Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Consciousness raising...

Thanks to a recent post on Kiss Me I'm Vegan I was exposed to this video available on Youtube produced by Farm Sanctuary. The story itself is wonderful but I was strongly struck by the portion of the video where Dienna Capers, a Coordinator at New York City Animal Care & Control spoke about Maxine's impact on her. She begins speaking at 1 minute 27 seconds into the video. I am giving a precise timing because there are a few fairly brief shots of cruelty at various points in the video...they are not gratuitous or excessive but they are very painful to be forewarned.

Ms. Capers exemplifies the astonishing power of the disconnect that permeates our society regarding how we treat the other animals. She acknowledges working at the animal rescue for 9 years...yet never put together that her food choices supported and maintained the most horrific and terrible suffering imaginable.

If nothing else, at least watch her and then beginning at 3 minutes 24 seconds watch and be delighted by Maxine's exhibition of joy and cow binkies. Again, the whole video is very well done and worth watching but if you only want the "g" rated part you can pick those based on the timings specified.

If you are still trying to sort things out, go to the post titled Alone and Afraid and look at that cow person, then go to the last post here called Dancing and watch that cow person (and watch Maxine in the last part of the current video.

What kind of world do you want to be supporting? A world where that forlorn being in Alone and Afraid is the norm for cow people, or one where the joy of the cow person in the Dancing video and the happiness of Maxine would possibly be common.

The choice is yours and you make it every time you eat...every time you buy clothing...every time you choose entertainment. If you try to live as an ethical vegan, you choose joy and dancing and cow binkies...if you don' are choosing the misery and suffering and death of Alone and Afraid.


Krissa said...

I haven't mustered up the courage to watch this yet even though you were good enough to give a warning. My laptop drags and doesn't cooperate sometimes and I'm afraid I'll see something awful in spite of efforts not to and I've read two headlines in the past 24 hours that are haunting me already so I will just say that it gives me hope that sometimes people figure it out on their own by their association with other animals...they can make the connection and sometimes even change their ways. I will forever be thankful to my cow friend because she's the one that got me to stop eating cheese about 2 years ago (I can't remember the exact date) and that led to me realizing that I needed to give up the 'free range eggs" too. Those were the only unforgivable things that were still in my diet at the time. For whatever reason, she is the one who changed that. It didn't save her life, but it saved others. ... As always, thanks for sharing and for keeping on speaking up for those who don't get to speak up for themselves.

veganelder said...

Thank you for commenting Krissa. Your writing about cheese made me realize that I don't miss all. How weird.

I do hope you manage at some point to watch the video, it really is worth the discomfort. Take care.

So I'm Thinking Of Going Vegan said...

Yes, I hope you'll watch the video too Krissa! It really IS uplifting.

Laloofah said...

I watched this important video in its entirety (I appreciate the warnings you give, as I'm not always up for watching disturbing and/or brutal footage), and was moved by Ms. Capers' emotional interview. You're so right that the disconnect permeating - and reinforced by - our society is astonishing in its power. But even more powerful is experiencing or watching another experience that barrier disintegrate and see the light pour in. I was really touched by Dienna, and hope that she has followed through on her vow to stop consuming flesh and is by now vegan as well!

It's also so true that we will often connect and feel empathy for one suffering individual, while continuing to tune out and even contribute to the suffering of millions and billions of fellow beings (human or non-human) just like her. It makes me think of this insightful quote from "Animal Machines" by Ruth Harrison,

In fact, if one person is unkind to an animal it is considered to be cruelty, but where a lot of people are unkind to animals, especially in the name of commerce, the cruelty is condoned and, once large sums of money are at stake, will be defended to the last by otherwise intelligent people.

The scene of Maxine's joyful celebration of her hard-earned and abundantly deserved freedom was a delight to behold! How I wish that were the happy ending all everyone could experience.

Bea Elliott said...

Dienna Capers says "This sweet innocent cow running away --- from being slaughtered..." She made the connection. In her mind it was this sweet innocent cow running away from "me". Dienna discovered she is NOT that type of person that a gentle animal should fear! Most of us aren't. Given the chance as this rescue did most people would realize the harm they are unwittingly participating in... My favorite part was from 2:02 to 2:22 --- I just want to hug her for being such an alive, awake and responsible person! Not ashamed to say she hadn't thought it out before... No need for her to hem and haw about ... Yeah, but we've always been doing it. Or, our teeth... Or, any of those false excuses meant to delay doing the right thing. She was BRAVE enough to rectify the problem on the spot! That's courageous and real. THAT is being genuinely "humane."

Yeah for Maxine and her running-free white stockings!

Byron DelSignore said...

I just watched this on 101 reasons to go vegan and all I wanted to do was hug this woman. She was genuine and I love her even though I don't know her. I'm proud to see people like this in the world

veganelder said...

Thank you for commenting Byron. I'm pleased to see folks like her in the world too.