Society is strange and the internet is exposing our idiosyncrasies at a level unrivalled in human history.
The antics of one pop star on a live television broadcast attracts more attention and social media (over)reaction than the atrocities happening right now in Syria. By simply gyrating one’s derriere in front of a thick gentleman on a “music” show you can receive media attention from the worlds’ renowned news channels and reinvent your personal image.
This leads me to the media’s coverage of the exporting of livestock from South Africa to Mauritius. The exporting of live animals takes animal cruelty to the next level with thousands of cattle, sheep and goats being sent to the island paradise of Mauritius in conditions that an evil villain would probably think was offsides. These land animals spend two weeks at sea drowning in their own excrement and facing starvation. The ones that survive the ordeal then meet their end on the other side of the Indian Ocean and form part of an entrée to be served at one of the island’s five-star resorts.
The NSPCA has labelled the shipment “cruel and inhumane”, while the media has taken the moral high ground and has given the ships the titles of “Horror Cattle Ships” and “Ships of Shame”.
But what is the solution? What is touted as the right thing to do? Slaughter the animals on our shores and export the meat? The palm-sent-to-face action is the only response in my opinion.
The atrocities committed daily by abattoirs across South Africa would make the most ardent carnivore quiver and produce the knee-jerk reaction of “oh no… the meat I eat is free-range”. And this leads me back to why people are strange. When a pop star is desperate for attention, why do we give it to them? When it is inhumane to mistreat animals on the open sea, why is it okay to do it on land? The two stories are completely unrelated but the fact that Miley Cyrus receives more media coverage than the slaughter happening in Syria and our abattoirs makes me want to hit the “eject” button on this planet sometimes.