Who Matters?

WARNING! Today’s picture post is not for the squeamish.

Photo from a Facebook repost from Al Ramirez originating from a (by self-report) Animal Shelter Manager, who posted via Facebook this and other pictures to give the inside look at life for pets surrendered to his and other animal shelters. I am unable to verify that this shelter manager’s written or pictorial report is true but I have no reason to doubt it. Besides, a “picture is worth a thousand words” and his picture certainly speaks volumes. This picture was not something I particularly wanted to see on my Facebook page but the image has remained with me. It spurred me to other thoughts though. Pictures of what we don’t see.

Dozens of metal trash cans are piled full of stiff dead cats. Quite the shocking image and it’s meant to be. It’s being circulated as a warning to those who turn their pets over to animal shelters, “This is what happens to these poor animals. Shame on you”.

Another series of television ads show dozens of abused animals. It’s up to us to rescue them.

An entire reality based television program was being aired depicting animal rescue workers going in and forcibly removing abused animals from their owners. It’s the SWAT team for animal rescue.

Every time I watch television and I confess that isn’t daily, I see these type advertisements. Send donations! Put a stop to these horrible animal cruelty! It’s an ugly and hard look at an ugly truth.

It rips at your heart. It’s meant to and it should. Animal abuse and neglect is evil. God never intended for humans to purposely hurt animals.

He didn’t intend for us to do the same and worse to our children.

What’s wrong? No advertisements depicting abused and neglected children’s situations. No reality based television of Child Protective Care workers storming into a house and forcibly removing abused and neglected children. (Of course people’s privacy must be protected, and everyone is innocent until proven guilty, but given what is aired on television today, I do believe there is a way around all of that. Is it truer to say the reason we don’t see it is because it’s an ugly reality we just want to ignore? Do we think it will just disappear?)

The closest we come in equalizing the issues are the news coverage of child abuse cases (and what we see and hear about is an incredibly small percentage), television ads to send donations to stop world hunger and advertisements from pro-life groups to stop abortions. The latter two also soliciting funding.

But states are responsible for child abuse and neglect protection and they are funded by our tax dollars. As a resident of Alabama let me tell you state tax funding is far, far, far from being enough.

Here Child Protective Services is under the Department of Human Resources, DHR for short. Funding cuts are yearly events. If DHR can’t have enough money to fund themselves decently then they can’t reimburse the service providers they contract with to cover services DHR themselves can’t provide for lack of money and/or cost effectiveness. Foster families are given incredibly insufficient funds to care for foster children. Every year it is do more with way less.

The lack of money trickles down and who hurts the most? The children. Children already removed from homes where they were abused and/or neglected are then hung up in a program poorly funded, overloaded, overworked and insufficient because no one can get blood from a stone.

In no way would I advocate the harming of animals or the protection of those who do. I also realize that for many their pets are as human to them as my child is to me. But I can’t help but wonder who matters more? Animals or human beings? I think it is a legitimate question. Along with many more when it comes to what gets funded and what doesn’t.

That’s just my opinion.

–Faye

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