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Archive for the ‘Animal Rights’ Category

(PART I CAN BE READ HERE)

PART II: MULESING SHEEP OR FACING A CRUEL DEATH

When we look at Proverbs 12:10 again,

 

A righteous man cares for the needs of his animal,
but the kindest acts of the wicked are cruel.

 

We see a Biblical basis for stewardship and owning animals, something the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) might not necessarily agree with. In stating that “a righteous man cares for the need of his animals”, note that the animal is identified as “his”. To state it another way, the animal that is taken cared for is owned and possessed by the righteous man. It belongs to the man. And one who is righteous would take care of his animals in a biblical display of stewardship.

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At times it appears that PETA have an agenda to chip away man’s dominion of domesticated animals even at the price of cruelty to the domesticated animal itself.

 

An ongoing (as of August 2006) media saavy campaign that PETA has been engaged in lately has been focused on a boycott against the Australian sheep industry. The large campaign targeting the practice of what is popularly called mulesing has effectively gotten Timberland and Abercrombie & Fitch to forsake their business dealings with the Australian sheep businesses. A campaign with threats of boycotts, pictures of bleeding sheeps and emotionally provocative slogans would move most people to be concerned about the plight of what these Australian sheep go through with the process of Mulesing. Mulesing is depicted as cruel and despicable torture, part of a larger industry’s senseless violence. But what is the purpose of this painful infliction called Mulesing in which the flesh of a sheep’s anal area is torn away? Is there a reason that Mulesing is performed? And how is it done?

 

What surprise it was to discover that Mulesing is actually done for the health and good of the sheep!

 

First off to begin with, we must deal with the description of it being some deep, harmful cut into the sheep.

 

In a one page flyer ad released by PETA titled, “The Six Myths of Mulesing”, it described as a myth the idea that “Mulesing isn’t that bad—it’s just a little skin off the rump.[i] It then proceeded to give the fact but in doing so it never addressed the issue or marshal in any evidence that only a little skin off the rump is taken. When we look at a 1996 (eight years before PETA’s boycott began by the way) document printed by the Western Australian Department of Agriculture that provided instruction in Mulesing for sheep herder, we discover that the mulesing involves shallow cuts.[ii]

 

In that same Australian government document, we also discover the reason behind the practice of Mulesing: “Mulesing to control fly strike in sheep is common practice in Western Australia.”[iii]

 

What is a ‘fly strike’? We learn elsewhere what ‘fly strike’ is:

“Australia is home to a nasty species of fly (the blowfly) that reproduces by laying eggs in wet wool, particularly around wounds or in healthy but damp areas soiled by feces and urine. When the eggs hatch, the maggots literally eat into the flesh of the sheep and feed for several days — a condition known as “flystrike” — before falling off onto the ground to pupate and become mature insects, starting the cycle anew.”[iv]

And its devastating effect:

“This parasitic maggot infestation — which partially eats the infected animal alive — is not only agonizing, but releases toxins causing afflicted sheep to die lingering and terrible deaths.”[v]

Mulesing protects the sheep because “when the cuts heal, the natural bare area around the vulva and anus is stretched and enlarged. This reduces dampness caused by sweating, urine and faecal staining, and so minimizes susceptibility to flystrike.”[vi]

 

You would think that PETA would be in support of something that would protect sheeps from literally being eaten alive in a cruel way. What a surprise to discover their boycott based upon this procedure!

 

Of course, there are followers of PETA who pursue the boycott sincerely thinking it is for the betterment of the sheep because it brings pain to these sheep. However, in the same way a surgery can be painful and is performed for the benefit of saving lives (and for the care of a patient) then in the same way the pain that the sheep goes through is far greater than dying such a painful death as it would suffering from a ‘flystrike’.

 

Wikipedia list several other alternative to Mulesing:

  • topical protein-based treatments
  • selective breeding
  • organic insecticides
  • biological control of blowflies
  • application of plastic clips to sheep’s skin folds[vii]

Yet as Wikipedia stated, “So far, no alternative method has proved satisfactory and acceptable”, providing reasons such as “The eradication of the strike fly is not a viable alternative”, and “Breeding alternatives are very slow, even if GMO techniques are allowed (which is unlikely)”.[viii] By the time one breeds a survivable sheep breed (assuming it would succeed), many sheeps would have died tragically in the process. Further, medication for the sheep does not exist at this time, as Australian Wool industry is still researching a vaccine or insecticide treatments to protect sheep against flystrike.[ix] Observing PETA in light of Proverbs 12:10, we have to indeed be saddened to note how the kindest, sincere act of PETA can be very cruel to the very animals that it originally sought to protect.


[i] A flyer titled “The Six Myths o f Mulesing”, obtained in Summer, 2006.

[ii] Gherardi, S.G. “Mulesing For Flystrike Control”, Farmnote. Issue 46, 1996: Accessible at http://agspsrv34.agric.wa.gov.au/agency/pubns/farmnote/1996/f04696.pdf

[iii] Ibid, pg. 1.

[iv] Smith, Wesley J. “Tall Tales Down Under: Australian Wool Industry Gets Sheepish In The Face of Animal-Rights Demagoguery”, Discovery Institute, February 10th, 2005: Accessible at http://www.discovery.org/scripts/viewDB/index.php?command=view&program=Bioethics&id=2418

[v] Ibid.

[vi] Gherardi, S.G. “Mulesing For Flystrike Control”, Farmnote. Issue 46, 1996: Accessible at http://agspsrv34.agric.wa.gov.au/agency/pubns/farmnote/1996/f04696.pdf

[vii] “Mulesing”, Wikipedia. July 6th, 2006: Accessible at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mulesing

[viii] Ibid.

[ix] Plate,
Alice. “Plan for Mulesing Ban Not Realistic”,
SouthAustralianCounty Hour. October 11th, 2004: Accessible at http://www.abc.net.au/rural/sa/stories/s1240324.htm

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PART I: FATHER OF ANIMAL RIGHTS, PETER SINGER AND BEASTILITY

To begin with, in writing this, this is not an endorsement for animal cruelty or hurting animals. Let that be upfront and clear, lest anyone waste their time in an unproductive, heated and utterly meaningless response that misses the point. Animal Cruelty is a sick and twisted thing.

In Proverbs 12:10 we find with God’s Word:

10 A righteous man cares for the needs of his animal,
but the kindest acts of the wicked are cruel.

Many people are familiar through the media of what is perhaps the world’s largest animal right’s group called the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA). The Animal Rights group have been a fairly recent phenomenon and the founding of the Animal Rights movement as a whole can be attributed to it founding father, Secular Utilitarian Philosopher Peter Singer.

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Though an intellect and a philosopher, and someone applauded as the champion of animal rights, imagine how shocking it is to learn that he expose the idea that sex with animals are okay so long as you have consent. As the Wall Street Journal reported:

“Princeton’s DeCamp Professor of Bioethics says that when it comes to sex with farm animals, the only real issues are whether you get the animal’s consent–and you don’t kill it as part of your pleasure.”[i]

Yet, how do you have an animal consent that is intelligible or certain without languages?

How does one know that animal gives consent?

Perhaps you can “train it” to consent like you train Fido to COMPEL it to roll on the floor for one’s or train it in the same fashion as you train an Elephants to “consent” to blowing out peanuts from its nose to an joyful audience in a circus show?

Sex with animals is a gross, abominable thing in the Lord’s sight that is nothing else but a tragic physically pressured violation of the animal itself. It is raping the animal.

You would think PETA, with all their protests against not only killing animals but also for torturing animals would be the first to protest Dr. Singer and block all the roads to Princeton University, where he teaches.

Whereas other Animal Rights group condemned Dr. Singer in writing or interviews did PETA participate in these activities too?

PETA instead spared Princeton and Dr. Singer any protest and the silence from PETA at
Princeton was as silent as a sleeping cat.

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But not as silent as a dead piece of fur though.

Imagine PETA and the President of PETA instead supporting Dr. Singer!

As the New York Times stated:

“There was one important exception. Ingrid Newkirk, the president of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, not only stood by Mr. Singer but also imagined a few…acts.”[ii]

Besides revealing the twisted mind of PETA’s president we catch a glimpse of the animal cruelty of their ideologies.

Looking at Proverbs 12:10 again we find the insight from God’s Word:

10 A righteous man cares for the needs of his animal,
but the kindest acts of the wicked are cruel.

Note here that this verse points out that a man who is upright in his life would even care for the need of his animals. For anyone who thinks that animal cruelty is justifiable, this verse should be enough to show otherwise. The Word makes its clear that the caring of the need of one’s animal is the overflow of an individual’s righteousness, and the problem of abusing animals within the sight of God is not primarily economic, social or phsychological, but of a sick, twisted and sinful heart.

More interestingly enough, this verse also mentioned that the most kind acts of the wicked can also be cruel. We have seen how true that is here in the twisted, cruel and sinful mind of Singer and PETA.


[i] “Animal Crackers”, The Wall Street Journal, March 30th, 2001: http://opinionjournal.com/editorial/feature.html?id=85000772 .

[ii] Boxer, Sarah.”Yes, but Did Anyone Ask the Animals’ Opinon?”, The New York Times, June 9th, 2001: Accessible at http://www.nytimes.com/2001/06/09/arts/09TANK.html?ex=1149393600&en=b561095c90e26157&ei=5070 with registration.

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