Blogging About Critters Since 2007

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

2010 Declared the Year of the Tiger...So What?

The Kathmandu Global Tiger Workshop declared 2010 to be the Year of the Tiger. The intention is to focus on saving the tiger species which is being decimated. I say so what? It's just lip service. When China won't support a ban on tiger farms, nor will it work to curb the ridiculous demand for tiger products in its own country, what's the point? China is the single biggest threat to the tiger and it won't participate seriously in its protection. So what if the tiger gets its own year? It's just fuzzy wuzzies and PR.


Andrew said...


Unfortunately, attitudes toward animal welfare in north-east Asian countries are just not the same as those in western countries.

Where I lived in Korea, an animal rights movement did exist, but it was extremely small and sadly, the concept of proper treatment of animals just did not register at all with the vast majority of Koreans.

As you probably know, I lived in a small country town there, and I did not have to ride a particularly long way on my bike before coming across dog farms where dogs were kept in cages so small that some of them were not able to stand up properly, not to mention cages being left completely uncovered even in temperatures of zero degrees (Celsius) and below.

And Koreans embraced the eating of dogs as a delicacy, even though they were routinely beaten to death - apparently in an effort to make the meat more tender.

That part of the world is very fixated in some of their ways, and unfortunately, they do not attach any form of priority to animal rights whatsoever.

Ana said...

Hi Andrew,

Thanks for sharing that first-hand experience. I know that Korea still has a long way to go in animal rights. In many ways, though, their treatment of food animals is just not that different from how we treat our own food animals in the United States and other developed countries. It's just that dogs are subjected to this treatment in addition to cows, pigs, etc.

In the Azores, where my family is from, I had a schoolteacher cousin tell me that a bull salivating with thirst was not really "thirsty." They just salivate for some reason. This after seeing the bull chased in the streets in high humidity heat.

At least there is some animal rights movement in Korea. It may be small, but such things have to start somewhere. I have to look at it that way, otherwise, I probably couldn't get up in the morning some days.


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