There was a major paradigm shift in my life in June of 2017.
Being a vegetarian all my life, I believed that my conscience was clear since I was not eating animals. But then truth hit me hard in the form of a video on YouTube. Turns out, the story behind the innocent glass of milk is more disturbing than a horror movie.
What is milk? Bodily fluid produced by the offspring’s mother for the purpose of providing primary nutrition, until the stage where the child can digest normal food. Which is generally up to the age of 1 in humans.
Take a moment and think about this: Humans are the only animals who drink milk, even after growing into an adult and that too, of another species. How absurd is that!? Would you drink dog’s milk? Cat’s milk? How about human breast milk (being adults)? Yuck, right? Then why do we drink cow’s milk? We are not baby calves!
When does a mammal produce milk? Only when their offspring is born. Cows are artificially impregnated so that they give birth and start lactating. A person ties up the helpless cow so she doesn’t move of kick around, and inserts his hand containing bull sperm into her vagina. In plain words, the cow is raped every year. When the calf is born, it is torn away from the mother and the grieving mother is robbed of her milk. Because how can the baby demand mother’s milk? That belongs to us, right? The mother and calf cry out for each other and that is the most heartbreaking cry you will ever hear. What happens to the calf then? If it is unlucky enough to be a male, he will be sent to a slaughterhouse (to be killed for either veal or leather) or he will be forced to become a slave in the fields. If the calf is a female, she will be fed minimal milk with substitutes. Just as she reaches puberty, she will be raped and made a milking machine. Just like her mother. For them, puberty starts around 6-8 months of age. While in human females it is 13-16 years. Think about that, the cow is equivalent to a teenage girl.
Just consider for a moment, if this is done with a human female? We would be furious. We would participate in candle marches, post angrily on social media and demand maximum penalty for rapists. And rightly so. But when the same thing happens to a cow, why do we call it milk, paneer, cheese and ice cream?
What’s more, because the poor cow is completely exploited everyday, her body gives up before one third of her natural life span and does not get pregnant anymore. Guess what happens after she has been exploited all her life? Slaughterhouse or abandonment. And then we complain of cows blocking roads. The poor mother is left all alone, without her family, friends, children and is starving to death.
I was shell-shocked and actually cried while watching some of the videos.
Here’s more: when the male is killed, his head is cut off, the meat and brains are removed and filled with dried grass. Why? To be hung beside the mother. The crying mother believes her child is alive and starts producing milk, which is then stolen by a human. This is standard Indian practice and is called a “Khaalbaccha” literally, skin-child.
Then there are people who believe ethical ways of using animals is fine. How is that? Did the cow walk up to us, squirt her breast milk into a bottle and sell it to us? Did a chicken walk up to us and ask to be killed? Did an animal come to us, begging us to ride on their back? No, right? We force them into it.
Regarding people who believe in ‘humane’ way of killing, tell me, is killing someone humane or is letting them live their lives as they want humane? If you claim that the cows in your area are not raped, their children are allowed to live and lead excellent lives, I would like to ask you two simple questions.
1. Which human female would want a man to touch her private parts every day and steal her child’s milk? Do you think anyone can enjoy that abuse?
2. The whole dairy industry is based on separation of mothers and children. Do we have the right to decide when and how much of his mother’s milk can a calf drink, so we can steal the rest?
We say we like the taste of meat and dairy, but is our sensory pleasure worth the life of an innocent animal? Is 10 minutes of us eating animals equal to the entire life of an innocent being that just wanted to live?
People tell me they love their dog and cat and yet consume meat and dairy. How is your love so selective? Would you eat a dog or cat? No, because you love them. Then why kill animals who have never meant any harm to you?
The really sad part is: Someone a long time ago convinced us that we have to segregate between animals. These are for eating, these are for milking, these are for eggs, these are for their skin, these are for riding and so on. When in reality, they are all the same. They all want to live happy, healthy lives.
Did you know: When the chicken eggs hatch, they are immediately segregated into male and females. All the males, (mind you, they are not even a day old) are put into a GRINDER and cut up into pieces because they cannot get fat for meat and produce eggs. Some people prefer to suffocate them to death by tying them up in a plastic bag, others just burn them alive.
What we are doing is Speciesism. We think the human species is the most superior and hence we treat animals however we like. We think our lives are superior to theirs and hence kill, rape, torture them all the time. 56 BILLION land animals are killed every year. And more than 100 BILLION sea animals. How much is the human population? 7 billion. If we are indeed the most intelligent species on Earth, does it not make sense for us to protect the others, instead of murdering, raping and enslaving them? What have they done to us to deserve such a fate?
Would we want to be in their places? What if we were in a cage and a superior alien species decided to make use of our milk, meat and skin? How would we feel?
Animals are just like us. They have families, friends, they feel happiness, they feel sadness. Most importantly, they have an equal desire (and right) to live, as much as we do. A knife put to the throat of a dog, a chicken or a human like you or me is the same. We all want to live. None of us want to die.
There is an idea that I want to put forth to you. It’s called Veganism. As vegans, we believe in causing the least possible harm to animals. We abstain from animal products like meat, dairy, leather, eggs, wool, silk, honey and others. Why? Because we don’t need any of those things. That flesh, that skin was never ours to claim, it belonged to the animal that was born with it. We have to differentiate between our ‘Need’ and ‘Greed’. We have absolutely zero need to use animals for anything.
If you felt bad reading so far, I congratulate you on being human and letting your emotions surface. Now that you know the bad news, I’ll tell you the good news.
Right now, you have the choice to stop all this murder, rape and suffering of innocent animals. By taking simple steps, you can play a significant role in eliminating animal suffering. All you need to do is abstain from any animal products.
Find out what animal products you use daily and just cut them off. Happily, the meals we consume daily as Indians are 90% vegan. Roti, sabzi, dal, bhaat are all vegan. We just need to cut out the dairy. Say no to ghee and butter, instead use oils and Vanaspati ghee. It’s very simple.
I need you to make a decision right now to end animal suffering once and for all. The future we want to see begins now. Change begins from you and me. Why steal from animals when we have thousands of plant species that are edible, delicious and nutritious to satisfy all our needs?
I can assure you that all the nutrition we need is available in plants. I dream of a day when we will all be vegan and love and respect all animals equally. I know that day is coming very soon because all sensible humans realize this is wrong and just need that final nudge to stop this inhumanity. Please make the choice to go vegan right now. Any help you need, comment below, or contact me.
Be kind, be human, go vegan.
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