Feb 20, 2013

The Irony - Finding & Killing Your Favorite Cow

Two articles reached my mailbox almost simultaneously and I'm left scratching my confused head over the contradictions they expose.

There's this account that cow-rancher-turned-author-wanna-be Amanda Radke gives of reading her book Levi's Lost Calf to a group of school children. The book apparently includes all the expected characters and "drama" surrounding a barn... While Levi and his friends search for the missing calf they encounter a bunny, a raccoon and I imagine other wild critters that help further distinguish the role of the "domesticated" missing prize...
I belong to me- by B.Elliott
Of course the story will end happily as the calf is recovered and not quite "finished" yet. But there is the treat of a "kid friendly", "real cowboy cookout" recipe included in the final pages... 

I haven't read the book but I can guarantee ya --- There will be blood.

Oh but there's nothing that isn't age appropriate though... Ms Radke makes it clear that she's not "taking any bullet" to explain where/how baby calves come from... No... There's no talk of sperm straws or genetically selected bull semen in this meat on the hoof story... Just pure love in saving a stray (favorite) calf - (ugh!)

Click. Delete.

Next comes this from Drovers - The Cost of an old cow where ranchers are urged to evaluate the expense that sentiment might entail: 
"Every article about culling cows includes a bullet point that says “old cows,” but rarely are there reasons to get rid of the “trail boss cow," the last cow you bought from dad, or the favorite 4-H heifer listed. There is a favorite cow in every herd that gets kept every year, even if she calves a little later each spring and the calf weans a little lighter in the fall. Reasons to cull these animals could include the death potential of older cows and the increased feed costs required to keep them".   

So we can see where Levi's lost calf eventually winds up... Even after all the teachings of "family values", loyalty, love and "care" - If the bottom line says that even the "favorite" cow doesn't count unless he/she is "profitable"... Well everyone gets snuffed out of the financial story! But as Ms. Radke mentions in several of her posts... This is exactly how her gOd planned it for FFA members and all the spiritually guided cowboys. - (ugh!)

Click. Delete.

Now contrast this shrewd calculating of what an other's life is worth and mosey on over to this fabulous post at VINE Sanctuary where there's a joy-filled celebration talking place inspired by the rescue of 5 "old" cows...

So the next time Levi's missing a calf - Or Drover's addition fails - Let's hope they all wind up as valued as these guys: 

You don't need to kill them. You don't need to contribute to the blood spilling coffers. And you shouldn't lie to kids or yourself that you do. Vegan is Love - "saving" a calf to kill later isn't!

Click. Delete.


Anonymous said...

After shaking my head, with a sad, "Oh, brother, Bea" (or should that be, "Oh, sister Bea"?), I'm always grateful when there's a transition in your blog from LIES & KILLING to TRUTH & LIVING LOVE! Today it's the folks at VINE who provide the uplift. Who cause me to nod my head with approval, after I grow weary of the earlier sad "shakes." :-)

Bea Elliott said...

The grief is guaranteed in reading/writing what these carnist folks do on the way to their blood money and "juicy" meat... There's really no escaping it!

But I thought I always concluded on a better note --- I always leave the solution: The Vegan option! It's within reach of everyone who truly cares.

Thanks for doing so sister! ;)

veganelder said...

There are some lessons here. Hard and sad ones. The grim, strangely upbeat, messages of "it must be done" and the sketchy eliding over of doing murders for money and pleasure so you can have a "cowboy cookout".

How strangely sick and twisted we apparently so easily become. Or...maybe not so easily...few children (myself included) experience the hurting of our fellow animals with ease. Maybe it's because the twisting and the deluding and lying gets implanted so early that later as we age it vanishes (seemingly) and we walk around glibly not seeing things or understanding things and not knowing our blindness and our obliviousness. And perversely proudly consider ourselves to be "grown-up".

The sad truth is that after being lied to and lying to ourselves for awhile...it takes more courage to see the world clearly than to lie. How sad and wrong. Truth should come easily...like it did when we were young instead it becomes easier to harm and exploit and destroy than it does to be honest and to allow others that which we want for ourselves.

What a bunch of crap.

Being vegan...pretty much the only way to live without being a liar and a harmer.

Ingrid T said...

Bea, yes, thank you for the uplifting ending although I come from the era of 70s films where I can appreciate the authenticity and necessity of portraying the sorrow and grit of our existence. In this case, it lifts the heart to always, always remember those like Vine who -- as I like to say -- are adding their light to the sum of light. *
(* paraphrasing from "The Year of Living Dangerously")

Bea Elliott said...

Thank you veganelder - With mind and heart I totally agree that truth should come easy! Truth is our greatest shield against those things that hurt others and cause internal strife. I know I'm a broken record... But if adults who are raising precious kids could only get a peak at the pain caused once the realization of lies is discovered. I'm sure you and others who've been awakened can see that it turns the gut inside out! And the other worse scenario is that the kids never learn at all --- And go on to become the perpetrators --- And live whole life of false, unearned "happiness"... And we wonder why so many are anti-depressant-dependent and "entertainment junkies"! Keep reality hidden. Keep telling the feel-good myths. It's terribly sad. :(

Thanks for having the courage it took to open your own eyes and helping others do the same.

Bea Elliott said...

Thanks Ingrid! You of course know you're also one of those who adds light and immense beauty to an otherwise unkind, dark world!

Literally - The way you capture the magic of birds in flight always uplifts!
Thanks for adding to the sum of truth as well. <3