Thursday, July 29, 2010

Are Pigs Happy? Are People?

Now I've heard it all! According to ScienceDaily the UK has devised a way to ask pigs if they are happy. Don't get me wrong, I don't think animals should be abused or mistreated but I do believe they should be treated as animals not furry people. A study in the UK led by Dr. Catherine Douglas used a technique "reminiscent of Pavlov's dogs" to study the capability of complex emotions in pigs. Through utilizing a paper bag and a training clicker the study concluded that pigs in a stimulating environment are happier than pigs in a boring environment. Gee, ya think?

People are the same way. If you're stuck in a cubical for 40 hours a week I doubt hearing anything other than the 5 o'clock bell will cheer you up but if you're on a beach with a cocktail your pretty peachy. This is a no- brainer; was a study really necessary? With approximately 18.8 million Americans suffering from depression and the national unemployment rate at 9.5 percent I think there are bigger fish to fry. Not to mention that according to a 2008 Johns Hopkins Bloomberg study suicide in the United States increased for the first time in a decade.

I'm sure glad this study was done in the UK instead of the US because I don't want my tax dollars going to something as asinine as this. Sure, I want my pigs to be happy little critters but lets be realistic here. We can't feed 6.8 billion people on an 80 acre plot with less than 50 hogs on it. It just won't work unless everyone--town folk, city folk, rural folk, etc--start only eating what they raise. Realistically, do you see yourself, your neighbor, or New Yorkers with a yard full of livestock and a plentiful garden? I don't think so. This nation would starve to death without Kroger's, HyVee, or any other national grocery store on every corner. Guess what folks, the food doesn't grow in the store.

I'm glad animal welfare is on people's  minds. We should care about animals, they are worth caring about but when animal welfare comes before the welfare of mankind I think something is terribly skewed and priorities need to be re-evaluated. There are people working 40, 60, even 80 hours a week and still barely able to feed their family and I don't know about anyone else but I see a real problem with that. We have a national deficit that is outrageous, government officials squandering money that they stole from those hard working people barely scraping by but people are more concerned with keeping the food on the dinner plate happy. People, we need a wake up call. Animals should be happy and taken care of but don't people deserve the same...even more?

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