Friday, April 16, 2010

Interesting Questions.

Syd's post for Thursday made me laugh when I reached the final paragraph, the idea of being "...pulled overboard by a killer whale." It's so Jaws. The whole idea that orcas are out there looking for a tasty person to have as a nice little midday snack, and have the motor control to get far enough out of the water, then bend themselves in half like a stooping human, and pluck a person from a boat? Mind-boggling.

I have my own ideas about why orcas in captivity kill people, and it has to do with taking a magnificent animal capable of ranging for thousands of miles in the oceans: a social animal, which in the wild lives in pods, cohesive family groups, and placing it into a tiny pen, alone, forcing it to perform silly tricks for food rewards. (All this as a money-making venture, regardless of the "educational"  rationalisations offered.) But let's not get me started on that particular rant. (She said, having already delivered herself of half of it.)

I feel the same about birds - I have never, from a small child, been able to understand how people can capture a creature which can fly, and then cage it and clip its wings, rendering it earthbound.

One of those mysteries of human nature, that we cannot just admire wild creatures in the wild, but must remove them from their natural habitat and put them into the miseries of captivity, for our entertainment.

We have that endless desire to be in control. I think the human species doesn't like the idea that other creatures on the planet can be our predators; we want to be at the top of the food chain, the ultimate predator, and with our technologies and our arrogance, in many ways, we are.

But one on one, it's a vastly different story. And some of us just hate that.

I'm a member of a gardening website, and cringe to read of how many people are still madly pumping poisonous pesticides into our environment, for no other reason than to make it easier to weed their gardens.

It's that whole "I want this, and my little bit of hubris isn't going to hurt anything" magnified a hundred thousand, a million, a billion times, that is killing our beautiful planet. We're on a spaceship, and merrily bashing away at the hull, saying cheerily, "I'm only making a tiny dent, one tiny dent won't matter, surely?"

I've ranged rather far afield from where I started; suffice it to say that the desire for ultimate control over our environment and all the people, creatures, plants and insects within it, has been our downfall, and will continue to be.

There are those of us going about asking the ones with the hammers to please stop bashing at the hull of the spaceship, and wrestling others to the ground and confiscating their hammers, and we do it for love.

Love of spaceship Earth, and all the miracles and beauty she contains.


  1. Your description of animals pulled out of the wild reminds me a bit of the British Museum in London. If you look at all the statutes with their noses (or other body parts )broken off, as well as many of the other items, you pretty quickly come to the conclusion that this was really just plunder from the far reaches of the British Empire. It all seems very sad and out of place (as do the animals) when you think about it that way!

  2. You and I are kindred spirits. We do have to clip our chickens' wings so they can free range without going over to the neighbors and crapping on his kids swingset. :-D Our little ducklings will be able to fly whereever they want..they know where dinner is!


  3. I so agree. I have seen more and more habitat destruction which will ultimately result in species destruction. But those who don't believe and keep on taking will ultimately destroy themselves and others too.