Please Take Action to Help Captive Elephants

The plight of elephants and indeed other wild animals confined and exploited in zoos is so sad and unnecessary. Worldwide there are approximately  15,000 to 20,000 elephants held captive, mostly for entertainment in zoos and circuses. These animals live miserable lives, often alone like Mali the elephant who holds her tail for comfort, like Mali many are abused and neglected without proper medical care and attention. Without exception all wish to be free as nature intended.

Below there are a number of actions you can take to help captive elephants, please take as many of these actions as you can.

Firstly please sign and share the following petitions to help at least two elephants confined in zoos who lead lonely miserable lives:

“HELP TRANSFER SUFFERING & LONELY MALI TO BLES SANCTUARY. PLEASE HELP MAKE IT HAPPEN BY SIGNING & SHARING (OR RE-SHARING)THIS PETITION”

SHE IS SO LONELY, SHE HOLDS HER TAIL FOR COMFORT. PLEASE HELP MALI THE LONELIEST ELEPHANT IN THE WORLD.

Lonely Mali was stolen from her close-knit loving family in Sri Lanka while she was still nursing. For almost 40 YEARS Mali has been confined to a barren concrete enclosure and denied the company of other elephants, which is essential to her emotional and mental well being.

Please read more and sign and share:
http://www.thepetitionsite.com/takeaction/841/626/994/

Read More About Mali:

Mali the Lonely Elephant Holds Her Own Tail for Comfort
http://www.care2.com/causes/mali-the-lonely-elephant-holds-her-own-tail-for-comfort.html

The Bronx Zoo, Release Happy the Elephant to a Sanctuary!

Unfortunately her name belies her situation, happy is most certainly not happy:

Happy, an Asian elephant, is one of the loneliest elephants in the U.S. She is 45 years old, and has been without a companion of her own species for 10 years.

“Please sign this petition to urge the Bronx Zoo to release Happy to the Tennessee Elephant Sanctuary.”

Please read more ,sign and share the petition
http://www.thepetitionsite.com/551/210/358/the-bronx-zoo-release-your-three-elephants-to-sanctuary-no-more-zoos/

More Petitions and other actions

Melha Shrine Circus: Go Animal-Free Again!

The Melha Shrine Circus made a very smart, progressive, and humane decision in 2016 to remove animals from their circus, but unfortunately they have decided to bring elephants and tigers back this year.

Please read more, sign and share the petition:
http://www.thepetitionsite.com/633/576/253/melha-shrine-circus-go-animal-free-again/

Elephants have been held in captivity for more than 4,000 years beginning in the Indus Valley. Since that time elephants have been take from their natural environment and trained, used as labour and exploited as entertainment in zoos and circuses.

“Around the world there exist between 15,000-20,000 captive elephants and the circumstances for most of them are abysmal.”

You can read more about the history of their captivity and their use and abuse by clicking the link below:

Traditions, use & abuse
https://www.elephantvoices.org/elephants-in-captivity-7.html

Take More Action

Please take the following actions:

You might also like to sign the elephant charter, open to signatures of Friends of Elephants, which is members of the public who care about elephants, Elephant biologists who are scientists whose profession involves or has involved the study of elephants and “Elephant Professionals who are individuals whose profession involves or has involved the care, medical treatment, protection, conservation, legal defense of elephants, advocacy for elephants or education about elephants.”

Please everyone sign the Elephant charter:
http://www.theelephantcharter.info/index.php/signatories

Please take as much of the recommended action included in the same website:

What YOU can do
https://www.elephantvoices.org/support-now/what-you-can-do-support-now-70.html

Related Links
Elephants In Zoos Don’t Do Well

“For every elephant born in a U.S. zoo, on average two others die”:

Read More:
https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/animal-emotions/201212/elephants-in-zoos-dont-do-well

Innocent Prisoners

“…there were over 40 elephants currently housed alone in zoos, circuses and private facilities across Europe.”

If you have not the time to read the article please watch the video. Just so sad and depressing to see this poor elephant entirely alone without the companionship of her own kind


Read More:
http://www.bornfree.org.uk/campaigns/zoo-check/captive-wildlife-issues/elephants-in-captivity/

A Vote For The Tories is a Vote For Fox Hunting And Badger Culling (Massacre) June 8th Vote Labour!

When you list all the reasons why you should not vote Tory it seems inconceivable to me that many people are about to grant them five more years of power to destroy our lives!!!!!

All potential Tory Voters: If you don’t care about losing the NHS to privatisation, or are not concerned about the shocking treatment of disabled people such as denying disability benefit to 165,000 of our sick and disbaled and a £30 cut each week in benefits , the rise in food banks, the bedroom tax, low pay, zero hours, homelessness, cuts to education, increases in tuition fees and limitless austerity please at least think about what the Tories will do concerning our wildlife.

Please consider the following:

If the Tories gain power in addition to all the above, they will eventually try to repeal the fox-hunting ban and will most certainly continue their massacre of helpless badgers referred to as culling.

The Badger Cull (massacre)

Watch this lovely video of these amazing creatures as a mother her keeps an eye on her cub as they walk through a Bluebell carpeted wood.

Surely these creatures are worth saving?

Read More about the badger cull from Team Badger :

http://www.teambadger.org/

Team Badger need your help:

“We are looking for people to help with all aspects of Team Badger”
https://en-gb.facebook.com/TeamBadgerCoalition/

More information about the badger cull from the League Against Cruel Sports:
https://www.league.org.uk/badger-cull?gclid=COCPyZfL2tMCFRSeGwod60YJng

See also https://twitter.com/ally_wsm?lang=en for regular tweets concerning badgers, also graphics to use in our fight to keep the Tories from murdering these innocent defenceless animals who are a part of the countryside, living feeling sentient beings who enjoy life as much as any other animal including you or your cat or dog. Badgers have a right to life and should not be killed by the Tories or any other person simply because they are perceived as an inconvenience in the exploitation of another species, namely cattle, to satisfy the insatiable greed to acquire wealth and to consume a food – meat and milk – that is not natural.

Fox hunting – hunting with dogs

Along with the continuation of the badger massacre (cull) a Tory government will make another attempt to repeal the fox hunting ban

From the League Against Cruel Sports

THE HUNTING ACT IS UNDER THREAT

“There is a very real danger this election could deliver a pro-hunt majority in the House of Commons. This would be the very first time there has been a clear majority of pro-hunt MPs in Parliament since the Hunting Act was passed in 2004 – if we don’t stop it.

We have a matter of weeks to fight this.

Make no mistake – the hunt lobby will be doing everything they can to get pro-hunt MPs into power and destroy the landmark law protecting UK wildlife. They will stop at nothing to legalise the abhorrent cruelty of chasing terrified animals with packs of dogs and tearing them limb from limb.”

Please continue reading for more information:
https://www.league.org.uk/act-to-protect-the-hunting-act

Also check out their Twitter stream
https://twitter.com/LeagueACS?lang=en

A reminder of why fox hunting is a cruel and a wicked so called sport.

How can anyone kill these beautiful defenceless animals.

Do we really want a government comprised of people who wish to continue killing  wild animals for “sport” or profit?

A recent poll shows that 84% of British people want fox hunting to remain illegal. Opposition to hare hunting and deer hunting was even stronger, at 91% and 88% respectively.

The best way to ensure this is not to vote Tory on June 8th.

More information about fox hunting:

The League Against Cruel Sport
https://www.league.org.uk/fox-hunting

Hunt saboteurs Association
http://www.huntsabs.org.uk/

If re-elected, how many badgers and foxes will be killed over the next five years.

A few reminder of the horrors of fox hunting

At present Tory politicians and Teresa May are focused on winning the election. There is not much going on to campaign against this barbarity. However right now you can take the most important and most decisive action to stop the repeal of the fox hunting ban and the continued culling of badgers and that is not to vote Tory in the coming election. 

June 8th. VOTE LABOUR!  Our wildlife depends on it!

With the Tories gone the badger cull would be over and the ban on fox hunting would remain in place.

Save badgers, foxes, and other wild life  Vote Labour June 8th

Vote Labour for a more compassionate fair society for us all, both human and non human animals.

A Tory Vote is a Vote For Poverty: Food Banks

A vote for the Tories is a vote for more Foodbanks.

Today in the sixth richest country thousands of people will go hungry, including children.

Why? The reason people are so desperate they need to go to food banks is as a result of poverty as a consequence of low pay and brutal cuts to benefits. Under the last seven years of Tory government the use of food banks has increased at an alarming rate. According to the The Trussell Trust the reasons for food bank referrals were benefit delays, low income and changes to benefits. Back in October research by Oxford University reported the following: “For every ten sanctions applied in each quarter of the year, on average five more adults would be referred to foodbanks in the area.”

Areas where Universal Credit with a six week waiting period has been introduced has seen double the use of food banks. School holidays leave 3 million children at risk of hunger  A report by a cross party group of MPs has cited “evidence of children existing on holiday diets of crisps, hungry youngsters unable to take part in a football tournament because “their bodies simply gave up”, and others surviving on stodgy, unhealthy diets “bought to fill hungry stomachs”.”The report said those at risk of hunger over the summer include more than 1 million children who receive free school meals during term time, and 2 million more with working parents who are still in poverty.”
Read More:
https://www.theguardian.com/society/2017/apr/24/school-holidays-leave-3-million-children-at-risk-of-hunger-report-says

Tracey had to use #foodbanks because her Universal Credit was delayed

The Trussell Trust runs a network of over 400 food banks, giving emergency food and support to people in crisis across the country. During the last year they gave 1,109,309 three day emergency food supplies to hungry people in the UK. Of this number, 436,938 went to children.

Here are the latest figures:
https://www.trusselltrust.org/2017/04/25/uk-foodbank-use-continues-rise/

The numbers of people who receive help with food could be higher as there are other food banks run by churches, faith groups and other charities.

Here are just three examples

Barnabas Centre Strewsbury:
http://www.barnabascommunityprojects.org/foodbank.html

Claremont Parish Church in the Glasgow area
http://www.claremontparishchurch.co.uk/connect/ek-community-food-bank/

This food bank in Greater Manchester supplies food for longer than three days in cases where this is required:
http://lchaimfoodbank.co.uk/index.php

Also the Salvation Army and the Red Cross provide food and other essentials.

It is important to note that the Trussell Trust  food banks supply only three days of emergency food, what happens to people who suffer chronic food shortage I have yet to find out though some of the other food banks may well supply food for a longer period.

Here are the real people, people who go without food when the supermarkets are stocked to access and food is thrown away.

Hunger is back in the UK , for the first time since the establishment of the welfare state larger numbers of ordinary people are turning to charity to provide food for themselves and their families. The next video was published in 2012, since than nothing has changed for the better, the situation is increasing worse with a continuing rise in poverty and hunger here in the UK and consequently the necessity of food banks.

Three and a half million parents go hungry so they can feed their children. One million people in our country are living is destitution. A mixture of welfare reform, high rents and poverty pay are forcing people to use food banks. Also according to the video below 2.2 million people were sanctioned back in 2015. Sanctions in some cases may be for long periods of times, as long as six months to three years!

The truth of the matter is Tory polices have driven people into dire poverty , if they are elected again for a further five years more and more people will suffer. If you vote conservative on June the 8th you will be condoning one of the greatest of social injustices, and that is taking from vulnerable people including children the right to have adequate food which is a basic human right. For people to go hungry, even starve in a rich country such as the UK were the shelves of thousands of supermarkets are crammed with food, a lot of which if not sold is thrown away, is a moral outrage.

A vote for the conservatives is a vote for poverty hunger and deprivation – June the 8th Vote Labour
https://www.thecanary.co/2017/04/25/woman-using-food-banks-breaks-live-tv-i-need-let-nation-know-like/

Related Links

Student nurse slams Theresa May’s ‘disgraceful’ food bank comments
https://socialistworker.co.uk/art/44519/Student+nurse+slams+Theresa+Mays+disgraceful+food+bank+comments

Food banks have tragically become a normal way of life as 3.8 MILLION UK workers live in poverty:
http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/food-banks-tragically-become-normal-9420952

Charity reveals staggering rise in foodbank referrals in Lincoln
http://thelincolnite.co.uk/2017/04/foodbank-charity-reveals-staggering-rise-in-foodbank-referrals-in-lincoln/

Don’t Vote Tory If You Value Our NHS

“The NHS will last as long as there are folk left with faith to fight for it”
Aneurin Bevan

I am still reeling over a shock announcement that a snap general election has been called.    My greatest concern is for the NHS, anyone thinking of voting Tory will in effect be sanctioning the dismantling of the finest institution that Britain has.

At a recent demonstration over cuts to the NHS  Jeremy Corbyn urged tens of thousands of demonstrators to “defend the NHS with all of your might”. “Defending the NHS is defending a basic human value and a basic human right. “You don’t walk by on the other side when somebody is in difficulties or needing help.”

“The NHS is in crisis, in crisis because of the underfunding in social care and the people not getting the care and support they need.

“There are those waiting on trolleys and those who are desperate to get into an A&E department waiting hours for treatment.

“It is not the fault of the staff. It is the fault of a Government who have made a political choice.”

Len McCluskey, general secretary of the Unite union, tweeted: “I’m marching because I am furious. Tories destroying the greatest gift the people of this country have created”

In this coming election in just five weeks vote as though your life depends on it, because without the NHS your very life and the lives of all those you love may well depend on the action you take on election day.

Don’t be fooled by Tory lies, the Tories want to privatise our NHS. The Tories are not a party for working people, they never have been and never will be and will put the interests of business over those of the vast majority. There is huge profit to be made from private health care but always at the expense of the average person. Keep in mind that the Tories voted against the formation of the NHS. The Tories are now chipping away at the NHS by increments, bit by bit, cut by cut.

“The 2012 Health and Social Care Act was clearly designed to carve the NHS open for privatisation. Meanwhile a number of other Tory policies such as budget cuts, the forced closure of dozens of A&E units and maternity wards,  driving young people away from studying towards careers in the health service by scrapping bursaries and conducting an ideological war with junior doctors and deporting non-EU NHS workers for the “crime” of not earning above £35,000 per year all look designed to put the service under such severe strain that they can offer up privatisation and American style health insurance as the solution.”

Please continue reading
Why do people who like the NHS vote Tory?
http://anotherangryvoice.blogspot.co.uk/2016/06/why-do-people-who-like-nhs-vote-tory.html

Under the Tory government here are some of the detrimental changes that have taken place to our NHS

There are now 3.9 million people on NHS waiting lists

1.8 million people wait four hours or more in A&E including this baby:

Note this is not the fault of NHS staff, it is the fault of the Tory government’s cuts including hospital closures.

One in four patients have to wait a week or more to see their GP
http://www.labour.org.uk/index.php/nhs-campaign 

There are now 6000 fewer mental health nurses than in 2010 despite Theresa May claim the Tories will improve mental health care.

“The number of mental health nurses working in the NHS has dropped by almost a sixth since the Conservatives came to power in 2010, figures show.

The revelation has sparked fresh doubt that government pledges to improve mental health services are being matched by progress at the NHS frontline.

Philip Dunne, the health minister, has admitted in a written parliamentary answer that while there were 45,384 mental health nurses working in England in 2010, there were just 38,774 in July this year.”

Read More:
https://www.theguardian.com/society/2016/nov/01/number-mental-health-nurses-nhs-drops-sixth-tories

Anyone still in any doubt concerning the Tories track record for the NHS read on

“As an A&E consultant I have a to tell you that Tories are underfunding and destroying our

NHS Crisis: Medical Staff Share Fears Of Conservative 2017 General Election Victory”

Read More:

NHS Crisis: Medical Staff Share Fears Of Conservative 2017 General Election Victory
http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/nhs-crisis-public-duty-hashtag_uk_59005305e4b0af6d7189aa3f?utm_campaign=NHS_Hunt_huffpostUK

A selection of tweets with the following hashtag #publicduty

A nurse exposes the state of the NHS under the Tories. And it’s heartbreaking. [VIDEO]

“Vote for the NHS

Whether directly or indirectly, NHS workers are warning that a Conservative victory in the upcoming general election will be the end of our health service

… a win for the Tories would certainly embolden their privatisation agenda – which they’ve previously sought to keep under the radar. In recent years, the party has deliberately set the NHS up to crash and burn, so the private sector can swoop in and ‘save the day’. Statistics show just how much the Conservatives have defunded our health service:”

Read More:
https://www.thecanary.co/2017/04/27/a-nurse-exposes-the-state-of-the-nhs-under-the-tories-and-its-heartbreaking-video/

Under the Tories privatisation has risen by a staggering 76% which amounts to £48bn of our NHS handed to private health. If Elected Labour will eradicate this. Private medicine has one main goal and that is profit, profit will always come before the patient.

On June 8th vote Labour your very life may well depend on it, a vote for the Tories is a vote to end the NHS. 

Related Link

A VOTE FOR THE TORIES MEANS A VOTE TO DESTROY THE NHS
http://www.eclecticblue.org.uk/a-vote-for-the-tories-means-a-vote-to-destroy-the-nhs/

 

 

Anguish: Ewe Mourns The Death of Her Lamb

“Sheep are able to experience emotions such as fear, anger, rage, despair, boredom, disgust, and happiness.”
 Dr. Isabelle Veissier et al., Animal Welfare1

The engraving below is entitled Anguish (Angoisses) 1879 artist Unknown, after August Friedrich Albrecht Schenck

The following is the original painting  (c. 1878) August Friedrich Albrecht SCHENCK

True benevolence, or compassion, extends itself through the whole of existence and sympathizes with the distress of every creature capable of sensation.
Joseph Addison (1672-1719) (English essayist, poet, playwright and politician)

When I first saw the engraving above, I had not up until then seen the painting,  I was profoundly moved, the artist has captured the anguish of the grieving ewe at the death of her tiny lamb.

Detail from the painting Auguish

Standing in the bleak snowy landscape of winter with large back birds (crows) waiting to devour the flesh of her newborn her sorrow is palpable. I find that in fact the engraving more keenly portrays the bleakness of despair than the painting.

I mostly appreciate art for aesthetic reasons but since seeing this work anguish most certainly conveys a meaningful message, particularly in view of the time of year and the recent death from exposure, pneumonia and hyperthermia of an estimated million tiny lambs here in the UK.

Schenck 1828 – 1901 was known for his paintings of animals, many of which were thought to be allegorical .

In Anguish, Schenck has given his distraught ewe an expression suggestive of despair mingled with stoic determination. Recognizing these decidedly human responses, the viewer might be expected to identify immediately with the animal’s grim predicament. The ewe’s bravery in the face of the threat posed by the murderous circle of crows is perhaps, however, somewhat overstated in her defiant stance above the bleeding lamb.

There is little subtlety evident in this work. Although Anguish has a sentimental quality, Schenck did not intend this to be overt. Indeed, his sincerity in portraying the nobility in animals was not lost on his contemporaries, with a critic for Le Figaro describing the artist in 1878 as ‘One of our finest animal painters. He is one of those originals of the species not yet extinct who prefer dogs to men and find more sweetness in sheep than women’. This is by no means a derogatory statement, but is, rather, a testament to Schenck’s abilities as a painter. Interestingly, if we accept that there is an anthropomorphic quality in Anguish, then the surreal massing of the crows may well be Schenck’s method of alluding to the inhumanity prevalent in society

Read More:
http://www.ngv.vic.gov.au/explore/collection/work/4344/ –  Incidentally I don’t see the “stoic determination” only the despair.

Here is a philosophical interpretation:

“A mother has just lost her child; it is winter, and there’s no food. She knew he was in danger, she tried to feed him, she tried to keep him safe but in the end, after yet another bitter night, he succumbed. Her grief feels all the more real, all the more like ours, for being inarticulate and wordless; pure anguish. The crows are unbearably cruel. They gather when another is in agony; they sense the opportunity opened up by the problems of others. They are like the people we most fear – those who like it when we are miserable. The scene reminds us of a possibility we glimpse perhaps only in our own worst moments: that we won’t always be able to protect what we love, our children, our homes, our dignity… That they might win.”

Read More:
http://thephilosophersmail.com/virtues/painting-alleviates-anguish/

While the above perspectives treat this mostly as a metaphor for Human anguish and despair such of course can be manifest in animals, and sheep have emotions similar to our own.

Consider the following:

Sheep are capable of compassion and will help others even those of another species

Jeffery Massom in this book ‘The pig who Sang to the moon’ tells the story of Rammo, ” a macho two-year old Ramouillet ram” who formed a special and compassionate bond with Whisper, a cow who was born blind.

“Rams tend to be loners, and he was a pretty tough ram, so it seemed unusual that he would take up with a blind member of another species. But he did”

“He would graze next to her all day and guide her about the field, making certain she did not bump into the fence or posts…When she had a calf , Shout, sired by an Angus bull, Rammo behaved paternally toward the young animal, more so than even to his own offspring, several bouncy lambs. Whisper lived to be four years and than died in 1996 of a viral infection. Rammo mourned her a long time, standing by her dead body, calling and calling.”

Sheep grieve for their loved ones

10 Things Most People Don’t Know About Sheep

“Research has shown that many animals grieve for their lost loved ones, but did you know that sheep do too? When they lose someone they love, it can completely shake their world and leave them feeling lost and unsettled for months. Sheep have been known to cry out for their lost friends and family in a desperate attempt to understand why they are no longer here.”
http://www.care2.com/causes/10-things-most-people-dont-know-about-sheep.html

Sheep fall in love and have best friends

(A) study showed that ewes fall in love with rams, have best friends and feel desolate when those close to them die or are sent for slaughter. The discovery could have important implications for the way farm animals are treated.
Jonathan Leake, Science Edito

So it can be established that sheep are capable of grief, therefore it is reasonable that the artist was actually portraying the anguish of the sheep and there was in fact no philosophical implication relating to human beings as such, though of course it can be implied. I am not inclined to accept artistic interpretations if they do not originate from the artist his or herself.

http://www.ngv.vic.gov.au/school_resource/art-start/image-bank/august-friedrich-schenck/

Maybe the art should be taken at face value which may be to convey the agony/anguish of a ewe for her dead lamb.

Personally I rather like this description with the exception of the reference to sheep being the humble servants of man:

” All the world to-day regards Schenck as one of our first animal-painters. He is one of those originals, of a species not yet extinct, who prefer dogs to men, and finds more sweetness in sheep than in women. With such fancies one leaves the city for the fields, and has only to do with animals. Our artist has taken this part after having profoundly studied his fellow-creatures. Retired to Ecouen, to a farm, he lives in the midst of oxen, dogs, goats, asses, horses and sheep of all types, races, and species ; cares for them, cultivates them, loves them, and above all studies them, as never artist studied his models. He knows better than any one their habitual behavior, their favorite poses, their preferred attitudes, and the mobile play of their physi- ognomies. By means of studying closely the joys and griefs of these’ modest companions and humble servants of man, he has penetrated the inmost recesses of their souls, which he knows how to show us in pictures of striking truth. His animals’ heads are portraits particularized with all the care which Cabanel, Uubufe, and Bonnat gave to the human mask. The picture which he exhibits to-day under the title of ‘Angoisses, ‘ is pathetic to the last degree. A lamb is wounded, lying on the ground, losing its blood, which pours out of a” horrible wound. The ravens, with their infallible instinct, scent the approaching death, and await their prey; their sinister circle is closed in, — the unfortunate little beast cannot escape them. The mother is- there ; she comprehends it, the poor creature ! the fate which awaits her dear nursling, and broken-hearted, full of anguish [it is the title of the picture, and it is just], she bleats for the shepherd who comes not. It is a little drama, this picture, and as poignant as if it had men for actors and victims.”

Reference:

Catalogue of Mr. H.L. Dousman’s gallery of valuable paintings
by George A. Leavitt & Co

Published 1884

https://archive.org/stream/b1494157/b1494157_djvu.txt  or https://archive.org/details/b1494157

Below another poignant painting by the same artist entitled The Orphan. Below is a print of this painting.

A similar subject but in reverse the Orphan Lamb left to fend for his or herself.

His animals’ heads are veritable portraits. In the picture of The Orphan (which is a companion to Anguish, exhibited with it) the mother is dead or dying, and the ravens with their infallible instinct scent the soon-to-be carrion and close their sinister circle round the sheep and lamb. The poor living helpless lamb will hardly escape them. It is a tragedy, and as poignant as if it had a mother and child for actors and victims. There are few artists more popular than Schenck and we find the reflected judgment of the connoisseurs confirming the instantaneous verdict of the multitude.”

http://www.searlecanada.org/schenck/albertschenckdata03.html

Anguish and animal rights

While the whys and wherefores, interpretations, history and so on are all very interesting; it is the subject of the art that rings so true. Both paintings depict the despair and anguish of these creatures extremely well. According to this article the painting has also been called Agony and indeed the agony of fear and sorrow is expressed on the sheep’s face and indeed on the face of the orphaned lamb. Amazing art, so powerful, so moving.

The lot of sheep left to fend for themselves in the bleak cold uplands of the UK and elsewhere the worldover has changed very little. You can read in a previous entry about the suffering of sheep and lambs who die from exposure:
https://rantingsfromavirtualsoapbox.wordpress.com/2017/03/23/lambs-the-cruel-side-of-spring/

Tiny fragile lambs born too early as a result of human manipulation to ensure they are ready for Easter. Very much like the paintings, no shepherd comes.

Apparently in a very literal way a bird similar to crows; ravens, are harming/killing newborn lambs, yet another hazard to contend with. Hundreds of lambs die as a result of conservation gone wrong, even 10 to 12 ewes have died as a result of attacks by ravens.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2016/05/01/death-from-above-the-ravens-slaughtering-newborn-lambs/

Time to stop interfering with nature, time to bring an end to farming and the enormous suffering not only to sheep and their vulnerable lambs but all farmed animals of course.

More paintings dramatically depicting the hardship of sheep:

Above is a print of Lost: Souvenir of Auvergne (which may be a religious metaphor)

http://www.metmuseum.org/art/collection/search/437637

An unknown work

http://www.searlecanada.org/schenck/albertschenckdata24.html

Unfortunately there is not a lot of information about this artist or this series of paintings. Some of the information and graphics came from the following website:

http://www.searlecanada.org/schenck/albertschenckdata03.html

It Is Hard to Believe That People Can Be So Cruel: Fish Fights For His Last Breathe While Being Eaten Alive

“Fish are more intelligent than they appear. In many areas, such as memory, their cognitive powers match or exceed those of ‘higher’ vertebrates including non-human primates”
Culum Brown University of Edinburgh

Fish do not get a lot of sympathy in quite the same way as other animals, yet their lives are just as important. Fish are sentient creatures who suffer both physically and psychologically. The poor creature in the video below struggles vainly for breath, an horriffic way to die and as the article which follows says, it is the stuff off nightmares

Please watch the video which you are advised is difficult to watch.

“Fish Gasps for Air While Being Eaten Alive

BUT I JUST EAT FISH

Fish are tortured in so many ways from being cut apart alive on the fishing boats to being cut apart alive in restaurants…. DON’T TAKE PART IN THIS BARBARITY TO ANOTHER LIVING BEING…..Leave them and ALL Sea Life off of your plate!

The fish in this video isn’t the only animal who has had to live through this horror: Frogs, lobsters, octopuses, and other animals are eaten alive by humans all around the world.”

Please continue reading:

https://www.peta2.com/news/fish-gasps-air-eaten-alive/?utm_campaign=0317%20bi%20weekly%20recap%20march%20twenty%20six%20EA&utm_source=peta2%20E-Mail&utm_medium=Alert

Please take the actions suggested in the article including sending the message linked below to Urge legislators in California and New York to introduce laws that will stop restaurants from mutilating and serving live animals :
http://campaigns.peta2.com/restaurants-hack-apart-and-serve-live-octopuses-and-other-animals/

Fish are sentient creatures.

Watch Some Screams Can’t Be Heard

Fish feel pain and suffer psychological distress. Below is an excellent article by Marc Bekoff with links to numerous essays and studies which validate the fact that fish feel pain and are sentient beings like any other animal.

Science Shows Fish Feel Pain, So Let’s Get Over It and Do Something to Help These Sentient Beings

A set of essays in the new journal Animal Sentience concerning the question of whether fish feel pain is a must read. Fish are not mere streams of readily available unfeeling protein.

Continue reading:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/marc-bekoff/fish-feel-pain_b_8881656.html

If you don’t think fish are intelligent watch the following video. While I don’t condone making animals perform tricks this video nonetheless shows how intelligent fish are. Yes a fish is an animal. Obvious to most people right? Unfortunately there are those who do not consider fish to be an animal. I had a friend who insisted she was vegetarian regardless of the fact she ate fish. You could not convince her otherwise. A fish is an animal along with other aquatic creatures such as jelly fish, crustaceans and so on.  If you eat fish and other sea creatures you are neither a vegetarian nor a vegan. 

“Leading scientists are in agreement that fish feel pain. As biologist Victoria Braithwaite writes, “there is as much evidence that fish feel pain and suffer as there is for birds and mammals” – a conclusion hardly surprising to anyone who has seen a fish struggling and fighting for his or her life when pulled from the water.”

Read more and please take the pledge to go Vegan

Fish and Sea Animals
http://www.peta.org.uk/issues/animals-not-eat/fish/

Fish are intelligent animals who lead complex lives that rival those of your dog and other mammals.

Dolphins and whales are accepted without doubt as intelligent creatures, sensitive, aware, conscious: sentient. But what about other aquatic creatures, the myriad species of fish, 27000 in all, which is more than all vertebrate species combined, are they sentient? Approximately three new species of fish are discovered each week! And even more vast are the huge numbers of species of invertebrate creatures such as molluscs – Octopuses, squids, snails, slugs, do they possess sentience? The ocean is a vast habitat teeming with life, astronomical in number and diversity, creatures dwell even in the most inhospitable of environments.
Read more:
http://www.think-differently-about-sheep.com/Sentient%20Farm%20Animals%20Aquatic%20Animals%20Fish.htm

Stop the cruelty to fish and other aquatic animals and go vegan:
How to Go Vegan:
http://features.peta.org/how-to-go-vegan/

If you can’t resist the taste of sea food try vegan alternatives which taste much the same but are cleverly prepared and flavoured but do not contain the flesh of a dead animal.

Here is PETA’s  list of the best places in the UK where you can eat faux fish and chips and other Vegan sea food.
The UK’s Best Vegan Fish and Chip Spots:
http://www.peta.org.uk/blog/uk-best-vegan-fish-and-chip-spots/

Eating at home? Why not try  VBites  fish streak, fish cakes and fish fingers, these products and others may be available at Holland and Barrett in the refrigerator section or in any health food store. Yes they really do taste of fish, though frankly I have never been that keen on fish. Ever noticed the stench of fish at a market or a seaside town, not pleasant. The stench of death in one small fishing village in Scotland was so overpoweringly awful I never visited again. Over so many many years millions of sentient beings met their deaths here and out in the sea, caught in nets they were dragged aboard a fishing vessel and left to die gasping for air.

We do not need sea food to be healthy, we do not need the flesh or any other derivative from any animal, it is neither natural nor humane.

Credit fish graphic:
https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Barracuda_laban.jpg

Help Protect America’s Health Care

“It is my aspiration that health finally will be seen not as a blessing to be wished for, but as a human right to be fought for”
United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan

Please take the following actions concerning ObamaCare . Despite the fact that the House of Representatives has failed to pass the Obamacare repeal it is unlikely that this is the end of the matter.

Please read the information below and sign and share the petition. 

Lawmakers: Please Protect Our Health Care!

Despite recent defeats, Republicans on Capitol are not giving up on their quest to repeal the Affordable Care Act. Every proposal we’ve seen takes health care from millions of low-income families while giving billions in tax breaks to the wealthy and the health care industry.

The bottom line? Repealing the Affordable Care Act would harm millions of people in America and throw the U.S. health care system into disarray.

Please sign our petition urging lawmakers to vote NO on any bill that repeals the ACA without a plan that provides the same coverage and protections of the ACA.

Repeal would lead to higher premiums and out-of-pocket costs, and leave state governments to cover the cost of care for those who lose coverage. It would also jeopardize the availability of adequate, affordable coverage for people with pre-existing conditions like cancer, diabetes, and heart disease.

Sign this petition telling Congress to protect the health coverage and consumer protections that millions of Americans enjoy thanks to the Affordable Care Act (or Obamacare). 

http://www.thepetitionsite.com/takeaction/960/554/412/

TRUMPCARE VS. OBAMACARE

Americans don’t want to lose the benefits they have gained, and Republicans are hearing about it.

“…Obamacare, it turns out, has done a lot of good. It guarantees that people with preëxisting health conditions cannot be rejected by insurers or charged more than others. It has reduced the number of uninsured people by twenty million. It has increased access to primary care, specialty care, surgery, medicines, and treatment for chronic conditions. Patients are less likely to skip needed care because of the cost. As a result, according to studies conducted at Harvard, the A.C.A. is saving tens of thousands of lives each year.”

http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2017/03/06/trumpcare-vs-obamacare

Other actions you can take to remind republicans how you feel about Obamacare:

Keep the Pressure on Congress to Protect Our Health Care

“With House Republicans trying to revive their disastrous bill to repeal the Affordable Care Act, it’s time once again to remind lawmakers that we are paying attention.

Opponents in Congress were unable to repeal the law because the American people – along with a bipartisan majority in Congress – want to keep the law’s protections and key components. Members of Congress must hear this simple message: Do not take away our care. Stop trying to repeal the Affordable Care Act and cut Medicaid. Move on.”

Read More and take the suggested actions:
http://familiesusa.org/blog/2017/04/keep-pressure-congress-protect-our-health-care

Sending the following message from Familes USA may remind the Trump and republican leaders how you feel about the repeal of ObamaCare

Protect the Gains We Have Made Under The Affordable Care Act and Protect Health Coverage for Millions

This message asks President Trump and Republican leaders of the House and the Senate to protect the gains already made:

“Dear President Trump and Republican leaders of the House and the Senate:You have declared your intention to repeal or sabotage the Affordable Care Act. If you do, millions of people will lose their health insurance. You would return us to the days before Obamacare, when insurance companies could deny coverage to the sick and kick people off insurance if they ran up big bills.

It means turning back the clock to when fundamental benefits—like maternity care, prescription drugs, and mental health care—were not routinely covered, and women were charged higher premiums based solely on gender.”

Continue reading and please sign and share:
http://familiesusa.org/protect-americas-health-coverage

In my opinion health care is a basic human right. To provide care to those who need it regardless of ability to pay is surely the mark of a truly progressive society. It is shameful that one of the world’s richest countries does not provide it’s citizens with a universal system of health care. Progress has been made with Obamacare , it is vital that this progress is not undone by the warped ideology of the Trump administration.

It is interesting to compare health care in other countries.

Which country has the world’s best healthcare system?

We look at how patients pay for healthcare around the world and the general standard of care they might expect

https://www.theguardian.com/society/2016/feb/09/which-country-has-worlds-best-healthcare-system-this-is-the-nhs not all countries are mentioned.

List of countries with universal health care:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_with_universal_health_care

Health care should be available and free to every person, it should not be a commodity sold for profit. To leave anyone without medical attention when his or her life could be improved or saved is great social injustice.