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 The behavior of men and other animals

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Dick Stodghill
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Dick Stodghill

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Age : 94
Location : Akron, Ohio

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PostSubject: The behavior of men and other animals   The behavior of men and other animals EmptySat Sep 26, 2009 11:31 am

A Stodghill Says So blog:

The behavior of men and other animals HansvonLuck
A week or so ago I finished reading a book by a WWII German tank commander, Colonel Hans von Luck (above). Fittingly enough the 1989 book is titled Panzer Commander. Luck's luck was amazing. He survived battles from the invasion of Poland in 1939 to the final defense of Berlin in 1945. In between those dates he fought in France, Russia, North Africa and France a second time.
His is a fascinating story, yet for me the most memorable words were written by another German officer, Gerhard Bandomir. Regarding the huge Allied air raid on the German front line in Normandy he wrote: "Even a wild rabbit fled into our bunker, jumped into my arms, and drank quite petrified out of my coffee cup! He also chewed a hole in my sleeve."
Those words hit home for me. It's no secret that I feel great empathy for all the little creatures. They lead a hard life under the best of conditions. Predators, including humans, are always on the hunt for them. I have written many times about how upsetting it was for me to see how terrified all animals, large and small, were when a battle was taking place in their normally tranquil territory.
One sunny morning after a particularly vicious firefight in a barnyard I stood for a moment watching the tame rabbits in a pen. I did the same thing on other occasions. The rabbits showed no emotion, but were trembling uncontrollably. The exchange of gunfire hadn't bothered me; seeing the frightened rabbits did.
For a while I lay on my back in the warm sunlight thinking how horrible humans can be. Why were we doing this? The firefight had been exhilarating. Seeing innocent and helpless animals caught up in the slaughter for me was demoralizing.
While lying there I vowed I would never shoot at anything incapable of shooting back. Man against man is an even fight. Man against animal is not. That's one vow I have managed to keep all these years.
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Carol Troestler
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Carol Troestler

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PostSubject: Re: The behavior of men and other animals   The behavior of men and other animals EmptySat Sep 26, 2009 2:00 pm

Good post, Dick, and a good reminder.

Carol
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Betty Fasig
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PostSubject: Re: The behavior of men and other animals   The behavior of men and other animals EmptySat Sep 26, 2009 2:07 pm

Dear Dick,
I imagine that you and I see eye to eye about these things. My childhood was like a war to me. I saw such mean-ness, such disregard. I had no more control than the animals in the war. What small creatures baby humans are.

I try not to hurt a living thing, no matter how small.

Growing old and looking back, it is sometimes all a person can do to change the world a little bit. Not pass on the hurt. It is important.

Love,
Betty
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alice
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PostSubject: Re: The behavior of men and other animals   The behavior of men and other animals EmptySat Sep 26, 2009 7:02 pm

Good point, Dick.
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Phil Whitley
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Phil Whitley

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Location : Riverdale, GA

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PostSubject: Re: The behavior of men and other animals   The behavior of men and other animals EmptySat Sep 26, 2009 7:31 pm

I used to hunt a lot, but it was always for food. Not that we needed
it, but we ate what we killed. At around 18, I realized that I was now
hunting for sport and quit. I now hunt with a camera.
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dkchristi
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PostSubject: Re: The behavior of men and other animals   The behavior of men and other animals EmptySat Sep 26, 2009 7:40 pm

We need an NRA member to round out the opinions. I am anti gun in any form and believe if animals are hunted, it should be because they are needed for food.

Great Grampa lived in an Eastern European country as a teenager. They checked their guns at the constabulary who kept them cleaned and ready. In hunting season, they checked them out to hunt; and they only killed the meat they needed for their family. Then the guns were returned until the next season.
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Carol Troestler
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PostSubject: Re: The behavior of men and other animals   The behavior of men and other animals EmptySat Sep 26, 2009 7:53 pm

The Moosehunter, by Carol Troestler, from Now Is Once Upon a Time


We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time.
T.S. Elliot

Once upon a time, a young man and woman, Eric and Muriel, lived in a cabin by the shore of the river near a small village in the north. They were usually very happy together.

Each year during the warm season, Muriel prepared, seeded, cared for, and then harvested wonderful vegetables from her beautiful garden rimmed with lovely flowers. She worked very hard and her garden grew beautifully. What vegetables her family did not eat, she sold to others in the village and preserved others for her family’s use during the winter.

Eric was a moose hunter. He also seemed to work hard as he went out early each morning and came back at night very tired. The only problem was that he never caught a moose. Now catching a moose is not an easy task, but Eric had been hunting moose for many years, and since his profession was moose hunter he was supposed to catch moose.

Eric told the men in the village all about moose. He said that they were always on the move. They did not live in herds. He said they didn’t move in straight lines, but often doubled back in their journeys to check to see if they were being followed. He told them that moose ate willow buds, green leaves and water plants and sometimes a big caterpillar or other bug. In the winter they ate woody twigs of poplar, birch, alder, and willow. He even told them that moose had no upper teeth. How did he know these things?

Eric told them how moose really couldn’t see too well but had an excellent sense of smell and the big ears helped them hear the living creatures in their surroundings. He said the long legs and special hooves of the moose were the reason he never caught them as they could quickly escape. They could run through forests, rivers, swamps and over the snow in winter.

When he was not with them, the other men in the village sometimes talked about Eric. “How does he know so much about moose and yet has never been successful in his hunt for one?” they wondered. They thought this was very mysterious. They knew Eric was very smart and thought it was very mysterious he had never brought a moose home.

The townspeople had heard the moans and calls of the moose. They had sometimes glimpsed moose racks through the trees in the forests, or seen moose tracks or moose droppings near the trails. An old man in the village had even told about a moose that had come into the village one day back some twenty years ago. But no one knew as much about moose as Eric did. He was an expert on moose.

Eric would talk about the big moose he would shoot someday. This moose would make up for all the times he had not caught moose before, that one moose caught in a lifetime was a great accomplishment for a great moose hunter. One moose could feed many people all winter. The moose hide could make moccasins, blankets, and even coverings for boats. Muriel would be able to make moose stew and other delicious moose meals.

Muriel believed in Eric and defended him when her friends would criticize him. “Why do you put up with this, Muriel? Eric has been hunting moose forever and never caught one while you are working hard growing vegetables. Maybe he needs to get a different job.” they would say.

At first Muriel would also think about the big moose Eric would catch someday, but since this never occurred they continued to eat vegetables. Every morning Eric would get dressed in his moose hunting clothes; his leather boots, jacket and cap, plaid shirt and green pants, and take his rifle and go out to hunt moose. He followed moose tracks and would often tell of seeing the large antlers of a moose through the trees or over the long grass. He would come home with moose stories and tales of adventures of chasing moose, even if he didn’t come home with the moose.

He would tell stories of moose with antlers eight feet wide, of them wading in the streams and marshy areas, of even seeing a moose cow with two babies. Although Muriel never admitted it to Eric, she loved the stories and was learning a great deal about moose. But still she longed to have a gorgeous moose jacket to keep her warm in the wintertime.

Muriel truly loved Eric, but began to doubt he would ever catch a moose. She believed that he actually went out with the intention of hunting and bagging the moose every day and often saw the moose. But she wondered, as friends did, why there was never the moose head above their fireplace, moose blankets on their beds or moose gloves on their fingers.

After many months of Eric hunting moose with no success, and his becoming more and more obsessed with the moose, Muriel began to feel left out of Eric’s life. Each day he went on a quest with no result. It seemed to hold some secrecy and she felt lonely and a part from him. She longed for him to catch the moose so that he would be again part of her life and they could have some pursuits together.

And still each day Eric would set out along the river shore alone. He would spend all his days alone in the woods and along the marshes. He seemed to be becoming a loner, and sometimes Muriel grew tired of only talking about moose. She would try to tell him about her vegetables and ask him to come and see her garden which was doing very well. He would be polite and tell her how beautiful he thought the cabbage and beans and corn were, but still he seemed obsessed with the moose. Sometimes she thought he didn’t want to hear about her vegetables because he felt guilty she was feeding their family and he was not doing his part.

One morning Eric and Muriel were eating their porridge and Muriel looked out the window and into the dark eyes of a moose. She was so excited she could not speak. She saw his majestic rack and his beautiful dark eyes, his soft brown coat, even his eyelashes. He was that close. As soon as she could speak, she told Eric and he ran to get into his hunting clothes, but, alas, the moose had disappeared.

Muriel had never seen a moose and was amazed at his beauty, his majesty, his greatness. She could understand Eric’s being drawn to the moose, his wanting to be a moosehunter and search for this beautiful animal. But when she thought of Eric actually killing this animal, bringing him home, cutting him into pieces, she was deeply saddened. She had sometimes been angry that she alone had to grow and provide the food for the family, that she worked hard with great results, while Eric, although he went out hunting through rain and snow, great heat and cold, the darkness of winter, every day of the year, had not provided for her. She now was suddenly glad Eric had never killed a moose after having looked into the eyes of this majestic animal.

Each morning the moose would appear and Muriel would look into his eyes, and he would disappear when Eric would get ready to go out to hunt him. Muriel sometimes would not even tell Eric the moose was there, but would gaze into the huge eyes of the moose and felt she was in the company of greatness. The moose would come silently, stand silently and leave silently when no one was watching. He was huge and great and Muriel looked on him with great admiration. She was not afraid.

One morning there had been a few inches of snow. Eric thought that this time he would certainly be able to follow the moose tracks and bag the great moose. After the moose appeared outside their window, he set out to follow the tracks. Soon Muriel became gravely concerned that the huge animal she had come to love would not survive the day after many years of Eric hunting the moose. She could not stay quietly at home, and so she put on her warm clothes and set out to follow Eric’s tracks, which were following the moose tracks. The tracks continued up through the hills, through the forests, down into the valley and through the marshland. The days were short as winter was approaching and soon the sun began to set.

Finally she caught up with Eric. He was sitting quietly on a log, looking through a clump of trees at the majestic moose outlined by the full moon that had risen. Eric was surprised to see Muriel, but motioned her to quietly come sit by him. He put his arm around her as the two of them watched the majesty of the moose. In some ways the moose looked out of proportion with his large horns and large head and long legs, but there was something in his eyes. She knew the moose knew they were there. She and Eric sat quietly for a long time. The air was still and there was great silence amongst the newly fallen snow. They felt like they had come to the home of the moose to stand and watch, as he had come to their home where he had stood and watched them. They felt, at a spiritual level, the greatness and power.

After a period of time Muriel began to shiver with the cold. She had been outside in the cold for a long time. Eric and Muriel got up from the log and left the moose and walked following the tracks of each of them and the moose back through the marshland and through the valley, through the forest, and up into the hills and back to their home. When they arrived it was well past midnight and Muriel fixed Eric some hot tea and bread while Eric built the fire. They ate silently, but with a great feeling of love between them.
It was a while before they spoke.

Eric said, “Muriel, I have a confession for you. I have seen the moose many times. I have seen his horns through the trees, his great body walking across the river, his tracks in the snow, even his children in the marsh with their mother. I think he is the most beautiful creature I have ever known, besides you, of course, Muriel. Sometimes I feel at one with him. Sometimes I feel he leads me to the most beautiful places in the world. Sometimes he leads me through difficult places like forests and marshes. Sometimes he looks at me with his large eyes. He has taught me a great deal about himself. I could never shoot him, Muriel. I also could never stop being led by him.”

Eric continued, “I have seen great mountains and rivers and small animals and beautiful flowers when I have followed him. I have seen him in the cold of winter surrounded by the beauty of the northern lights. He is silent but speaks great things to me in a way I cannot explain.

“I did not think you would understand or my friends would understand. I’m sorry I have not been productive as you have. But I knew that my work was to follow the moose wherever he led me. It was a kind of quest. I learned to love him. I think, in the past weeks, he has also made you a part of this wonderful spiritual nature he and I have together. I think he somehow realized that I was leaving you out of my life. Then you found him by our window. Somehow I feel he knows great things. Somehow I feel he knows me.”

Muriel answered, “I trusted you Eric. I thought you were pursuing a dream that never came about. I never got the coats and gloves and blankets from the moose that I dreamed I would have. But then the dream appeared right outside the window. You had been the hunter and I found what you had been hunting. The dream you pursued appeared to me right here where I lived and not in some far off place. I felt the majesty and beauty. As soon as I saw the moose, I realized you were led by that which you hunted.” Eric and Muriel talked long into the night.

After that night, Eric no longer pretended to be a moose hunter. He had found the moose, as had Muriel. He had found wisdom. He had found his soul. He had found his love, Muriel. Eric took Muriel and showed her all the many beautiful places the moose had taken him. They explored the forest and valleys and marshland together. At the end of each day Eric helped Muriel with her vegetables.

Eric could no longer pretend to Muriel or to the other people in the village that he was a moose hunter. He needed to find a new profession. So Eric became a teacher and taught the children much more than reading and writing. He often took them from the village school on hikes through the places where he had followed the moose. He showed the children the flowers and small animal tracks and small animals along the way and told them about the hills and valleys and streams and rivers and, most of all, he told them about the lives of moose; where they lived, what they ate, how they lived, about their children.

Muriel continued to grow vegetables. But now Eric helped her till the soil and plant the seeds and made her a wonderful wooden stand that they could sell the vegetables from by their house, and a portable stand that they could take to sell vegetables in the market.. With Eric’s help, she did even better at selling her vegetables, which were large and beautiful because of her tender loving care.

And every morning, as Muriel fixed breakfast for herself and Eric, the moose appeared briefly by her window. Or did he? Or was it her memory of him, her vision of his majesty, her love for him, her belief in him

The End
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dkchristi
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dkchristi

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PostSubject: Re: The behavior of men and other animals   The behavior of men and other animals EmptySat Sep 26, 2009 8:10 pm

:-)
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alice
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PostSubject: Re: The behavior of men and other animals   The behavior of men and other animals EmptySat Sep 26, 2009 8:12 pm

Wonderful story, Carol.
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alice
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PostSubject: Re: The behavior of men and other animals   The behavior of men and other animals EmptySat Sep 26, 2009 8:16 pm

dkchristi wrote:
:-)

I am not the sharpest tack but, interpet please. Thanks!
I am not being snide, I even did a google search on it.
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Carol Troestler
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PostSubject: Re: The behavior of men and other animals   The behavior of men and other animals EmptySat Sep 26, 2009 8:27 pm

I think DK was smiling!

Thanks. It was a little long, but it seemed to fit this thread.

Carol
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E. Don Harpe
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PostSubject: Re: The behavior of men and other animals   The behavior of men and other animals EmptySat Sep 26, 2009 8:58 pm

I am very much in favor of owning guns, and over the years have owned quite a few. Like Dick, I see nothing wrong in shooting certain people that I am certain deserve it.

My father was a hunter, and my mother always cooked whatever he brought home. He never hunted just for the sport of it, and we learned early that there are quite a few critters that will cook up brown and tasty, but I never developed a taste for wild game.

I don't hunt, would not dream of harming a small animal, and would look very harshly upon anyone who did. I was once at a table with some younger men who happened to be talking about "getting rid" of a litter of kittens their family didn't want. I stood up to leave and one of them asked me why. "So that I don't decide to pinch your fine head off, kid," I said. The boy never knew how close he was to waking up the next day in a hospital.

There is no excuse, NO excuse, for harming a small animal. For the most part they are defensless, and for the most part they put their trust in us. I care less for the life of a person who mistreats an animal than I do for the animal that was mistreated, and to my way of thinking, a person who is that cruel should be on the recieving end of a few well placed kicks. Perhaps then they might think twice the next time they decided to kick a dog or cat or do harm to a puppy or kitten.

And here's the thing guys. I don't care how wrong some of you will think I am, that's the way I feel and I don't make any apologies for it.

Again like Dick, I think that if deers carried hunting rifles, there'd be far less hunters in the woods. Shoot at something that shoots back, I say, or don't shoot at all.
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joefrank
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PostSubject: Re: The behavior of men and other animals   The behavior of men and other animals EmptySat Sep 26, 2009 8:59 pm

9/27/2009


EVeryone...

I agree , all animals deserve a right to
live ,just like us humans. I get so upset when I read
or see on TV News that someone has tortured or
killed an innocent animal, maybe thats why I was always
an animal lover even as a kid, smuggling pets home. I
feel anyone who tortures or kills an animal should be
put in prison 1st offense 5 years, 2nd offense 10 years,
3rd offense 25 years. I read once that if a child tortures
small animals , you know what he's capable of doing
don't you, kill human beings, it's called a "sociopath".
Long live our small friends ......

Cheers...Joe
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Abe F. March
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PostSubject: Re: The behavior of men and other animals   The behavior of men and other animals EmptySat Sep 26, 2009 11:42 pm

Hunting for sport is one thing. Hunting for food is another.
When I was seven years old, my father placed a 410 guage in my hand and taught me to shoot. During the war years, we hunted for food.
Skipping ahead many years, when I returned from Beirut financially broke, I stayed in a log cabin with a friend. We hunted for food at night. In my $250 car, my wife drove while my friend and I sat in the back seat with our rifles and spotlights. It was illegal but we were hungry. When we bagged a deer, it was thrown in the back and we sped away to a secluded place to dress it out. I was not afraid of being caught or arrested since I had nothing to lose. Desperate times cause people to do desperate things. We need to understand that in today's world, much crime is committed by desperate people. When we can walk in their shoes, we may begin to understand why, and work to change the conditions that necessitates crime. Crime comes in all forms: greed, revenge, etc., but crime for survival is not crime in my book.
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Carol Troestler
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PostSubject: Re: The behavior of men and other animals   The behavior of men and other animals EmptySun Sep 27, 2009 3:01 am

Abe, good post.

I love your stories of perseverance and never giving up. Those experiences make us who we are as caring people, or make us bitter. For you it is the former. I saw the results of those experiences in your friendships and willingness to help others in your town.

I live in the land of deer, wolves, bears, and hunters. I don't understand the hunting part, but I do go fishing now and then. (Catch and release, but I still hurt those poor critters. Most of all I love sitting in the boat.)

There is a program here where venison is taken to food pantries.

Carol
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alice
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PostSubject: Re: The behavior of men and other animals   The behavior of men and other animals EmptySun Sep 27, 2009 1:50 pm

I think there are enough things to eat without hunting animals

Palin's moose hunting did not endear her to me.

Probably nothing did.
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alj
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PostSubject: Re: The behavior of men and other animals   The behavior of men and other animals EmptySun Sep 27, 2009 9:46 pm

My dad grew up in a family of hunters. He had no taste for it. They teased him for being weak. In some ways, he was the strongest of the lot, because he dared to do what he thought was right.

Ann
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Abe F. March
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PostSubject: Re: The behavior of men and other animals   The behavior of men and other animals EmptyMon Sep 28, 2009 8:04 am

As previously stated, I don’t believe that wild game should be killed for the sport of it. Killing for food is another matter. Often the deer herds become so large that they destroy crops and there is a need to reduce the herds.
We slaughter thousands of cattle daily for food and by products. One example: A close friend of mine works for a company that produces leather
components for a small fraction of the automobile industry. They produce leather headrests, armrests, seat covers, etc. This one company requires 5,000 hides daily for their needs. The company that supplies the hides is in Brazil. The company in Brazil merged with another company and now claims they have the capacity for 25,000 hides daily. That’s a lot of cattle being slaughtered for the meat and by products.
There are numerous people who raise deer for the meat and sell it to restaurants. These deer do not roam wild and are raised for the purpose of slaughter. I think the subject had to do with the killing of innocent animals like pets. Deer are not pets. How one treats this subject will remain controversal.


Last edited by Abe F. March on Mon Sep 28, 2009 10:19 am; edited 1 time in total
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Betty Fasig
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PostSubject: Re: The behavior of men and other animals   The behavior of men and other animals EmptyFri Dec 31, 2010 6:20 pm

Dear Abe,
If your family is hungry, ...well, I was going to say, hunt meat.

But, you know, I cannot say that with a clean eye.

Grow beans, weeds, ...I am so sorry for the glut of the human race, and the justification for it.

Perhaps I am just a nim nod, and look through the colour of hope.

I was looking at all these posts of Dick Stodghill, and it seems to me that I had not finished thinking on his words and so every time I read these blogs, it is as if he is still here and we had not finished the conversation.

Happy New Year, my dear Abe!

Love,
Betty
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dkchristi
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PostSubject: Re: The behavior of men and other animals   The behavior of men and other animals EmptyFri Dec 31, 2010 6:30 pm

My beliefs, my judgments and my actions are not always in agreement. I believe like my friend Bill whom I've mentioned before that we should not eat or use animal products. We have evolved beyond the need of our ripping teeth, and we are harming ourselves, harming our environment and negatively impacting the world food supply by our love of meat. Animals are abused in hideous ways to provide us with cheap meat that passes FDA inspection.

Yet, after I manage vegan, then vegetarian, then just some meat (I am severely anemic) I forget about the films I've seen, the screaming chickens I've followed in trucks in northern Florida, the documentaries I've seen and I eat meat and buy leather products. I think what I do is wrong. But what difference will I make?

Therefore, I cannot judge others for their hunting or their eating habits. I can only wish for a better me that can follow my own beliefs.

My brother went deer hunting for years. I always smiled. He never hit a deer except the two that ran into his car on a major urban highway on the way to or from work. For Christmas one year I gave him a very masculine designed snow globe with a reindeer with a full rack standing elegantly inside. I told him he had his very own deer so he didn't have to hunt and be cold anymore. He had already given it up.

When people are raised with hunting and guns, they just have a different point of view than me. I believe no civilian should have a gun. I am not afraid that the police or the military will rise up against me. If I have to protect my family from my neighbors, I hope neither of us has guns and that I can reach 911 where they do have them. I think teaching killing of any nature is harmful to the psyche. That's why boot camp has to be so heinous, to clear the mind to accept the unacceptable.
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Abe F. March
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PostSubject: Re: The behavior of men and other animals   The behavior of men and other animals EmptyFri Dec 31, 2010 10:29 pm

I don't believe in hunting for sport.
I don't believe in owning a gun for protection. To live anyplace where one needs that kind of protection, is not a place I want to live.
Kill or be killed is acceptable in war. But, first I would have to believe in the war.

Survival is simply that - survival. One will do what they must to obtain food, protect themselves or their family. It is rare to be in that position. To plan for such an eventuality means that the law of attraction will help make it happen.
One never knows how they will react until faced with the situation. A so-called coward may turn into a person with courage. A toughie may become a coward when faced with danger. We only know what we're made of when faced with the situation. The situation is seldom if ever what it is perceived to be.
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Betty Fasig
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PostSubject: Re: The behavior of men and other animals   The behavior of men and other animals EmptySat Jan 01, 2011 5:45 pm

When I think back on that hungry time of my life, as a child I had no options or decisions. Now that I am here, in this time of my life where food is not a fleeting thing, it is easy to say what choice should be made. I know that in those old days of hunger, vegetables were not growing around me. But, I could make a snare and trap a rabbit or a raccoon. I could fish with a string and a home-made hook with worms as bait. All that food was meat. Meat that I hunted and was glad to find. Frogs bonked on the head in the night with a lantern blinding their eyes...
Each of those animal's spirit is part of me this day.

I cannot see hunting for sport, just to kill another animal as trophy. I consider that killing a sin against the creatures of this earth, man included.

Life really is the prize. All creatures fight for every breath.

Love,
Betty
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dkchristi
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PostSubject: Re: The behavior of men and other animals   The behavior of men and other animals EmptySat Jan 01, 2011 7:36 pm

Your descriptions are so vivid, I am anxiously awaiting your next book.

I used to catch fish when I was alone on the sailboat. I would bonk them and feel badly and once, I actually prayed over a dolphin (fish) as its rainbow colors of life force drained away - like the Indians who took the life force into theirs - just as you expressed.

I think it's the gluttony, the mistreatment of large numbers of animals, and the cost to the world's food supply that are issues. Food for survival is part of the natural order of things. I remember in California it was nothing to go out and order a 16 oz. steak, rare, with a salad. Yuck!
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Betty Fasig
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Betty Fasig

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PostSubject: Re: The behavior of men and other animals   The behavior of men and other animals EmptyMon Feb 07, 2011 8:04 am

I do not know if I mentioned this before, but it happens a lot. When I click on Chatter Box, one of Dick's post comes up instead. I always read a few of them when that happens. I wonder if it is Dick's way of staying in touch with me. I smile and feel as I did when someone picked me to be on their team. Very Happy Does this ever happen to any of you?

Love,
Betty
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Shelagh
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PostSubject: Re: The behavior of men and other animals   The behavior of men and other animals EmptyMon Feb 07, 2011 8:21 am

What a lovely thing to happen.

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