As long as one form of injustice is not only legal but is encouraged other forms of injustice will continue to exist in our culture.
"Cruelty", "Suffering", "Slavery", "Murder", "Rape", and even "Child Abuse" all take place every single day in the meat, dairy, and egg industries, and if it is your desire to be a "Kind", "Loving", "Compassionate", "Ethical", "Caring" and "Peaceful" person you will not be able to reach your true potential as long as you are supporting this kind of violence.
Below are 6 reasons why I feel that consuming meat, dairy, and eggs is bad for our karma, and as you are reading this please remember that "what goes around comes around", and "you are what you eat"...
The only reason that animals in factory farms are able to live until the day that they are slaughtered is because they are slaughtered at such a young age, and below are some statistics on how young the most commonly farmed animals (pigs, cows, and chickens) are when they are slaughtered...
The Natural Lifespan Of A Pig Is 12 Years
* Pigs raised for meat are killed when they are only 6 months old.
The Natural Lifespan Of A Cow Is 22 Years
* Cows raised for milk are killed when they are only 4 years old.
* Cows raised for beef are killed when they are only 1 1/2 years old.
* Cows raised for veal meat are killed when they are only 4 months old.
The Natural Lifespan Of A Chicken Is 8 Years
* Chickens raised for their eggs are killed when they are only 1 1/2 years old.
* Chickens raised for their meat are killed when they are only 6 weeks old.
* Chickens who are born male are killed on their day of birth.
So in other words most of the animals that we eat are still babies when they are killed!
Because of the inhumane conditions that the animals who are being raised on factory farms have to endure I don't believe that it would even be possible for an animal to live out their entire natural life expectancy and die of "natural causes" in that kind of environment.)
Animals today are commonly given lots of growth hormones to speed up their growth, and I don't think that it's a coincidence that children today are reaching puberty a full 5 years earlier than they were before the animals that we eat were being given these hormones.
And although most children want to hurry up and become adults (and some parents are even proud of the fact that their kids are already developing breasts and facial hair even though they are only 10 years old) it is important to realize that it is "premature ageing" and these children may end up looking very old for their age later in life, and the more hormone filled meats that they consume the more likely that just like the animals they have been eating they will die way before they reach their natural life expectancy.
If the slaughter of an animal isn't quick and painless and the animal experiences a lot of fear and trauma at the end of it's life it will release a lot of adrenaline, which is a fear hormone often referred to as the "fight or flight" hormone. This hormone will remain in the animal's meat and is toxic to us when we eat it, and besides being toxic some believe that when people consume meat that contains a lot of adrenaline it can cause them to become far more likely to snap and go into "fight or flight" mode over little things that they would otherwise be able to ignore. (Like a stranger accidentally bumping into them when they are walking down the street.)
For many of the animals who are being raised as food every moment of their existence is torture. They are kept in cages so small that they can't even turn around which leads to mental problems as well as aggression and fighting, so to stop them from fighting farmers will remove certain body parts from their animals. (Chickens will have their beaks cut off so they can't peck each other, pigs will have their teeth off so they can't bite each other, and cows have their horns cut off so they can't gore each other, and to save money this is all done without the aid of any anesthetics!)
And even if an animal gets "humanely slaughtered" it typically means that they get shot in the head with a bolt gun, and unfortunately this doesn't always kill or even knock them unconscious, so many animals are still alive and fully conscious when their body get dismembered!
And even if an animal's death is quick and painless animals are smart enough to know what is going on when they enter a slaughterhouse. They can smell the blood, they can hear the screams of their brothers and sisters, and they are clearly terrified because workers have to use electric prods to make them go in, so animals like this will no doubt be producing a lot of adrenaline!
Not only do most farm animals never mate but most of them never even get to see the opposite sex due to the segregation on factory farms. (Female dairy cows who are raised for there milk never interact with male cows who are being raised for their meat because they are usually on separate farms.) Certain male animals like pigs are actually castrated at birth (and without anesthetics) and because of selective breeding practices animals like turkeys have become so unnaturally large that they can no longer physically mate!
So in order to have offspring most farm animals are "artificially inseminated" against their will by humans. (And if you think that referring to this as "rape" is extreme and you have never seen a cow getting artificially inseminated you can view videos of it on YouTube, but it is very disturbing so I don't recommend it unless you are under the impression that that there is nothing wrong with this practice.)
Sexual assault is very common and so is meat eating, and I believe that eating diets high in meat can increase sexual aggression in men. I believe this because I am a man, and although I still am attracted to women I have more of a "manageable libido" then I did in the past. (Plus during my years of promoting veganism I have encountered so many men who have told me that they would never go vegan because they believe that eating meat makes them more manly, and that men who don't eat meat become too sensitive and not aggressive enough.)
I used to go to the zoo as a child and back then I never thought of the animals as "prisoners" (even though they were all behind bars) but one day when I was a young adult I went to the zoo and when I walked into a monkey exhibit I was shocked to see that not only did the monkeys look like humans to me but they looked like depressed humans. (They looked so board and lonely as they just sat there locked in their small cages and completely deprived of their natural life outdoors.) I never went to a zoo or circus after that and it was one of the many moments in my life that ultimately lead me to becoming vegan.
There are prisons who have decided to stop serving their inmates meat and they have reported that the violence of their prisoners went down, and I believe that if society stops imprisoning animals and eating them less people will be committing crimes and going to prison.
Sometimes when people see footage from slaughterhouses they feel so badly for the animals that they stop eating meat but they will still consume dairy and eggs because they imagine that cows who are being raised for milk and chickens who are being raised for eggs live a happy life and aren't killed, but unfortunately these female animals actually have a far worse life (and death) than the animals who are being raised just for their meat because they are forced to be slaves...
Like humans cows won't produce milk unless they get pregnant, so humans collect sperm from male cows and then inject it into the female cows to impregnate them, and since humans want all of the milk for them self as soon as the cow gives birth her baby is stolen from her, and then she is impregnated again so she will keep producing milk.
She is also given hormones to make her produce 10 times as much milk as she would naturally, and to get every last drop of milk out of her that they can farmers will hook suction hoses up to her utters to extract more milk. She will continue to be forced to pump out babies and milk until her body wears out and she can no longer produce enough milk to be profitable, and then she is sent to the slaughterhouse.
So if you drink milk please know that all dairy cows end up being slaughtered, and consider that even the worst criminals in history didn't receive the amount of punishment that a dairy cow (who is 100% innocent) is forced to endure just because we choose to drink milk...
- Dairy Cows spend their entire life in a small cage. (Solitary Confinement)
- Dairy Cows are impregnated against their will through artificial insemination. (Multiple Rapes)
- Dairy Cows have all of their babies taken away from them the day they that they are born. (Multiple Kidnappings)
- Dairy Cows are slaughtered once they are unable to produce as much milk as the dairy industry wants them to. (Death sentence)
To make matters worse any babies that a dairy cow has who are females will be forced to be a dairy cows as well, and any babies that a dairy cow has who are males will be sold to the veal industry. ("Veal" literally means "baby cow meat" and it is produced by putting baby cows in small crates and chaining up their arms and legs so they can't move, which results in no muscle formation and extra soft meat. The these baby cows are fed a diet that is purposely deficient in iron so they will become anemic and their meat will be white instead of red, because the soft white meat is considered a "delicacy" to some.
No cow has ever done anything to deserve this, and no human needed to drink cow milk...
* No other species drinks milk after its infancy.
* No other species drinks milk from a different species.
EGG LAYING CHICKENS
Chickens are forced to lay 10 times as many eggs as they would naturally so their bodies quickly ware out due to all of the stress and trauma, and once a chicken can no longer produce as many eggs as the egg industry wants her to she will either be sent to slaughter or the workers will purposely stop feeding her food and water because if she is starving her body will devote all of it's available energy and resources to producing more eggs in a final attempt to insure that when she dies she will have offspring that will live on, and this starvation method continues until she starves to death.
And when chicken eggs hatch all of the male chicks are immediately killed since they can't lay eggs and aren't profitable to the egg industry, and they are killed by either being thrown into a large meat grinder while they are still alive or by being put into garbage bags and thrown in a dumpster while they are still alive.)
NO LONGER PROFITABLE
If you are still consuming dairy and eggs please know that once the animals are no longer profitable to the industry they are killed regardless of whether the farms that they came from were "organic", "free range", or any other humane sounding label.
Even animals like sheep who are raised for their wool still get slaughtered as soon as they can no longer produce enough wool, and the only way to put an end to this killing is to make animal exploitation it's self no longer profitable by refusing to buy meat, dairy, and eggs and leather, fur, and wool, and by purchasing vegan alternatives. (Like "almond milk" instead of cow milk.)
If you were a cattle farmer and one of your cows spent it's whole life being sick and you were constantly having to have a veterinarian come over and give the cow antibiotics, would you feel safe eating it's meat when it died? It is estimated that 80% of all of the antibiotics that are produced in America are given to animals who are being raised for human consumption, and I believe that about 80% of the illnesses that humans are plagued with could be healed or prevented if people stopped eating animals.
Factory farms try to save space by cramming their animals as closely together as possible. (Such as in large chicken shacks were literally over 100,000 chickens are crammed into one building.) On farms like this it would be physically impossible to actually keep all of the animal cages clean and sanitary so the animals have to stand, sit, and even sleep in their own urine and feces. (It is so bad that people living within several miles of farms like these will often get sick from the smell, and when the animals are finally taken out of their cages and sent to the slaughterhouse it sometimes requires bulldozers just to haul away all of the manure that piled up in these buildings when they were being raised.)
In Europe there were deadly plagues because people were throwing their raw sewage into the streets, and it makes no sense to believe that living that way would make humans sick and diseased, but that it would be totally safe to eat animals whowere raised in even more unsanitary conditions.
Animals today are raised indoors and in very small cages, and because of this complete lack of physical exercise and sunlight (which are just as necessary for the health of animals as they are for the health of humans) combined with the fact that they are under unimaginable amounts of stress and are surrounded by urine and feces they are guaranteed to get sick and are highly vulnerable to disease, so antibiotics are necessary when animals are being raised in such unhealthy and unsanitary conditions.
There are several videos on-line that show cows who are so sick that they can't even walk being picked up with a forklift or tied to a truck and dragged to the slaughterhouse so they can be turned into meat which will be sold to the public. (These cows are referred to as "downers" and even if they are rare like the meat industry claims, remember that the meat from just one animal can literally end up in thousands of different food products due to the way that most meat is processed.)
The meat industry claims that health inspectors come in and inspect their animals to make sure that they are healthy and safe to eat, but keep in mind that over 100 BILLION animals are killed each year for human consumption, which makes me wonder how in the world they could possibly have enough inspectors to inspect 100 BILLION different animals every year.
And the scariest thing of all is that the excessive amounts of antibiotics that the animals are given can result in the formation of antibiotic resistant bacteria which could not only cause those who eat the meat to get sick, but it could lead to the outbreak of a deadly disease that no current existing antibiotic could cure.
Sometimes people get offended over referring to the killing of animals as "murder", but at the same time many of them would become vegetarians if the only way that they could eat meat was to kill an animal themselves because they would feel morally wrong about doing it, and because so most people refuse to kill animals them self a very small percentage of people out there have to kill over 100 billion animals a year for the rest of us, and I would encourage you to stop and think about what a job like that would do to a person.
KILLING FOR A LIVING
Do you think that it's possible for someone to turn their heart off for 8 hours a day and kill defenseless animals, and then once their shift is over they simply turn their heart back on and go home and be a loving husband and a loving father? Imagine that your job required you to kill a certain number of animals every hour and no matter how much screaming and suffering you witnessed you had to just keep killing scared and defenseless animals without mercy if you wanted to keep your job.
Our choice to eat meat creates jobs where people have to kill for a living and regardless of whether that person loves or hates their job it will likely lead to even more violence. (If they hate their job they will likely take out their aggression on the animals or learn to become desensitized to the violence and be more likely to physically harm another person if they are upset. And if they actually enjoy their job and enjoy killing animals they will take out their sadistic tendencies on the animals and will almost certainly become a threat to society.)
Not only are the animals exploited but so are many of the workers. Many workers are minorities who feel that they have nowhere else to turn to and who can be forced to work long hours for little pay. And because of our high demand for meat combined with the competitive nature within the industry slaughterhouse workers are forced to work so fast that their jobs becomes among the most dangerous in the world, and every year there are many cases of slaughterhouse workers losing their fingers, their arms, and even losing their own life due to becoming victims of the dangerous weapons that they work with.
So please be vegan and help to create a world where there are no jobs that require people to kill for a living.
LIVING FOR A KILLING
Many people around the world suffer and die due to hunger and lack of drinking water, yet the animals who we raise as food NEVER experience hunger or thirst, and are purposely being fattened up.
Instead of eating their natural diets farm animals are usually fed grains and they have to eat about 16 pounds of grains in order to gain 1 pound of meat, and because of this virtually all of the grains that are grown in America are consumed by livestock...
- Over 80% of the corn in America is fed to livestock.
- Over 85% of the soy in America is fed to livestock.
- Over 95% of oats in America are fed to livestock.
The amount of grains that we feed to farm animals is enough to end world hunger many times over, but instead we choose to take this enormous amount of grains and convert it into a much, much, much smaller amount of meat and billions of tons of manure! (This has been referred to as "The most wasteful recycling program ever created by man".)
The manure that these animals produce also pollutes the environment and ends up in our rivers and oceans which results in a serious shortage of safe drinking water. (Plus it requires over 1,000 gallons of drinking water just to produce a gallon of milk and over 2,000 gallons of water just to produce a pound of beef, and it is estimated that 50% of our water supply is used by animal agriculture!)
As the human population grows the last thing that we should be doing is actually increasing the amount of animal foods that we consume (which is exactly what we are being encouraged to do in the media) and what's really scary about this is the fact that other countries are starting to eat the way that Americans do. (Restaurants such as McDonalds, Pizza Hut, KFC, Burger King, and Taco Bell are popping up all over the world like a virus and it is crucial that everyone becomes more aware of just how unsustainable and cruel the American way of eating really is before karma gets us.)
MORE REASONS TO BE VEGAN