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Payne: Animals have just as much importance, right to life as humans

On October 26, 2010

Some people may say that while animal's rights are important they're not as important as human rights.

Others may say that in comparison to human rights, animal rights don't matter at all. If a man is hungry then a cow's right to live disappears. I disagree.

There are politics to the world we live in and sometimes it's kill or be killed. Only the strong survive. But in my mind anything breathing air has rights and their thoughts and feelings matter.

I love animals. I once freaked out and hyperventilated for five full minutes while driving because I thought I might have hit a squirrel. Actually that's happened more than once but I digress.

I understand that animals are tasty and delicious. I enjoy a good chicken breast as much as the next girl. But I'm not for senseless or cruel killings.

I believe that animals have souls. Call me crazy but they're living and breathing so I assume there is something inside. They're capable of feeling so I would hate to think that behind the beautiful eyes of a puppy there is…nothing. There has to be something there and that makes them deserving of some sort of respect.

I know that we have to live and eat and maybe if we didn't eat some of them they would over populate the planet or whatever. But do we have to be so mean about it?

Is the world going to end if some teen ager doesn't get a burger? Do the animals have to be murdered? I don't even trust people who kick dogs that aren't attacking them.

Why? If you'll kick a dog you'll kick me. You have no respect for life.

No, it's not different. Why are people more deserving of love and respect than animals? Personally I react more to an animal being hurt than I do to a person in some situations. If I see you hit a human being it's possible that they did something that I don't know about.

Maybe they called your mother a name just before I got there. But explain to me what the cat said or did to you? It's not cool to snatch up a cat that's just sitting there. There is no reason that you can give me that I'll believe and I don't even like cats.

I suppose that I'm a bit of a hypocrite. Who isn't? I eat eggs at an alarming rate and I put cheese on everything. I don't want to give that up. They're good and good for you.

I believe God put chickens here (before the egg) just to give us eggs. But if I had my way I wouldn't chain chickens to cages and abuse them. I'd give them lots of food and allow them to lay those delicious eggs naturally.

Yes people have the right to eat and wear animals if they so desire. That's true. But I always say that your rights end where someone/something else's begin.

Just because the animals haven't unionized doesn't make them less important. So start small. If you see a squirrel in the street, slow down. He's just trying to live.

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