A poem from a vegan group.


One of the members of the Vegan Atheists group on Facebook posted this and said it was free to share.

“Do you hear the screams of my friends, of my family?
Can you look into my eyes?
ANSWER ME,
Can you feel my pain and loss?
I assure you I have feelings,
Our flesh is not yours,
Why do you consume it?
Our skin is not yours,
Why do you wear it?
Our milk and eggs are not yours,
Why do you eat them?
Why do you steal from us?
Where is my baby going?
I hear him crying for me,
please do not take him,
please do not kill him,
my child is everything to me,
This cage it is so small,
I have no room to move at all,
Why do you kick, punch and prod me?
Am I lesser than a human being?
My legs ache from standing,
My udders are sore,
My weary body cannot take anymore,
My wings they need to spread,
My eyes need to see the light,
My body is too large for this space,
I am getting sores all over the place,
Why do you confine me so?
What is going to happen to me?
Am I going to end up like my friend?
Hung upside down, suspended,
Her throat was slit, my eyes squeezed tight,
I wish I could run, no where to hide,
It’s my turn next, I am scared,
I shall fight the good fight,
Why should you get to end my life?
I want to thrive and live, and flourish,
Not perish at your hands,
You humans do not care for me do you?
I am nothing more than a morsel to you?
Please see this is not the way,
Life was meant to be,
You do not have to kill me,
You can see me as I see you,
We are earthlings,
I would never harm you,
Why not do the same for me?
The words I wish I could speak,
My voice goes unheard,
Your knife draws near,
I am hung for all to see,
it will be my blood on that floor,
My life will be no more,
and thousands will die after me,
with a voice yet to be heard,
We are finally free, finally free.” – Ashley Farmer

Abortion prevention: don’t forget about the men


This is a post that I submitted to Kelsey Hazzard at Secular Pro-Life

http://blog.secularprolife.org/2014/08/abortion-prevention-dont-forget-about.html

I encourage everyone to go to the link and comment there. Also Kelsey put a funny picture of a pregnant looking man. However, for convenience of those who subscribe to my wordpress blog, I have also copied the text here.

Abortion prevention: don’t forget about the men

Consider this situation: A man chooses to have sex with a woman who he knows will go for an abortion if she gets pregnant. She does get pregnant. She goes to an abortionist, who performs the abortion. Which of the three people killed the baby? The father, mother, or abortionist?

It should be obvious that all three people played a part in the abortion. So no matter what your answer, you are partially correct. The father chose to do the one thing that could result in a pregnancy the mother did not want. The mother chose to abort rather than seeking out alternatives. The abortionist was the final step in causing the death of the baby.

Keeping all of that in mind, if you could go back and talk to one of the people—the father, mother, or abortionist—and convince them to become pro-life, which one would you choose?

Again, there’s no one right answer, but I would pick the father. Talking to the abortionist could have a major impact if he’s the only abortionist in town and has no one to replace him, but otherwise, the mother will just go elsewhere for the abortion. Of course talking to the mother is good because if her mind changes, the child will live. But will she have the support of the father? He had expected the mother to have an abortion even before they had sex, which implies that he has no interest in taking care of the child.

Talking to the father makes sense because he has the power to change his ways and stop creating children who will be killed. He also has the ability to support the mother in taking care of the children he is responsible for, making the mother less likely to want to abort. Many women abort due to fear of being a single mother.

Outreach to women in crisis pregnancy situations is great, but we need to make sure we’re reaching the men too, rather than placing all of the weight on the women. The idea that men are irrelevant to the abortion debate is incredibly misguided.

Why the Good Samaritan is relevant


Luke 10:25 And, behold, a certain lawyer stood up, and tempted him, saying, Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life? 26 He said unto him, What is written in the law? how readest thou? 27 And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself. 28 And he said unto him, Thou hast answered right:this do, and thou shalt live. 29 But he, willing to justify himself, said unto Jesus, And who is my neighbour? 30 And Jesus answering said, A certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves, which stripped him of his raiment, and wounded him, and departed, leaving him half dead. 31 And by chance there came down a certain priest that way:and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side. 32 And likewise a Levite, when he was at the place, came and looked on him, and passed by on the other side. 33 But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was:and when he saw him, he had compassion on him, 34 And went to him, and bound up his wounds, pouring in oil and wine, and set him on his own beast, and brought him to an inn, and took care of him. 35 And on the morrow when he departed, he took out two pence, and gave them to the host, and said unto him, Take care of him; and whatsoever thou spendest more, when I come again, I will repay thee. 36 Which now of these three, thinkest thou, was neighbour unto him that fell among the thieves? 37 And he said, He that shewed mercy on him. Then said Jesus unto him, Go, and do thou likewise.

To me, it is irrelevant whether the events in this story happened. It does not matter whether there is a God or not. It does not matter if Jesus existed or if he actually told the story.

What matters is that this story is one that nearly everyone has access to in their bibles. Many Christians claim that they believe every word of what they call the Bible, Good Book, or Word of God.

Those who do believe that this story is from God should consider which character is most like them. Are they one of the thieves who hurt the man in the first place? Are they a priest or levite who did nothing? Are they the Samaritan who tried to help the stranger he didn’t even know?

For people like me who don’t believe in the God of the Jews or Christians, this story is an example of what happens all the time. The story may not always happen in the way described, but there are people who have been injured terribly or need something that they cannot possibly get on their own.

I was once the injured man from this story, but now I plan to be the Good Samaritan. My moral philosophy is heavily based on the Golden Rule and the Good Samaritan. I do enjoy the fact that this story is easy for anyone to find, but I am sad that very few have read it or live as if they understand it.

If verse 27 is true, I will most certainly not inherit eternal life because I can’t love a God I don’t believe in. This will not prevent me from loving my neighbor as myself.

Why life is relevant


Obviously, life is relevant to me because I am alive. I think the fact that I am alive is self-evident. This is not the case with everyone because some people argue about what life is.

Is life simply the same as existing? If so, then everything that exists is alive. Is it the same as moving? In that case whatever moves is alive.

My definition of life would match very closely the definition of relevance. If something is relevant, related, connected, or linked to something, it means that it makes a difference. That is why I am an activist. When someone says they are active, the question that someone is bound to ask is “What are you active about?”.

Everyone alive is active about something. When one activity ends, another begins. I am sure that I will always have something to be active about. My primary goal right now is ending worldwide abortion.

I refuse to live in a world that says that people must be killed whenever they are inconvenient. This irrationality is exactly what leads to war. It is the source of all forms of discrimination.

Why the declaration of independence is relevant


The declaration of independence is relevant to me because it reveals something about history the country I have grown up in. The following is a quote from the beginning of it.

“When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

A lot is said in this. The language of it is very different from what I have grown up hearing. Understanding it requires an accurate understanding of the Laws of Nature, Nature’s God, Life, Liberty, and Happiness. I am not sure if I can claim to know exactly what the writers meant by these terms, but it is something that I will try to learn.

Independence is what allows me the “liberty” to be relevant and irrelevant at the same time. To relate to others without having to agree with everything they say and do. Some irrelevance or independence is what brings me “happiness” in my “life”.

Why heaven is irrelevant


I do not know for sure what heaven is supposed to be. People talk about it as a place that some go after they die. Since it is a place, I consider it to be the same as Japan, England, or Australia. Since I have never been there, I can make no assumptions of who is there or what is happening. What other people tell me or what is written in a book about it may be incomplete or inaccurate.

The definitions of what heaven is can be almost anything. It can simply be the sky. In that case I would like to know where in the sky. It can also mean some type of paradise.

The notion of heaven is usually connected with a certain religion. I do not think that this is necessary or rational. I also have never understood why I would have to die to visit whatever this heaven is.

If there is any action that I must take in order to go to heaven, I would like to know what it is and who else is there. I would like to try it before I buy it. Only then can I decide if it is for me.

I also wonder why I could not simply be born in heaven the first time rather than on planet earth. If I cannot figure out my life right now, then I am not ready for another one.

Death


Death

As far as I know, everyone knows that they will die eventually. Often though, people don’t talk about it. Lately it’s been on my mind a lot.

The reason people avoid this subject is most likely because there are disagreements on what happens after death.

Some people believe that people either go to heaven or hell. This is the general idea taught in the Bible, and it’s the one that I currently think is true. The most confusing debate is the reason people go to either of these places. Some think that good people go to heaven and bad people go to hell. That’s actually not what the Bible teaches nor can anybody agree on what good or bad deeds someone would have to do to deserve eternal reward or punishment. The main lesson of the new testament is that Jesus somehow paid the price for our sins by dying on the cross and that by believing this we go to heaven. Even as I write it I must admit that it doesn’t make sense to my brain, but I just wanted to define this before I mention the two alternate ideas about what happens after death.

The next idea is reincarnation. That generally means that after one life ends, then another begins in some other type of body. This new body could be another human, animal, plant, or maybe something else. I don’t really think that this would be a good idea unless someone could choose what they would be reborn as. If I could choose, I would probably want to be some kind of flying bird.

The next idea is oblivion, the idea that after death, people just don’t exist anymore. This idea is probably the easiest to understand and certainly sounds a lot better than either going to hell or being reborn as a cockroach. Of course some would rather go to heaven, but at least if you don’t exist, then you don’t care.

So far, those are the current theories I know of that people say happen after death.

I think that the way people live their lives is directly affected by what they think death is. For example, if you believe that someone doesn’t exist after they die, then what difference does it make how long they live or what they do. If you think that someone is doomed to go to hell if they haven’t accepted Jesus as their savior, then naturally you want to tell them about him before they die.