“I love mankind, he said, "but I find to my amazement that the more I love mankind as a whole, the less I love man in particular.”
― Fyodor Dostoyevsky, The Brothers Karamazov
― Fyodor Dostoyevsky, The Brothers Karamazov
It may be unfair to say that animal rights activists love animals as a whole but could not love a single animal however from observation I do believe that animal rights organisations have no love for the people who actually do care for animals. Rather than just talk about animal welfare, those that walk the walk placing time, finance and emotional commitment into the direct care of animals are the farmers of this country; not only domestic animals raised for food for all Australians but also by cohabitation, native wildlife found on farms and especially through active rangeland management of larger cattle & sheep stations.
A measure of the love for another person, ideal or in this case animals can be the response to a single event especially one of some urgency. There is unfolding now an event of much urgency that has a high probability of a dire outcome. In the gulf area of north Queensland there have been fires of an epic scale. In the image below developed from the NAFI website compare the size of the shaded areas of fire events to the 100km scale on the lower left hand corner.
CATTLE are dying slow deaths in the Gulf Country after bushfires of unprecedented ferocity reduced more than two million hectares of grazing land to scorched earth.
With no grass left, cattle are surviving on leaves and ash. On Kutchera Station 90 kilometres north-west of Georgetown at least 500 head have died, most of them from starvation. Weak cattle are bogging at the edges of waterholes where they become easy prey for the dingoes and pigs which have been quick to take advantage of this on-going calamity.
Rural Press reporter, Troy Rowling has written a comprehensive report complete with photos, Hard work up in smoke.
Seasonal rain, at least 2-4 inches (50-100mm), is needed to extinguish the last of the fires and begin the healing process.
However, the heavens are yet to respond.
At time of print, the seven day forecast saw no rain, the 28 day forecast saw no rain and the latest Bureau of Meteorology modelling does not indicate when the monsoon will move down.
If there is no seasonal rain, it is predicted the Etheridge Shire will require at least $500,000 every fortnight until there is rain to provide enough fodder to keep cattle on affected properties alive.
Queensland Country Life accompanied State Agriculture Minister John McVeigh as he took to a helicopter to visit affected properties last Thursday.
While in Georgetown he announced the Newman Government would immediately donate $100,000 to the Bendigo Bank Far North Queensland Bushfire Appeal to help affected Gulf Producers, which was also launched at Georgetown on Thursday.
Try putting yourself in the shoes of the owners and managers of stations burnt out in these areas; a fire that has left a bare blackened landscape horizon to horizon; of surviving cattle weak, staving and bogging at waterholes; of the despair of the situation and no short term outlook for rain. Then have a kick in the guts while you are down when yesterday PETA issued a media release of such jaw dropping ignorance and heartlessness that was published very widely including the Courier Mail and The Australian; this from the Townsville Bulletin, Prosecute farmers for cattle deaths: PETA.
Others have said it better than I could such as in this blog post, Ethical treatment of animals = unethical treatment of people
PETA’s response to this urgent circumstance is just so, so wrong. PETA’s action is that devoid of any humanity or love that it leaves in its wake a soul destroying carcass of cold empty despair.
The human race is better than that, both in our treatment of each other and for animals under our care. To give credit where credit is due individual animal rights activists are raising awareness of the disaster in north Queensland on Animal Australia’s facebook page. These individuals are showing that even though they have a fundamental disagreement with the principle market for cattle from this area, live export, they are prepared to do what they can for the livestock in these areas.
However to date the organisation Animals Australia has shown its alignment with PETA’s position by its stony silence to the unfolding events. Any funds spent by Animals Australia directly on animals for their welfare is very nominal as revealed by their own campaign material. Another organisation that professes love for animals in general but cannot transfer that to practical aid to an animal in need especially if it may indirectly help the real caregivers, farmers.