The inflicting pain to other species! In my opinion

The Editor,

Eluxe Magazine

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Dear Sir/Ma’am,

Recently I read one of the 
articles featured in your magazine indited by Arwa Lodhi  titled “Animal Abuse in films: Why Hollywood
is no place for animals” and I thoroughly accede with the writers opinion and
perspective. Every being has a birthright to subsist and thrive in peace . We
the humans are not entitled to derive pleasure by inflicting pain to other
species! In my opinion the lowliest form of cruelty is one which is done to
those who cannot speak for themselves.

 

“The question is not ‘Can they reason ‘ nor ‘ Can they talk?’ But
‘Can they suffer ?”- Jeremy Bentham

 

In her article she surfaces the fact that “animals play a key
role” in films and  I am in full
agreement with this harsh reality. From the Tiger in ‘Life of Pi ‘to the dog in
‘Marley and Me’ countless animals have contributed to the humungous fame of
Hollywood productions. According to my research animal imagery has  exquisite and principled influence on the big
screen. Animal imagery represents the relationship between animals and humans
through an artistic approach. Jonathan Burt’s book” the animal image in film:
more powerful than meets the eye”talks about the actuality of the fate of animals
in films . If the animal is integral to the plot of the film and is cast as one
of the main roles , it is done so to get an emotional response out of the
audience and to make them connect more to the film and its characters. This may
lead to evoking sympathy among the spectators towards animals and their
consequentiality . But this is ironical since what is being portrayed on the
screen is an absolutely different story from that behind the scenes.

 

What authentically transpires “behind the scenes” takes the
inhuman form of animal cruelty. Arwa Lodhi goes on to verbalize about how “the
concern for animal welfare was suppressed”. Since times immemorial, animals
have been brutalised for man’s
regalement. Before the American Humane 
Association came into being, there were no rules or regulations in place
to forfend these innocent voiceless creatures. In the movie’ Ben Hurr’  100 horses met their death! They found
satanic ways to edify the animals how to fall and jump on the correct signals .
The poor creatures were even made to jump through flames just to get the
desired “dramatic effect”.During the making of ‘Jesse James’ in 1930 the horses were coerced to wear movie blinkers
with eyes painted on them. The horses plummeted to their deaths as they were
made to run to the edge of a 75 foot cliff! This film became the impetusfor the
need for protecting these inculpable beings and so the American Humane
Association was born.

 

Furthermore, Arwa Lodhi 
goes on to state that the ” American Humane Association can no longer be trusted to do their job”. I
support this claim because there have been numerous instances where the AHA has
failed to perform their obligations. It is supposed to be an organisation
committed to ascertaining the safety, welfare and salubrity of animals. This
seems contradictory to the fact that so many animals are “killed “and sometimes
even “euthanised” in movies. It
is a fact that there are at least 21 movies and tv shows where animals have
been brutally injured and murdered! The blockbuster movie Life of Pi
exemplifies this fact. King(the Bengaltiger, the species of which are proximately extinct ) virtually
drowned duringthe shooting of this film. Life of Pi went on to win an Oscar but at the expense
of the lives of the faultless animals.Movies like ‘The Hobbit’ , ‘Pirates of the Carribean’, and many others starring famous
actors have coerced animals into acting by denying them aliment, hitting them
until they bled and caging them in the most insufferable conditions.The
American Humane Association which
is ‘funded by the very industry it is monitoring”, repudiates any postulations
of animal brutality by claiming that all the incidents transpired off-camera.
They do not take into account the mental trauma the animals face during their
training for these movies and ironically instead of being paid hundreds of
dollars like their ‘HUMAN’
counterparts they are met with chains and whips! However, had the American
Humane Association not existed, so many cases of animal abuse would have gone
unnoticed. Since the inception of AHA the rate of animal abuse has gone down
considerably.

 

Now thanks to the modern technology and “computer generated
images” we can still make movies where animals are the protagonists without
torturing and tormenting  them. We need
to sensitise the producers , directors and their trainers to stop these demonic
acts towards animals and finally bid adieu to animal abuse altogether.

“All life deserves respect, dignity and compassion. ALL
LIFE.”-Anthony Douglas Williams. 

 

Yours sincerely ,

Sukrit Sethi

 

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