You get furious when you are called extremists don’t you? "It’s reality itself which is extreme!" you say, "The ones who are trying to stop it are the only sane people around…"
So we’ll answer in the same manner…
Tearing slices off sentient beings while they are still alive, trying to escape in panic, is an exaggeration.
Slowly digesting sentients after swallowing them whole, is an exaggeration.
Killing babies because they are someone else’s offsprings, is an exaggeration.
Injecting eggs into a live spider’s body to ensure that when the larvae hatch they are surrounded with “food”, is an exaggeration.
Aggressively horning other males for territory and for the "right" to mate, is an exaggeration. Chemically liquefying other beings before eating them, is an exaggeration.
A 15 meters wide swarm of around 100,000 driver ants warriors, working mutually as a single hunting unit swarming into any opening in the body of their prey (rats, scorpions, lizards and even young birds that are unable to fly), including the mouth and nose, suffocating or devouring them alive, is an exaggeration.
Skunks coming at night to caves full with bats knowing that sooner or later in such crowdedness some will lose their grip. Since baby bats are still unable to fly at their early age, when they fall on the cave’s ground they are totally helpless. Exactly what the skunks are looking for. The cave is totally dark so the skunks don’t see the fallen baby bat, they also can’t hear them because of the strong shrieks of the tens of thousands of other bats and they can’t smell them as well (because of the strong ammonia odder) so they actually grope handing the cave until they bump into one and since they don’t see where the head is, to avoid a bite they role the baby bats on the ground over and over until they die. That is an exaggeration.
Letting the U.S south east coast dolphins continue with their horrible fishing tactics of sweeping fishes into the riverbanks dooming them to death by suffocation and severe stress resulting from the rapid lift from water to land, is an exaggeration.
Another cruel hunting method the dolphins use is circulating sardine fishes driving them to swim against the water surface and against the stream, making a giant meat ball of sardines and then starting eating from it. If that is not exaggerated enough, birds who learned to interpret this dolphin behavior soon join the feast and eat the sardines from above too.
Octopuses use their eight sucker-lined arms to capture sentient beings, pierce their shells and inject poison that causes paralysis. It contains tetrodotoxin which causes motor paralysis and occasionally respiratory failure. The senses of the prey are often intact, meaning the victims are aware and remain fully conscious but unable to respond. Then the octopuses release salivary enzymes, loosening the flesh from the inner shell and then use their hard, parrot-like beaks to tear pieces of flesh. If this is not one of the most exaggerated methods of absorbing energy then what is?
Male Angonoka tortoise trying to flip one another over their backs when fighting over mating, is an exaggeration. And to further the exaggeration, after one succeeded he will sometimes bite the legs of the loser before he leaves him there to be boiled alive.
20 larvae slowly slicing a caterpillar’s skin from the inside out after their mother wasp has injected them in the form of eggs into the caterpillar’s body so they can have constant supply of food when they hatch, is an exaggeration.
And it even goes further than that - to protect the eggs the wasp injects a virus she produces in her ovaries that destroys the caterpillars’ immune system, and if it is not exaggerated enough the wasp also injects a certain chemical that causes the caterpillar to protect the larvae while they cocoon themselves, until the caterpillar dies of hunger or disease since the immune system is destroyed.
These are just a few everyday glimpses of the routines of this world. Refusing to destroy it condemns a countless number of animals to suffering. And that’s without a single word of how atrocious factory farms are, how brutal experiments are, how abusing circuses are, how maddening zoos are, how sadistic bullfights and rodeos are, how violent humans’ festivals are and etc. This is because we focused on examples which would be part of the world activists dream of - a vegan one, while totally ignoring the impossibility of reaching a non-speciesist world.
But it is an exaggeration to expect humans, who are so far from finding a sustainable, rational, and non-discriminative political, social and economic way to live with each other in the same country! Not to mention with their whole species (there is always a war going on somewhere in the world, more than three new wars every year), so what are the chances of settling the relationships with other species on the base of equal consideration of interests?
To continue with the efforts to convince humans to stop consuming animal products because it hurts animals while they don’t stop even when it kills them and their families, while they eat whatever they want whenever they want, keep on smoking even though they know it hurts them and their own children, don’t exercise, eat tons of sugar, fat and cholesterol, are too lazy to do something so easy and undemanding like recycling, is an exaggeration.
To continue with the efforts to convince humans to stop consuming animal products while most are still racist, sexist, nationalists, classist, ableists and chauvinist, is an exaggeration.
But even if we exaggerate for a moment and say that it is possible to make a vegan world, it would still be impossible to expect humans to live without hurting others. And so, even if a vegan world was possible…poisoning the world while producing food is an exaggeration. And more than 2.5 million tons of poison are used each year. 10 or more cycles of pesticide sprays during one crop cycle are not uncommon, and sometimes the seeds are even sprayed before planting. Today it is estimated that the agricultural chemical industry is producing about 50,000 different pesticides based on approximately 600 active ingredients.
The methods farmers use to “defend” crops are an exaggeration and the diversity is scary. From the common leg trap that snaps as someone treads upon it, to creative mechanisms that shoot sharp spears once triggered, scissor-like knifes that shuts firmly or a noose that tightens and chokes. Burrows are attacked by varied toxic gases, liquids called fumigants and also with foaming agents which are pumped into the burrow system, quickly filling it entirely. Smoke bombs are also in use, and even flammable gases such as propane and oxygen are injected with a hose into the burrows and then ignited.
Flooding or burning fields after harvest is also common.
But the most "exaggerated" variation of "pest control" takes place in sugar-cane fields (since the canes are protected from burning by a very moist tissue), where the farmers begin to harvest the field on all sides going from the ends to the center, so many animals are packed at the last square. Then they burn the area while surrounding it with tractors, listers, pickaxes, mattocks, pitchforks and etc. The animals that were able to escape the flames, the smoke and the tractors, are clubbed to death by the farmers.
It is an exaggeration to expect that the plant based agriculture that feeds the whole world would use only wild pollination methods and the wind. It is not at all realistic and so even more honeybees will be exploited in the pollination industry which already exploits more than two million honeybee colonies per year in the US alone.
And forcing billions upon billions of bees, to go through routine examination and handling, artificial feeding regimes, drug and pesticide treatment, genetic manipulation, artificial insemination, smoking, air blasting, transportation (by air, rail and road), starvation and killing in order to grow vegan food, is an exaggeration.
In addition and regardless of the hurtful methods used during the production phase, vegan food has to somehow reach vegans. Vegans are bound to participate in the extremely exaggerated paving of the world, and in the exaggeratedly transportation based human society.
And it doesn’t sum up with food only. Everything humans do is an exaggeration.
You all know about leather, fur and wool but did you know that cotton is the most pesticide-dependent crop in the world, accounting for up to 25% of all pesticide use?
In one year alone over 50 million pounds of pesticides are used on U.S. cotton fields.
Every T-shirt made of conventional cotton requires 1/4 pound of poison. It is not as bad as wool and fur, but isn’t it an exaggeration?
Expecting humans to give up their cars because they may kill other humans is a serious exaggeration in their eyes, so do it for squirrels, racoons and cats?
Treating the ocean like a giant dumpster, is an exaggeration.
Treating the ocean and the sky as traffic lanes, is an exaggeration.
About 2,400 square feet (in the U.S) as an average home size, is an exaggeration.
Expecting humans to stop building shiny glassed reflective skyscrapers just because around one billion birds die in glass collisions every year, is an exaggeration.
So is expecting them not to trim down city trees during the spring, which is the height of the nesting season for most birds and squirrels and also the time when a tree is directing all of its energy into producing new growth.
And more than anything else, nothing is more exaggerated than a life of suffering from birth to death of more than 150 billion sentient beings every year. So no, we are definitely not exaggerating.
Animal rights activism can’t achieve a vegan world and even if it was achievable it would still be a sufferingfull and extremely human dominated world. Food can’t be produced without hurting someone else, it is just impossible.
Animal rights activism also totally ignores the innumerable and inapprehensible suffering that happens in every fraction of a second to trillions of beings by other nonhuman animals. It is very cruel and cynical to think that it’s part of life so there is nothing we can do about it. The fact that all these atrocities, all this suffering, is part of life, is exactly the problem.
We definitely can’t change the system, but maybe we can eliminate it. Will you choose to make this world a little less horrible, or devote the one life that you’ve got to end it?