********** opinion alert - skip this entry if you're looking for some infotainment *********
Read in a Selena Roberts column in Sports Illustrated yesterday that 'animals are the new people', and that PETA has a growing membership, etc and so forth. I'm pretty sure animals are not the new people because, aside from some other obvious differences, I can't get a new person at the local shelter. But there are dogs and cats in abundance. And rabbits.*
Any time someone tells me a pet is "like a person" I think they're developmentally disabled. I appreciate that it's a 'member of your family' and that you care about the animal, but that animal will re-attach itself to someone else if you stopped feeding it. (Trust me on this.) Any inability to get past the fact that a pet sees you as nothing more than a good source of food and companionship is related to your own insecurity, not the animal.
There was even a program on HBO that decried the fact that horses are sold for slaughter. I don't condone animal cruelty, but what, exactly, should people do with the horses? Put them all out to pasture to live out their horsey lives? The awful thing about it was that the deaths of the animals was most definitely inhumane. That needs to change, but the fact that horses are put to death is not a substantive issue. It isn't an issue at all.
As for the egregious cost and growing myopia surrounding animal health care: A person smarter than I am wrote a good column about it over on slate.
* Rabbits are great because in addition to making lame pets they're difficult to adopt. And there's a lot of them. Good use of resources.
************ we now return to our regularly scheduled programming *****************