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On Having Compassion for Animals
(there is nothing wrong with it)

Since I have written my Humane-ifesto I have received feedback from people saying they were glad to see someone else with a similar mind set.  I am surprised to find that people feel they are the "only ones" out there who care.  Why is it that we, who feel compassion for other living beings, are made to feel we are a minority. Why are we made to feel like there is something wrong with being kind?  Made to feel we are silly or wimpy?  This is wrong and unfair. There is absolutely nothing wrong with having compassion for other living beings. 

When I received a post saying (in regard to chickens that she raised) "I have caught a lot of flack but I cannot bear to show such disrespect to an animal that has provided us with many meals of wonderful eggs." and "We also raise cattle and again I cause a lot of trouble because I cannot bear to see the old cows go off to the slaughterhouse." I just had to write this second short essay.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with being kind and having respect for other living beings, especially those who have served us in some manner.  I say this and stand behind it and I stand behind anyone else who believes this.

Even if someone is not a vegetarian, they can be loving and kind and have respect for other living beings.  Many meat eaters know this.  Just because you eat meat does not mean you also must not care about animals.  Omnivores can show compassion and should not be made to feel bad about it.

I think we should all stand up and stand by our beliefs in showing respect for all beings. Why should we catch flack because we show compassion? It is no sign of weakens... it's a sign of true strength and understanding!  It truly takes a strong person to show compassion.  It is much harder to be compassionate than to be uncaring and cruel.

Do not let people who put down others for having kindness and compassion lead you to believe that they are "right" and you should not show compassion, or feel belittled or silly for being kind. Deep down, perhaps they know you are truly on the side of what is right, but to admit all living beings deserve respect opens the flood gates to the true cruelty that humans inflict on animals. They are afraid of opening those gates; it's easier to keep them closed.  If you start giving animals a modicum of respect and admit that they have feelings how can you now justify the evils and cruelties that are inflicted upon animals every day?  It is easier to say animals have no feeling and deserve no respect and that you are silly for thinking that they do. But what is easy is not always what is right.

It's like how if you show any sort of care or concern for the environment you are labeled a "tree hugger" and looked down upon again as silly or "liberal" and not worth listening to.  It's easier to say "tree huggers" are silly and wrong then to actually care for the environment and try to do something about what is being done to it.  We all live here.  There is only one Earth, and if we do not take care of her, who will?  Call me a tree hugger if you like, but I will stand up and say I care about what is being done to this Planet.

Humans, animals, trees, plants, rocks, water... all that is the Earth, all that makes up her, and everything that lives upon her ... are all in this together.  We are all a part of each other.  We all deserve to be shown respect.  I will respect you if you respect me.....and, I'll even respect you if you don't respect me.

Animals are living, thinking, caring beings and by you showing them the respect and compassion they deserve, you are truly a good and strong person.  Never let anyone put you down for caring.  This world needs more people who care. I stand behind you, and am with you in heart and spirit, always.

-Molly Nolte
1/23/06

 


 

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