Archive for the ‘Activism’ Category

Gobble Gobble!

Thanksgiving is in exactly one week from today. I love Thanksgiving, even if the message is hugely skewed and a little
fabricated. The intent is good and it comes down to the start of the Winter Holiday Festivities and family time. The one time of year that I actually do genuinely feel some type of love and warmth towards everyone. I love the holidays! This will be my first holiday season without meat, and I’m prepared to be ridiculed. Bring it on, I don’t really care.

What I do care about are the poor turkeys that are being fattened up right now as I type this. Fattened up on shit they normally wouldn’t even consume to become big, plump feasts that Americans who already are fat don’t need to eat. Why do we use a holiday like Thanksgiving, where we are suppose to give thanks for our bountifulness, to consume even more food than normal while there are countries in poverty? Makes sense back in the hay day when food was scarce and one had to hunt for their family’s turkey feast, but nowadays it’s just a tradition for families to pig out together then all crash from their tryptophan (the reason why you get so sleepy after eating turkey) overdose then have a Thanksgiving hangover the next day.

Look at those poor baby turkey’s. 😦

Pretty much every family out there is going to be purchasing a turkey in the next week, so where do you think all these turkey’s come from? First off they are so obese from what factories feed them that they can’t naturally reproduce. They are almost all conceived through artificial insemination. Then they are raised on factory farms in large incubators and separated from their mamas. Then when they are a couple weeks old they get moved into windowless sheds with thousands of other turkeys and this is where they spend the rest of their lives. They get pretty stressed out, so in order for us to keep them from killing each other in these crowded sheds we cut off their toes and beaks without pain relievers.

How do we get them nice and plump for Thanksgiving? They are drugged and genetically manipulated to grow as large as they possibly can as quickly as they can. In the 1970s the average turkey weighed 17 lbs. Today they weigh 28 lbs! For anyone who thinks this is normal (to fatten and kill turkeys) take into consideration that they are so unnaturally large that they often die from organ failure or heart attacks before they are even 6 months old. They are suppose to live for 12 years.

Please eat organic turkey this Thanksgiving, or better yet don’t eat any. I may not be a perfect eater, but I’m really not going to be a vessel of dead turkey this Thanksgiving.

 

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Becoming Joey

I was reading today and came across a poem that really caught my attention. I thought it was worth sharing since I’ve been on my writing so much about diversity this week…

Becoming Joey
By Paul. C Gorski

Jose’s ten.
Looks six by size,
twenty in the eyes.

Down
the school-morning street
he ambles along
dotted lines of busses and cars
that spit exhaust like expletives,
disturbing his meditation
on a few final moments of peace.

He is frail but upright.
Hand-me-downs hang from his slenderness,
patched and stained.
Soles flop beneath battered shoes,
worn through but hanging on,
if only by lace.

He pauses in the schoolyard
where white kids laugh and scurry
unaware of this, his battle;
of this, his burden; of this, his borderlands.
Behind him; cracked sidewalks
and frosty nights
sweetened by the warmth of belonging.
Before him: manicured playgrounds,
heated classrooms,
and enthusiastic lessons about a world
that doesn’t see him.

Still he moves forward,
what feels in his stomach
A regressive sort of forward.
And he straightens his shirt,
tries dusting off the stains of ancestry.
And he clears his throat,
tries spitting out his Mexican voice.
And, becoming Joey, he crosses into school.

 

Teenage Gays Epidemic

Bullying is hardcore right now, as we have all heard about the recent increase in teenage suicide related to school bullying. What’s really sad is that a freaking lot of these teenage suicides are related to gays. (Five gay teenagers just committed suicide this past week.) Right now dealing with homosexual harassment and prejudice is the number one cause of teenage suicides. One national survey found that 90% of high school gay students were verbally attacked, and more than 40% of  homosexual students reported physical harassment. And a sad 60% said they don’t feel safe at school. It’s no surprise that lesbian, gay, bi and transgender students have higher rates of depression, drug abuse and (considerably higher-4x higher in) suicide. And this isn’t just about suicide…the hate, fear and intolerance in the country right now is almost, in a way equally as bad. There are people murdering other people for being gay, and families abandoning their own children because they don’t know what to do with a gay child. Seriously people. Life is too short and too precious to be hating and ruining the lives of others.

There definitely needs to be a change. It’s funny (not really haha funny, but coincidental) that I wrote my blog yesterday on prejudice and reteaching of acceptance and then today was bombarded with media on gay suicides/murders. This is exactly why we need to reconstruct our society on dealing with and accepting people’s differences. Poor kids.  It’s bad enough trying to figure out who you are, and then being treated badly because of your differences…sad, sad, sad.

I’d love to write more but no time! Too much homework…Please watch the media here, and anything else out there. There’s so much coverage on this topic right now.

Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender (GLBT) Youth Support Line
1-800-850-8078
Gay & Transgender Hate Crime Hotline
1-800-616-HATE
Gay Lesbian Bisexual Transgender National Help Center
Article on recent 5 gay teen suicides
The Trevor Project
A suicide letter from a gay teen
Suicide.org; Prevention, Awareness and Support


America’s Children Potential

My number one reason why I want to be a teacher is because I love kids. Absolutely, genuinely, whole heartedly love them. But there are other reasons of course. One major one is that I believe in order to produce education that is going to contribute to our society and democracy later, we must teach tolerance, love, and cultural acceptance at a young age. Intolerance and fear iswhat caused our country set backs in the past that are unfortunately still here today.

Instead of Anglo Saxon Americans just admitting that they had superior power in the past over the Black Americans for example, we had to make evidence up that we were a superior race. (Anglos’ skulls measured larger than blacks…must mean they are dumber? Come on. Race is completely man made.) All of a sudden the belief was that Blacks were an inferior race, therefore that was reason to enslave them. We couldn’t just admit that we had power, authority and the need for human labor…we had to make them lower than us. So what happened then after the slaves were free? Prejudice. Then it didn’t stop at Blacks; Americans wanted to assimilate and conform the Natives who were “savages,” then we put a ban on Asian immigrants because they were inferior. This prejudice applies to everything…or I should say, everyone. Some how we have become a country that believes one can be superior than another. Straights are better than gays. Men are better than women. The rich are better than the poor.

Please don’t get me wrong. I am so not bashing America. I love my country. We are a country that has good, very good, intentions. We promote freedom and have given everyone in the world the opportunity to pursue their dreams. We have so much to offer and we contribute to the rest of the world. I am a proud American, but that doesn’t change the past. The past is something to be shameful about, however we cannot undue the past…just move ahead and do better for the future.

Because of our past, our present is filled with prejudice, racism, intolerance, inequality, hate, and fear. This is no way for our children to grow up. It’s in our hands to fix the future. This doesn’t just apply to teachers, but to everyone…aunts, uncles, moms, dads, grandparents…we need to teach the kids of today to grow up open minded, tolerant, loving and compassionate.

Why? Why not? Children are constantly teased for being different, whether it is of their race, ethnicity, culture, weight, height, voice, opinions, dress, sexual orientation, social class…the list goes on and on. Why not stop the teasing in it’s tracks? Kids will be kids and teasing will never die, but could we at least try to teach our kids the concept of acceptance? Some people may say this is just a right of passage and that all children go through it however, there are teenagers committing suicide daily because of bullying, fear, depression from societal expectations, and rejection from peers.

I hope being an educator I can promote a classroom that is safe, loving, and open minded where I can have my students appreciate each other and welcome each other’s differences. I just wish these teachings and attitudes could go further than the classroom and reach the streets, homes, and lives of all children.

I love elephants…more than people.

I love elephants. I don’t know why but they have always been my favorite animal. Always. I’m obsessed with them. In love with them. So naturally I don’t like to think about them in the circus. I don’t think they should be trained against their will to do stupid ass tricks for dumb people to sit and watch them. I’ve always hated the circus, even as a kid. But now, there’s a real reason to hate the circus. Not only are the animals trained without a choice, but they aren’t trained the way you train your dogs. They aren’t rewarded with treats and praise. And they aren’t given time to learn their tricks either. They are forced to quickly learn their acts as soon as they are born. How? Well let’s beat them,torture them and punish them…then they’ll learn.

What we don’t see is the behind the scenes crap that goes on. Like how frightened and still-nursing baby elephants are captured rodeo-style, tethered neck-to-neck with an “anchor elephant,” and dragged away from their mothers. Then they go on to endure year-long intense and violent training sessions that last for several hours a day. On top of it the elephants struggle during training as they are wrestled, stretched out, slammed to the ground, gouged with bullhooks, and shocked with electric prods. Thanks to my friend B for sharing this with me… I would have never known just how terrible the circus really is. As if the clowns weren’t bad enough…

Please go to this site to see more pictures. There has to be at least 100 more pictures and information.

Ringling Beats their Animals

Lady Gaga Decides to Offend Everyone

I love Lady Gaga’s music, seriously. Just Dance is pretty much the anthem of all the nights I don’t remember. Her often psychotic approach to everything, usually appeals to me but last night? Not so much. Gaga came out to accept her award in a freaking meat dress. This is disgusting on so many levels. Let’s start with the obvious question, WTF? Seriously, WTF Gaga?! Raw meat already makes me want to vomit…how about I drape some of it all over my body? Now unto the more serious stuff…why the hell are you wearing dead animal all over you? What the hell is your point? Animals were slaughtered so you could drape their meat over your body for a few shocking minutes on the VMAs and then you can toss them into the garbage? That’s so messed up. I hate it when animals die, but feel a little bit better if they are eaten or worn, or whatever, and not wasted. This situation? A complete waste. I don’t think she made any point other than she’s an idiot.

Gaga defended and explained herself by saying “Well, it is certainly no disrespect to anyone that is vegan or vegetarian. As you know, I am the most judgment-free human being on the earth,” said Gaga. “However, it has many interpretations but for me this evening. If we don’t stand up for what we believe in and if we don’t fight for our rights, pretty soon we’re going to have as much rights as the meat on our own bones. And, I am not a piece of meat.” Who cares if it’s no disrespect to the vegans or vegetarians! What about the animals?! I think it’s, oh, just a little bit disrespectful that you have freaking dead animal on you. Just a little. “No matter how beautifully it is presented, flesh from a tortured animal is flesh from a tortured animal,” PETA president Ingrid Newkirk said in a statement. “Meat represents bloody violence and suffering, so if that’s the look they were going for, they achieved it.”

My fave Ellen DeGeneres taped her season opener last night, which will air today, and came across Gaga and presented her with a veggie bikini and suggested she try that next time she wants to make a statement. Nice.

This isn’t the first time Gaga’s used meat to “make a statement” either. Gaga posed for the September cover of Vogue Hommes Japan in a meat bikini. I really don’t think she has any real reason to why she’s using meat. I don’t believe she even has a fascination with it or anything. Really no point either. I think she’s just doing what she’s always doing…trying to shock, offend, and terrify people. Usually her tactics are werid yet alluring but not this time…just sick.

“Meat is the decomposing flesh of an abused animal who didn’t want to die, and after being under the TV lights, it would smell like the rotting flesh that it is and likely be crawling with maggots – not too attractive, really,” PETA’s president told TMZ today about Gaga’s nasty getup. Newkirk continued to discuss the matter, “In her line of business, Lady Gaga has a hard time being ‘over the top’, and wearing a dress made from cuts of dead cows is offensive enough to elicit comment, but someone should whisper in her ear that more people are upset by butchery than are impressed by it – and that means a lot of young people will not be buying her records if she keeps it up.”

I wonder how excited Cher was to hold Gaga’s raw meat purse. Gag.

Ugh, I’m Giving up Uggs.

I cannot lie. I love my Ugg boots. Love them. So how unfortunate that I had to do my research on them and now can no longer buy anymore of those evil boots. In reality, I do not need Uggs. I can happily get the Fuggs from Target, and now I probably will. It won’t compare in comfort, but how could it? Uggs are sheep on your feet. According to their website, “Only the finest materials are used in the construction of our products – the highest quality leathers and suedes, and of course, the world’s finest sheepskin. UGGÂŽ Australia is the world’s largest purveyor of grade-A sheepskin.”

So what does that mean? It means they skin sheep (not shave, skin) and then buff up both sides for you, making the nice soft outside and the comfy furry inside. “Twin-face sheepskin is used in many of our core products. A piece of twin-face sheepskin has been treated on both the fleece side, and the skin side, providing the soft comfort UGGÂŽ Australia is famous for.”

The Animal Liberation Movement has been criticizing Uggs since the beginning and have been trying to get them to stop using animal hides, but since they are so successful and popular, it just isn’t going to happen. Pamela Anderson who used to sport Uggs all the time, when finding out it was sheepskin, she posted on her website encouraging everyone to stop buying Uggs. A few other groups and people have been trying to stop the production of animal hides by Ugg but little has changed. The Princeton Animal Welfare Society have also held huge protests against the Ugg industry on their college campus, only getting the message across to some fellow students.

Obviously my blog isn’t going to stop anything either, however, for anyone out there who really cares about these poor animals, just stop buying animal hide/fur/leather! Is it really worth it? The faux stuff looks just the same anyways. Yes, I love my Uggs. And I’m not going to lie, I’m not going to toss out the ones I own…but I can promise that I will never knowingly purchase another pair again! See ya Uggs! It’s been a good run!