I was happy to hear of the announcement by the New South Wales government that it intends to ban greyhound racing as of July next year, and the Australian Capital Territory’s decision to follow suit.
I wasn’t quite ecstatic for a number of reasons.
One reason is that there is still another year of racing, during which time an estimated 180 dogs will “suffer catastrophic injuries such as skull fractures or broken backs”.
Also, the fate of the thousands of dogs currently in the industry in NSW and ACT has yet to be determined, and while dog racing continues in other Australian states and overseas, animals are still at risk.
I understand that there are over 1,000 people who will lose their jobs and many more who will be upset by this decision, and I have empathy for these people. However, even those people, whose dogs were well cared for and who did not practise live-baiting, were part of an industry which exploited animals. This is an industry which has been killing thousands of dogs every year, just because they weren’t fast enough.
We are moving towards a new world where exploitation is a thing of the past.
In years gone by, enslavement of inferior races and child labour was considered reasonable. In modern society, we realise that there is no such thing as an inferior race of humans, and children, no matter what their background, should be given the right to an education and to enjoy their childhood. The United Nations has agreed to this in its Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Convention on the Rights of the Child (see below).
Exploitation of other races and children is now illegal.
We find ourselves now in a movement towards the establishment of similar rights for non-human species.
This is where it gets a bit scary for a lot of people, because there are still a lot of people who are working in industries which continue to, not only exploit animals, but to cause them suffering. It gets even scarier when we realise that most of us are contributing in some way to this exploitation and suffering, not least by voting for a federal government which supports this exploitation.
So, whilst I am happy to see a ban on greyhound racing in NSW and ACT, I will be really ecstatic when the following cruel industries come to an end, and this will only happen when we all start to realise the consequences of our own actions:
Until these industries come to an end, you can do your part by not supporting them and by considering the consequences to animals of your actions in all that you do. Here are a few tips which can help you make a real difference:
Thank you for helping to make animal exploitation a thing of the past.