A few days ago now I put a posting up on Facebook that was the text of speech given by a 10 year old girl to her classmates and teachers. (Text is included at the base of this blog.) It was by any account a remarkable composition from one so young, not so much in its construction as in its content. It basically explained to any listener the salient points that could (should?) persuade any compassionate person of the reasons they might wish to choose a meat free diet. But even more stunningly, it went on to hint at some of the ecologically devastating effects of factory meat farming and provide a logic for any thinking person to choose a meat free diet. The speech was brought to my attention by Sharon who had found it proudly displayed on the blog page of the girl's mother, who happens to be a well known vegan food blogger and recipe book author. We were both hugely impressed, firstly because (as the surrounding dialogue in the blog revealed) the subject of the speech was quite clearly one of her own choosing; and secondly because using her own straightforward language, this 10 year old had managed to distil the essence of the greatest threat facing our world at this moment in time. It's an issue that most people are completely oblivious to; or if they are aware of it, they conveniently assume that they are powerless to impact upon it. In a nutshell, it's this. The meat production industry uses an inconceivable amount of precious resources to fuel our habitualised need for the flesh of harmless and innocent creatures. It is directly responsible for the consumption of colossal quantities of fresh water, the production of billions of gallons of pollutants, the destruction of vast tracts of rainforest, and the relentless production of ozone harming gases that make the exhaust emissions of all the vehicles on the planet pale into insignificance. Global warming, climate change, pollution of the oceans, extinction of species and many other ills which threaten our existence can be traced to our totally unwarranted fixation with the need for meat in our diet. The meat production industry is simply the single biggest factor imperiling life on earth and it will be the cause of our annihilation. This is known FACT. This ten year old knows about this and cared enough to want to share that message with her schoolmates and teachers. For my part, I too care enough to want to share that message, and I have already tried to convince my readership of the need to abandon meat (AND fish) eating on emotional grounds. She beat me to the punch in moving on to the logical, scarier reasons. But we do need to wake up to just what a devastating impact the pursuance of a carnivorous lifestyle has upon the world at large. So I chose to place her speech on all three Facebook pages I have control over, namely my personal page, the Some Dogs Are Angels page and the Angels in Canada page. Between them, there is a potential readership of 1,000+, and if you know anything about the way Facebook works, the message in the speech could have been seen by many more friends of friends of the pages. But this didn't satisfy me. I actually believe that in many respects, this girl was/is a better messenger than me, at least in so far as she does not carry with her the (potentially) off-putting status of being an open channel for the etheric, and the connotations of weirdness that attach! So I asked friends/page fans to 'share' the posting of the speech, knowing the amazing exponential growth of readership this can potentially bring about. Then I sat back and waited... Statistical analysis of the pages tells me that the posting reached one hundred and three people. It was read by twenty one and liked by nine of them; but only three people felt able to share the posting. (Thank you those three people who shared, whoever you are. I sincerely appreciate it.) To say that I was disappointed would be an understatement. I really believed that people might be won over by an 'out of the mouths of babes' philosophy. I thought that sharing the heartfelt outpourings of one so young would be a totally acceptable request to make. Clearly I was being naive. I hadn't (but should have) anticipated that even the words of a ten year old would be perceived of as a vegan diatribe which people don't empathise with because it is at odds with their own dietary choices and lifestyle. Well, that's the way it goes. I wasn't offended from an ego perspective. What shocked me most about the pitiful response to the posting was that clearly people didn't care enough about the message to share it. But here's the problem. It is perhaps important for the reader to remember that I am a messenger for the etheric and this message is one that they say needs to be gotten out there. What we all need to realise is that we are actually amidst a fight for our survival on this planet and incomprehensible though it may be, our choices over our foodstuffs is at the very heart of the battle. If compassion alone does not move people to review what they decide to eat, then there is a need to do a little research about the damage we inflict upon ourselves through ignorance, carelessness or sheer indifference. This blog contains some grim truths. If you can bring yourself to accept them, then perhaps you will also understand why in this case, sharing is caring. We all need to recognise that if we are not part of the solution, we are part of the problem. But the problem cant even be understood until we all know about it. THE SPEECH Good morning / afternoon teachers and fellow students! Raise your hand if you eat meat or dairy. Raise your hand if you think you have to eat meat and dairy to be healthy. My name is Bridget, and today I’m going to share 3 important reasons not to eat meat and dairy: our health, the environment, and animals. Meat and dairy are not good for us like people think. Studies have shown that our biggest health problems are linked to eating meat and dairy – including heart disease, diabetes, and some cancers. We don’t need to eat meat or dairy, we can get all the nutrition we need in other foods like vegetables, fruits, beans, and grains. Not only can you be healthier without eating meat and dairy, it is also better for our environment, and kinder to animals that share our world. In order for us to eat meat and dairy, animals have to be raised in factory farms. These are not farms with grass and sunshine. Instead, animals are kept in buildings that are factories, and people are cruel to the animals. Animals suffer and are tortured every day of their lives on these farms. On milk farms, baby cows are even torn away from their moms so the mommy cows can produce milk. If they don’t produce enough milk they kill the cows. The baby cows never see their mothers again. Eating meat and milk products is also bad for our environment. We all want to do things like recycle, and use less water to help our environment. But, the one thing that makes the MOST difference? How much meat and dairy we eat. Consider this: skipping just one burger saves enough water to drink for 3 months! Chickens, pigs, and cows feel and love just the same as animals like cats and dogs. They bond with other animals, and with people too. They value their lives just as much as we do, and they feel pain just as we do. If people treated our cats and dogs the way cows and chickens are treated on factory farms, they would be arrested! Yet, we eat these animals every day, but we would never imagine eating our dog or cat. I have been raised without meat and dairy. I’m healthy, happy, and just like other kids. I eat pizza, hot dogs, burgers, ice cream, and so many other delicious foods, without any meat or milk! Every time we make a choice not to eat animals, it helps our health, our planet, and the animals. Please think about this. Thank you.