Sep 10

“Not Just Dogs, Cats Should Be Protected”

Honolulu Advertiser

February 24, 2005

I appreciated your editorial because you said we must confront the issue of the dog-meat trade, and noted that it forces us to define our societal values.   You said that the issue of which animals are fit for consumption is “entirely arbitrary.”

This is an important statement.  We eat pigs, sheep, baby sheep (lamb), chickens, turkeys, cows and other animals.  So why not dogs and cats?

You said it’s because Americans assign a higher status to dogs and cats. Yes, but there’s more to it.  By caring for “pets,” we realize they are complex, sentient beings.

Yet we fail to make the connection with farm animals.  We assume they’re lower life forms, if we think about them at all. But the truth is, they are also feeling beings who value their lives and enjoy social interaction.

When her calf is taken from her just hours after birth (to live alone in a tiny crate and become “veal”), the mother cow wails inconsolably for days.  Her baby has been taken from her.

Thomas Edison said, “Non-violence leads to the highest ethics, which is the goal of all evolution. Until we stop harming all other living beings, we are still savages.”

–  Pamela Davis, Honolulu