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Why I Gave Up Eating Animals

You deserve to know where your grocery store animal products come from. You deserve to know where your grocery store animal products come from.

Jake was the older, bigger kid in my neighborhood, the guy we feared because he was a vicious bully. He’d knock you off your bicycle, steal your lunch money, and throw water balloons filled with pee at you.

He also had other bullying habits, such as shooting songbirds with his BB-gun, throwing firecrackers at cats and dogs, feeding poison to ducks, and egging widow’s houses.

When Jake was 17, he became an avid hunter. He called it “sport hunting,” but it didn’t seem sporting to me that a bunch of guys go out armed with high-powered rifles, scopes, spotlights and dogs to hunt animals that had never done anything to them.

Jake dropped out of high school to work at a slaughterhouse. After work he’d come back to the neighborhood and get out of his truck, covered in blood and guts, smelling awful. But he said his job was “a hoot.”

Anthropologists say it’s an unfortunate part of human nature that some people lust for dominance and power, getting pleasure out of cruelty, out of oppressing others.

I never fully understood how someone could see working in a slaughterhouse as fun.

But that was before I saw videos (such as the one embedded in this article) made covertly by “animal welfare activists” at factory farms and slaughterhouses.

The videos reveal animals imprisoned in horrific conditions. Instead of showing mercy and compassion for the animals, workers kick them around like soccer balls, bash their heads against the floor, cut animal genitals’ off without anesthesia, and torment the animals. Incredibly, some of them laugh and high five each other while their victims scream in pain.

I realized that Jake’s enjoyment of his job fit perfectly with his bullying, hard-hearted personality.

Studies show that people who abuse animals are more likely to abuse humans. Anthropologists say it’s an unfortunate part of human nature that some people lust for dominance and power, getting pleasure out of cruelty, out of oppressing others.

That explains a lot. Like why one of my schoolteachers got pleasure by hitting us with a ruler. Why huge superpower countries invade tiny countries. Why police tear gas and beat up non-violent environmental protesters. Why men rape women. It’s always the strong stomping the weak.

When I watched videos documenting how “food animals” such as cows, pigs, and sheep are treated, it made me sick and depressed. I heard about people who claim to make slaughterhouses more “humane.” But how humane could it ever truly be to imprison another living being and then kill it?

I searched my conscience for what to do about the animals’ suffering. The only thing I could think of was to become a vegan.

I admit, being vegan is tough. I was raised eating burgers, steaks, ribs, chicken and other animals. I miss the taste. At dinner gatherings I am sneered at. And I have a hard time sourcing enough protein to keep me healthy.

What’s the payoff? Being vegan, I know that not one penny of my money pays wages for people like Jake or puts profits into his employer’s bank accounts. I have chosen not to fund this barbaric system that inherently tortures animals in the process of making them into food.

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Here’s what happens in the animal products food supply chain.
Last modified on Thursday, 09 August 2012 17:18

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