Last night I bought a replacement for my leather coat. While I don’t see this coat as beautiful, like I did my leather one, it is comfortable, looks nice, and feels soft (I love soft things!). And it feels quite good to know that no animals died to make this one.
I also went to go look at shoes. I realized that that is going to be even harder then the coat. Most shoes, especially boots (pretty looking boots, not the functional work or snow boots), tend to be made of at least some leather. I think I’ll have to go to a shoe store (rather then looking at shoes in a department store) and hope that I can find something that will work for me. Maybe I’ll try to see if there is a specialty store that sells “eco-friendly” stuff. Maybe they might have something. I might end up shopping online.
Just the simple idea of wearing an animal’s skin is now sickening to me. What right do I have to consider myself so “above” that animal that their life is carelessly discarded for my materialistic pleasure? They have a right to live just as much as I do.
I tried to explain to my mom why getting rid of leather is so important to me. She doesn’t understand it. She can kind of understand not buying a new leather coat or new leather shoes, but why would I have a problem with the ones I already have? To her that animal is already dead, so what’s the big deal? I tried to tell her that it was like if I killed your deeply loved pet and then told you you had to wear their skin. She seemed grossed out at that, but for some reason she couldn’t transfer that to other leather that isn’t from her pet. To her she didn’t care about that other animal, so why should she care if it died? To me that’s like saying I don’t know that person, so it’s ok if someone kills them. Just because I don’t know them doesn’t make it right.
It is confusing to me that we (I mean we as a society, and I have been guilty of this myself) feel ourselves so superior to animals. Aren’t we just animals ourselves? We all have hearts and brains and lungs and skin, so where is the difference? Someone once told me that it is because we are able to create things and that we search for knowledge and we have rules and structure. But then I said that maybe the animals are the smarter ones because they are happy with the way things are. They know what their life is, and they don’t try to make it “better”, they just except it the way it is. You ask any animal behavior expert and they will tell you that animals understand the rules that they have set up just as much as we do. Just because those rules aren’t like ours, doesn’t mean they aren’t there. Submissive wolves always know that their alpha gets the first dibs at a meal, the first choice of a mate. You don’t have to force an ant to serve it’s queen, it just does it. They do those things because it ends up being better for their survival, and the survival of their offspring, in the long run. We don’t tend to think about stuff like that. We don’t make alot of choices based on what is best for the betterment of the human race. We tend to think about what is best for us as an individual.
Wow, this post was alot different then what I set out to write.
But it’s how I feel, so I’m not going to change it.
Just to clarify: these are my feelings and my decisions. Just because this is what I think and believe doesn’t mean that I think that everyone has to do the same. This is my choice for my life. You are free to make your own choices for your own life. Even if you disagree with me.