Saturday mornings, when I am not at a pet expo or green festival, are precious. Relaxing with a cup of coffee and the paper. This morning I was reading a great piece in the Wall Street Journal (Friday: When Jewish Scholars Fled to the South) on displaced German Jewish scholars in the 40's and 50's in our southern states. It tells how the relationships between these scholars and African American students worked to help recraft racial/social standards.
Reading our local Indiana paper earlier, I was deeply saddened to hear how poorly our puppy mill law was doing with our legislature. For example, simply allowing a breeding dog out of his/her cage once a day for a bit of exercise is seen as a big contentious deal. How DO people sleep at night? Indiana is know for having a huge number of puppy mills- many of them in our "scenic" tourist zone peopled by the Amish. Dogs are just breeding stock to some. These Amish "breeders" throw considerable economic weight into these discussions. Barns filled with dogs, cages stacked, many dogs never leaving the cage except to be bred. I don't get it. I will never get it. It can't be just about money. These same breeders do not have electricity and all the conveniences it brings secondary to their religious beliefs-- although cruelty to dogs doesn't seem to rate a mention.
So, in the face of this kind of material how do you keep moving forward? Why not just eat donuts and watch favorite TV reruns? Or... on the flip side.. go bonkers and break into a mill and release the dogs? How do things really change? How do things change that are normalized in a culture-- let's face it, even shameful things can be considered "normal". Back to the WSJ article. Jewish scholars were arrested in the 40's (arrested!) for having dinner in a public setting with black students and fellow professors. Events like this are no longer normal--not that they were ever "right".
So.. again: How do things change-- especially beliefs about the value of a non human's life? Perseverance for sure. Understanding that things will change. Believing this work is important and supported by the universe-- for sure! But... I am pretty much done being "polite" about these issues. Will I go bonkers? Some would say I am already there.