As a young girl and as a grown woman, I spent many days on my uncle's farm. Each summer until time for school to start I lived and helped in the running of his farm. My uncle had a small herd of dairy cows and a bull, and a few calfs. We also had horses and a small pony and raised a few hogs and chickens. The animals were well cared for always having free roaming in the pastures and home grown feed. But I learned early that money to keep the farm going did not grow on trees. There were animals that needed to be sold. And when they could no longer be productive and some were used for food for the table. Only rich farmers, unlike my uncle can raise animals and keep them all their lives as pets. A farm must produce lots of healthy animals or crops in order to survive.
Now, there are fewer small farms. Most were put out of business by the big factory farms. The small farmer cannot afford to stay in business when forced into competition with big business. Thus the country loses the small caring farmers and the animals suffer at the hands of men only interested in their bottom line. And the list goes on with puppy mills and abuse of all types of animals and now we have to worry about our food supply with GMO foods and seeds.
But on a small scale my concern lies with our own communion of interests and our compassion for other people. Do we care about our fellow man whether he or she, may be of a different race or color, or someone that does not think the same way we do? Or are we such bullies for our cause that the feelings of other people do not count? Can we share a deeper understanding of our fellow man and realize that people who eat meat are not vile or evil, wicked or horrible people and that most people share the same feelings and concerns about animal welfare as we do, and feel the same frustations in dealing with the problem.
We are in this world together and nobody gets out of this world alive. Sure there are people that say hurtful and demeaning things about others, but I have always felt it is better to take the high road, as in not being a hateful person and realizing that this behavior is not worth listening to or fighting against, for if I do jump in the arguement my behavior will be as cruel and hurtful as theirs and I will not win any rewards for bad behavior and I will be no better than they are.
However, on a high note if I understand not everyone is the same and thank goodness we are not, for what a boring world that would be. And if I try to share my beliefs in a encouraging and positive way, more folks will see the benefits of lifestyle changes and become supporters for the cause.
I found an interesting article that you might wish to read that gives a look at both sides of the issues that seem to divide people. The web link is: http://www.reasonpapers.com/pdf/03/rp_3_2.pdf
It is called A Critique of Moral Vegetarianism, by Michael Martin. I found the article is very detailed and informative in a positive way and gives one a sense of knowledge that could bind the differences between us, ending the need for insulting offensive behavior.