Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Love, Compassion and Vegetarianism

You know, we all oppose animal cruelty. But sometimes we forget that animals on farms suffer and feel pain like all other animals. They, too, deserve to be protected from harm and cruelty. 
-- Charlotte Ross

When I was a little girl I always felt pain when I saw an animal hurting or even felt bad if I accidentally stepped on an ant hill. I would feel terrible. I didn't use my voice back then to stand up for the animals. For example my Nana had a pig. She warned me what was going to happen to the pig and to not get too attached. Well I ended up naming her Daisy and gave her bathes, loved on her and took care of her. I actually don't remember the moment she was taken to be slaughtered but my family did not help. We would be eating and they would say you know we are eating Daisy then proceed to say things like, "Ashley why did you let them kill me." I'm surprised I didn't become a vegetarian right then and there. I didn't even know what that was and I didn't know how to stand up to my family who made fun of me for loving a pig, a hunting family, a meat eating family.

 I have been a vegetarian now for 3 years. I cannot even imagine going back to eating animals. It all started after I watched the documentary Vegucated. It took me 3 days to watch this film because I couldn't get passed what they were doing to these animals. Those videos changed my heart and I stopped eating meat right then and there. I threw everything out and just couldn't stomach eating them. Ever since then my heart has broken open even more for animals, ALL animals. On a trip to Colorado there were cows roaming and I got so excited, they were beautiful and had calves with them. I squealed like a little kid with excitement. How could anyone eat this beautiful animal?

I recently got into a FB fight with a family member about this very thing. It made me realize just how passionate I am now for animals. I am starting to wonder how people can watch those videos and not feel compassion and love for them. Is it out of sight out of mind? Would you be able to eat a horse, a dog or a cat as easily as you can a cow, pig or chicken? Do you not feel pain as you see the fear in their eyes? They know know pain, they feel deeply just like we do. They cry when their babies are taken from them, they cry when they are hurt. Factory farming is disgusting and no animal should have to live in those conditions and treated the way they are.

I will never go back to eating meat because I love them too much and I care about how they are treated and in my opinion so should everyone else! A friend recently became a vegetarian and it makes my heart happy. "I looked at my burrito meat chopped up and for the first time saw what I was eating. Dying, crying, slaughtered soul. Ugh." When your heart is broken open to see these precious animals as more than "meat" it changes you, it changes your soul. My family doesn't understand, some of my friends don't understand but I will no longer silence my voice.

Open your eyes people....

Until we extend our circle of compassion to all living things, humanity will not find peace.
-- Albert Schweitzer 

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