Tuesday, February 28, 2006

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Sunday, February 26, 2006

Why Protest at all?

This procession is a symbolic act. We are religious people whose consciences are troubled that society should authorize the suffering, privation and deaths of large numbers of animals in scientific and utilitarian tests. We lament this cruelty, see it as unnecessary, and feel it as a loss of human dignity that people should engage in it or condone it. There is suffering enough in this world without deliberately adding to it, even when this is done in the hope of some remote and uncertain future good. Animals should have a right to respect and protection and civilization should not be demeaned in this way.

This is not just the concern of one religious group but of many faith communities. The killing of animals is offensive to many faiths in varying degrees and ways and now that we live in a multi-faith society, such sensitivities should not be ignored. In keeping with the religious spirit of peace and harmony, we are exercising our right to be heard and seen in this peaceful and lawful demonstration of concern, registering our deep pity for the creatures that suffer restriction, trauma and death. We ask that all co-operate that we may hold our procession in a spirit of calm and civility.

We hope that all people who have a sense of the spiritual meaning of life, whether they follow a formal religion or not, will support this compassionate cause. The world and other life are not here simply for humans to exploit. They have their own lives that are precious to them just as ours are to us.

Science may hope to save lives - to do so it should not begin by destroying them, for it can never restore the lives it itself has destroyed. We hope that our gesture will contribute to the creation of a world where there is less suffering and greater sensitivity. We hope that all creatures may share this earth together in peace.

Monday, February 20, 2006

A new trend???

In 1807, the Reverend William Cowherd, founder of the Bible Christian Church in Salford, famously advanced the principle of abstinence from the consumption of flesh. Two followers of Rev Cowherd, set sail for the United States with 39 other members of the Bible Christian Church in 1817 and it was from this that the American vegetarian movement grew.

In 1822, Richard Martin MP piloted the first anti-cruelty bill through parliament giving cattle, horses and sheep a degree of protection in the UK. This was the first parliamentary legislation for animal welfare in the world in modern times.

In 1824, as the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals - the RSPCA was founded. It has worked tirelessly to promote kindness and prevent cruelty to animals.

In September 1847, the UK Vegetarian Society was founded and since then has been a basic source of reference, motivation and encouragement for local and national vegetarian societies and individuals worldwide, who still regard Britain as the leading pioneer of the vegetarian movement.

In 1863, one man took action against the inhumanity towards animals in the USA. His name was Henry Bergh and by 1866 it was against the law to beat one's animal.
The first protection of Animals Act was passed in 1911 in the UK.

The Order of The cross was founded in 1904. Since then it has promoted a pacifist and vegetarian way of life. It is an informal Christian Fellowship, dedicated to the Compassionate Life and the realization of the Christ within.

By 1916 Conscientious Objectors, including thousands of vegetarians in Europe, were imprisoned or executed for refusing to fight each other. Within a few years of the 1917 revolution vegetarianism was declared illegal in Soviet Russia, dozens of vegetarian societies and restaurants were closed.

In 1982, the Vegetarian Society set up its own cookery school to teach skills and educate people in vegetarianism.

In 1988 and 1989 the Ministry of Agriculture alleged that 7 cases of BSE had occurred in 1986, but in 1993 the 7 had grown to 60 cases, then suggestions were made that cases first appeared a year before – in the spring of 1985.
In 1995, during the Young Indian Vegetarians' annual picnic the Muslim Vegetarian/Vegan Society was formed in UK.

The Christian Vegetarian Association of the U.K. was launched September 2004. http://www.cvauk.org/

The Animal Welfare Bill is expected to be enacted in summer 2006. MP's welcomed the new welfare offence, which would for the first time protect thousands of animals from enduring ongoing neglect by legally obliging owners to properly care for their pets.

According to the Vegetarian Society, the number of vegetarians in the UK has doubled in the past 10 years and both research and industry sales figures indicate that a third of the population eat meat only occasionally.

Despite the promising vegetarian trend in UK and other parts in the world, and the legislative changes that have been made to improve the lives of animals since the 19th century in the UK, many animals have suffered and continue to suffer and die at human hands.

"Distressingly, Government statistics
(http://www.official-documents.co.uk/document/cm67/6713/6713.pdf)
published on Thursday 8 December 2005 reveal the twelfth consecutive rise in the annual toll of animals sacrificed in British laboratories. According to the figures, in 2004 2,778,692 animals were subjected to experiments that are officially regarded as potentially 'causing pain, suffering, distress or lasting harm'. This is an increase of 57,093 animals, or 2.1%, compared to 2003. The Government's comment accompanying the release of these figures states: 'It is impossible to predict the number of animals likely to be used in future years'." ~Uncaged Campaigns 09.12.05

Friday, February 10, 2006

Quotations

Vivisection

Vivesection literally means cutting while still alive. Now it refers to any harmful experiments done on animals.

With The Animal Spirit's permission, I have included some quotes on vivesection. For more excellent quotations please visit: http://www.theanimalspirit.com/quote.html

"Results from animal tests are not transferable between species, and therefore cannot guarantee product safety for humans...In reality these tests do not provide protection for consumers from unsafe products, but rather they are used to protect corporations from legal liability."
~Herbert Gundersheimer, M.D.

"Doctors who speak out in favour of vivisection do not deserve any recognition in society, all the more so since their brutality is apparent not only during such experiments, but also in their practical medical lives. They are mostly men who stop at nothing in order to satisfy their ruthless and unfeeling lust for honours and gain."
~Dr. Hugo Knecht

"Ask the experimenters why they experiment on animals, and the answer is: 'Because the animals are like us.' Ask the experimenters why it is morally OK to experiment on animals, and the answer is: 'Because the animals are not like us.' Animal experimentation rests on a logical contradiction."
~Professor Charles R.Magel

"The reason why I am against animal research is because it doesn't work, it has no scientific value and every good scientist knows that."
~Dr. Robert Mendelsohn, M.D.

"Vivisection is a social evil because if it advances human knowledge, it does so at the expense of human character."
~George Bernard Shaw

Saturday, February 04, 2006

Where is our compassion?

 

In 'What does Buddhism say about Animals' by Dr. Tony Page. The Buddha felt such great sympathy with all living creatures that he could never sanction torturing or killing animals, whatever the circumstances.

Do they have a right to live for their own sake?