Property is Theft
Imagine no possessions
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood of animals
Imagine all the animals
Sharing all the world…
— veganarchistic rendering of the original Lennon, no rights reserved
Put down that knife
Don’t eat a cow. She is a fellow mammal. She produces milk designed by evolution, design, evolutionary design… designed evolution… for her calves. Milk is theft.
The proper study of mankind is nonanimal-kind. Centering your attention on the primacy of mankind yields skewed results. Similarly, the proper study of White mankind is not White mankind. Racism is theft.
What is a human?
- an Earthling with a somewhat larger brain, proportional to body weight, than other Earthlings.
- an Earthling with four fingers and an opposing thumb projecting from right-and-left opposing hands.
- vocal cords that flex in certain ways as to produce sounds that present as speech patterns.
All humans are mammals.
See “They Might Be Giants” for more on this.
Borders are artificial constructs created by human empires to contain and to control their fellow animals — human and nonhuman. Look at a world map and you will see that empires do not view borders as arbitrary; borders serve interests, interests enforce political borders, interests fuel politics. Factory farms are death camps. Slavery is theft.
Humans build slaughterhouses to process nonhumans in order to sate human appetite, for human fashion, for human folly. Humans eat ten-times their number in nonhumans per year (70 billion), one-hundred times their number in maritime creatures per year (multiple trillions). Nonhumans do not no such thing. Use of an animal for monetary gain is theft.
Humans ravage their fellow humans as well as their fellow nonhumans. Take another look at that world map, consider who authored those borders. What role do colonial powers play in carving every continent, every speck of space on the planet? Does White Supremacism rear its ugly countenance on this planet? White Supremacism is theft.
Humans using fossil fuels pyro their own funeral pyres. Humans are the only animals that burn fossilized remains of previous lifeforms that, ironically, perished in a previous extinction event. A ferocious fossil fuel consumption is relying on the limited biomass of one extinction to fuel an extinction event. Clogging the atmosphere with the carbon dioxide of that limited biomass is generational theft.
Perhaps the sorcerer/creator will return to see how well we are faring with its nonhuman land, air, and sea animals.
Are humans going the way of the Sinclair Dino?
Pyromania is also theft.
Thanks for reading.
18 thoughts on “A World Without Borders, Slaughterhouses or Pyromaniacs”
Brilliant writing. We are all animals. And thieves.
PS – reading Hal Herzog’s book ‘ Some We Love, Some We Hate ..’. Excellent collection of ethical dilemmas and the human psyche. Your post is timely. 😀
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Thanks so much, Shannon. We are indeed all one 🙂 It’s a joy to be a *fellow* animal, one that doesn’t stack the deck against every other form of life on this very singular planet. And, indeed, we are all thieves as well. To turn a phrase: “the fox-men in the hen house.” Thanks too for the reference to Hal Herzog, an ethical dilemma indeed. You guys do a great job of directing me to great reading. My best to all and each in Texas 🙂
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I do not know why people eat animals. I also don’t know how people can kill animals. That said I think your outlook as described in this article is overly simplistic as unfortunately removing some borders today will ultimately be the end of the little civilization we have on our lonely blue planet. Whatever created our world seems to want a certain amount of chaos and inhuman behavior or at least condones it for whatever reason. To get me to sleep at night I have to believe that we have had previous lives and this current one must have a good reason. I also believe the life I am living now is fascinating and I should be making it better for as many people as possible while enjoying my time here. Considering how much we have improved medicine we don’t seem to know that much either. This comment may seem unduly depressing but as the Irish taught me – in this life I have two options, either to enjoy it or NOT.
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Hello Mike, Good to hear from you, and thanks for the reply. I’ve been on both sides of the vegan and non-vegan set of belief systems and have found that eating meat is a societally sanctioned addiction that involves most of the populace — November is a particularly meat friendly season. In these parts it begins at Halloween and ends with the junkiest of food-centered celebrations: the Super Bowl. I also think that a certain nihilism sets in here that coincides with SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) and SAD (Standard American Diet). Food Deserts are often the only available source for sustenance, fitting right in with lottery tickets, alcohol, and tobacco. Carless households find no means to reach healthy fare and public transportation is unreliable or unavailable. The prison-industrial economy finds no equal in this economy, white supremacists populate many police departments, and any shade of brown makes you instantly vulnerable. Ignorance, arrogance, misinformation and disinformation don’t help much. I look at the systemic barriers that either fence out or fence in, at the selection of judges on the basis of “tough on crime”, “enacting constitutional rights for victims of crime” and the availability of assault rifles everywhere. The NRA fell victim to an internal coup around 1980 and became a favorite haunt for so many who want to keep “liberals” in check by upping the ante and tossing heaps of guns on the table for ultra white-wing militias. Kansas is no longer in Kansas anymore, I will put it that way. Actually, I graduated from Kansas State Univ. in 1971. It’s not the same State, and what a state we’re in.
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Kansas and Texas are very similar (with its guns and suprematism). I derive hope from those (liberals, I guess) outside my state who are doing all the deep thinking that result in action rather more words and wars. Time for us [conservatives?] to stop shooting ourselves in the foot. Times are indeed changing. Just listened to an excellent podcast by Rich Roll with Bruce Friedrich (GFI) .. you too would get much from it.
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Thanks for the kind reply, Shannon. Please send me a link to the Roll/Friedrich podcast; as you know, I very much value your reading, listening and viewing recommendations.
Cincinnati is deeply divided: racially, politically, and economically. We live in Northern Kentucky, right at the Mason Dixon Line. I lived in Kansas from 1969 to 1971, then to Germany from 1971 to 1973. Those four years were enormously valuable to me, something I am humbly grateful for. The Berlin Wall had already been mortared for 10 years. I sent a week in Berlin in 1972, including a day in East Berlin: passed over that wall on a rail line and saw it from both sides, one side had a dead zone ringed with tank barriers, barbed wire, soldiers patrolling with German Shepherds, goose-stepping troops and all that. Of course, there was a large fence between the two countries as well. I walked up to that fence from the West German side and saw where a road once connected two villages. You could not tell that a road was ever on the East side. From the observation deck on the other side of the fence, I could see sunlight reflected from binoculars, observing me.
White Supremacism represents most violent acts, but it gets far less news coverage. I get pleasant smiles from police officers around here. If I suddenly grab something out of my coat pocket I am not gunned down. I wouldn’t even be gunned down if I strutted around town with an AR15, I would more likely get pleasant smiles. Times can also change for the better, but not without addressing the Proud Boys, Jim Crow, Voting Rights, Gerrymandering, and equal opportunity under the law, and shutting down the factory farms by voting with your shopping cart.
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Oh my. You know, Fear is the great motivator, and Power is its weapon, Lies its shield. As long as we allow our leaders to stoke fear, g-mandering, guns, and tribalism will always result. Not sure there’s a way out; we tend to repeat history. But ..
You can listen (my fav, ‘cause I’m always multi-tasking!) or watch. Let me know what you think. Cheers, fellow traveler! 😀
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Me being on the other end of the planet I am not very well informed as to what is happening in your very large and complicated country. I think there is a similar smell to a lesser degree in most places today. I have always been amazed at how people from all over the world seem to accept so many crazy and sad things maybe because they have become used to the whole package where they live. I would certainly not want to be the legal council in a galactic court speaking on behalf of earth. What you describe is pretty close to the truth so I suppose we have to find those little nuggets of goodness however small wherever we can find them.
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The suggestion that national borders have anything to do with white supremacy is ridiculous.
Is China’s border wall white supremacy ?
I’m vegan & I don’t agree with the liberal immigration philosophy at all.
Nations need borders to make sure all immigration is legal and everyone is documented.
Amanda is 100% right. You should be able to choose who comes into your country so they are not a burden. Talking about white supremacy – where the women are free their group/country/tribe do much better than where they are not. Where the women are jointly running things that country/group does the best. In Israel everyone is slowly becoming the same colour so what Bill calls white supremacy here will soon be dead anyway – he will need another name 🙂
Hi Amanda, Thank you for the comments and question. I hadn’t intended to imply that White Supremacism is responsible for contriving *all* national borders, but drawing borders to achieve imperial ambition was the norm for Northern European Empires. Famously enough, the sun didn’t set on the British Empire. Divide and conquer, define a national border that includes warring tribes so they fight against each other instead of uniting together to shake off the imperial yoke, using a straightedge from the comfort of a strategic war room in London. I talk about at some length and with illustrations on that very topic here:
Long soft borders with Mexico and with Canada have worked peacefully and productively. The waiting period for legal immigrants was already long. Walls, even the Great Wall(s), fall eventually. I recounted some thoughts on the Berlin in response to Shannon’s comment. When you drop an iron hand on immigrants without papers you end up hurting yourself as well. Brutal working conditions in the fields and the factory farms get filled by desperate and frightened workers who eke a low-wage life. Low wages reap rewards in the supermarket in the form of low prices for produce and animal corpses. Crime rates for persons without papers is very low, the last thing a frightened person wants to do is direct attention to themselves. That was already the case before 45 arrived on the scene. Now they have to worry about internment camps and ICE (an agency that did not even exist before September 11th. Refugees flee from countries in Latin America that have leaders installed by the U.S., and certainly not just Latin America. Bombs manufactured in the US get dropped on innocent populations: collaterals they call them. Every time a bomb is dropped in Yemen, to give a single example, a purchase order is issued for its replacement by Saudi Arabia (literally a single family). Many people with a taste for a whole bunch of money are willing to look the other way or not think about it. The same dynamic occurs for shoppers with an appetite for factory farm body parts. I didn’t kill the cow, I was trying to eat mor chikin, it was self-defense because I would otherwise have died without the protein and B12, I say a prayer to my pork chop for gracing my plate, thanks for your sacrifice, thanks for your service.
Where to begin 🙂
Bill I think you have it backwards. You don’t need wars as your ridiculous weapons laws get enough people killed in schools, concerts and cinemas in the US of A. Instead of having vision (Europe is a lot worse than you guys) and making sure people don’t want to leave their countries like Syria and Africa, for example. A US president once drew a line in the sand there and instead of putting an end to genocide in Syria he turned his back and let the Russians help them kill going on for a million people and this president of yours gave Iran a billion $’s to help them carry on what they started in Syria.
As for Saudi Arabia being one family – of course it is. The Middle East except for Israel is run by tribes, which in essence are families that started when they had to protect their water sources. All the countries in the ME that are doing well are one family or tribe but in places like Iraq and Afghanistan their are multiple families or tribes trying to be governed by the same government. Your knowledge of Arabic does not make you a credible source of information about the ARAB ME.
For whatever reason that is really unclear to me you guys cannot look after your sick. There are so many good examples of medical services that work around the world but definitely not the idiotic system they have in the UK. Even Israel has a system that costs us about half (maybe a 1/3) of what yours costs per capita and is 10X more effective – and this is definitely NOT a socialistic country. If you cannot look after your own sick people how are you going to manage with another 10 million people that really need a lot of medical help. You can also be sure probably none of them have been immunised against diseases you have forgotten about in the US. Karma is the key here and you are trying to change the karma of our planet. I have to find you some lectures by Mordehai Kedar on why the ME is in such chaos. Fascinating lectures and explain why the West Bank of the Jordan needs around seven countries to run peacefully.
But you realize that white supremacy (or “white” anything) has nothing to do with why Republican/ conservative/libertarian/independent voters want borders, right?
You do realize we want borders to prevent illegal undocumented migration, don’t you?
What on Earth could justify people of any national background violating the immigration law of and sneaking into ANY country ?
No one has a justified right to be in any country without documentation or legal permission, and no one deserves that right.
American citizens – including the massive surplus of legal immigrants – deserve to be protected from people illegally entering and living in their country.
It isn’t America and it isn’t great if we don’t enforce border security and our laws.
I will be damned before I will pay taxes to raise the children of illegals.
Come in legally, or don’t come, because illegal immigrants are not welcome in the United States of America.
The United States has very strict immigration laws and they are strictly enforced, but I’m wondering what you mean by “the massive surplus of legal immigrants.” Our black population is mostly comprised of individuals who did not immigrate, they were human cargo, resources of the slave trade. Former slaves and the children they bore (many by slave-owner fathers) have never received reparations.
They lost their ancestry, their language, all their roots. They were *forced* to immigrate. Illegally immigrate? People without papers take jobs that no people *with* papers will take. Produce rots in the field. Ironically, non-human indigenous animals who once roamed freely were domesticated and then slaughtered by the first immigrants. The progeny of those once free roamers now live all their days in countless factory farms. The passenger pigeons got to fly freely but to die from gunshot wounds, to become extinct.
Thank you for the perspectives, Amanda.
“a person who believes that the white race is inherently superior to other races and that white people should have control over people of other races.” — Merriam-Webster
All 50 States were once a tapestry of indigenous peoples.
Bill, your following comment is worthy of some deep reflection:
“Humans are the only animals that burn fossilized remains of previous lifeforms that, ironically, perished in a previous extinction event. A ferocious fossil fuel consumption is relying on the limited biomass of one extinction to fuel an extinction event.”
Oh, the folly of humankind!
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Hi Rosaliene, Thank you for the marvelous compliment, and for recognizing the essential absurdity of the folly that surrounds us, I am deeply grateful for your innate kindness and gentle spirit. My chakra says namaste to your verve and to your soul 🙂 ❤ 🙂
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