Dear Ms. Teisler-Rice:
Not only did I write to my Congresswoman about saving the Endangered Species Act, as the Sierra Club's Kathleen Casey urged in your May/June VivaVine, I also wrote to both of my senators. But I don't believe that such an Act could ever realize its true potential as long as it refers to sentient beings as "species" rather than as individuals capable of feeling the range of emotions we do.
It would be much easier for human leaders to relate to the plight of a black rhinoceros, for example, were they to see him as an animal "in danger" rather than as a member of a species "endangered."
A truly compassionate society would understand that the value of an animal's life or the intensity of his suffering is determined by the being himself and not by how many brethren he has or by his "value" to humans.
The lives of each of the billions of cows are just as much worth saving as are the lives of each of the thousands of elephants. The elephant calf whose mother was just shot by a poacher has the same capacity to suffer as a "veal" calf grabbed from his mother and chained to a small wooden crate by a farmer.
The Endangered Species Act truly is a "powerful safeguard," as Ms. Casey says, but only a speciest society such as ours would need one. Even more powerful and effective than this Act would be a universal ethic which reveres the lives of all animals whether they were born on an African savanna or in an American factory farm.
Were such an ethic to exist, there would be no need for an Endangered Species Act, for there would be no endangered species. Our compassion alone would have inspired us to save not only those animals facing the stun gun, but those facing extinction as well.
-- Scott Walker East Hampton, CT
Dear VivaVine: Re: Feces Fiasco: How fortunate we would all be, if, as a consequence of our poor choices at election time, our states were all buried in hog manure a year later! North Carolina is decidedly ahead of the game.
--David Briers, McLibel Campaign
REGARDING THE MILITAN VEGAN #8 (reprint in cyber.vine Mar./Apr., '95): it freaked me out! We're trying to advocate peace because the suffering and murdering of animals is so abominable and then we go and murder and torture humans in the name of PEACE?? Geez, where are these people's heads??
-- Kerry Clair, Otisville, New York (email@example.com)
EMAIL OUT... Greg Christopher, do you read me... this is Vegan 1. Come in please. Do you read me...? Greg... you're back on the Listserve
Email, in: >Vegan 1, this is Asparagus, over. >I roger you loud and clear. >Keep me "Listserved" on future developments. >over.