Bug Lives Matter
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Bug Lives Matter

The case against killing bugs

Bug Lives Matter

With summer in full swing, you and your fly swatter are probably in full swing, too. As the bugs attack you and everything you hold dear this season, you're probably doing all you can just to keep them out of your lemonade.

How could anyone justify the lives of beings this awful? They've got too many legs, too many eyes and to make matters worse, some of those little pests can fly. Who would dream up such terrible little creatures and who in their right mind would knowingly vouch for them?

After a lot of thought and personal growth, I can now say that I will. So, show me to the stand because I'm ready to speak up for bugs.

Bugs areknown to many as God's most annoying gift to the natural world, but according to Wikipedia, they are also the most diverse group of animals on the planet.

They can be found in nearly all environments and they communicate with each other using everything from light to that annoying wing rubbing sound that you're probably familiar with because it kept you awake last night.

Some of these flying fiends damage our crops. Some carry disease. A number of them, on the other hand, perform roles so important to our ecosystem that we'd die without them.

Nevertheless, I'm not going to get on the “we'd die without bugs killing other bugs and pollinating stuff” soap box for today. Today, I'm going to argue the life of bugs by comparing them to us.

The truth is, bugs and humans have a lot in common. They're grossly over-populated, annoying to other species, come in all shapes and sizes and they communicate differently. Right now alone, there are about 7.4 billion people on the planet. With all the racket we keep and the ugly faces we wear, the animal kingdom can't be all that happy with us either.

We tear down their homes, we pollute the air and although some of us human beings try to give back, most of us carry on from day to day doing absolutely nothing for the rest of the ecological system aside from breathing carbon into the trees we keep chopping down anyway. Most of us are parasites sucking the very life out of the world and animals in it—but hey, we're just trying to live our lives, right?

Well, so are bugs. Mosquitoes, for instance, don't suck our blood just because it tastes good; they do it in order to care for their babies. Spiders don't crawl into your home to torment you; they do it to protect themselves and stay alive.

Despite their almost genuine apathy towards us, we have all kinds of reasons for killing bugs. When ants are in our way we have to squash them and if a spider is scary, we feel the need to kill it. We says things like "Bugs do nothing good for the world so why shouldn't we kill them?" and my personal favorite: “It's just a bug, so what?”

Well, humans, funnily enough, are also in the way all the time. We're expanding by the minute into the homes of thousands of animals, bugs included. Not to mention, we're pretty scary ourselves. Even though we don't buzz and bite, we carry on with loud, never ending construction, bad music and useless conversations; boring, pestering and murdering the animal kingdom to no end.

Many people would argue that we're pretty useless in the grand scheme of things. We certainly aren't making things much better for anyone but ourselves.

In the end, we're no different from bugs. With all these similarities it comes down to seeing the life of a bug for what it is—a life.

As far as lives go, It's pretty unfair to murder something just because it's annoying, troublesome, discomforting or ugly but, we do it without a thought every single day.

So, this is my soap box; bugs are living breathing beings that, like us, are just trying to live their lives. No, I'm not expecting you to go about saving each and every insect or let them feast on the flesh of your loved ones, but the least you could do is show a bit of feigned remorse when you crush one to a bleeding pulp.

Lots of parents try in vain to stop their children from hurting animals by saying, "What if it were you?" But honestly, let's imagine for an instant all the parallels we have between this "see-bug-kill-bug" world and our own human realities. We shoot and kill plenty of people because they seem threatening and strange—from black people to men in turbans to men who happen to like other men.

In a world where appearances, stereotypes and privilege rule, we lash out against the people we view as strange, foreign, unimportant pests in our society. We lash out at them because we don't understand them, because a few of them hurt us before, and because we think we're better than them. We do it with bugs, and we've been doing it with humans, too.

Killing bugs without a thought, without a conscience, without awareness sets us up for exactly the kind of world where killing humans that fit the same standards is easy. But, I for one am holding out on the hope that if we start treating bug lives like they matter, we can start seeing human lives through a new context, too.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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