuse of animals when:
- Willful harming of an animal.
- Not taking care of an animal. Knowingly neglecting its needs.
- Keeping an animal hungry because you ‘forgot’ is animal cruelty too.
- Exploiting an animal for monetary gains.
What Are We Doing?
We, humans, we’re supposed to be the most harmless creatures, right? How did we become the most violent predators? We have left no animal to be free.
Animal cruelty is rampant. We have tortured, killed, eaten, and beaten every animal that we could domesticate. And with the ones we could not, we have hunted them. We have captured them and kept them in cages; we have charged petty money from the public and showcased them like toys.
Today, as you read this article, there are elephants being stolen from their mothers and forced to entertain tourists. Pandas – the most adorable of all animals are kept so alone that they are falling into depression! The funny thing is that the logic behind humans’ protecting’ and keeping animals in captivity is to save them from- yes, you guessed right- humans themselves.
Different Examples of Animal Cruelty:
- Rabbits corneas are still being burned, and rats are poisoned to test cosmetics.
- Dogs and other pets are left out in the open. It doesn’t matter to those owners, even if it’s too cold, wet or too hot outside!
- We evolved and got lucky, but Chimpanzees are still kept in laboratories and tested for new surgical procedures.
- Bird feathers are plucked to decorate hats. Yes, it’s still in demand.
- Sheep are beaten and kicked to get their wool.
- Military training in many countries use pigs and other cattle to practice shooting and cutting them open during training.
- Horses are drugged and transported to slaughterhouses, where they are sold for meat. Not just this, now that we are bored of eating animals that we are used to, new animals are being used in the culinary industry. E.g., Emu meat and Reindeer meat are widely being eaten in Central European countries.
- The aquatic animals in Aquariums are kept in isolation and treated even more cruelly than we can imagine.
- Farm Animals are kept in terrible conditions and often stuffed together in closed spaces. Many times, they die of disease and are just thrown away.
- Puppy mills: We adore puppies, don’t we? The dark truth behind the places which breed puppies for commercial sale has the power to make anyone shudder.
- Greyhound Dog Killing: Greyhound racing is still prevalent in many parts of America and in some other countries too. When they become slow to win, they are killed.
- Fur farms store animals in cages, and there is no limit to cruelty here.
The Irish playwright- ― George Bernard Shaw, once said, in his book ‘Man and Superman’— “We cut the throat of a calf and hang it up by the heels to bleed to death so that our veal cutlet may be white; we nail geese to a board and cram them with food because we like the taste of liver disease; we tear birds to pieces to decorate our women’s hats; we mutilate domestic animals for no reason at all except to follow an instinctively cruel fashion, and we connive at the most abominable tortures in the hope of discovering some magical cure for our diseases by them.”
Do we not think that the lives of animals also mean something? Just because we cannot understand what they speak does not give us a right to torture them endlessly.
The Looming Danger:
We need to worry about the link that exists between cruelty towards animals and towards humans. A person who can be cruel to an animal, a harmless life that hasn’t ever done anyone any wrong, can also easily be cruel to another human.
“He who is cruel to animals becomes hard also in his dealings with men. We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals.” Immanuel Kant
Apart from the cruelty towards animals displayed by commercial establishments, there is an equally grave crime happening behind closed doors. More often than not, we don’t even get to know who is torturing a pet. How do we save these souls?
Governments around the world are trying what they can on their part to do something about animal cruelty.
- In the United States, animal cruelty was made a federal crime on November 25th, 2019, by erstwhile President Donald Trump.
- In India, cows, dolphins and many other animals are protected by law against torture. Dolphins are also given a person status and considered intelligent creatures.
- In Switzerland, animals are recognized as social beings too, and it’s required to keep them in pairs.
Let’s stop this cruelty. Let us not add to the list of unforgivable crimes committed by us humans towards nature.
“Humanity’s true moral test, its fundamental test consists of its attitude towards those who are at its mercy: animals.” Milan Kundera, the Czech writer
Sources and References:
- www.peta.org – “Worst Things Still Happening to Animals.”
- www.brut.media – “Animal Cruelty Around the World.”
- www.youthkiawaaz.com – “Horrific Animal Cruelty.”
Disclaimer: This article is not meant to target or disrespect any particular group, race or community. It is purely aimed for information and research purpose.