PCTV’s Mountain Morning Show interviews Lauren Lockey about her food mission and her goals with Sage Mountain, and some of the amazing vegan food alternatives.
Sage Mountain’s co-founder Lauren Lockey with plant based athlete Craig Gordon talked about health, movies, and how to live longer while being a better friend to our mother Earth. Click here for more information about the film What The Health.
By: Lauren Lockey
A few days ago I stood in front of the mirror, naked in the flesh with the desire to FEEL the rawness of my own heart. I needed to be with it. Be myself, with me. With tears rolling down my face and my heart aching for all the injustices in the world now amplified with my fear of our soon to be president elect, I struggled. I asked myself how and why? The questions rolled through my head. I thought of my 5 young nieces and what this meant for them as young women. What will this mean for young men and their view of power? Will minorities be alienated even more? Will the lives of animals matter even less? Will mother earth and her signs of depletion be denied even more than before? The oppressed now significantly more oppressed? Our country and our world divided, depressed, and enraged?
I reminded myself that the people of our country spoke and whether we are celebrating or running for the hills we MUST remember one thing, authenticity. The transparency and alignment to what is. For me that means never apologizing again for being an emotional feeling being who has the capacity and desire to empathize with others. Yes I wear my heart on my sleeve but is that a bad thing?! Perhaps that is what has been lacking this whole time. Our ability to empathize, feel compassion, and then take action. Do something! That is what made this election more devastating AND more motivating than in years past.
The last few weeks have been rough to say the least. My work and perhaps my rent for inhabiting this beautiful planet is speaking up for a large percentage of the oppressed, animals. Everywhere I look they are either being exploited, used, abused, or eaten by humans. Men in orange vests surrounded the outer limits of my property looking for their next victim. 300 cows with number tags in their ears stared through my windows every morning because they knew I wouldn’t harm them. I observed and spent time with them and learned that they have daily joys and fears. They communicate, form very strong friendships, and share the responsibilities of watching over their young. The bond between a mother and her calf is absolutely beautiful. So of course I feel tremendous sadness when that bond was broken after only a few weeks. I watched them get rounded up and separated. Their cries were heartbreaking. Next stop? Feedlot then slaughter. A trust broken and families torn apart.
I bore witness to pigs in a transport truck that was pulled over. Their bodies crammed so tightly together that they couldn’t move. Some frothing at the mouth because they were so dehydrated. Their breathing heavy from fear and exhaustion. I voiced to them that I was sorry for what we had done to them and that I will do everything I possibly can to stop it. I pet their ears and peered into the slots of the truck while I told them I loved them. Tears welled up in my eyes and at that moment, the driver returned and confronted me while saying “yup they will be bacon and pork chops tomorrow!” Right there and then I ask myself “how did we get here?” “What happened to empathy?” Is this lack of connection why the US is considered the most depressed country in the world? In my opinion empathy may be the only way forward.
I studied all the blemishes on my body, the lines in my face and felt proud and empowered. It takes tremendous strength to carry the weight and sadness of the world. Let’s be honest, we messed up as humans. True power comes from recognizing that and moving forward from a place of empathy and compassion. I picked my stomach up off the bathroom floor and re-membered who I am. A woman who feels deeply.
We at Sage Mountain are celebrating all mothers today, both human and animal.
Animal agriculture co-opts and profits off of motherhood in every way. We all know slaughterhouses are horrific. But, in this industrialized nation of ours, the “meat” and dairy industries are very much tied to the productive capabilities of a female cow, chicken, or pig, and the systemic control over that body, her life chances, and the offspring she is forced to bear, repeatedly, but will never be able to raise naturally.
In celebrating Mothers today — we ask you to observe the vital questions that link back to motherhood and animals — who had to birth that animal to then be raised and “harvested”? What does motherhood look like in factory farming? Why do we have a constant supply of milk? Why are we the only mammals who drink milk into our later life?
Think about the processes of production and the animals behind much of what we eat, use, buy, and wear. Within the dairy industry, not only are these rape racks a horrific “industry standard,” but further still, newborn cows are ripped from their mother immediately after birth. Male calves go directly into the veal industry and the females begin growing so that they can produce offspring and milk as quick as possible. Today, factory farmed dairy cows produce 100 pounds of milk per day–10 times that of cows a few decades ago. The increase is due to bovine growth hormones and constant breeding to increase milk production. Imagine being chemically induced to produce more milk for the financial benefit of another being, against your will, all while having your baby stripped from you and taken to their own tragic fate.
The egg industry is equally as vile, what with hens crammed into tiny cages and forced to grow and lay multiple eggs daily via hormones. Male chicks are simply “disposed of” or thrown in a grinder while alive — viewed as worthless in their inability to lay eggs or produce breast meat. “Breeding sows” or pigs in the “pork” industry are kept in gestation crates for their entire life–not allowed to move, merely a fuel station for their piglets and kept pregnant, lactating, and miserable. And these are just the cows, pigs, and chickens of the animal agriculture system — the unfortunate truth is that this fate happens to these and millions of other animals for human “need” and “benefit” every single day. By choosing not to take part in these systems of torture, suffering, and exploitation, you are making a deliberate and powerful, and, I would argue, “Honor your Mother [Earth]” statement.
Join us in celebrating mothers today, and everyday — be that yourself, or the mothers in your life, inclusive of the cows, pigs, chickens, etc. who are unable to mother, nurture, or live naturally within the animal agriculture system.
Adapted from original post by author.
Imagine Planet Earth
By: Lauren Lockey
Thanks to Mercy for Animals for making this video and for being a voice for the animals and this amazing planet we live on because we only have one and it is shared with many other human and non human animals. All of whom have families and friends that they love and care for.
Here is what we all can imagine and create during 2016 and beyond..
A planet where ALL beings have a life of dignity and respect. When we look into the eyes of a cow, a chicken, a coyote, an elephant, or any other creature, we see our loving pets at home, therefore we as humans do all we can to protect them. Rivers flow clean and full and water scarcity is a glimpse of the past. Our oceans support all biodiversity with no shortage of food for sea life or land animals who truly need it to live. Wild horses are wild again and aren’t rounded up and auctioned off for slaughter because they simply can’t compete with ranchers using their home for grazing cattle. There are far more trees than there are cattle and livestock feed crops because we need trees to live as trees are the precious lungs of the planet. Natural grasses are abundant and land can return to supporting all species, not just humans. Animals are no longer used or killed for their fur, feathers, tusks, scales or skins because they need it far more than we do. Suffering is drastically reduced because animals would no longer be on our plates and therefore no longer within the food industry. We have a sustainable food industry that does not require enormous subsidies to exist. We have large reductions in cardiovascular and cancer related diseases in humans that alleviate the financial stress on our healthcare system. Animals are no longer are used for entertainment so are free to roam the open plains, oceans, mountains, and deserts. Wildlife can live and hunt freely causing balance again in our ecosystem. All beings can share the planet as it was meant to be. There is no longer war or hate because we all live from a place of compassion not greed or want. The bigger picture is always at the forefront of all political decisions and environmental issues are no longer swept under the rug. Since humans have switched to a plant based lifestyle, we will see a reduction in greenhouse gases that would be more the equivalent than taking every car, truck, boat, and plane off our roads, and out of our skies and water ways.
We have the power to change the world each and every day. If we as a society move towards a plant based lifestyle, we not only reduce the mass cruelty to farm animals, we also become healthier humans and create a more vibrant planet.