Recently I heard a news story about how the ‘People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals’ is offering a reward of up to $15,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of a man who kicked a squirrel off the edge of the Grand Canyon in a video that has gone viral.
Its acts of cruelty like this that make me think there’s no hope for the human race. There is a difference between killing for food and simply killing for pleasure.
When I was nine-years-old I threw a frog as hard as I could against a board all because a friend ‘dared’ me too. Afterwards I told myself I never do such a cruel thing to another living thing jus’ because someone said to do it.
Later while in high school and heading home on the school bus I thought it would be funny to place a sharpened pencil behind a guy as he was leaning forward so he could lean back and poked by it. My immature brain didn’t see how the pencil could have easily pierced his skin and damaged an organ.
Fortunately, the guy next to me thrust his hand between the pencil tip and the other guy’s back preventing a severe injury from occurring. To this day I’m embarrassed and ashamed of myself every time I think about that incident.
My sleep is often interrupted by jagged nightmares about the men I’ve killed in combat. Yes, though they tried to kill me, I still feel horrible for having taken their lives.
When I think about these three situations taken from my life, I wonder – when it comes to having a conscience – am I the acceptation or the rule. It scares me to think I could be part of the minority in this case.