Another Side Of Speciesism

Another Side Of Speciesism

The hypocrisy surrounding our animal cuisine

"Speciesism" is defined by Merriam-Webster as "prejudice or discrimination based on species." It is often used by animal activists to question why we, as human beings, believe we deserve greater rights than the rest of the animal kingdom. So why do we think it is okay to eat certain species and not others?

I recently spent time in Thailand, living in an Akha village outside the city of Chiang Rai. Here, the Akha people have no problem eating dog, and invited me over one night to share. I told my friend this over lunch the other day, and she frowned, asking me, "how can they eat dogs? Dogs are too cute to eat!" taking a big, guiltless bite out of her 100% beef hamburger as she said so. I noted the irony.

Cuisine is a huge part of culture, and varies greatly from place to place. In the Andes of South America, guinea pig is popular, but travel a couple more hours to the Amazon, and one finds beetle larvae sold grilled on skewers. In China, it is not uncommon to find animal genitalia on fancy restaurant menus, and Russians dine happily on caviar. As Americans, accustomed to our bacon breakfasts and beef barbecues, we turn up our noses at the '"weird foods" found in other countries. We discriminate.

A while back, it was discovered that some supermarkets in the UK sold burgers that contained up to 30% horse meat. The public was appalled. But in France, they have no problem eating horse. The distinction we make between animals we eat and those we don't is largely artificial. Granted, there are species that are either unsafe or unhealthy to consume, but for the most part, we create boundaries based on customs.

Dogs are our pets, our friends -- how could we eat them? But cows, pigs, and chickens all show signs of similar levels of emotional attachment. The animals we do eat feel the same things as those we do not. In fact, in many studies, pigs have higher measures of intelligence than our canine pals. Ben Martin, a campaigner for Animal Aid, reiterates, "Pigs, horses, cats, chickens and dogs all feel love, fear and pain -- the reasons for not eating one kind of animal applies to all of them."

This is not an argument against eating animals. It is not an argument for eating animals. This is an argument to make you think: why do you eat what you eat? It is an injustice to condemn some animals to murder, while arguing for the salvation of others. It is hypocritical. Instead of discriminating, have an open mind. Think about it.

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30 Bee Puns To Get You Through The Day

These puns are as sweet as honey.

There are few things in life that make me happier (and/or make me want to bury my face in my hands and groan loudly) than a well timed pun. This goes double if the pun involves some my favorite insects — bees. There's nothing quite as satisfying as uttering a bee pun when no one expects it, so here is a list of the top 30 bee puns around!

Use these puns to make your grandparents laugh, impress your date, spice up your Tinder profile, make friends with a beekeeper, break the ice at your new job or make everyone in the general vicinity wish they hadn't invited you to come hang out with them. You won't bee-lieve how many of these puns you'll be pollen for! You'll bee-come an instant hit at parties! You'll bee sure to thank me later.

1. "When a bee is in your hand, what's in your eye? Beauty. Because beauty is in the eye of the bee-holder."

2. "Bee puns really sting.

3. "Who's a bee's favorite singer? Bee-yoncé."

4. "What's a happy bumblebee's blood type? Bee positive!"

5. "Bee puns aren't that great. I don't get what all the buzz is about."

6. "Wasp are you talking about?"

7. "Naughty bee children really need to beehive."

8. "What kind of bees drop things? Fumble bees!"

9. "A bee's favorite haircut is a buzz cut!"

10. "What do you call a bee that's a sore loser? A cry bay-bee!"

11. "What's a bee's favorite flower? Bee-gonias!"

12. "Why do bees get married? Because they found their honey!"

13. "That bee is talking too quietly, it must be a mumble-bee!"

14. "Bee children take the school buzz to get to school."

15. "A bee's favorite sport is rug-bee."

16. "The bees went on strike because they wanted more honey and less working flowers."

17. "On the first day of class, bee students are given a sylla-buzz."

18. "What did one bee say to the other when they landed on the same flower? Buzz off."

19. "Who's a bee's favorite painter? Pablo Bee-casso!"

20. "A bee styles their hair with a honeycomb."

21. "When a bee writes a sonnet, they're waxing poetic."

22. "The worker bee decided to take a vacation to Stingapore last year."

23. "A bee that's been put under a spell has been bee-witched!"

24. "Say, these bee puns aren't too shab-bee."

25. "That pretentious wasp is just plain snob-bee!"

26. "Why did the bee want to use the phone? To say hi to their honey."

27. "A bee's favorite novel is the Great Gats-bee."

28. "What's a bee's favorite Spice Girls song? Wanna-bee!"

29. "What do bees like with their sushi? Wasa-bee!"

30. "Remember, bee puns are good for your health, they give you a dose of Vitamin Bee!"

Cover Image Credit: Fanaru

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To The Rescue Dog That Gave Me Wisdom, Thank You For Everything That You Do

Not only is she named Wisdom, she embodies all that the word represents and showed me unconditional love.


Wisdom: (definition) "the quality of having experience, knowledge, and good judgment; the quality of being wise."

Seven years ago this December, a little mutt entered our hearts and made a permanent residence. One Saturday, my mother and sister were out running errands, shopping for dog food for our one-year-old red heeler. As they walked into the pet store that afternoon, they walked into adoption day. My mom's eyes fell onto this little black puppy curled up in a ball sound asleep as the other dogs barked up a storm. She held her for a few minutes before she knew she wasn't going to walk out of that store without her in tow.

Next, they called me at home. I was curious as to when they'd be home to bring home lunch like they had said they would. Instead of answering my question, they told me all about this little black puppy that needed a home. I was hesitant as we already had a wild one-year-old who still needed plenty of training. They dismissed my remarks and an hour or so later, my family stepped out of the car with a little puppy in my sister's arms. I was shocked. I didn't think they'd actually bring home a dog. Before I could ask what her name would be, my mom had chosen the name Wisdom. That name would parallel with our red heeler's name of Justice. Justice and Wisdom, the perfect pairing -- almost.

My family informed me of her story and how they could not walk away from little Wisdom. Her name had been Merle. She was 3 months old and abandoned. She had a family previously and they decided to put her out on the street. Later, she was in a kill shelter. On a whim, she got a single weekend to be adopted into a forever home or return to the shelter. Now, of course, we couldn't let her go. She deserved a life full of love and family. She was so young, with so much potential.

However, the volunteers had told our family little Merle was part Catahoula. Those dogs get to be around 90 pounds. Wisdom is seven years old now and 35 pounds. I don't think they had that correct.

Wisdom quickly adapted to our family routine but was unsure of her new brother. After a while, the two became inseparable. Best friends. Adopted siblings. A dynamic duo.

Within the seven years that Wisdom has been a part of our family, she has brought us so much joy. Wisdom stood by my and my sisters' sides as we endured the hard parts of middle school and high school. She slept beside us as we were sick. She never acted out or misbehaved and always showed the best behavior and love towards her family. Even curiously loving the cats.

Wisdom has shown me that second chances are possible and to never give up on hope. Through her hardships at a young age, she endured through it all as the happiest and most loving pup. She does not let her past define her present. Wisdom embodies a wise demeanor with a selfless care for her family. She knows how to light up a room with her funny noises. She can make you laugh randomly. She's never a challenge.

From entering our wild family, Wisdom has provided so much wisdom into the strength of recovery. She recovered from the darkest part of life and is now surrounded by love that carries you into a warm light of happiness. When I was at my lowest in life, Wisdom comforted me. Her presence let me know that anything is possible, that there will be light. She became everyone's companion to discovering happiness. A dog can be one of the best stress-reliefs, lowering blood pressure and adding a smile. Wisdom does exactly that. She pulled my family out of sadness with her big brown eyes staring back at us with adoration.

Wisdom gave not only me wisdom, but she brought it to my family. As well as providing some for her brother Justice, who could use it at times. Having a dog that represents a virtue of knowledge and another that represents a virtue of resilience, empowers each of us every day as we come to love them more than ever each day.

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