When I first attended the University of Rhode Island back in 1992, I joined three groups that were on campus: an animal rights group called SETA (Students for the Ethical Treatment of Animals), a pro-life group, and a group against racism. What I found very interesting was the fact that the majority of the students in SETA were for abortion. Even as a freshmen at URI that believed in God but was far from practicing the Catholic Faith that I was baptized into, I couldn’t for the life of me, understand how a person could be so pro-animal while at the same time being so anti-human. How could one stand up for animals and at the same time, be very vocal against the life of human beings in the wombs of their mothers. I actually left the animal rights group because of that hypocrisy. This hypocrisy continues in our current culture of death as over 3000 babies a day are killed in the wombs of their mothers through abortion, while any mistreatment of an animal in our society is treated with swift justice.
I say all of this as someone who truly loves animals. I have a dog, two gerbils, a gecko, and 10 fish. I take care of each of them as my “own” family. Yet, at the same time, I know that human beings were created in the Image and Likeness of God. Each of us have human dignity, and our lives are invaluable. We have eternal souls that Jesus died on the Cross for. As we come very quickly to Holy Week and prepare ourselves to enter into the Passion, Death, and Resurrection of Jesus, let us pray that our current culture of death that seems to value animal life on a higher level than human life, changes into a civilization of life and love where every human life is welcomed, loved, and treated with respect and reverence, regardless of size, race, or age. God bless!