Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Do Animals Really Have Rights?


A few weeks ago, I chanced on a disturbing website – BestGore.com. BestGore.com is not for the faint hearted for it features such things as beheadings, firing squads and thieves being burnt alive.

But I persisted and watched a ten minute clip of beheadings in northern Nigeria. Well it wasn’t a beheading, but more like slicing off the head at the neck with a knife. One-by-one men were taken to the edge of a mass grave where they laid down and with Executioners foot stamped on Victims head. Executioner then takes the knife and slices through the neck much like we do when we slice through a steak at Silver City. Like I said, not a video for the faint hearted.

People can be sadists. They don’t care how they kill, as long as they kill. Years back, the PLO were considered sadist killers, then came Hamas, Al-Oueda, the Taleban, Al-Shabab and now in Iraq there is a group called, ISIS who in their killing make the Taleban look like saints.

When I was in my early teens, I displayed sadist tendencies, a trait which worried my parents.

I started with the cat and when I found out that if I threw it off the roof and upside down, midway it would flip round and always land on its feet.

Along with Friend, we hauled the cat nine meters up onto the roof of Dad’s double storied house and flung it off. And sure enough, midway, the cat turned round and landed on its feet.

We did this again and again over the summer recess and each day the cat saw Friend or I, it would take off and hide. And we would hunt it down, drag it back  up to the roof and throw it off as we watched, totally mesmerized at its ability to turn round mid air.

Except that we took things too far. One morning after spending hours hunting it down, this time when we flung it off the roof, it did not turn round in the air and land on its feet. It landed on its head and breathed its last.

In a panic, we hid it in the trash by the fence and calmly went about the rest our holiday like nothing had happened. No guilt, no remorse.

Whenever we went to the village, Cousin and I could hardly wait until the order was given. The order of slaughtering a chicken for supper.

On one occasion, rather than pluck the feathers off its neck and slitting its throat, we plucked off all its feathers then let it loose, a move that saw us spend more than an hour trying to re-capture it. Frustrated that that we were unable to catch it, Cousin threw a small rock at it, which caught the chicken on its head and the rest was history. As we ate it for lunch, we still felt no guilt or remorse.

However, it was Billy Goat that brought out the worst in us. Billy Goat died a horrible death from multiple stab wounds. No matter how loud it bleated as we stabbed it, we just carried on. We had this sense of ‘teenage pride’ in watching it die slowly. We were not bothered about the pain we were inflicted on it, rather we wanted to see how many stabs it could endure before it died.

We were rumbled when Dad asked for the skin which was riddled with lacerations. He didn’t have to be a rocket scientist to figure out what had happened.

But suffice to say, I am no longer a sadist and I can’t bear the sight of seeing an animal slaughtered – no matter how humane Slaughterer does it.              

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