Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Callousness to cows - read this and stop drinking milk!

Fight the Good Bull Fight | OPEN Magazine

All of us (barring those lactose intolerant) consume milk and/or milk products. Soy Milk is not yet at that stage where it can replace cow's milk. It is pretty amazing that we get milk in polythene covers or cartons or cans - leading to a numbed sensitivity amongst us regarding the origin of milk. We don't care about where milk comes from and what the poor cows have to go through to give us our morning cup of coffee, tea or milk or ice cream.

India is the land of cows and cow reforms. Yet, we don't seem to think about what cows experience during their lives. Cows give milk only when they are lactating - when they have recently borne a calf. So, in the interests of the millions of milk-guzzlers, cattle are kept pregnant throughout significant parts of their lives - their "cycles" are "optimized" to generate maximum milk. Just replace "cow" with "woman" in the preceding lines and think what a revolting thought that can be. Yes, it is really *that* bad!

To add insult to injury, reproduction is now mainly via artificial insemination robbing cows and bulls of those few moments of conjugal bliss in their lives. What a wretched state we have led them to!

The article (linked at the top of this piece) talks about the "outrageous" national project for mass artificial insemination. It is a well written and informative piece.

Go-rakShaNa vEdike, Vishwa Hindu Parishat, BJP and other self-appointed cow protectors! Wake up!! Fight this injustice to the animal that you worship and use for political mileage!

Why don't well intended corporates/farmers promote milk from humanely treated cows for starters? (If nothing - it is a good business idea. I for one will pay the premium to drink milk from humanely treated cows. I am sure there are several thousands if not millions of people who agree with me.) Till then, I should probably give up milk and curd entirely...

PS: This is for those who believe in karma (pApa and puNya). kartA (the doer), kArayitA (the one who gets it done), preraka (the one who provides the encouragement) and anumodaka (the one who assents to the action) - all have shares in the results of an action - boon or sin. In this case, since milk-drinkers like me (and you) provide preraNa for the cattle farmers to generate more and more milk. In other words the likes of you, gentle reader, and me are responsible for the dire straits of the bovine world. Mankind, as a whole, is suffering the consequences of the accruing bad karma. Now, when a Tsunami looms over the horizon or you're quivering in fear in an earthquake, don't think you weren't responsible....


parijata said...

Your idea of buying milk from humanely treated cows is good. But it will be a little difficult to work it out in India, IMO.
Most of the milk that is sold is milk that is collected from farmers. These farmers will own about 5-6 cows on an average, not more than that. To claim that a cow is treated humanely, you will need to get a certificate from some authority, and we know what kind of a situation that will lead to, courtesy our corrupt officials. In the West, milk is usually got from ranches (afaik). The farmers are business-minded enough to partner with companies that can market their humane-ness.

Artificial insemination is terrible, though. I hope people have seen sense since then.

~rAGU said...

I remember walking with our buffalo all over the place looking for a he buffalo that is willing to help us! Artificial insemination is a god send. The process itself is not horrible but that fact that it takes away calf's right to normal mating, is. What do I do for B12 if I do not drink milk? We can not be completely idealist - this world itself is inconsistent. Focusing on all issues will make our life hell. I do not have a solution but focusing on just one-two seems proportional to a man's energy to bring about change.