Christmas for the Cows

A cow in the snow at  Farm Sanctuary  in Watkins Glen, NY

A cow in the snow at Farm Sanctuary in Watkins Glen, NY

Article originally appeared in my column The Vegan Examiner of New Orleans

Christmas is a time to say "I love you." While it is nice to say it to other humans, we have all heard it so much it is nearly meaningless. Cows, on the other hand, don't get to hear it enough. If they did, they wouldn't understand your tiny mouth noises anyway. But if we truly did love cows, then everyone would be vegan. Or at least not eat, milk, or human-ually impregnate cows.

Some people confuse sex for love. Perhaps that is why in the dairy industry people are paid to artificially inseminate cows. In these times it is hard to find a job, and some of us turn to sex work, that is just a common reality. First the sperm has to be collected. This is done by a human, who uses an 'artificial vagina' to collect the seminal fluid. Next, another human dons a long latex glove and inserts his arm into a real cow's vagina and squirts a bit of sperm into the cow. In case you are wondering, cows need to be impregnated every year to produce milk, and this is how the majority of cows get knocked-up.

This is not the ideal vision of a white Christmas, and Jesus probably would not have approved. Some Christians worry that if same-sex marriage is allowed it will lead to humans marrying animals. Yet every time a Christian drinks a glass of milk or eats some cheese they are practically paying someone to engage in sexual acts with a cow or a bull. Sex without marriage, as we know, is a sin. Either we should quit drinking bovine mammary secretions, or allow people to marry whomever they like. This would create lots of jobs in the wedding industry, and offer alternatives for sex workers who want to change careers.

For the record, the Vegan Examiner of New Orleans officially condones same-sex marriages and condemns bestiality. That is just how he rolls. Many people say they condemn bestiality, but then eat animal products produced through such practices. Domestic turkeys, for instance, can no longer mate naturally because of breeding and genetic manipulations that have grown their breasts too big for coital contact. Some humans may have reached these proportions as well, of their own accord. But let's not go there.

It is best to express your love for animals non-sexually. Take, for instance, the band The New Hot 5. While none of them are known to be vegan, and although they play New Orleans Jazz but don't live in New Orleans, they still have at least once been nice to cows. They went all the way to France to play When the Saints Go Marching In for some cows (see "Jazz for Cows" video above), who seem to genuinely appreciate it. No one knows what the band had for dinner that night, but we can be hopeful they might have thought twice about eating cow flesh.

If you would like to do something nice for a cow this Christmas, how about helping a cow out at an animal sanctuary? Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary offers animal adoptions, where you can pay a monthly donation to help out one of the critters living there. The national organization Farm Sanctuary offers the same. These can be given as gifts, and come with photos of the animal and other benefits. The biggest benefit being that you are helping to raise awareness about animal exploitation.

This holiday season, say "NO" to bestiality, and choose to eat vegan. Leave your outlandish comments below.