July 23, 2014

Vegan receives animal-farming mag in mailbox!

I live in rural animal farming country. Yes, an unwavering vegan of nearly 36 years is receiving animal-farming magazines in her mailbox. Some quotes straight from farmer's advertisements: 

First page, the ad reads: "the stress of calving season" stressful it is on the human, that is. This is ironic, of course, because it is horrifically stressful for the abused cows exploited for dairy and their calves - far more than the human. These adverts clearly show that our species is humancentric; pointing out the stress on the exploiters; not the innocent victims.  

I continue to the next page to see all the gadgets they have for sale like a new eco milk bar, a black calf teat, and a milk bar pen - devices to feed fake formulations to calves. Calves are taken from their mother and their rightful milk supply - and the calve's milk is given to humans instead. This is an obvious injustice. Humans should be weaned and not drinking cow's breast milk; but human breast milk. They use terms like "calving" for giving birth to a calf. They use the term "stock" for living breathing sentient animals - as if they are goods you buy off a shelf, a thing, not an animal with consciousness and awareness. No animal should ever be considered "stock". This is a word that will be obliterated from language at some time in the future. In an ad for selling this "milk bar teat" contraption, they describe it as "a lot easier for feeding". Hmmm. I'm pretty sure the calf would find his/her mother's teat to be much easier and the way it was meant to be.
Castrator to be used on calves 2-4 months

Moving on to the next page, they are trying to sell 'Captive Bolts'. The ad's caption reads: "The humane destruction of livestock is an unpleasant, but necessary fact of farming life. Whatever the reason for destroying an animal, the process should always be carried out in a humane and effective manner." Truth in advertising - the killing and abuse is not necessary - we humans can live vegan, and I'm living proof of that of course. Secondly, they use the term "destroy". Would you say a human being was destroyed? No, but you could say the car was destroyed. Destroyed is describing an object - not a sentient being. In order to kill fellow sentient animals, society has turned them into "things....things that can be destroyed". 

Now here's an interesting quote from the same page: "Using a Captive Bolt device is one way of ensuring a humane death is achieved and, while the device requires no license to operate, owners should be aware they can be dangerous tool in the wrong hands and safety must be a priority when using and storing them." Hmmm No license is necessary! Oh, and by the way, in reality, captive bolt devices are dangerous in anyone's hands if you see it through the eyes of the victims. 

Another quote from this page: "Several different strength activators are available for use with your Captive Bolt and users should ensure the correct change is used for the varying classes of stock to be euthanized - failure to do so could result in an ineffective kill." They incorrectly use the term 'euthanasia'.  Euthanizing is mercy killing; what they are doing is murder. Like many salespersons, animal exploiters use deceitful terms to make sales. 

The next page they are trying to sell "cleaners, disinfectants, and teat sprays, right through to mastitis management" because obviously mastitis; a painful infection often contracted by these poor exploited cows - is commonplace. Quote: "..attention to mastitis prevention is critical for a smooth calving season by minimising time spent treating mastitis and the long milking that the treatment causes." It's all about the human, once again. Not about the severe pain of this disease to the cows, but about the extra time for farmers and the possible loss of their profit, as mastitis is potentially fatal.  They say looking for and treating mastitis is "a big job" - it's obviously very prevalent. 

The ads are trying to sell farmers a gadget that monitors the performance of cows exploited for dairy. "This provides valuable insights into individual animal production, highlighting variances from a cow's normal position to signal early changes in her state." Sentient individuals enslaved in the farming system are literally monitored as to their profitability to the farmers; all they are is a money-making machine. Humans unjustly objectify other animals in order to force breeding and pregnancy on them, exploit their reproductive system and then kill them when they are not profitable enough to the farmer; and they now have machinery that detects which animals will cost them money or profit loss. 

Next page, the headline reads: "You cannot underestimate the role of good farm infrastructure in attracting and retaining staff and making farming a truly enjoyable experience." How is it possible that the minds of humanity accept this objectifying, raping, exploiting, and killing and then have the indecency to advertise it as "A Truly Enjoyable Experience"? Getting pleasure out of another's pain is a misguided thought pattern that we were all handed by society, but should not accept as Truth. 

Next quote from magazine: "The dairy market is steady. Auctions are going really well with strong buying for top end cows although herd sales have slowed due to 'on farm auctions' but are still selling for $1700-$2000 per head." There is no difference between a cow, a dog, a pig, or a human - when it comes to the right not to be a victim of slavery and exploitation. I live in a culture where seemingly polite people are quite literally violent animal abusers. They torture and kill their exploited animals, the "pests" that threaten their livelihood (even though there is no greater pest to this planet than humans), and they exploit dogs to help them herd animals. Where I live, I see dogs all the time thought of as a commodity; a farm dog, a "working dog".

Next page they are trying to sell you "Chunky Dog Roll" for "working dogs": "I've been a convert to Chunky dog roll for some time now. It suits my dogs down to the ground - they love it. It's also a labour saving product for me, which is particularly cost-effective and the dogs do well on it." (Well he's honest about his blatant ego and not caring about anything beyond his own greed.) He continues: "Coming home after a busy day and having to kill an old ram or five is a time consuming drag, plus the old rams are worth quite a lot more now than they used to be so it's not a cost effective way to do it. ....Chunky is an easy choice that I know is good for them. When they're working hard they get a three split roll, then four or five split when they are working lightly or on vacation."

To prove these dogs are seen and treated as working dogs (another one of the many ways humans exploit animals) the ad says this: "There are around 35 working dogs fed Chunky - it helps them hold condition and I only supplement with a few bics when they're working really hard, and for variety." Then I turn the page to an advert from Purina Tux brand: "TUX Energy 20% protein and 18% fat) is recommended for hard working dogs with high energy needs, such as hard working beef and sheep farm dogs, pig hunting, service and pest control dogs. TUX Country is recommended for dogs with moderate energy needs - such as dairy farm dogs, rural pet dogs, and retired working dogs." They are not "farm dogs", "pig hunting dogs", "dairy cows"...these are the slave names humans give them. They are dogs exploited for herding and hunting other animals. They are cows exploited for dairy. And this is the animal-exploiting mentality I am surrounded by; where I get this sort of adverts in my mailbox.

We have to start standing up to this age-old socially accepted wrong of using other animals for human convenience. Perhaps humans could not live vegan in the past, but we can now. Just because something "has always been done" does not mean we should continue doing it. It's time humanity turns away from animal farming and all intentional harming of anyone feeling and conscious. 

July 22, 2014

Meaningful, Memorable, or Must-See Movies!

These movies have social justice themes or convey a meaningful message; many inspired by true stories. Listed randomly, the following films deal with subject matters like women's rights, animal rights, environmental rights, human rights, the Holocaust, genocide, war, slavery, rape, domestic abuse, exposing truth, apartheid, abortion, gay rights, civil rights, racism, poverty, wrongful conviction, the death penalty, prison system, or powerfully uplifting or memorable movies...with a little comic relief mixed in. 

Amazing Grace
William Wilberforce and
the abolition of the slave
trade, highly recommended

Steven Spielberg directed this
film based on the uprising in 1839
by newly abducted Mende tribesmen.

Steven Spielberg starring
Daniel Day Lewis - need I
say more?

The Jackie Robinson story

The Stoning of Soraya M.
Has haunted me since I saw it.
Unforgettable. Based on a
true story. 

Votes for Women
Iron Jawed Angels
Hilary Swank; recommended
movie about suffragettes

Sophie Scholl: The Final Days
The true story of the final days
in the short life of heroin; Sophie
Scholl. Highly recommended.

True incredible
story, during
Nazi Germany

Red Dust
South African
Hilary Swank
chooses some
powerful roles to play.

Fahrenheit 9/11
Michael Moore



  Homosexuality and
  the early days of Aids.

   Charlize Theron's mind-blowing
   performance portraying a Florida
   serial killer
   based on a true story.

  The Shawshank Redemption
  Classic much-loved movie!

Schindler's List
Nazi Germany
Steven Spielberg movie.

Freedom Writers
Hilary Swank plays
an inner-city schoolteacher.

The Butler
A White House butler who served
eight American presidents
over three decades, based on a
true story.

Dead Poets Society
Robin Williams plays
an unorthodox teacher.

The story of Linda Lovelace;
a porn star.
Domestic Violence issue.

Norma Rae

Erin Brockovich
The true story of Erin Brockovich,
played by Julia Roberts,
who fought against a big corporation.

A League of their Own
feminist rights

The Love Ranch
A Nevada brothel
for legal prostitution.

  African-American Slavery


   Made in Dagenham
   Comedy drama
   feminist themed

    The Color Purple
    Steven Spielberg classic
    Slavery in the U.S.

E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial
Steven Spielberg classic
for kids of all ages; like me.

Animal Rights theme
for children of all ages.

Freedom Riders
Civil Rights

  The Green Mile
  Death Row

The Pianist
Nazi Germany

Dead Man Walking
Powerful death row movie

   North Country
   Charlize Theron
   The case that changed
   Sexual Harassment Law 

Gorillas in the Mist
The true story of
Dian Fossey

The Killing Fields
war, and one man's will
to live. Interesting.

   The Lorax
   Dr. Seuss is awesome!
   Environmental message
   great to pass on to children
   of all ages.

    The Accused
    older movie about
    rape culture

The general practices
of the largest animal
exploitation industries
seen in undercover footage;
narrated by vegan actor;
Joaquin Phoenix.

The Terminal
Steven Spielberg movie.
An immigrant is stranded in
airport, and takes up
residence there.

 Mississippi Burning
 FBI investigation in Mississippi into the    disappearance of civil rights activists. 

   Rescue Dawn
   True Story about

Moulin Rouge
Strong Message;
but I don't want
to give it away.

The Help
African-American maids working
for white people in the early 60's
in Jackson Mississippi. And about

Milk - based on
the true story of Harvey Milk
gay politician 

  Cry Freedom

  Slumdog Millionaire
  Feel good movie
  Poverty in India
  seen throughout the movie.

  Profound comedy drama.

    Hilary Swank
   portrays Betty Anne Waters
   in this true story about
   wrongful conviction. 

The Hurricane
I didn't see this one,
but it's recommended
from a reliable source.

   older classic with the
   famous line "I'm mad as
   hell and I'm not going to
   take it anymore."

    Bowling For Columbine
    Michael Moore
    Documentary exploring
    the causes for the Columbine
    High School massacre in 1999
    and gun violence.

  Les Miserables
  Poverty, war, etc.

Good Morning Vietnam
Robin Williams 

 Liar Liar
 Good subject matter!

   Little Miss Sunshine
   Feel good comedy, but with
   a message.

      12 Years a Slave
      Based on the true story
      of a free black man sold
      into slavery for 12 years. 

 If these Walls could Talk
 A look at abortion, through the years

Guyana Tragedy
The story of Jim Jones,
leader of a cult that
committed mass suicide.

The Courageous Heart
of Irena Sendler - true story
of an extraordinarily brave
woman who rescued children
out of the Warsaw Ghetto.

The Dark Side of
Child Slavery in
the Ivory Coast of Africa

Bambi reveals to kids
the magical characters
that animals are.
It also shows that human hunters
killed Bambi's mother. 

Life of Brian
classic satire comedy

A great screen musical

Dr. Dolittle
One of the earliest films
with message about animals
and their rights. It was a
friend to me in my early
and lonely years of being

  The Tuskegee Airmen
  True story of African American pilots
  overcoming racism while fighting for
  the U.S. in World War ll

  Frost / Nixon - interesting

  Saving Private Ryan - A
  Steven Spielberg film.
  War and humanity.

 The Trials of Darryl Hunt
 Racism and Wrongful
 Documentary Movie

Hotel Rwanda 
in South Africa

 In The Name Of
 The Father - true story;
 a wrongful conviction.

In my Country
Interesting subject matter
of the "Truth and Reconciliation"
council, South Africa.

a look at multi-ethnic
struggles in

  When Harry met Sally
  Unforgettable scene in
  this classic comedy

 The Great Gatsby
 Leonardo DiCaprio
 I remember really liking it

Forrest Gump
Exceptionally well-made
movie and Tom Hanks was
great. Has a part about shrimp
fishing that took away from
it's excellence.

Walk the Line

The life of country singer;
Johnny Cash
played by (vegan) actor
Joaquin Phoenix who was
truly impressive playing
the role.

The Big Chill
Older classic
Fun Movie

Django Unchained

How does one make a spoof out of the
slavery issue? This movie pulled it off.
I had a hard time getting around the horses
that were exploited to make the movie. The end credits says "no horses were harmed to make this movie" - but they were definitely exploited and thus harmed. I don't like that about movies.

History of the World (part 1)
Classic Mel Brook's comedy

   And Justice for All
   Classic courtroom justice movie

A comedy that
actually made me laugh.

Whatever Works
I happen to be a
Larry David fan; I
have found much needed
comic relief from him.

 Biography of Charlie
 Chaplin's life.

Based on the true story
of a rescue of 6 American
hostages in Iran.

African-American soldier
fighting in the war to abolish
slavery and the racism they