Opinion Article on Animal Abuse

The immorality of consumption and animal abuse

Mahatma Gandhi stated that “the greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way it treats animals ”, meaning that the way we relate to other species is a reflection of the degree of cultural refinement of our societies. And although in principle it is easy to agree with the Indian leader, it is not so easy when it implies a radical change in our life habits, such as food, entertainment or consumption.

Modern industries have been clever at hiding from us the way in which they manufacture their products: what they make them with, in what way, how they test them. And we, inveterate consumers , play the same game, since deep down we prefer not to know.

We cover our eyes in front of the food industry, whose animals are raised in cruel and unsanitary conditions, and then stuffed with antibiotics to fight the infections that their own way of life generates. We cover our eyes in front of the makeup testing laboratories, where animals are forced to suffer product after product so that you or I can use a shampoo with rinse without running the risk of an allergic reaction, since a hundred animals have already had them in our place.

We cover our eyes, because deep down we don’t care, or because we feel that there is nothing to do, that this relentless industry is the same one that gives us work, brings us ready chicken to the supermarket or allows us to believe that we look the same hairstyle than that movie star advertising the shampoo.

What does this say about us, in Gandhi’s terms? What does he say about our morality, our empathy , our view of life beyond our species?

Our animal victims

I do not propose a return to the caves, nor the strictest vegetarianism, nor a life inimical to hygiene and the social customs of the time. Those are arguments with which any attempt to think in moral terms is often ridiculed of what is clearly a monstrous reality: we treat animals as merchandise.

And that is something that a couple of centuries ago we hardly did with human beings: we reduced them to slavery. Only in the case of animals it is much worse: we push them from birth to handicap, to a place of inferiority and suffering, because they do not even have a voice to express to us, in terms that we want to understand, that their suffering is identical to ours. . The slave at least had the word, with which he could curse the master and swear revenge. Our animal victims don’t even have the consolation of rage.

That human beings should feed on plants and animals is a reality that for some is inescapable. A practice, moreover, that modernity did not invent but has accompanied us since we emerged on the face of the planet and that we even share with the animals themselves. We cannot at the same time consider ourselves superior, occupy the commanding place on the planet, and treat them in a way that we do not reserve even for the most infamous member of our species.

If human rights exist , if we truly consider them the foundation of a moral existence in the face of our fellow men, how is it that we have not done the same with the universal rights of animals, the vast majority of which suffer like us, feel like us and die like us?

That is something for which the modern world has no answer.

What is an opinion article?

An opinion article is a type of journalistic text in which the author exposes to the reader his personal position regarding a specific topic. These are essentially argumentative texts , which use information to promote a perspective, that is, to convince the reader to assume her point of view. For this reason, they are usually signed and of a personal nature (with the exception of press editorials, in which the institutional position of the newspaper is reflected), since the reader may agree or disagree with what they contain. it is stated.

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