Take Heart!
From Christian Vegetarian Association (CVA)

I Am A Turkey

Andrew Kirschner, Ed.D., founder and CEO of Animal Rescue Bar, a delicious plant-based snack for health-conscious people that donates 50% of its proceeds to non-profit animal rescue and advocacy organizations, wrote a beautiful piece about what it means to be a turkey in today's society. Enjoy it and share it!
 
I am a turkey.
 
You may think Iím a stupid and worthless bird.
Iím not who you think I am.
I have a purpose on this earth just like you.
Simply because you may not understand it
doesnít make it any less meaningful.
 
I enjoy having my feathers stroked.
I care for my young, search for food,
take dust baths, and build nests.
You may have other interests but these are mine
and I enjoy them as much as you enjoy yours.
 
I am a turkey.
People have studied me and concluded Iím highly intelligent.
If I met you, I would run to greet you
and rub against you to show my affection.
Thatís my nature.
Remember it when I explain what people do to me.
 
Iím a gentle soul.
I like to gobble, chirp, and cluck.
You may not understand it but itís what I do.
Imagine if people who donít understand what you do
confined, abused, and killed you because youíre different.
I think you call it genocide.
 
I am a turkey.
I have the ability to remember your face.
Each time you visit me, youíll notice I can pick you out in a crowd
and Iíll run up to you first because I know you.
 
I defend my family from predators
but I canít defend myself against factory workers
who kill 300 million of us every year in the United States
so people like you can eat us
when you donít need to in order to survive.
 
What happens to turkeys like me?
Instead of living the full 10 years of my life,
Iím only allowed to live six months before Iím killed.
I live in a filthy and dark factory without ventilation.
Iím crammed into sheds with thousands of other turkeys.
 
I am a turkey.
Iím force-fed so Iíll grow three times faster than I grow naturally.
My heart and lungs canít keep up with the growth of my body
often causing heart attacks and death.
Itís common for workers to throw me, kick me,
and even stomp on my head as they take out their aggression on me.
 
Many of us die of starvation or dehydration
because we canít reach food and water stations.
I suffer from burns and blisters from the use of ammonia
and workers cut off my beak without anesthesia
so I wonít hurt other turkeys
when I go insane from the confinement.
 
Workers take us off trucks with forklifts
and dump us onto conveyor belts.
Many of us fall off during unloading and get crushed by machines
or die slowly from injuries.
When the factory workers are ready to kill me,
they hang me upside-down
and drag my head through an electrified stunning tank
which stops me from moving
but doesnít kill me.
 
Many of us are so scared that we dodge the tank
leaving us conscious when they slit our throats.
Many times the knife only grazes our throats
failing to kill us.
Weíre dumped in scalding hot water
to remove our feathers
while weíre still alive.
Factory workers have reported our screams are deafening.
 
Do you believe paying someone
to abuse me in these ways
is the proper way to  celebrate a holiday?
Is it possible you can show us mercy
and find something else to eat?
Is supporting an industry that brutalizes animals
consistent with your values?
Does my life matter to you?
 
Is there a reason why you canít make simple changes in your life
to avoid supporting this industry?
If you think about what youíre doing,
you wonít do what youíre doing.
This was me.
 
I was a turkey.
You know me now.
Now that you know that I live an unthinkable life
of pain and suffering
and die a horrible death,
please consider eating your meals, including Thanksgiving,
without supporting the abuse of animals.
 
Many years ago, Paul McCartney once said,
ďIf slaughterhouses had glass walls,
we would all be vegetarian.Ē
They do now.
Here are the glass walls.
Youíve seen the cruelty.
Now itís up to you to make a change.
You donít need to eat animals to survive.
Right and wrong doesnít just matter when itís convenient;
it matters all the time.
Forget the cultural norm and do whatís right.
You can eat food that tastes just like a turkey but isnít an animal.
Please make a compassionate choice.
I was a turkey.


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