'Runaway cow killed by police van'. Headline from BBC news here
For everyone who has been shocked by this incident, where a cow, a sentient individual, escaped her captors only to be killed whilst still terrified and running, exhausted, for her life, there is a much deeper lesson to be learned from your disbelief and horror.
While societies worldwide still view the lives of all other animals as some ‘thing’ to be owned, while media outlets use the term “it” to describe an individual who is scientifically proven to have deep emotions, while we continue to believe that our birth right gives us dominion over all others, then this killing is no different from what we are willingly complicit in every single day.
We despair for this poor pregnant cow. We condemn the humans who made that choice, to ram her poor body four times with a powerful vehicle in an attempt to kill her, to stop her attempt at escape to freedom, under the guise of ‘public safety’. Yet all the while we enslave and subjugate and take the lives of over 300 million cows every year, without a thought, just so we can eat parts of their bodies. Where is the despair for them? Where is the despair for the almost 80 BILLION land animals whose lives we take every year for food? For the trillions of sea animals. Or the undocumented numbers we use for so called scientific testing, of for sport and entertainment, or for clothing? Where is the condemnation for the oppressors of these untold numbers of other animals, who experience suffering just as we do?
This issue is one of deeply ingrained societal injustice, and we have such a long way to go to reach an understanding of that. While terrible wars rage all across the planet between humans of different cultures, and modern day human slavery continues rife on every continent, and so many of us are weighed down by patriarchy, racism, sexism and all the senseless prejudices that capitalism brings, what chance is there that other animals will ever escape from the shackles we have placed on them?