To Serve Man

The UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights is a laudable mission statement signed in 1948. It’s a worthy list of inalienable rights. Unfortunately they are self-ordained by a single self-admiring specie for a self-admiring specie.  There were two billion humans alive in 1948, there were 7.6 billion by 2018. At least 70 billion animals who do not qualify for human rights will become “what’s for dinner” and other consumer products by this time next year.

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Universal rights? No. Membership is limited to just one specie.

Inalienable rights? No. I can violate them each and every day, with or without impunity. At a supermarket for example.

Can you name any species as selfish, self-serving, arrogant and violent? Humans excel at both inter- and intra- species exploitation. They are toolmakers who waste no time weaponizing every clever invention they devise into a long list of engineering marvels — to serve man. Damon Knight’s story is also set at the UN and is also a curious take on human rights.

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Humans domesticate every creature on this planet: inter- and intra- as well. They are toolmakers who can transmit their will at the speed of light, who recreate by watching blood sports and who domesticate their domestic realms with domestic violence. Do I hint at patriarchy here? Yes, it’s by design and by inheritance. How many matriarchal societies can you inscribe on the head of a pin?

 

 

Look at the Elephant in the Room as it looks back at you. The eyes have it.

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Built-in optical systems for locating sustenance and for detecting danger are not trivial physical characteristics. Eyes are something that homo sapiens have in common with other sentient beings who developed them during the Cambrian — about half a billion years ago.

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Creatures with eyes possess an astonishingly complex central nervous system that channels cognition to intention. Sentient creatures share a long list of extraordinarily similar organs, systems that pump lifeblood from the heart to each organ and back again — sentient beings possess extraordinarily similar oxygen-breathing mechanisms and waste elimination processes. Glance at the corresponding organs found in pig and in man.

If this all sounds a bit like a rant, initiating a discomfiting mood, I provide the following bit of reading material that contains much more “conventional wisdom” on the state of bacon in contemporary American thought on comfort food:

Where bacon comes from on a pig

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Here is where I found the Dan Piraro (fellow vegan) cartoons. You may also wish to visit Dan’s website, Bizarro dot com

Thanks for reading.

 

 

Hedonic Hyperphagia

Announcing an alliteration to accompany my entry to Club Septuagenarius. Have I mentioned being born on my mother’s birthday: September 17, 1947? Well, I found a clinical word pair to celebrate a new decade — hedonic hyperphagia — eat one and you’ll eat them all. Whether potato chips (or crisps), Oreos®, All Hallows Eve candy: ad nauseam. It literally describes a fulsome moment. I raise my hand to admit something to a jury of my peers.

“My name is Bill and I am an hyperphagic.”

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“Revealing the scientific secrets of why people can’t stop after eating one potato chip” couches that couch-potato moment in an article from Eurekalert.

Here are fifteen words to digest while digesting the last thing you consumed, such as Deep-fried Oreos® breaded with finely crushed chips (the crisp variety).

I know from studied experience that animal-based product may result in hedonic hyperphagia. You might not wish to know that the consumption of humus, not to be confused with hummus, is termed “geophagia.” I once (circa 1970) read an article in the Annals of the Association of American Geographers that earth-eating is associated with a low mineral diet. I also recall that Frank Zappa once warned about eating yellow snow.

Every time you eat or drink, you are either feeding disease or fighting it.

Heather Morgan

As a former loyal-to-a-fault meat and hide consumer I know that items containing meat and meat by-products are based on animalian cells. These cells are comprised of molecules that have a psychoactive effect on an homo sapiens’ brain, “hedonic hyperphagia.”  Detox from such a diet is enervating to the extreme, both painful and discouraging. I had previously gone cold Tofurky® from tobacco and alcohol consumption before abstaining from animal-fare. I admit to the character flaw that accompanies total abstention however. Ambrose Bierce tosses well deserved water on my countenance. It’s called “total abstention.”  🙂

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Vegans stand as infuriating reminders that they serve sentient beings to man. Damon Knight wrote the definitive “To Serve Man,” most familiarly associated with its adaptation into a Twilight Zone episode. I wish Rod Serling had kicked smoking. You too?

That introductory pith drawn from the work of Heather Morgan inspires me to join Morgan by paraphrasing her:

Every time you eat or drink the lifeblood of another, you are either feeding nihilism or fighting it.”  — Bill Ziegler

I leave tales of nihilism for a future post.

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Here is another envisaged scenario: what would occur were I to show up at a pro-life rally with an enlarged photograph of an aborted calf fetus? It’s surely happened at some rally somewhere. Would one or more protesters counter that there’s a deity-informed difference between the immortal soul of a God-created icon found in a book called Genesis? Who made homo sapiens the boss of other sentient beings? May I beg to differ?

Thanks for reading.

 

 

 

 

 

Caveat Emptor and Veganism

My posts on post truths continue with the truth of veganism. Look at a meme as it blazes its way into the new news: the fake news, the reality news. The vast majority of US humans are other-than-vegan.

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Software marries the thoughts you wish to believe to a clever image. Veracity is totally optional in the new-news era. A faux quote by Einstein or Gandhi or Yoda. Free of the annoyance of truth.

Make it flashy and dashy. Freneticism is voracious. Attention span is short. No time for truth.

Veganism is much more than diet. It’s radical change.

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Snopes Tested Meme

Advertising unhealthy toxins is not an ethical enterprise. One Earth species is squeezing its fists on billions of non-human species.

Weapon factories and factory-fresh farms are death machines run by that same species. They number 7 billion. They have long lifespans. Twice as many  chickens have a lifespan calculated precisely by the cunning “intelligence” of species numero uno.

But veganism demands something seriously sane of its adherents: a willingness to countenance truth full-on. Truth by unblemished science, pure art and gentle compassion.

Hey Bill, I didn’t kill the cow but now that it is a dead slab between plastic wrap and styrofoam…well it would waste the cow’s life, but prolong mine. Meh. The scriptures of my faith proclaim it wholly holy. Proud people eat tasty animals. Leader of the food chain pack we are — har har. We’re numero uno, so let’s slaughter. Why are vegans so annoying. By the way, you are outnumbered. It’s something called majority rule. Live with it.

To Serve Man” is a short story by Damon Knight made better known by Rod Serling’s adaptation for his “Twilight Zone.” Misunderstandings matter.

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Thanks for reading.