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A Small act of barbarism

11th July2007

Is there really no practical alternative to what will be a distressing spectacle?

Shambo the bullock lives in the Community of  the Many Names of God in the Welsh Village of Llanpumsaint – the Church of five saints.

He is now healthy. In future he may be infected with Bovine TB a non-fatal cattle disease. He kept in quaratine, in a structure within a temple. He is no risk to other animals or humans. Thousand and of healthy sheep and cattle were slaughtered and burnt in the outbreak of the non-fatal Foot and Mouth disease. A scientifically illiterate cull of badgers is demanded by farmers. In Ireland badger extermination led to double the percentage of TB compared with the UK.

On Thursday a decision will be made. Indirit Singh on Radio Four this morning eloquently explained that killing Shambo will outrage the reverence for all life which is the core principle of the community in Llanpumsaint. As they are dedicated to non-violence, the monks and nuns will not physically opposed the actions of the vets.

What a demeaning spectacle it will be if Thursday’s decision is to slaughter. It’s commercial interest triumphing above religious principle. Crude mass extermination in place of dedicated animal husbandry. It’s the might of the rich farming industry stamping their will on those with weak voices and no power.

It’s casual death crushing respect for life.

This small act of barbarism demeans us all. It's a sad testimony to society’s elevation of greed as the supreme virtue.