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Exploring the feelings behind the worldview theme--another project WORLDVIEW theme song...
for theme #44B: Animal Rights
to Die” by Stephen P. Cook
the tune of “Expecting to
Fly” by Neil Young /
The Buffalo Springfield
Confined you are to gestation crate1
Expecting to die2
Uncomfortable you can’t turn around
You won’t even try
Factory farm breeding pig
By the winter you are nursing
Piglets you can’t see
Confined to farrowing crate3
To spare injury
Babe, piglet you can’t see4
Babe, piglet you can’t see
Your life cycles on and on
Three litters a year and you’re spent
To the slaughterhouse you smart animal
To market holiday ham is sent
Pork production farm5
Ham and bacon
I’ll live without you6
For me, pigs won’t die
Give animals like Babe respect
Please give it a try
Babe, please give it a try
Babe, please give it a try
crates measuring 6.6 ft long by 2.0 ft wide used in intensive pork
production to house the sow (which may weigh up to
900 lbs) during pregnancy (meaning most of her adult life).
Typically lined up row after row in large sheds, to opponents of
such factory farming they are unhealthy and inhumane. Given
floors made of concrete slats that manure falls through, the
animals live directly above their own waste.
the 1983 novel The Sheep Pig (which the 1995 movie Babe
was based on), the border collie Fly, who comes to treat the
precocious pig Babe like her son, is glad Babe has no idea of the
fate in store for him: his owners initially plan on fattening him
up to be a Christmas ham. So
despite his intelligence, Babe is thankfully spared from learning this
knowledge by the other
farm animals and is not “expecting to die.” Happily both his
intelligence and social nature make him so useful and win him
respect that his life is spared.
Unlike factory farm pigs, Babe is not confined to a tiny space
but mostly runs free. The
remarkable intelligence and behavior of feral hogs, whose growing
numbers infest places like rural Texas, suggest they know
the fate in store for them if caught —explaining the extreme
precautions they take to avoid capture. Of course whether pig
“intellect” and consciousness is such that they expect to die
if caught is debatable!
A few days before giving birth, sows are moved to farrowing crates. Here
piglets will be nursed. Despite
providing room for
piglets to play, they are designed to separate piglets from their
mothers, whose weight might otherwise crush them.
restrict the sow—and she can’t turn around to see her
line imagines Babe’s life beginning as a piglet on a factory farm with
a confined mother who, although able to provide
nursing, is unable to see him.
year around six million breeding sows populate factory farms in the
surprisingly, many who respect animal rights are vegetarians!
Comment: The behavior associated with
this theme provides emotional armor in that it allows those who
empathize with and feel compassion for animals (as in the song) to
better sleep at night knowing their feelings and actions align. Beyond
that, one doesn’t have to look far to find the strong emotional
driving force behind both anti-abortion and animal rights movements. It
could be that among the strongest defenders / advocates for both
protecting the unborn (theme #44A) and extending humane treatment to
animals are people who have themselves felt unwanted, unloved, weak,
powerless, and generally at the mercy of stronger adults. Living for so
long with those feelings, they often identify strongly with unwanted
fetuses or animals.
back to theme #44B
Musicians--We'd love it if you perform this song! Please contact us!