Thursday, 18 June 2015

Ignorant Voices Everywhere Are Shouting About the Yulin Dog Meat Festival

A petition has been launched against the Yulin Dog Meat Festival, which takes place in GuangXi, China. When this article was written it had amassed 561,285 signatures.

 Let’s break down the reasons that are acceptable explanations for supporting this cause, as laid out in the petition letter itself:

 1.    The fact that China has the second largest number of rabies in the world, causing huge economic costs and hundreds of deaths. Continuation of this festival implies a lack of vigilance at tackling this public health concern.

2.    The fact that dog theft is a huge problem and a major route of supply for the dog meat industry. Allowing the festival to continue shows a lack of concern for the dog theft that is happening, a crime which is heartbreaking for caring owners who fall victim.

3.    Food safety issues – many dogs involved are ill or contaminated and not properly checked or examined the way they should be before being slaughtered for meat. 

If any of the above three are the reason you signed the petition, you can stop reading. Your argument is educated and your concern is genuinely for the people of China. I salute you in your efforts in raising awareness to make China a safer place.

If your opinion rings familiar with either of the below points, I want to explain why you should not be signing this petition:

1.    The animals are inhumanely killed.

2.    You do not agree that dogs should be eaten, and the festival endorses this belief.
Let’s tackle the first point, which is perhaps the most common reason that the media is ganging up to fight against the Dog Meat Festival. This point is backed by animal-rights fan Ricky Gervais, who stated 
"I’ve seen the footage that HSI has captured on video, and it breaks my heart. I will never forget the look of bewilderment and fear on the faces of these poor animals — the dogs and cats await a horrible fate. No animal deserves to be treated like this."

(I would like to point out at this stage that Ricky Gervais is not a vegetarian.)

 So the issue is that these animals are afraid, awaiting a horrible fate and inhumane slaughter? I see. And we don’t have this in the UK? 

I agree, it’s upsetting to see this imagery but people seem to be jumping very quickly to be outraged at what is happening across the world in China, when it happens here in the UK too. There are unfortunately hundreds of slaughterhouses carrying out ‘inhumane’ acts of slaughter in order to feed us hungry Brits our burgers and sausages for dinner. Perhaps your time would be better spent trying to change the issues in the country you live in, rather than worrying about another nation. At least if we fight against inhumane slaughter in Britain our voices have a better chance of actually making a difference. 

Of course, this is just my opinion, but my second point will make you realise there are better ways to spend your time then signing this petition to end cruelty to these animals.  


I would like to point out that at no point does the petition actually address the way in which the animals are slaughtered, or tackling inhumane practice.  It mentions the animals being slaughtered publically, and the effect this can have on children in particular, but at no point is the actual slaughtering act discussed. You signing this petition will in no way fight against the inhumane methods used on the dogs, so if this was your main reason for signing the petition then there’s absolutely no point. You should have read what you were signing properly.

You can argue it's 'raising awareness' but if you are making a brazen online presence to support humane treatment of these animals, don't you think your time would be better spent supporting petitions that actually fight your actual cause, rather than jumping on the bandwagon of a closely-linked petition that has absolutely no impact on what you actually want? (For the ill-treatment of the dogs to end.) 
Food for thought. Excuse the pun.

And perhaps the most ignorant and uneducated opinion: You do not agree with eating dogs. The key word here is OPINION. This is what you believe, and you believe this because you have been brought up in a culture where dogs are recognized as loyal and loving family pets, not food. Your opinion is how you feel, due to your circumstances. Your opinion is not the only opinion, and it is not the opinion of hundreds of Chinese who eat dog meat in the same way we in the UK rabbit. (Which, may I add, many people own as a pet.)

 It is a part of their culture to eat dog meat, whether or not we agree with it. Who are we to impose our Western opinions and views on their traditions and culture? Do we not have our own animal issues in the UK to deal with?  It was only in 2013 that cosmetic testing on animals became illegal, yet we sit here thinking we are high and mighty advocators of animal rights. 

If you want to sign a petition about harsher punishments for those involved in dog-fighting rings in the UK, go ahead. If you want to sign a petition about making hitting a dog illegal in the UK, go ahead. But to sign a petition because you don’t agree in another countries choice of food… Well that’s really none of your business, is it? 

It would be like Indonesian citizens (the country with the largest Muslim population) creating a petition against the UK selling pork and slaughtering pigs. Goodbye to our pulled-pork sandwiches, because Indonesia doesn’t like us going against their beliefs. Am I putting this into perspective yet?

 To sum up my argument clearly for anybody who has struggled to grasp the main point, it is as follows: 
Be educated about what you are signing before you sign it.

 Do I personally agree with eating dogs? No! I have dogs at home who I consider family. 

Do I personally agree with the way they are killed or think that it is humane or moral? No!

Do I think that my views are the only views? No! 

 I do not agree with Westerners trying to impose their beliefs on other cultures and ramming their opinion down the throats of other nations. 
Make sure you are signing the petition for the RIGHT reasons: to help China improve as a country. 

If you want to register support for ending inhumane slaughtering of dogs in China, I suggest you look for another petition because this one is not going to help you fulfil your goal. (Try this one.

If you want to end dogs being eaten in general (even if slaughtered humanely), I suggest you stop being so closed-minded and accept other cultures practices.

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1 comment

student writing services said...

Thank you for such a detailed post. Everybody needs to learn exactly what they are standing up for before signing any sort of petition. I really hope your voice is heard and your concerns are addressed by China.

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