A Bad Experience and a Poem - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 06-03-2013, 08:11 PM
 
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Ok, so I had a really bad experience yesterday. I want to believe that people eat animal flesh because they don't know any better, that they would stop if they realise how cruel it is.

However, there's a group of people who aren't like that. They know it is cruel. They've seen pictures before, they've heard all the horror stories. They know it is wrong. But they're actually proud of the fact that, after having gone through all that, they have the gall to say 'I don't care'.

Anyway, apparently while I was not in camp last Friday (I'm in the army for two years on conscription), there was a live demonstration in my camp on how to survive in the wild. One part of this involves killing birds and skinning them. I half wanted to be there because I haven't had a real life encounter with animal cruelty before, and I want to force myself to see it with my own two eyes. But hearing this bunch of people talk about it yesterday, I'm ****ing glad I wasn't there. They were laughing at how it took them multiple tries to break the chickens' neck, and some people started plucking their feathers before they were dead. Apparently, the people who can't take it and fall out are considered pussies, and the ones who do it fastest (but probably in the least caring manner) are the best.

I was sitting at their table during dinner, hearing them talk like that as they ate chicken for dinner. I just lost all my appetite. I was really really upset, and couldn't concentrate properly for the rest of the day.

I seriously think that, if I were there in camp on Friday, I would've gotten in serious trouble by running to grab the chickens. It'd be on impulse, because there's nothing I'd be able to do after that. However, if I were to attempt to set them free, my action would be considered an insubordination of orders, obstruction of authority and an attempt to steal army property. I think it would land me in military prison for at least a week, maybe a month.

Under the Geneva conventions, which Singapore is a signatory of, a soldier has a duty to disobey an order that is unlawful, and constitutes a human rights violation. Obviously, though, animals don't matter.

Anyway, I used to write poetry but I haven't in a damn long time, because I feel that poets who have nothing meaningful to write about and just write for style are pretentious, egoistic losers. But last night, while trying to sleep, I wrote a poem because I wanted to try to express my feelings on this issue. Here it is:

Psychopaths Laughing

Everywhere I see psychopaths laughing
Over their bloodied plates
They play with the cold bodies of their victims
They are indifferent
They are mutilating
they are mutilated
they are marred
I cry for the ones who have suffered
But I can no longer glimpse upon their faces
I want to hide but they see me
Ask me if I want to do it too
Expect me to want to do it too

I want to forget but I cannot
The memory of psychopaths laughing.
It persists though it is cruel
Because they know it is cruel
It is proof that they are still alive.
Unable to create, they are afraid
That they will cease to exist if they stopped etching
The blood of others as their footprints in the sand
The footprints of psychopaths laughing.

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#2 Old 06-03-2013, 09:14 PM
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First, I think that conscription into military service is itself a violation of human rights.

 

Second, the story you tell of "survival" training (which is a joke) demonstrates that animal abuse and militarism are unquestionably linked. Can you imagine an all-vegetarian army?

 

And third, about your poem: the concept of eating meat being a form of mental illness is brilliant!

 

I hope you can make it through your service without too much difficulty. Send me a message, if you ever need to talk.


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#3 Old 06-03-2013, 09:37 PM
 
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Haha, I'm generally okay with army life. I'm already 3/4 of the way through, and I only have 6 months left! I'll be out before I know it. Also, this survival lesson happens very rarely. At most, if it happens again, I'll request to skip it, which I think my superiors will allow. Witnessing it would be unbearable.

One of the reasons why I'm not pushing myself to go vegan earlier is because the army has vegetarian rations, but not vegan rations. They still have buttered bread, buttered rice, cream soups and they serve milo in the morning. It is possible to avoid the non vegan foods, although this means on some days you don't have much to eat. Nonetheless, your consumption pattern has no effect on the demand. Vegetarian rations is vegetarian rations, and they'll order the buttered bread for you even if you don't want it. So yeah, I'd rather wait until I'm out of the army to make the change, instead of making my time here extra miserable with little effect on the animals.

Anyway, one thing I realised about the kind of people who see themselves as macho because they can kill animals, who think the pleasure justifies the cruelty and live for the pleasure, is that the meaning of their lives is literally the cruelty they inflict to others. I'm the kind of person who is afraid of dying before I've done anything important or meaningful to society, and it shocks me to think that these people are the exact opposite. They will go on to do boring jobs, use the money they earn to get pleasure from animal products, and when they lie on their death beds, cruelty is the only thing they will be able to remember themselves by. How can anyone want to live like that?

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#4 Old 06-03-2013, 10:38 PM
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Such people will be imbeciles in Heaven.


"There is more wisdom in the song of a bird, than in the speech of a philosopher...." -Oahspe
"The thing is, you cannot judge a race. Any man who judges by the group is a pea-wit. You take men one at a time." -Buster Kilrain, The Killer Angels -Michael Shaara
"Anyone who doesn't believe in miracles isn't a realist." -Billy Wilder
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#5 Old 08-05-2013, 01:43 PM
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Sick people are everywhere; not just in the army. Sometimes, I felt everyone around me are zombies like in the movie I Am Legend
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#6 Old 08-05-2013, 04:07 PM
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I'm sure that when your conscription is over, Yingchen, you'll be able to carry on a life that best follows your ethical compass. While change can be effected anywhere, sometimes a different venue is needed to bring about the most effective change. After you leave the army, you will no doubt be an advocate for the abolition of cruelty. 

 

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#7 Old 08-05-2013, 04:16 PM
 
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I'm sorry Yingchen = that would have made me so sick/angry to hear too. I know I could NEVER make myself watch something like that, just couldn't do it. Don't really know what to tell you except YES you are mostly done now and can soon live however you want, with hopefully (possibly?) less people like that around you.

 

On a totally different note, I liked the form/physicality of your poem. 

 

Edit - only just noticed this is an old thread - well all of that still stands!

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#8 Old 08-05-2013, 07:01 PM
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As hard as it may seem, I would counsel you to hold both the chickens and your fellow soldiers with compassion in your heart. The chickens for the violent death they suffered, and your fellow soldiers for the disturbed psychology that would permit them to do that let alone take pleasure in it.

There wasn't anyone who escaped from that demonstration unscathed and holding negative views of those that committed the violence won't lead anywhere positive. You can't foster love and compassion while nurturing anger and disgust. The two extremes are incompatible.
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#9 Old 08-05-2013, 07:47 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rinchen View Post

As hard as it may seem, I would counsel you to hold both the chickens and your fellow soldiers with compassion in your heart. The chickens for the violent death they suffered, and your fellow soldiers for the disturbed psychology that would permit them to do that let alone take pleasure in it.

There wasn't anyone who escaped from that demonstration unscathed and holding negative views of those that committed the violence won't lead anywhere positive. You can't foster love and compassion while nurturing anger and disgust. The two extremes are incompatible.

 

Well, I'm glad VB exists as an outlet for me to let off steam ^^ I know it doesn't do any good to view them with complete hatred, but it's something that really terrified me. I was having trouble sleeping that night, and so I went and made this post, and then slept a little better afterwards.


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#10 Old 08-05-2013, 07:52 PM
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That sounds terrible. Sorry Yingchen. sad.gif

I'm glad the poem and sharing it helped.

I believe everything.
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