Tuesday, January 2, 2007

Hopes of Extinction

Looking back, I realize how ridiculous it is that slavery used to be the norm. Human beings treated like crap because of their skin color. What about the refusal to let women vote? I cannot imagine there are many organizations trying to ban women voters from doing there thing at election time. What about men wearing powdered wigs ALL of the time? George Washington seemed to think he looked quite dapper in his sweet white rag.
I am predicting that a couple of completely unnecessary activities will be slowly but surely abandoned within the next 5 to 10 years. First, the wearing of leather. Second, the consumption and wearing of fur. Third, I think that meat consumption will be forced to lessen as we decrease our need for leathers and animal products in general.
Animal products are ruining our planet. Americans are insanely greedy in that they think they need anything and everything they want when they want it. There is no thought process for most consumers after they see an ad in a magazine they idolize or a celebrity they love is donning something new and exciting....its sad. The American way is to not think about what you are doing, just DO IT! Stress yourself out about your boyfriend or your load of debt or your thinning hair or your fat ass. Don't worry about what climate (mental and physical) your child and grandchild are going to have to endure because of your splurging on unnecessary goods.

I encountered a mild challenge when wanting to purchase a car last year. I used CARTELLIGENT (they act as a middleman between you and the dealer) so that I could order an Audi Wagon with NO LEATHER inside. He assured me that was completely fine but I could not order any other special features because CLOTH SEATS only come in the base model. Whatever, the car rules, it gets decent gas mileage until I buy my TESLA electric sedan. But, we found it odd that we could not pay them more money for other features if we wanted to. They refused because the car would have to be taken off the assembly line and that is a no no apparently. When I arrived about 4 months later to pick up my special order vegan Audi wagon, there was leather on the friggin' steering wheel and gear shifter. UGH! So they had to take the car in to be re-upholstered with vinyl that looks just fine and hardly any different than the leather. It holds up just as well, cleans easily and is void of any animal skin! I was dreaming of putting my salesguys skin on that steering wheel after waiting months for a special ordered car that ended up with leather after all. So frustrating. Anyway, Americans are obsessed with leather because they seem to think its so luxurious. If I have to listen to another woman brag about her friggin' handbag (which is an animal skinbag, yes, skin peeled off an animal, bloody and gross until they tan it and dye it to oblivion until it basically looks like vinyl anyway) her husband bought her for Christmas.....POW! I think I might have the ONLY vegan Audi in America. Interestingly enough, in Europe, cloth seats and vinyl options are more common than leather options. Its some weird American obsession to buy leather over its alternatives that look and feel the same. I challenge someone to put that same leather coat or shoe on, fresh off the animal. If they can deal with that, they might want to seek counseling. Leather tidbits from PETA's website: "What's Wrong With Leather? Millions of cows, pigs, sheep, and goats are slaughtered for their skin every year. They are castrated, branded, and dehorned and have their tails docked without anesthetics. Then they are trucked to slaughter, bled to death, and skinned. Leather is not simply a slaughterhouse byproduct—it’s a booming industry. The meat industry relies on skin sales to stay in business because the skin represents the most economically important byproduct of the meat-packing industry, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Animal skin is turned into finished leather through the use of dangerous mineral salts, formaldehyde, coal-tar derivatives, cyanide-based oils and dyes, chrome, and other toxins. People who have worked in and lived near tanneries are dying of cancer caused by exposure to toxic chemicals used to process and dye the leather. A study conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that a solvent used in tanning leather appears to be associated with an increased risk of testicular cancer. When you buy leather products, you may be purchasing leather from Asian dog and cat tanneries; because product labeling rarely indicates where the skins originate, there’s no way to know for sure. Visit CowsAreCool.com for more information on the leather industry."
Fur, I know this is so tired. I don't even think I need to explain how sick this industry is. Russia and China are the big fur buyers right now and they basically think they look hella rich in those coats. I have news for you, real men don't need to wear fur to appear wealthy and distinguished. Faux Fur buying tips on PETA's website: " Forget about coats with fur collars and trim and fur accessories. Again, read labels to weed out cruel products. Cruelty-free faux furs made of plush modern synthetics are becoming easier and easier to find. Fabulous Furs sells elegant, stylish coats that are completely faux. Many other designers and manufacturers are specializing in fabulous faux furs as well, including Charly Calder, Faux, Purrfect Fur, and Sweet Herb."
Veal is my next prediction for "soon to be extinct list." I think we will be DONE with this cruel practice in 5-10 years. I am absolutely SHOCKED when I see it on the menu. I will NEVER go into a restaurant that carries a VEAL dish. I thought we were done with this! I remember being in high school 13 years ago and hearing how people boycott veal often. Its coming baby cows, your day is coming soon, no worries. This situation is NOT like factory farming, I mean there was never a time of "conscious veal" production. Its just flat out cruel and completely excessive. What else can you eat on the menu? Oh, there are probably only maybe 20 other items, PASS ON THE VEAL! (oh, and Veal is a by-product of the dairy industry because, what else do you do with male calves? Can't milk 'em!) PETA says on veal: "Because of these extremely unhealthy living conditions, calves raised for veal are susceptible to a long list of diseases, including chronic pneumonia and diarrhea. A study published in the Journal of Animal Science found that calves who were kept in “smaller housing units” had difficulty keeping themselves clean and had trouble “extending their front legs and changing from a lying to a standing position,” which resulted in joint swelling. It was also determined that stereotypical stress behaviors such as tongue rolling and “sham-chewing” (the act of chewing without food in the mouth) increase when smaller pens were used and as calves got older.(8)
After enduring 12 to 23 weeks in these conditions, these young animals, many of whom can barely walk because of muscle atrophy or sickness, are crowded into metal trucks for transport to the slaughterhouse.(9) On these trucks, they are trampled and suffer from temperature extremes and lack of food, water, and veterinary care.
Veal crates are prohibited in Britain, and the European Union has instructed its members to phase them out by the end of 2007.(10) In the meantime, Dutch farmers are required to keep calves in group pens.(11)
Federal Oversight of Illegal Drugs
The U.S. Department of Agriculture has never approved the use of hormones on veal calves, but in early 2004, federal officials found a “suspicious lump” in a Wisconsin calf, which turned out to be a hormone implant, commonly used in adult cows but not allowed in young animals.(12) The subsequent investigation revealed that as many as 90 percent of U.S. veal calves are illegally fed synthetic testosterone, and a spokesman for the American Veal Association confessed that the practice had been going on for 30 years.(13)
A decade prior to that discovery, federal agents found more than a dozen veal production companies that had been giving calves clenbuterol, an illegal and toxic drug that speeds growth and increases anemia in the calves. Even trace amounts of clenbuterol can cause severe illness in humans, including increased heart rate, tremors, breathing difficulties, fever, and even death.(14)
What You Can Do
Ask your state legislators to sponsor bills that would prohibit the use of veal crates. Check out NoVeal.org for more information.
In addition to refusing to eat veal, don’t consume dairy products—veal calves are a “byproduct” of the dairy industry. Discover the joy of soy instead! Fortified soy, almond, oat and rice milks provide calcium, vitamins, iron, zinc, and protein but contain no cholesterol. They are perfect for cereal, coffee, and soups and also work well in baked goods and other recipes. Many other delicious dairy alternatives—such as soy cheese, Tofutti Better Than Sour Cream, Silk creamer, and Soy Delicious nondairy ice cream—are available in health and grocery stores. "

Until this test tube meat thing takes off, I am going to put some serious energy into spreading the word on why meat eating is NOT going to be forever. Just like oil folks. We are all at the party of plenty where fairly cheap oil and food is the norm. I know most won't act until Mr. and Mrs. Desperate Measures show up and prevent you from filling up your hummer today or eat that KFC bucket o' chicken. Wake up friends, its happening in front of your eyes. A shift in consciousness has to occur. Take note of your actions and purchases throughout the day. Are they good for you and your grandchildren to be? Don't believe the "flex fuel" lies. Read about supposed "green" solutions because most of it is catchy bullshit. Can't wait for that episode of Penn and Teller's "bullshit!!!!"

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