Rose and the Philosopher’s Chocolate: Do you feel used?

The other day, I was visiting my old man, Mr L, and we were discussing dogs.  Apparently, as a kid, Mr L used to have to shoot the working dogs, after they’d reached the end of their useful life.  He hadn’t liked it much.

‘I can’t stand cruelty to animals!’ says nice Mr L, ‘Just can’t bear it.  I know they were put on this earth for us to use, but still…!’

Put on this earth for us to use? I’m sorry, Mr L, you’re a sweetheart, but what! (I didn’t say that, just nodded and moved on.)

We’re all living beings, inhabiting this world by pure chance.  Humans are a species of animal.  We’re a clever, imaginative, adaptable and destructive species of animal  but we’re animals all the same.  What incredible arrogance to think that somehow, we’re here like the Ring of Power, to Rule Them All.  It would be ironic (if a bit upsetting) if a species of superior beings came down and colonised us on the principle that Humans were put in this universe ‘for us to use’.  Medical research, perhaps?

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Still,  Mr L isn’t alone in this interesting belief.  When I was in English class at school, we used to have this red haired English teacher with Strong Views.  One day she gave us a lecture about greenies.

These greenies, she said. I hate them!  I mean, animals were put on this earth for us to use, and all this running around yelling about saving the planet and being nice to cows is a whole lot of rubbish as far as I’m concerned!’

There was silence.  Then the class idiot put her hand up.

‘So…what side are you on..politically, Ms H?’

‘How DARE you! How DARE you ask me what my political views are!  I’m a teacher in this school and my political views are absolutely off limits!’

Oh.  Silly me.  I should have known.

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8 comments

    • Maybe. And maybe the seal would pay back the killer whale, too. It’s all very complicated. All I know is, I don’t want to be mean to anything at all.

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  1. You know I feel for animals, cause I know how it feels, sometimes I feel that us men are only put on this planet to be used by our evil overlords… Women!!!

    Yep, it’s a funny idea that we arrogantly assume that we are the race that has the right to ‘use’ animals… I don’t think of Tabitha as my personal toy to be used! But on one score the treatment of animals is better than us humans, at least when they reach the stage where their lives become unbearable they can be euthenased, we humans aren’t given that option legally to choose to die with dignity, at least not yet, CS

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