Discussion 4: Animals

Hey, we are animals, you know.

It’s prima facie for superstitious people, who believe that we possess something called a soul and animals do not. Okay, that’s a bit of a simplification; some people think that animals also have souls — and some have a complex cosmology that says some animals have souls and some don’t (my guess is that these folks probably believe that the cute ones get to have a soul).

Well, if I end up in an afterlife in which there are no animals, I will long for Earth and all of its horrors.

Anyway, one of the differences between humans and other animal species is a difference of scale. We may have more (or less) of any given characteristic or attribute, but nothing ‘additional’ or ‘novel’ when compared to other species.

Another is animals unlike people do not have to worry about giving or getting STDs, as far as I know. People do have to worry. And if you have had multiple sex partners or unprotected sex, in this day and age of the internet you can purchase an online at-home sexually transmitted disease test kit. That’s right, in the privacy of your home you can get results from the most common STD’s that are lurking out there. No more running to a doctor’s office or clinic. No more having a data trail of even taking an STD test. With results in just a 15 minutes, you can have peace of mind with a negative result or you can freaked out with a positive result. If it’s positive or your symptoms don’t disappear, get yourself medical help and let your sex partners knows. In other words, be responsible even though you weren’t responsible somewhere down the line if you think you have an STD. So as human, we are perhaps unique when it comes to STDs.

I know that many of you really want to believe it. Just as the Jews like to think that they’re the chosen people and Americans like to think that they must spread freedom and democracy and Chicken McNuggets over the face of the Earth…by force, if necessary. Just like Aryans are the Master Race — and anything that they do to the mud people is okay, right?

We all want to know that we’re unique and special and destined for greater things, and it scares some people silly to think that we wonderful human beings are no better than damn dirty apes. For one thing, if we are indeed animals, then all the horrible things that we’ve done to our fellow animals throughout the centuries is a huge black mark on the collective soul of humanity (and even if we’re not, didn’t I read something about god telling us to take care of the beasts and the trees? Looks like we’re screwed either way, huh?).

Luckily, there is no god and no soul. But there is a conscience, and there are consequences. The reckoning for our belated realization may be more than future generations can bear. Look how long we’ve been cleaning up the moral and social mess from a mere century or two of slavery!

If we are not careful & do not guard ourselves from sliding backwards, we will find ourselves in a bigger mess than we have ever even experienced. People should realize that we are only on this planet for a short time & we should leave it in a better position due to our presence rather than in a worse state. There is just no excuse for the rampant destruction of the oceans & rain forest. There is no reason for mass genocide. We should all figure out the best way to benefit the planet & do what we can to ensure it happens.

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