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The Face of Meat. Sentient Being on Your Plate.

Meat sauce, hamburgers, steaks, and stews don't have a face on them. Most people don't know where their meat came from, and how those animals lived, were fed and how they were killed. Most people have never met the meat they consumed. It's all very convenient when people just have to order from a menu. It's all been made pretty on a plate for them. People like that arrangement unless they have a conscience. For something that is so critically important, the meat that people put in their mouths, chew, and swallow into their bodies, most of them turn a blind eye to the animals' well-being while alive, to the manner of their slaughter, and preparation as food. I know. I have been this kind of fool for the greater part of my life.

People don't even want to sit on a park bench that is dirty, but they will eat meat whose past is unknown to them.

We, as a species, must be incredibly stupid. Most animals will check out their food by sniffing at it, but we go right in an…

Scotch Plains. New Jersey. Nativity Scene. Live Animal Display.

I am cross-posting a message from the Animal Protection League of New Jersey (APLNJ) regarding a nativity scene in Scotch Plains, NJ that uses live animals 24 hours a day---even during the snowstorm we had last week. The misinterpretation of Jesus' birth as it is stated in the bible ( Matthew and Luke ) coupled with a disregard for animal welfare makes this display more of a naivete display than a nativity display. From Luke, the most we can know is that Mary placed Jesus in a manger after being told that there was no room in the inn. There is no account of animals living in the room or stall where the manger was located. The location of the manger is also in dispute. Two early accounts placed the manger in a cave outside town. Furthermore, Mary's placing the baby Jesus in the manger does not mean that the birth took place there. The gospels are not clear on these points.
We must ask, whose bright idea was it to use live animals and what is in it for the town of Scotch Plains? …

Vermont. Dog Shooting. Scheele vs. Dustin. It's more than just Property.

I love Vermont. It's God's little green acre, picturesque both in Summer and Winter. My wife and I made all sorts of excuses just to come up to Vermont to see our son who, back in 1999, was a freshman at Middlebury College. Well, he transferred to a school in England after another year but those two years were enough for us to enjoy the natural beauty of the state. We haven't been back since 2001. At the present time, amidst Vermont's bucolic splendor, a case is pending in the state supreme court regarding emotional distress and the value of a pet's life in our own lives.

Is it sufficient compensation when the man who shot your dog is ordered to do 100 hours of community service, a year's probation, pay for vet bills and cremation ($4000) resulting from his harmful and criminal act? According to Denis and Sarah Scheele of Annapolis, that isn't enough.

The culprit is 76-yr old Lewis Dustin ( Vine Street, Northfield, Vermont ) who shot the Scheele's dog, Sh…

Philippines. Quezon City. Midnight Dog Rescue. PAWS. Carlee.

I never get tired of rescue stories, animal rescue stories to be exact. Human rescue stories, I must admit, are simply news to me. They are not as heart-warming as animal rescues. I love the animal kingdom, but the human race scares me. Heck, I am being very frank here.

The photos below tell you the story of a dog who ran for its life, and found the only safe refuge in a sewer. This dog reportedly ran away from some guys who intended to slaughter it for its meat. Horrible, horrible stuff. If God had a drop box for suggestions, I would implore the almighty God to endow all animals a natural element, a cell or pigmentation, or whatever, that would make them inedible to humans. Now, that would be the only true God! I am still waiting.

A kind-hearted citizen had been trying to reach members of the Philippine Animal Welfare Society (PAWS) for hours. Unfortunately, PAWS was out rescuing animals from the floods that typhoon Ondoy brought to the Metro Manila area. Upon their return around midn…

Domestic Violence. Animal Abuse. Hand in Hand.

IHOP. International House of Pain. Bill Maher. Cage-Free Poultry.

It would be off the mark to describe Bill Maher as a funny guy. Yes, he makes us laugh but that is made possible through his quick wit, his lampoons, and not through exaggerated and silly situations that some comedy shows thrive on. His sarcasm and perspicacity are traits to be admired and feared. In other words, he is not a comedic character, and he certainly wasn't kidding in The Video .

Vegans. Eggs and Chicks Poster.

I reckon men who are vegans can have a field day with this poster, but it will be one of those unsubstantiated claims reminiscent of PETA's ad about vegetarians having better sex. But, in reality, this poster reminds us that they are chicks behind those boiled or fried eggs. And for those who can't make this equation, remember that a diet heavy with eggs could translate into arteries with plaque. As a vegetarian, I consider myself a lumpen vegan, short two yards of the required ten. I still wear leather shoes and a leather belt although they are holdouts from the past, just like my leather jacket which I refuse to wear anymore. And my expensive leather portfolio? That one is in the closet, replaced by a nylon shoulder bag. Look closer and we will find an abundance of animal products in our daily lives.

Birthday Wishes. Mom at 76. Thanks to you.

Mom celebrated her 76th birthday yesterday with a Sydney Harbor cruise so graciously provided for by my sister. I heard they had a grand time, and this photo was taken during the cruise. Mom spent most of her life in the Philippines including four years of WW2, and her retirement years in and around Sydney, Australia. She's a proud and grateful Aussie alright, just like my Dad when he was still alive. She's very independent and strong-minded and even at 76 Mom is still full of spunk. Last year, she ran for President of her local senior citizens organization and lost by 12 votes. I heard that it was a tough campaign, but Mom slugged it out with all who meant to besmirch her reputation. She hasn't said so, but she will run again. From my Mom and Dad, I learned never to hurt an animal. As a young boy, I manage to convince my Dad to get me a Co2 powered BB rifle. Nothing wrong with shooting tin cans. Naturally, birds became my targets. When I showed my Mom a little bird I just…

Thanksgiving. 2009. Not for Some Animals.

It's going to be the day to give thanks very soon, but not for some beings. Their slaughter, unfortunately, is a requisite for many families in America, turning the hapless turkey into the centerpiece of their thanks-giving. I remember as late as the 1970s when some of my friends and acquaintances frowned at my idea of doing a Thanksgiving dinner without the turkey. I wasn't into animal welfare yet at that time. True to my iconoclastic nature, I just thought that the tradition was to give thanks, and not the turkey on the table. So, my family had many Thanksgiving dinners/lunches without the turkey while my so-called friends accused me on trashing a cherished tradition and setting a bad example and a terrible precedent for my then young son. Well, if one is comfortable with a tradition and it fits well into his/her personal philosophy, then so be it and be happy with it. However, there are no limits on tradition and new traditions are born all the time.

As for those Thanksgivin…

Poster. Animals Have Rights. Animal Liberation Front.

Fur-Free Friday. Demos. Manhattan & Red Bank. 2009.

It's Friday again! Well, not today, really, but next week, it's Fur-Free Friday. The annual demo takes place at Lord & Taylor on 38th and Fifth and then marching over to Macy's on 34th is the big event. Fur-Free Friday is observed not only in New York City. Check your local listings, my fellow animal lovers, at Fur Free Friday

The specifics for Manhattan:

11/27/09 – FUR FREE FRIDAY –
Meet at Lord & Taylor 424 5th Ave by 38th Street 1:00 – 1:15
March to Macy's 151 West 34th Street between 7th & Broadway
Protest starts at 1:30 and goes to 3:00pm
This year is the 1st Annual FFF Costume Contest
Come Dressed As Your FAVORITE Fur Covered Animal
We know, it's hard to choose!

And then, there is a gathering of animal rights proponents in Red Bank, New Jersey on Saturday, Nov. 28th, to protest at Winter Furs at 43 Monmouth Street. That's going to be between 1 and 4 pm. Activists are invited to gather from 12pm in the Municipal Lots near and around Wallace Street for d…

Europe. Ringling Bros. Barnum and Bailey Circus. Rejected By Germany and Spain.

No rest for the cruel, and bad news travels fast. Ringling Bros Barnum and Bailey Circus has taken their act to a place where they have never been before---Europe. It might look like their expanding their horizons, but I've got this feeling that they are actually looking for new markets to peddle their scandal-ridden show. With more and more Americans getting educated about the cruelty behind circuses that use captive, performing animals, Ringling Bros., must have decided to do an exploratory tour of Europe and gauge its potential. Well, the circus is there now and we've learned that Ringling has recently canceled their plans in Germany. They might veil this cancellation in so many different terms, but it is a cancellation nevertheless. No interest, no market potential, and the Germans are simply not going to be entertained by captive animals performing unnatural acts. What did Ringling think? That Europeans are as gullible as we are?

But wait. There's more. With Spain in …

Don't Kill Me. 50 Billion Animals Killed Each Year. Go Meatless.

50 billion pleas for mercy are ignored every year

50 billion animals suffer for meat, milk and eggs. They are cruelly confined, mutilated, burned, condemned to a life of degradation, loneliness, pain, and terror of slaughter. Most spend their lives unable to turn around or spread their wings. Most never see the sun. Most never leave their cages except to die.

GoVeganNow.com

Kentucky. Owingsville. Golden Retriever. Dusty. Justice Sought.

That's Dusty hanging by his neck in the photo. Who hanged him? His owner, Wesley Barrett of 478 Peeled Oak Road, telephone 606-674-3193, claimed that Dusty was shot by a neighbor and he hung Dusty's body as a message to his neighbor. What? Already, this story doesn't make any sense. Why treat your beloved pet's body in such a manner just to send a message to a neighbor who shot it? Something isn't right here. But when the authorities met with Mr. Barrett, he couldn't name the neighbor and therefore he couldn't press charges. To compound the situation, the authorities decided not to press charges against Mr. Barrett, and let the case go cold. Not just yet, said Slyvia's Animal Sanctuary, Inc. Someone is responsible for this animal cruelty, and they are asking for signatures to send to the Governor of Kentucky and other elected officials to take action. Please go to the website below and sign the petition. It only takes for good people to do nothing for e…

New York. Gassing of Animals. It is now Illegal.

The gassing of stray and shelter animals is so repulsive that we assume that there must be a law against it. After all, we're a civilized nation. Wrong. Actually, in New York State, no law existed that prohibited the gassing of homeless or unwanted pets. More often than not, such issues come under the purview of the state government and not the federal government. It would be wonderful to have a federal law against gassing, but no such luck yet. " There ought to be a law against it! " How many times have you heard that in your lifetime? Well, in the Empire State, there now is a law against this most cruel form of extermination.

TheHumane Euthanasia Bill (NY A. 999B)became law last October 9th when Governor Paterson signed it after laying dormant for nearly a year. The prime movers of this bill were the ASPCA, Assemblywoman Amy Paulin, Senator Suzi Oppenheimer and their respective staff. God bless them. They just made this world a better place. The law, however, takes effe…

Northern New Jersey. Bloomingdale. Dogs for Adoption. Beagle, Lab, Rat Terrier and Hound.

Behold four of our latest arrivals at the shelter...


Troy is a Beagle mix who came to us as a stray. He's a bit overweight, and so he must not have been a stray for a long time. He's my favorite at the moment. He is most willing to roll over and have his tummy rubbed. Troy is syrupy sweet, wagging his tail and cocking his head sideways at you, keeping low in some kind of submissive position. What a sweety! I could hug this dog all day. His left eye is kinda cloudy, but the doctor said to leave it alone.Uh oh, looks like Troy isn't the only super nice dog at the shelter! This is Polly, and she's a Rat Terrier. Polly gets up from her bed and greets volunteers at her gate, a bit shy at first but warms up to people very quickly. She's got no issues, and on the quiet side. Polly is bigger than a Chihuahua, but she could become a lapdog if you allow her. What a nice dog!

Maggie is a Hound mix who also came to us as a stray. You can see that she is on the skinny side. Calm …

Animal Shelter. A Few Thoughts. Two Adoptions.

A fresh influx of dogs brought our kennel population to eighteen, and that's about full. Beyond that, dogs need to double up in a kennel. Our dogs come to us in a myriad of ways : divorces, foreclosures, confiscations, strays, rescued from cruel conditions, and even rescues from pounds down South where they would have been put to death via injection or gas chamber.

Dottie, a cattle dog mix, went home last Sunday with a couple looking for their first dog together. She stayed with us for approximately a month and a half. Mostly White, Dottie had a few black spots on her body and head. Thus, the name. About medium to large in size, Dottie was strong and a puller. She's the type who will give you nylon burns on your hands from the leash. Dottie didn't fully realize what was going on until our president heaved her unto the back of the SUV and shut the tailgate on her. And off she went to a place easily superior to the best kennel we can provide at the shelter.

And then, there wa…

New Jersey. Elections for Governor. Jon Corzine. Not a Friend of Animals.

It wasn't too long ago that Governor Jon Corzine signed into law Senate Bill 802, a bill permitting bow hunting on Sundays on state wildlife management areas as well as on private lands during the respective deer season. This was sometime in March 2009. Because I was vehemently against another day of hunting when hunters already had six days to kill animals, blogged about this issue and encouraged readers to take action, and called the governor's office several times when he opened the lines for an opinion poll, it was with great disappointment, even resentment, that I learned that the governor finally sided with the hunters. The main thrust of the hunting community's argument was that Sunday will compensate for their lack of time to hunt during the week. However way Gov. Corzine came to his decision, through days-long deliberation and consulting with many groups at opposite sides of the issue, in the end, he bought the argument and signed the bill into law. Yes, I felt th…

Time Magazine. Strays to the Rescue. A Photo Essay.

Time Magazine has come out with a photo essay on rescued dogs who have, through their humans, contributed to societal good in one form or another. The stories come from a book entitled, To the Rescue: Found Dogs with a Mission by Elise Lufkin. The photographs were by Diana Walker. Each individual case warms the heart and underscores the fact that a human-animal relationship could be the very best relationship one, or many, could possibly have on this Earth. Read through each case and come out even more assured that dogs do have a special and comforting role in our society. These examples of harmony between dogs and humans make it ever so clear that abusing a dog, or any animal for that matter, is disrespectful, indecent, inhumane and outright barbaric. Tell me how you treat an animal and I will tell you who you are.

Strays to the Rescue

Healthy Food. Vegetarian. VegNews. Barley and Porcini Soup.

Of all the forms of food out there, I like soups the most. Hot soup on a wintry or clammy day is the ideal, but soups are good anytime you feel the need for a simple, hale and hearty meal. Its complete, one-dimensional form is probably what attracts me to them as compared to full course meals plus their accompanying utensils. A spoon, that's all you need. Okay, maybe a pair of chopsticks if you are having noodles with your soup. Appetizers, two entrees, some rice and dessert can be very busy.

Here's a recipe from VegNews Magazine for a Barley and Porcini soup. If you're the type who can't work a screwdriver, you should still be able to put this soup together. ( Credit is given to VegNews for the photo and recipe.)



1 ounce dried porcini mushrooms, soaked in hot water for 20 minutes
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 yellow onion, chopped
1 carrot, grated
1 cup barley5 cups water or mushroom stock
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon fresh dill, minced


1. Remove the porcini m…

New Jersey. Meatless Diet. Path to Better Health and Animal Welfare.

The Animal Protection League of New Jersey (APLNJ) has sent out an invitation to those who have yet to make a lifestyle change for the better. We're talking meatless diet that is surely to improve your health and say NO to animal cruelty at the same time. This is a free presentation by Food For Life, a community health outreach program, to be held at Organic Style, 621 Cookman avenue, Asbury Park, New Jersey 07712. Time and date are October 27, 2009 at 7pm. They will discuss the four food groups : fruits, vegetables, whole grains and legumes. Yum, that made me crave for some. You can learn about their nutritional value and health benefits plus mouth-watering recipes. Food-tasting will top the evening off like the cherry on other people's sundae. Please call Nancy Ehrlich at 732-775-1051 for reservations. Space is limited.

If there is something I can kick myself in the rear for, that would be for being tardy in making this dietary change. I am only on my third year of a meatless…

United Kingdom. A Farmer. His Cows. And the Dark.

And there was the case of the case of the 65-yr old farmer, Ronald Norcliffe, who was fined £150 fine for failing to address the psychological needs of his cattle. What exactly were the psychological needs of cows could not be determined but keeping them in a darkened room proved unacceptable to officers from Kirklees Environmental Health department and the Government's Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA). The darkened room was actually a basement barn that allowed little natural light to come in during the Winter. The barn lacked electric lights and the barn doors kept shut to keep the cold out. For DEFRA, such conditions in Norcliffe's farm at Scammonden, West Yorks, were a violation of the Animal Welfare Act. This was in August 2008, and Mr. Norcliffe has been a farmer for thirty years.

Bob Carr, lawyer for Mr. Norcliffe, stated that "In my respectful submission this didn't do any harm whatsoever." But how do we know that? Are harmful effe…

Philadelphia Eagles. Michael Vick. A Cruel Past. A Bleak Future.

Clicking through some web pages yesterday, I came upon Michael Silver's piece on Yahoo Sports declaring Michael Vick as a dud, a has-been, nothing more. It was argued that for all the controversy and promise that Michael Vick brought with him on his return to the NFL, the truth is that Michael Vick isn't worth all that attention. I won't regurgitate what Silver has said because you can read his article, but I gather that Vick's time at the big house has cost him more than just time but his momentum and prime years as a player. Against the Buccaneers, Vicks gained ten yards on four carries. I don't mean to be facetious, but even my chihuahua can cover more ground than that.

Vicks might be advised to hold dear and cherish that one year, $1M contract the Eagles have so munificently given to him because that might be the most he's getting from them, or from any NFL team. Pity? Most law-abiding, non-animal torturing citizens will not realize that kind of money in the…

Cuteness in Thumb size. Nature's Way. Cuteness Overload.

Lately, I have been putting up a lot of depressing graphics from the typhoon in the Philippines, and I thought I should lighten up a bit with something that will surely make you smile. Sometimes, nature's beauty is out there in grand, breathtaking style. That's when we say, " Wow, take a look at that! " Fortunately, beauty knows no proportion. Equally beautiful sights or things can be found in a dimunitive size. Take a look:



Northern New Jersey. Bloomingdale. Dog for Adoption. Bear.

Anyone for a St. Bernard mix? Bear is our well-behaved gentleman at the shelter. He's a willow tree on four legs. I love cupping his head between my two hands and just go nose to nose with him. And that's like having a small watermelon in your hands. Bear ran away from his home, and his humans(?) decided not to pursue him. So, Bear became our dog. He's up to date on all shots, and ready to go to his new home.







Bloomingdale Animal Shelter SocietyUPDATE : Adopted! 10/11/09

Philippines. Typhoon Ondoy. Animal Rescue. PAWS.

As of Sunday, September 27 2009, a day after typhoon Ondoy hit the Manila area, the Philippine Animal Rehabilitation Center (PARC) had taken in 16 animals stranded by the floods. Some of them include a German Shepherd, an Aspin ( Filipino dog ), a turtle, and several cats. The animals came from De Castro Subdivision in Pasig, and Midtown and Provident Villages in Marikina.The rescue continues and more animals are expected to come into the shelter. Help is on the way from the Humane Society International (HSI) who is sending a team to help with the rescue and to set up safe stations. The team will be working with PAWS and the Animal Welfare Coalition. Donations have come in from kind-hearted individuals, but supplies are never enough. Here are places where you can drop off your donations :

MAKATI - c/o PAWS Volunteer MARLA NICANDRO360 Media, Rm 508, 5th Flr Chinabank Bldg (formerly Manila Bank)Ayala Ave, Makati (MON-FRI 9am-5pm)

QUEZON CITY - c/o PAWS Director RICH ILUSTRE2-B Legaspi St…

Philippines. Typhoon Ondoy. A State of Calamity. September 2009.

By now, the devastation left behind by Typhoon Ondoy in Philippines has become world news. It pains me so much to see thousands of people lose their homes, their personal belongings, their clothes and food, and their loved ones both human and animal. I have been through many typhoons myself, having grown up in that country, but nothing compares to destruction caused by Ondoy. A natural steamroller that knew no mercy, Ondoy, basically, trashed everything in its path. How can people rebuild their lives when all have been washed away in the flood? How can one survive the aftermath when there is no food to buy? Ondoy reduced thousands of people to a state of penury. There are many tragic stories, but I learned that a couple of directors for the Philippine Animal Welfare Society were stranded on their houses' roofs for two days without food or electricity. Those who can save their pets had them on the roof, some as many as ten or more. As of yesterday, the estimated dead was more than …

Philippines. Dogs for Adoption. PARC. PAWS. September 2009.

Here are several dogs who are under the wing of the Philippine Animal Welfare Society, and they are up for adoption. Because I don't have personal interaction with these dogs, I can't offer any substantive background information on them. You will have to contact PAWS for that. However, I read that John Dog was run over by a vehicle and survived in pain for many days before being rescued while Flipper was abandoned on a riverbank to drown as the tide rose. If you are interested in any of these dogs, your contact info is philpaws@yahoo.com. Keep in mind that these are not the only dogs up for adoption. There are more at the Philippine Animal Rehabilitation Center (PARC).

John Dog


Cheese
Nicolas Flipper