Monthly Archives: December 2013

Mercy for the Utterly Helpless Seems Too Much to Ask

During the summer I had to have a plaster cast on a leg and went to hospital several times for it to be changed.

The Plaster Room is usually a fairly subdued place, but on one occasion it was quite distressingly different. There was the general bustle of activity, the noise of harmless circular saws and – on this unusual day – several very young children being treated for arm or leg injuries.

It was not so much the children’s screaming as their terrified pleading for their mothers’ protection – seemingly unsuccessfully – that was so upsetting.

The children were being hurt and scared without anything they could do about it. The adults all knew they would come to no harm, but young children could not understand that. The terror of their utter helplessness would move anyone to tears.

And my thoughts have since turned to others, like lambs or calves in abattoirs. They, too, are hurt, terrified and utterly helpless. And, as we know, for them there is no happy ending.

I do not know why decent people will not stop inflicting pain and appalling distress upon other sentient creatures just because they like to eat them.

Mercy for the helpless seems too much to ask, despite British people having full knowledge of what they do and the dire consequences for other beings.

So that day in the hospital Plaster Room made my mind up for me: we need to grow as much meat in labs as soon as we can, so we will stop inflicting terror and pain on the utterly helpless.