Do animals have any rights? Please don’t laugh…

I’m posting this again. It’s from a few of years back when certain royal personages were in the media- which prompted a musing on the issues connected in my view with it.


Like many others recently, I noticed the Prince of Wales and His son talking about the poaching issue, thousands of creatures being slaughtered… and then I saw in another piece, that these selfsame Princes were off to Spain themselves to slaughter some creatures. I suddenly realised with a sense of shock – even outrage- a whole gulf exists between saying ”’I care about Wildlife ‘ but doing little-to-nothing to advance its protection;  just like these high and mighty examples of humanity- just like  like me say They say one thing and do another, without any shock at the gulf between these two views. I was stopped in my tracks for a moment… and started to think on it…

Then another jump, to see how immense the suffering of all those billions of worldwide farmed creatures, kept alive merely as foodstuff material; apart from those groomed on “Estates of the Wealthy” to be shot and hunted for “fun” and to provide some employment for the tied vassals (wardens, gillies,gamekeepers, etc). It may be true that some people feel that legally they “own” these Estates and therefore, everything “found and bred” on them, and  that therefore because they have a tradition, in other words by use and custom – as their legal advisers have expressd it for them- and since they have done so for many generations past, they feel it’s  quite within their rights to do totally as they see fit with whatever is on their property, with no Cheeky Comeback Comments from various uninvited ( and to tell the truth, probably downright jealous/envious) outsiders such as my good self… and anyone else who just realises the overall modern situation. 

This is not to mention those contained within Zoos, where however ‘natural’ their surroundings purport to be- and many don’t even bother to try very hard- where any  inhabitants found to be ‘surplus to requirements’ cannot expect to be given a stay of execution (recent case of giraffe applies)… I mean have you seen the pandas in Edinburgh, going about, endlessly being watched and stared at…

I’d not been struck to such an extent before by the disparity between trying to appreciate the variety and the beauty of Life on this poor benighted planet and realising just how much of it is threatened; but I had overlooked the point of how much of the whole Global Farming industry hinges on actually exploiting creatures wholesale for the benefit of Humankind in general and how we all in general AND myself in particular, am equally implicated in this process: Simply by continuing our passive acceptance and inactivity: It’s not entirely hidden from view any more if we take even a little notice…

I realised how much of all that modern humans do is bound up with satisfying their seemingly limitless variety of appetites… not even ‘needs’ anymore, just sheer utter waste of limited resources- like those pictures of elephant flesh left lying about after the tusks are taken, the flesh not even being eaten as food but just left… the household food wasted and dumped in landfill not even given to hungry people…

It leads into another issue, out limitless use of  the other scarce resources on Earth, unpolluted water and air, added to the insatiable demand for more and more energy which is behind our drive to continue using fossil fuels and even to seriously consider the nuclear option as an alternative to wind, water/ tidal or solar power… who can really see it as a sensible idea?

Then I began to wonder further; do these creatures have any awareness of how they’re continually being exploited by “Our” system for food/medicine/clothing/entertainment? If so, morally we should be campaigning for a New World Order which actively discourages such widespread wanton and wholesale inhumane treatment of relatively sentient beings. We dimly appreciate this in our “pets” maybe in dolphins, whales, apes- but to any extent in ALL life? Certainly not!

The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be measured by the way in which its animals are treated.
— Mahatma Gandhi–



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