Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Wednesday-4am-cogitation on Earthlings DVD

The sun didn't last long yesterday. By the time I left for K&Krafts around noon, there wasn't a ray to be seen.
Here's the new rubber ball that dangles down and sits on my windshield.
Dagan and Leah attached this to the ceiling in the garage so I won't park so far forward that I can't get to my shelves--hehe! It is going to help, that's for sure. I would never park this far back on my own--hehe! Thanks Leah! :)
On the way to K&Krafts it started to sprinkle. I was actually hoping for a short downpour to clean my car off. No such luck. I think next time it really rains I should just take the car out and drive around for a few minutes to clean the dust off it--ROFL!
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Kay was there. I put in an order for the new Tim Holtz tattered flowers die and refills for the foam holder. It will be quite a while for the die to arrive, but they'll call me when it comes in. It is super popular and they're behind in production. I saw online how you can use his dies in the Cuttlebug--only $19.99--can make my own paper flowers--grunge style.
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Anyways, I got my green paper so I can work on the Christmas cards for the Etsy shop. Picked up a few other little things that were on my list. (I always have running lists going--hehe!) I have the blending tool for the felt pads--decided to get one for the foam pads. The blending solution, refill for my new distress ink pad, alcohol ink, and a couple of stamp cleaners.
As soon as the bag hit the floor...hehe!
Before I left, I spent the late morning making phone calls I had been avoiding for a week. I did avoid the worst one--school loans--by signing up online and finding the online form to fill out for forbearance. It was one of the worst sites to navigate! Hard to find your way around, links that didn't work...took me about 15-20 minutes just to be able to get to the online form. I guess you wait to see how they respond. Easier than having people get snippy with you on the phone every six months, tho. I think my loan has been sold or something? Dealing with new company the last couple times. They don't want to accept anything but the full payments and I can't do that for them--still. :( I hope this online thing will work. Much easier than calling them and requesting forms and going round and round on the phone. :)
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Oh--before I forget...when I got home I saw somebody on twitter had posted: "May the 4th be with you!" Cracked me up! I had just mentioned "the force" on the blog--ROFL!
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I called IdeaOne and they do cover my apartment complex! Tada! And they are cheaper than CableOne for Internet and have more megabites or whatever they are--10 of them. Only $35 for installation and the modem box is free--no rental fees! Wow! Looks like I will be able to switch providers when the time comes. :) I'll let Dagan and Leah know tonight when I see them.
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Okay--after I got home and settled in--I tried the Earthlings DVD again. Funny how yesterday nothing worked...not cleaning the DVD, not anything. I guess I wasn't kidding when I said The Universe must not have thought I was ready. Yesterday it worked--started right from the beginning. So I took the subtitles off right away...and watched......
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Oscar-nominated actor Joaquin Phoenix narrates this powerful award-winning examination of mankind's dependence on animals. The film delves into the food, entertainment and medical industries' use of animals and links each to the world economy. Unflinching footage, some shot by hidden cameras, explores slaughterhouses, puppy mills, factory farms and medical labs and reveals the roles they play in perpetuating society's disrespect for animals.
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I cried thru the whole documentary. I watched all the bonus material (where that goat killing was)--and cried.
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I had no idea how bad it actually is...what we actually do--routinely--to animals...and sea life. This film was released in 2003 and took years to accumulate the footage--much of the hidden camera work is in the American slaughterhouses. In 2005 Bush signed into law a bill that declared that anyone who caused these companies loss of revenue from activism (mentioned mini-cams) could go to prison--called it an act of terrorism!? The food industry is huge. The animals are just product, of course.
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They're afraid if people can see what is actually done that they won't want to buy the product.
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I know I can never look at a package of chicken again and not see the conditions they barely exist in and workers slapping them up by their legs on a conveyor chain and slitting their throats. They can't get away. They can barely walk let alone fly.
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Or beef, pork...any kind of animal...I will see them hanging by one leg, supposed to be unconscious, but twisting in agony while their throats are ripped open and they bleed to death. Some dipped in scalding water or skinned while they are still alive...
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...all that fear...cruelty...pain...misery. We eat that.
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And the DVD covered pets, food, clothing, entertainment, and science. All the areas where we abuse and deprive animals of dignity--not just in the United States, but all over the world. I was appalled by how the cattle are treated in India--where we get most of our leather. Their "sacred" cows are treated worse than our meat cows in the end. Tortured on their long trek to the slaughterhouse--no food or water for days--when they fall down the men snap/break the bones in their tails over and over to get them back up, beat them, or rub burning spices all over their eyeballs to shock them back to consciousness...
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I loved leather. Now I see those tortured cows.
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I didn't sleep well.
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I am still nauseous.
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But I watched it all. I certainly will have to take a while before I watch Food Inc!
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But I don't want to forget.
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I am glad I know.
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We walk down the cool aisles in the grocery store. It all looks so clean and fresh and bright. And those pieces of meat don't really look like anything, you know? We know they are crowded..but we like to think the animals are in clean environments and at least treated humanely...
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They are not.
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I know I was already behind online with emails and blogs and such...I will catch up after a while here. I am just so overwhelmed right now. Need a while to let all that sink in. To apologize to all the animals I have eaten. To grieve for all those animals who have lived and died so horribly and are still dying for us. We humans are eating more meat than we ever have before--because of the meat factories. Man has always eaten meat. But this is the first time animals have become an industry to this extent. These factory animals have no lives, no dignity, no ground beneath their feet or sky above them. We have no gratitude for the sacrifice of their lives...for them. We scoop up the fish out of the sea, club the seals, and slice open the dolphins...cut down the forests to make room for more crops to feed more animals. Sixteen pounds of grain to make one pound of meat. Doesn't make a lot of sense when the world needs food.
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I come from farm stock...only a few generations back. The days of the farmers with the few cows--that I could pet and each one had a name--and they roamed outside all day and didn't come back till night milking--and when a cow got older and didn't give as much milk, it was a hard thing to send her off to be butchered--so you hung onto her for longer than you should--and when she went she was still healthy and still wandered the fields all day--maybe a little bony in the hips and slower on her feet...and you missed her. Those days are gone.
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Now it makes me wonder about organic and free-range...how are they raised really? Now I wonder about my dairy and eggs...?
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As you can probably tell, this was a life-altering experience for me. I would recommend everybody watch this. We need to do something to change this whole process of meat supplies. The way we are doing all this is adding to pollution, disease, and our own environmental demise.
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And we can also not buy leather or goods that are tested on animals. Don't buy pets from the puppy mills--and spay or neuter. There are things we can do.
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I am so glad I switched over this month!! If I am ever feeling weak and need a reminder...I can just watch Earthlings again. I can't imagine those pictures ever going away completely from my mind in the first place, tho. And that is a really good thing. :):)
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Well--anyways--rainy, cloudy, cold day--low 50s. Dagan and Leah are scheduled to come over after work...and I am ruminating up here in Fargo...

14 comments:

  1. You definitely have a lot on your mind and things to mentally digest (as well as edibles).

    I was watching an "apologist" show on PBS about Tyson chickens and how the farmers were all saying, "If you can raise a chicken in 49 days instead of 90, you'd be out of your mind not to." I think I nearly hurt myself scowling at the TV.

    George Bush was a total disaster. This country may never recover from him (and his follow-on).

    On a more happier note, I mentioned you on my blog post today. :)

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  2. When I was in high school, I think, I read "The Jungle" was that the right name? about the meat packing industry. It really sickened me, so I can sympathize.

    The milk and eggs are a natural product from the animals and they are a good source of protein.

    I like vegetarian food, but have not been able to switch over yet.

    Also, I agree that Bush was one of the worst presidents ever for this country.

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  3. WOW! What a powerful and moving post, Rita! I truly felt every word of your thoughts on Earthlings. I can't bear the thought of animals suffering anywhere and it truly hurts my heart when I see how man has become so desensitised within the animal industry. I hope I have the courage to watch Earthlings one day. As you know, I was Vegan for 11 months because of these same feelings that you have shared in this post. When I turned back to being vegetarian a year ago, I gained two dress sizes (over six months) in weight due to the dairy (fat) intake, plus I now have a rise in my bad cholesterol. Even the doctor agreed that this would have been due to my body being adapted to a Vegan diet and then shocked at the sudden intake of dairy again which has a lot of fat in it. I actually felt more healthy and active on a Vegan diet and my cholesterol was good plus, I rarely had a problem with iron levels. Besides, many meat-eaters suffer iron deficiencies which speaks for itself really. We can get healthier protein from plant-based foods although the animal food industry would have us believe otherwise. I have commented to the kids in recent months that I was thinking of going back to the Vegan lifestyle....fat-free, healthier and guilt-free. After reading your post, I am feeling more strongly committed to doing this. Thanks so much for this reminder, Rita!

    The scary part with the food industry nowadays is that is a power unto itself. It's scary the amount of chemicals and additives they add to our foods. I remember watching a documentary once where this scientist showed that a basic sponge cake purchased from a supermarket bakery had absolutely no real food in it at all...all manufactured with chemicals, additives and waste food. It was an eye-opener. Is it any wonder that cancers and disease are so prevalent in the world today with what we are putting into our bodies?

    Again, a wonderful and thought-provoking post, Rita!

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  4. Any mention of animal cruelty sickens me. Just as I can't watch any mention of it on tv because it deeply hurts me, I could not finish reading your blog.
    These truths leave me with a sick feeling inside.
    What I did read was well written & informative. Food for my thoughts as i do eat meat.

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  5. I'm in the animal feed business. We sell feed to family farms and hobby farms, not to "factory farms", but there are a lot of factory farms in this country, as well as in other countries. I agree that the animals in these farms are treated badly.

    I had a customer at my desk the other day buying chicken feed for the chickens he's raising for meat. He told me that a chicken is considered free range if it has a 4 foot by 4 foot area to "range" in. I just read more about "free range" on wikipedia. What it says conflicts with what some may consider free range. You might be surprised.

    I was raised with a farm background, and I live and breathe it every day of my life. I would have a hard time going without meat. We have raised our own beef animals, and yes, they had become "pets" to us before being butchered. That first bite was hard to choke down. Have you ever seen a "factory" dairy farm? Milking thousands of cows a day? That's almost as bad as the factory beef and poultry farms we have in this country.

    One question....who's to say that a head of lettuce or even a stalk of celery doesn't feel some sort of pain when it's eaten?

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  6. That's interesting info about what the industry classifies as free-range. All the more reason for me to lean back to being vegan. That's right, we don't know what pain a vegetable may feel when it is chopped up because there is no visible or violent struggle for it's last breath such as we see with animals. I don't condemn meat-eaters...my own kids are meat-eaters and that's their choice. However, I do condemn the cruelty and atrocious conditions that animals suffer in the factory food industry. I think more and more people need to be made aware of it too because maybe then these food giants would re-think their methods.

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  7. Wow! I thought the Food Inc one was bad but Earthlings sounds a lot worse. Did you get it from Netflix? I was only thinking of being a Vegetarian with occasional seafood but for a few weeks now I've been thinking of doing Vegan. I can't believe I'm even thinking of it. I think once I watch Earthlings, that will do it for me. Today at work for lunch they are having a barbeque and I'm not going anywhere near the breakroom. I can't even stand the smell of it anymore.
    My cookies came out disgusting! Can't I have healthy and yummy? I'm going to keep on searching for a recipe that fits the bill. Maybe you will have better luck in this area.
    Well, back to work for me. Peace to ya. :)

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  8. Iggy--I am still digesting. Watching something like that gives you a lot to think about, that's for sure.

    I totally agree with you on King George! ;)

    Thanks for the bookmark heads up on your blog, my friend. :):)

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  9. Sue,
    The trouble is that the way they treat the dairy cows and the laying chickens is absolutely dreadful, too. The cows normally should live about 20 years and they only last 4-5 years because of the terrible conditions, etc. I hope I can eventually go vegan. :)

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  10. Serena,
    I really hope to eventually go vegan with no dairy, either. Going to be a shock to my system--this big change. But it will be a good thing. From what you said--look how much healthier it was for you! That is very encouraging. But even just not eating meat is better for you these days--and for the earth. :):)

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  11. I shit you not,
    It's always sickened me, too. I guess I never wanted to know where all that food really came from in the grocery story. I loved my chicken and fish and beef and pork--so didn't want to know. So, I can totally relate. Hey--they don't want us to know! :)

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  12. AliceKay,
    4 X 4 foot cage is free-range!!?? I am going to have to look that up! More reason to eventually go vegan! Things have changed soooo much with farming since I was a kid. It gradually became "big business" and there aren't all that many small farmers left anymore.

    In Earthlings they did show how badly the dairy cows are treated--never seeing daylight--and the laying hens in tiny cages that can't even stand up anymore. It's more a question of how we raise the food and what we are actually eating (hormones and antibiotics for one thing). Even vegetables and fruit are sprayed with pesticides--and they probably feel pain, too. Who knows. *sigh* We eat way more meat per person than we ever did 50 years ago because they promote it as normal--and the meat isn't as healthy. It's a dilemma. Unless you know a local farmer. That would be the way to go, I suppose. For meat, dairy, veggies...that would be healthier. I know Dagan and Leah get their beef from a local farmer. Just thinking out loud--sorry--rambling. :):)

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  13. Serena--yup! That's just what I was rambling about to AliceKay--hehe! It's more the methods and that the food isn't really healthy anymore--PLUS inhumane. I know what you mean. Dagan and Leah get their beef from a local farmer. I don't expect them to quit eating meat. That's their choice. But I am glad they have been trying to find healthier meat to eat.

    I have to look up about "free-range"--now it sounds like that isn't all that much better choice. But it is still a little better, I suppose. Might have to check into local farming products more. We've changed the food industry so much it is harder and harder to find anything safe and healthy. *sigh*

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  14. Barb--Yes--I got Earthllngs from Netflix. I haven't watched Food Inc yet. You'll have to tell me what you think when you watch Earthlings. I just had NO idea it was this bad. They cover five areas--and I had heard of a lot of the other three. But the "farms" & slaughterhouses of the food industry and the leather industry in India--blew me away. But I am glad I watched it all. I would rather know than contribute and add to my poor health thru denial, you know? I am sure you will be impacted by the movie.

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