Cows vs pigs OR gender-based dehumanisation of humans

Cow.png

Dehumanisation is the process of depriving a person or group of positive human qualities. Dehumanising always starts with language that degrades humans to animals, vermin or various objects.

For centuries dehumanisation has been used as a technique for creating false excuses and justifications for immoral behaviour, violence and abuse. You’ll see dehumanisation at work in most large-scale atrocities or genocides committed by governments, armies, or terrorists. The main purpose is to get people to accept or even engage in behaviors that they know are wrong. Once we see people on “the other side” as morally inferior and less human, the conflict starts being framed as good versus evil…

Jews.JPG
As Kayla Williams noted in her book “Love my rifle more than you: young and female in the US army”, “The first thing any soldier did in a combat situation was learn to dehumanize the enemy. In prior wars we called them nips or chinks or gooks or krauts or slopes. In Iraq we called them… towelheads, ragheads, camel jockeys… Words that ensured that we didn’t see our enemy as people – as somebody’s father or son or brother or uncle…”
Rats.JPG

Dehumanisation is not limited to political issues, however. Any time someone reduces a human being to a single characteristic, especially a negative one, they are dehumanising. “Alcoholic,” “addict,” “diabetic,” “schizophrenic”, ‘”cow”, “pig”, “sausage” all rob people of the full complexity of their lives and reduce them to a symptom, disorder, animal or body part.

When we engage in dehumanising rhetoric, sharing dehumanising jokes or promoting dehumanising images, we are promoting disrespect and cruelty against those groups of people. When we reduce other people to animals, men to sausages and women to cows, it tells a lot about our own integrity, values and attitude to other people. Why caring about others, respecting their feelings and treating them well if they are just cows with boobs and pigs with sausages?

Pigs and cows

THE END

Credits:

This can happen to anyone…

“I dream of giving birth to a child who will ask, Mother, what was war?”

Eve Merriam

This is what war does to children…

Can’t stop thinking about children suffering from war in places of my childhood where I felt so happy and safe as a child.

Syria, Ukraine, Russia, BosniaAfghanistan, Iraq, Chechnya… – this can happen to anyone 😦

Sevenly

Image from pinterest.

ENDS

Who wants war?

http://www.theburningplatform.com//

It worked and still works the same…

 😦 

Related posts:

THE END

Chanel N°5 Russian Style

Russia, 1990s

CHANEL-N°5-LEau-2

“Gosh, don’t tell me it ‘s Chanel N°5”, Victoria wrinkled her nose.

“What’s wrong with Unleaded 91?” – I gave her a wink.

“And look at your face. Is that your new makeup?”

“Ivan does not mind it. In fact, that’s the only ‘makeup’ he is OK with,” I giggled inspecting my dirty snout in the car mirror.

*  *  *
From http://www.photosight.ru

Ivan hated seeing me with my makeup on. “Why do you need to put all this stuff on your face to make yourself look like a painted doll?”, he used to say every time he would spot lipstick or any other makeup on my face. “You are beautiful just the way you are. Why can’t you simply be yourself?”…

You are so beautiful without makeupFrom http://www.pinterest.com

“Give us a few minutes to finish with the car and we’ll be ready to go,” said Ivan, poking his snout out.

“Gosh, you both look like twins now,” giggled Victoria.

From http://rikki-t-tavi.livejournal.com

I always enjoyed hanging around when Ivan was fixing his car, moped or various stuff around his or mine flat. He was good at fixing stuff. I was not much of a help, but he did seem to enjoy my company. We could chat about all sorts of things, or enjoy silence. No silly questions, no pressure. Everything was so simple with Ivan. If something rattled me, he always knew how to make me feel better.


From http://razeehasblog.blogspot.co.nz

Victoria got cheap tickets to ‘Swan Lake’. We both enjoyed ballet. Luckily, St Petersburg had some of the best ballet theatres in the world. Ivan and Alex were not particularly into ballet, but they were OK to go with us and get us safely back home. The streets of St Petersburg were not very safe in those days. No sensible girls ventured out on their own in the dark.

Swan Lake Odette San Francisco BalletFrom http://debeysklenar.wordpress.com

The ballet finished after 10 pm and we happily trotted back to the car. Ivan was driving, while Victoria and I were giggling and chatting on the back seats. There was not much traffic and hardly any people on the streets. Suddenly a car swirled towards us, almost forcing us off the road.

“Duck down,” shouted Ivan, accelerating .

“It looks like we got mistaken for a rival escort service by the local bastards who are ‘manning’ this district. Two lads on the front seats, two girls at the back – typical escort services set up.”

“But we surely don’t look like that sort of girls,” objected Victoria.

“Duck down, Victoria. I doubt they will bother looking at us, if they get us,” I whispered, forcing her down.

Жажда скорости и 12 протоколовFrom http://zebra-tv.ru

“What will happen to us then?” whispered Victoria.

“Have you watched “The Rifleman of the Voroshilov Regiment”? If we are lucky, it won’t go further than a bit of Kama Sutra. If those bastards share Marquis de Sade’s views on the pleasures of pain however, then the outcome for us will be much worse. I’m more worried about our lads though – for them it might be all over much quicker and simpler, with a higher chance of a fatal outcome. Now duck down and stay quiet, please. We don’t know what kind of weapons these bastards might have.”

Though in Russia it was illegal to own a handgun privately, criminals did not seem to have any issues with obtaining all sorts of guns, including automatic ones. Knives, axes and other weapons were commonly used as well.

From Gun Violence

It was the fastest car ride in my life. That was the only time I ever prayed, though I was never particularly religious. Luckily, we managed to get away and drove straight to Victoria’s house.

“Is there any chance we could stay overnight at your place?” I asked Victoria. “Don’t feel like driving anymore tonight. We are fine with sleeping on the floor if you have no spare beds.”

“Sure. I’ll talk to my mum. I’m sure she won’t mind.”

Victoria lived in a two-room apartment with her mum. We stayed there a few times before – boys in one room, girls in the other. Her mum was OK with that.

“Gosh, these escort services must be a very scary business,” whispered Victoria once we settled in our room.

“You reckon. Ambulance services are as scary these days. Do you remember my school friend Lucy? She is studying to be a doctor. She had a stint with paramedics as part of her training – the scariest experience she ever had. What do you think such bastards do when they get drugged and drunk and want a girl to have fun with? Call an ambulance. With 99% of paramedics being female, these bastards have a good chance of getting a female for fun. Then you can only pray God they won’t get into experimenting with bottles and other objects. Drugged and drunk, they’ll have no brakes… and no understanding of anatomy to realise that there is not much room there for such objects to go far… Thanks goodness, the male drivers in that ambulance unit were very good. They would keep female paramedics in the ambulance until they check that the call is genuine and the specified address is safe.”

From http://www.xn 

“My God, that’s awful”.

“Talking about Lucy, I wanted to give her a call to check that magic stuff advertised in all pharmacies. It is claimed to provide emergency contraception as well as protection against all sexually transmitted diseases. Sounds too good to be true. Thought she might know whether these claims can be trusted. Let’s go to sleep now – tomorrow is another day and … please, no more ballet this month…”

Rape victim given 'contraceptive pills'From http://news.oneindia.in

Related posts:

THE END

 

 

The most beautiful people I’ve known…

Have you met such children in your life?
Or, may be, you’ve been one of them?

I was not “removed” – I stayed with my family –  well, with whatever was left of it by then… No one cared, no one noticed – it was better that way. I was ‘caught’ only a few times at school. Once I struggled with completing a test in writing because my hands were shaking too much. On another occasion I punched a girl. She saw my dad coming home drunk and started making silly jokes about that in front of the class. My fuse was short – my fist was fast… I was taken to the principal. He could not make any sense of it: “You’ve always been such a good quiet student, always getting the top marks, always listening to the teachers. I can’t understand why you did that?” I had nothing to say.

I never invited anyone to my place, I never talked to anyone about my family – except my only school friend Lucy and later Ivan.

From Digital Deconstruction

I felt very sorry for Lucy. She lived with her parents and her only sister. Her dad wanted to have sons – no luck. Both children turned out to be female. He never got over it, blaming them and their mum for that. He was often verbally and physically abusive – with both girls and their mother. I felt much luckier – at least, my dad was not bashing me.

Lucy’s sister got married as soon as she reached the ‘legal’ age, which was 18 – just to get away from her dad. Lucy ‘lasted’ a bit longer. She phoned me before her wedding day: “You might be surprised that I’m marrying a man who is 10 years older than I’m,” she said. “While it was the norm a century ago, I know it looks pretty weird nowadays. With a more mature dad, I hope my children will be growing in a better environment and won’t see the hell I went through as a child…”

From http://www.theguardian.com

Ivan’s dad was complete alcoholic. I saw him only once. He was so ‘marinated’ after decades of drinking, that it was even impossible to tell when he was drunk or sober, if he ever was sober. He was trying to say something friendly to me, but I could not understand even a single word. Poor Ivan needed to ‘translate’ for me from Russian to Russian. I felt very sorry for Ivan – my dad at least could still talk properly and was not always drunk.

Alex never talked about his family, but I had a feeling that there was a history of alcoholism in his family too, because Alex would never touch anything with alcohol, whether it was vodka, beer, wine or cider. Not a drop. For that reason, other lads were always mocking him with their usual ‘you are not a man if you are not drinking’ tune. My gender helped in those cases – as none of that ‘be a man’ crap applied to me I could easily get those lads ‘out of tune’ to shut them up.

From Russian Men Loosing Years to Vodka

Victoria was the only surprising exception. Her parents divorced when she was little. Her dad was married three times, her mum – twice. It always puzzled me how they all managed to maintain good relationships. Victoria lived with her mum, however if she needed her dad he was always there for her in the blink of an eye. She had very good relationship with all his children from other marriages – her half-sisters and half-brothers. Her step-dad treated her well too. May be, that’s why she turned into such a carefree chatter box with a beaming smile: always happy, always confident, always giggling…

I’m very proud of my friends. They did not have a good start in life, but they all managed to get their lives into a pretty good shape and provide safe, stable and loving environment for their children. It was a hard work – and still is I’m sure. However they never complained, they never blamed their fate, they never gave up and while steadily getting up on their feet, they never put anyone down.

I do admire their self-discipline, strength, determination and kind hearts. They are real heroes for me, the most beautiful people I’ve known.


From http://morethansayings.blogspot.co.nz

What about you?
Who are the most beautiful people in your life?

THE END

Travelling in time on the old moped

( Russia, 1990s )

* * *Photo by Dimych

We stopped for lunch not far from Balagoe – a small township located half way from St Petersburg to Moscow.

“Take care. There are lots of Gipsies living in this area. Don’t stare at them, otherwise they might think that you are ‘challenging’ them. They are very hot-blooded and quick to grab their knives and axes. A young lad from St. Petersburg has been killed here last  year,” – said Ivan, unpacking the bag with our lunch.

“Why?”

“Well, this is a long story. Gypsy lads are not allowed to touch Gipsy girls until they marry them. They still have a tradition of hanging out bloodstained sheets after the first night, you see. And gipsy girls are not allowed to bare their bodies in public, even arms and legs. Only their faces can be seen. However before Gipsy lads settle with Gipsy girls they like having fun with local Russian girls, who are perceived as easily accessible. Look at the way Russian girls are dressed, exposing everything they possibly can. They like getting male attention, don’t they? Unfortunately they are playing with fire. As the result, from time to time Gipsy lads get into troubles with local Russian guys.”

“Gosh, sounds more like a story about wild beasts rather than human beings. And it is only 300 kilometers from St. Petersburg!!!”

Ivan was just about to take the last sandwich from the bag, when I quickly grabbed it and took a big bite.

“Well, we were much wilder ‘beasts’ in the past too. A few generations ago the bride’s virginity was a matter of communal importance in Russia and, until it had been confirmed, either by the finger of the matchmaker or by the presence of bloodstains on the sheets, the honour of her household would remain in doubt.” He gave me a wink.

“Yuck! This fact has never been mentioned in our school textbooks! I bet cows were treated nicer in those days than girls. At least, cows did not have fingers poked into their private parts.”

“And at the wedding feast guests sometimes acted as witnesses to the bride’s deflowering” – continued Ivan.

“What?!” – a peace of sandwich stuck in my mouth. “Right, I see. You are telling me all of this only because you want to get hold of this sandwich, don’t you? Don’t even hope – no matter what our ancestors did in the past, I am going to finish this sandwich.” I bravely took another bite and inspected my shabby jeans and short-sleeved top.

“Would you mind to take your shirt off?”

“Why?”

“Come on, take it off. Believe me, Gipsy lads won’t get into fight with me over your beautiful arms,” I put Ivan’s shirt on.

“Can I borrow your cap as well?”

“Go for it.”

I tucked my long hair under Ivan’s cap.

“Can I have a go at the steering wheel now?”

“Are you sure?” Ivan did not seem to trust my driving skills.

“Not, but just want to get a taste of it. Please.”

“All right. Just a little bit.”

We packed our bags and hopped onto Ivan’s moped. We did not get far, when suddenly the front wheel skidded and we both flew into the air.

“Ouch”, – something hot touched my leg.

“How are you?” – asked Ivan.

“Fine,” – I slowly got up off the ground, checking my bruised body.

“Look what you’ve done?” – Ivan was almost crying, inspecting his moped. I managed to pull out every single wire on it.

“And what on earth happened to you? Why did you drive it right into this heap of sand in the middle of the road?”

“I could not see it.”

“Why could not you see it?”

“Because I did not have my glasses on?”

“Where are your glasses then?”

“In my bag?”

“Why are they in your bag?”

“They did not match my new outfit.”

“What?” – Ivan gasped in disbelief.

“They did not match my new cap.” …

( Photo by Sfa )

Related posts:

THE END

 

 

The cruelest animal…

“People speak sometimes about the “bestial” cruelty of man, but that is terribly unjust and offensive to beasts, no animal could ever be so cruel as a man, so artfully, so artistically cruel.”

Fyodor Dostoyevsky


From http://izquotes.com/quote/285251

* * *

India
2014

A few days ago, two Indian girls were gang-raped and murdered after doing what half a billion women and girls are forced to do every day – go outdoors to try to find somewhere discreet to go to the toilet. Those two cousins were just 14 and 16 years old.

“The father, a 45-year-old agricultural laborer from a low-ranking caste, said in a telephone interview that the two girls were last seen alive on Tuesday evening in a mango orchard, in the company of a man named Pappu Yadav. (The man’s surname is the same as his caste.)

The father said a relative saw the girls with Mr. Yadav and two of Mr. Yadav’s brothers and that, for reasons he did not explain, the relative tried to intervene between Mr. Yadav and the girls. One of the Yadav brothers pulled out a pistol “and put it to the head of my cousin-brother,” the father said, using a common term in India for a close relative. “He got scared and ran away.”

When he heard what had happened, the father said, he went to the local police station and asked that Mr. Yadav’s house be searched. But the police officers, who are members of the Yadav caste, “took the side of the culprits,” the father said.”

The girls were members of the Dalit community, India’s lowest caste once known as the “Untouchables”.

From http://filipspagnoli.wordpress.com

* * *

Russia
1800s

One old nobleman, along with a band of spongers, moved to his countryside estate and took to hunting with hounds. One day, a peasant boy (the nobleman had three thousand souls there) accidentally hit a hound from the landlord’s kennels in the leg with a stone. When he saw that his Nalet was limping, the landlord became incensed and asked, “Who injured the dog?”

The kennel attendants had to reveal the little boy’s identity. They produced the boy. He confessed.

In the morning, the landlord ordered preparations for the hunt in full complement. They went to the field and took their places near the forest, the hounds were let out, and the borzois were held on leads. There they brought the boy. The landlord ordered that the little boy be stripped of his clothes and set loose in the field to run. Then they let out the dogs from all the packs to chase him—literally to hunt him.

The borzois approached the little boy, sniffed at him, but did not touch him… His mother got there in time; she had run through the forest. She clasped her child in her arms. They dragged her back to the village and again set the dogs loose until the little boy was torn to pieces. The mother went insane and died within three days.

From ‘A life under Russian serfdom’


From http://eco-trophy.ru

However don’t put all the blame on men. As history shows, women in power are as cruel as men. Take as an example Darya Nikolayevna Saltykova, commonly known as Saltichikha who made her infamous mark with the atrocious killings of her serfs. She enjoyed torturing and mutilating her victims. Saltichikha was the epitome of boyar abuse of serfs in pre-reformation Russia. She pleaded guilty to the murder of at least 138 serfs at her estate, and the torture of many more. The name Saltychikha became a synonym for bestial treatment of the peasants.

Дарья Николаевна СалтыковаFrom http://russiapedia.rt.com/

I wonder sometimes where such cruelty originates. Is there a template for cruelty laid down in the human brain? Is it something that is unique to our species? Why do human beings find pleasure in deliberately inflicting pain on other living things? And what can we do to stop it because…

“Not much we can do about that,” you might say.

I think we can. The stories presented in this post have one common theme: these cases are the product of certain beliefs (or memes) held in the society. The stories from Russia happened at the time, when surfs were not perceived as human beings – they were perceived as property and therefore their owners believed that they could do anything with them, including torturing and killing them. Russian writers and artists were the first to object that deeply ingrained belief. Book after book, painting after painting, they slowly changed that ‘meme’ and eventually serfdom, like slavery, has been abolished.

This clearly demonstrates that even the most deeply ingrained memes and beliefs can be changed. We just need to keep talking about such cases and spread positive beliefs to combat mind viruses and memes that cause cruelty and violence.

Don’t close your eyes to ‘Hell on Earth‘. As Martin Luther King once said, “The ultimate tragedy is not the oppression and cruelty by the bad people but the silence over that by the good people.”

Martin Luther King Jr. I Have A Dream Speech Quote "Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter." Go here to read the article: http://www.jamiepelaez.com/i-have-a-dream-do-you-have-a-dream/  #InspirationalQuote #MartinLutherKingJr #IHaveADream #MLKQuoteFrom Pinterest

Related posts:

THE END