Saturday, January 19, 2008

The hare and the farm factories

-Negrita, look who was digging under the wind mill!

-Is that a peludito? I´ve seen a peludo mother franticly looking for him yesterday near the road. Wait here I have to find her and tell her - said the cow

-He doesn´t stay still. And he has big claws. Why don´t you instead ask Mr. Hare? You know I can´t talk to him.

-You´re right 99, he runs faster than anybody. Hey! wait a minute... there he goes... are you sure you can´t talk to him? He seemed to understood every word you said and is not wasting a moment... as usual... look, he´s already passing the barn´s curve...

-I never tried.

-Anyway, he seems to like emergencies. He´s always running for something. Can you handle the peludito?

-Kind of... By the way, I saw you this morning with your friends in a sort of cow meeting. Is something happening?
-Well, we meet every once in a while to discuss stuff. This morning we gathered to discuss factory farming.

-You mean those places that treat farm animals as mere factory parts? They are disgusting. I distrust the kind of humans that think that the ends justify the means.
-We just see them as people who believe that the moral worth of an action is determined by its outcome. We don´t blame them, they are stupid.
-You don´t? Feedlot animals are subjected to torture and cruelty of all kinds. Feedlots have come under criticism even by us for human health reasons. It´s not only the degrading treatments.
-Yeah, I know. We weren´t made for corn and grain diets. Here for example as grass-fed cattle we have far less saturated fat. I like to keep track of my omega 3 fatty acids. Good tissues make you happier. Actually, me and my friends were discussing happiness at the meeting.
-Wow! Tell me more.

-Today´s topic of conversation was the right to freedom of movement and residence.
-Most of us humans have those rights granted by some Constitución. Some go further and believe in the Pursuit of Happiness. What else?
-We believe we have rights to Five Freedoms:

freedom from hunger and thirst
freedom from discomfort
freedom from pain, injury or disease
freedom to express normal behavior
freedom from fear and distress

-Well, you don´t get any of those at the feedlots. At least not in the ones that I´ve seen. I can´t understand why you don´t even blame them for thinking that the rightness of an action is determined by its consequences?
-In those places they often justify harm to one individual by a greater gain to other individuals and humans naturally tend to be self-interested.
-You don´t?
-When faced with a choice, we first consider the rightness of the potential actions, and then we choose to do what we believe will generate the most happiness for every single individual.
-Not for the herd...? I never thought you were individualistic. I thought your first will was to preserve the herd.
-No. The herd is happy if all the individuals are happy. And I mean all, even the ones that don´t look like us, like the peludito. A great loss to one individual like the peludo mother should not be outweighed by small gains for many.-So Negrita, tell me, do all animals think like that everywhere?
-I don´t know. But here, we do. See, if Mr. Hare didn´t think that way he wouldn´t have run to help.
-You mean it´s not just you, the cows? The hares too?
-Everybody in this farm thinks like that. Even you.

-... I thought I only had environmental concerns...

A bird landed near us and we stopped our conversation. It was a big Martineta bringing good news. The worried mother had been informed and was coming for her baby as fast as her short legs could take her.

I left the little rebel on the ground near the bird and the cow. I knew they were going to take good care of him. I whispered namasté, the three of them answered back and I left.

I had a lot of thinking to do.


Anonymous said...

My site is no longer online. I had too many irons in the fire so am trying to reduce the clutter. My main place now is at if you want to change the link. Thanks.

Also thanks for visiting my place and commenting there.

I like your blog. Never knew any cow who went to the dentist. Up here not any that I knew of. I guess I learned something new.

I also don't know what kind of animal that one is. Never saw one of those before. Looks like it has quills or long, long hair.

99 said...

It´s done Abe!
Peludos are very much like armadillos except they are a little hairy. And yes, there are cow dentists!
I always love all of your "irons".
Thanks for passing by.