Whenever I read of the intense zeal of animal rights advocates or legislation being passed on behalf of their cause, I cannot help but sense something abnormal in their avid devotion to these lower life forms.
In light of the lack of legislation protecting the unborn child -- and inadequate laws regarding child abuse and neglect -- I can come to only one conclusion: These zealots suffer from a severe case of misplaced priorities.
The Biblical Perspective
However, animal rights activists generally fail to discern between the value of human life and that of a beast: that "there is one kind of flesh of men, another flesh of beasts ..." (1 Corin 15:39)
Scripture teaches that man is valued above beasts. (Heb 12:20; 2 Pet 2:12; Jude 10) "Ye are of more value than many sparrows." (Lk 12:7, Mat 6:26) God gave man dominion over animals (Gen 1:26, 28). They were created for our pleasure (Rev 4:11); but we are not to exalt "the creature more than the Creator." (Rom 1:25)
Fur, Leather & Ivory
It took many animal skins to make the 75-foot by 45-foot covering for the tabernacle in the wilderness (Exodus 25:5; Numbers 4:8-14)! Leather was also used in the construction of armor (1 Sam 17:4-7, 40, 49; Judg 20:16; 2 Ki 3:25) and for containers, particularly for wine because the skins would expand when the wine fermented (Gen 21:14-19; Judg 4:19; Josh 9:4, 13; Lk 5:37, 38; Job 32:19). Solomon's throne was of ivory, from the tusks of elephants. (I Ki 10;18).
Vegetarianism and Diet
David killed a bear (1 Sam 17:36); Paul killed a serpent (Acts 28:3); and Jesus ate fish (Jn 21:10-13). He multiplied and then offered the same to his disciples to eat (Mat 14:19).
In his writings St. Paul made it clear that dietary injunctions for religious purposes, as a means of obtaining favor with God, are obsolete. Food "commendeth us not to God." (1 Cor 8:8); those who rely upon such legalism as a means of pleasing God, he said, are "weak" in faith, not holier for it! (Rom 14:2, 3) They "depart from the faith ... [and] command to abstain from meats, which God hath created ... nothing is to be refused if it be received with thanksgiving." (1 Tim 4:1-5)
Confinement and Training of Animals
Bought and sold as possessions (Gen 47:17), they were also used as a means of trade. There is nothing wrong with typing them up (Mat 21:2; Ps 32:9), disciplining them with whips (Prov 26:3) or keeping them confined to a cage (Jer 5:27). How else might one expect an ox to pull a plow, except by use of a harness?
Scores of scriptures refer to Old Testament sacrifices which required the slaying of beasts. (Lev 17:11) Indeed, "without the shedding of blood there is no remission of sin." (Heb 9:22) Jacob's sacrifice of fruit was rejected; his brother offered the firstborn of his flock, and was accepted of God. (Gen 4:2, 3)
Gross incongruities can still be seen. Pro-lifers objecting to the slaughtering of innocent babies are arrested and receive exorbitant fines. The media portray them as extremists of the worst breed. When animal rights advocates don tree branches, throw deer meat at hunters, and place themselves in the line of fire, they are depicted as compassionate and committed lovers of life.
Since the mollusk and snail have been added to Wisconsin's list of threatened and endangered species, accidentally stepping on one is punishable by a $2,000 fine. According to a page-one story in The Milwaukee Journal Jan 26, 1990, purposely injuring these little buggers can cost $5,000 and nine months in prison!
Having a concern for animal welfare is honorable. But for a society to provide better protection for animals than for those of its "own kind" borders on idiocy.
Abortionists in this country deliberately snuff out the life of the unborn, 4,000 per day, one every 20 seconds. We do not call them criminals, but "physicians." The hunter who steps on a snail loses his license yet the "doctor" who commits abortion, and does it for a living, keeps his? The unborn have virtually no defense -- within the womb or the courtroom!
Animal rights activists will go to great extremes to pursue their goals, even at the expense of human welfare. For example. in a June 25, 1991 cover story on the northern spotted owl, Time magazine reported that if environmental extremists have their way, hundreds of millions of dollars in lost revenue an wages would occur as a result of mill closings in the Northwest: 30,000 jobs over the next 10 years! Not such a wise move.
"Save our saplings," read one woman's sign as she picketed against the timber industry. What would it take to get you dressed up like a tree as she did? To protect the wise owl, they make fools of themselves. They save the trees and kill their kids.
If it is wrong to wear fur or leather because these were once part of a living organism, then neither should we eat vegetables, for the same reason. Further, if there is no differentiation between human and animal life, neither should there be between animals and insects (is it wrong to kill a cockroach?), or plant life ... or viruses?
Serious questions arise. Shall man cease all efforts to develop a means of destroying the AIDS virus, also a living organism, and obligate ourselves, rather, to ensuring the virus an environment conducive to its growth, and help it thrive? One can easily see the irrational conclusions that must be drawn from such a crooked line of thought.
"Animal rights"? Where in the Constitution do we read anything of beasts? Animals lack the mentality ("Be not as the horse or mule, which hath no understanding," Psa 32:9) to appreciate, or exercise, "rights" as we know them. (They kill and rape each other all the time.) Otherwise, why aren't they out there picketing?
Copyright © 1989 Diane S. Dew
None of us has all the answers. But we know Someone who does!
© Copyright 1992 Diane S. Dew All Rights Reserved
Diane Dew o PO Box 340945
o Milw WI 53234