Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Well-intentioned kindness

I saw a bumper sticker today that gave me cause to wonder. It said, "Kindness to animals builds a better world for all of us."

Okay, now let me premise this by saying that I love animals. I really do. (You may question this if you know my current love-hate relationship with my dogs.) I do not believe in animal cruelty and my heart breaks whenever I hear stories of animals being abused, etc. HOWEVER, I take issue with this bumper sticker. I don't think it is false to say that kindness to animals can build a better world, but I think it takes a lot more than kindness to animals to have a harmonious world.

Wouldn't it be more prudent to say, perhaps, "Kindness to OTHERS" or "Kindness to ONESELF"? I think that our human interactions is what truly build a better world. The whole pay it forward phenomenon, in my opinion, is capable of bringing about lasting change for a better world. Okay, so that might include being kind to an animal, but you can make a greater impact on a fellow human being. It is all well and good to rescue a homeless animal, but what if we gave the same effort to rescue a homeless person?

In reference to the "kindness to oneself"...there are so many people out there who just exist..they contribute nothing because they don't feel as though they have any self-worth. They have entered into a cycle of behavior that causes them to abuse drugs, abuse others, and abuse themselves. What if they put half of that energy into actually taking care of themselves? That would also build a better world!

I certainly don't want to get into trouble with any animal activists out there, but I personally put more value on a human life than I do on an animal's life. I feel that to truly build a better world, we need to increase the number of times we are kind to others. Sure, throw in some kindness to animals, too!

Yes, I got all that from a silly bumper sticker. Go figure.


Sherill said...

Amen! After all it is the second part of the great commandment "love your neighbor as yourself." And I do wonder how much better our world would be if people remembered that love of God is expressed in love of neighbor and self (and even the neighbor's pets ;-D )

Hillary Dunham said...

All so true... and profound for getting it from a stinkin' bumper sticker!! haha!
I need to do another post on bumper stickers. I think Larry's comment on my first post was, "Really? Is that what you wanted to say to the world in 3 seconds?" So true.