What happens inside a country and what it does externally, matters.
Fifteenth century Italian painter Leonardo da Vinci reportedly said: "The day will come when people like me will view the murder of an animal the same way they view that of a man today."
It was shocking beyond belief and horrifying to watch on television recently (now for the fourth time) the brutal mistreatment of beautiful, innocent, unsuspecting and defenceless Aussie cattle, this time being slowly and brutally bludgeoned to death by sledgehammer in a Vietnamese abattoir.
Previous appalling footage has come out of Indonesia (cattle), Egypt (cattle) and Pakistan (sheep): all non-Christian countries.
They can't speak for themselves
Humanity loudly protests, and animal lovers want to be a strident voice for them. They cannot speak up for nor defend themselves. And the sickening scenes witnessed in my lounge room confirmed that they are voiceless, powerless and are sometimes placed at the 'mercy' of the brutality of man.
Viciousness and the darkness of hell rose up and stole life from powerlessness through agony and unspeakable suffering.
The poor animal's hooves had slipped on the concrete floor as it loudly bellowed in terror and pain, it having already suffered a terrible blow. The executioner smashed down his sledgehammer from above head-height onto the face of the stricken victim of his contemptuously cowardice behaviour. The same result could have been humanely achieved with a stun gun.
Gentle unexpected execution is possible, as a result of which the beast will not 'tense up' and thrash about thereby toughening the meat.
And before they arrive at their 'place of doom', these poor animals are subjected to an equally appalling lengthy ocean voyage, crowded in, oftentimes having to endure stifling heat with little ventilation and minus a veterinarian on board, during which their are deaths and injury, all seen on television.
The Aussie Government remained silent
The horror of this dark side of the live export trade has been surreptitiously happening for years, with governmental fear of jeopardising the massive AUD$2 billion p.a. revenue being the sole reason for successive governments turning to look the other way.
The underlying cause of this national disgrace was the making of an unprincipled decision in the first place.
It doesn't have to be this way
I submit that the unrighteous pastoralists, politicians and government officials who instituted (and continue) this horrible trade are and remain: in slavery under the basic principles of the world (Galatians chapter 4 verse 3), whereas the righteous person has: died with Christ to the basic principles of this world. (Colossians chapter 2 verse 20).
Another quote from Leonardo: "The king of animals is man because his brutality overcomes that of all others." And the ultimate owner of all animals still says today that: The soul of the unfaithful feeds on violence. (Proverbs chapter 13 verse 2b NKJV).
Buddha said: "When man feels compassion towards all living beings, then he will be noble", and Charles Darwin said: "Love for all living creatures is the most notable attribute of man."
Words from the Master
Darwin was in good company in this one regard, and thus in tune with God who says: A righteous man "cares" for the needs of his animal (Proverbs chapter 12 verse 10 NIV). The NKJV renders it equally well: A righteous man "regards" the life of his animal.
Although the following verse of Scripture specifically refers to (and no doubt was intended to refer to) speaking out for the human "poor and needy" (who clearly need and deserve to have the strong people of life speak up loudly for them), it is here applied to the animals over whom mankind has been entrusted by our Creator to administer stewardship.
Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves. (Proverbs chapter 31 verse 8).
God reminds us that: every animal of the forest is Mine, and the cattle on a thousand hills. I know every bird in the mountains and the creatures of the field are Mine. (Psalm 50 verses 10/11). Man easily forgets where true ownership lies, and assumes (arrogantly/ignorantly?) that he can do as he pleases with God's animals.
Words from other than the Master
Surely nineteenth century French novelist Anatole France was right when he said: "Until you have loved an animal, part of your soul will have remained dormant".
But: "Properly trained, a man can be a dog's best friend" (Corey Ford). Some Australian politicians and public servants still need to be "properly" trained.
The official line
The official reply received to my 'letter of outrage' stated that the Coalition (of the two conservative political parties that went on to win the recent Federal election and formed central government) "condemns" such brutality, that it "supports" this action and "has done" that.
It advised that the animals had been sent in contravention of Australia's "strict rules" to a facility "non-approved to receive Australian cattle", knowing full-well that once the animals have landed in a sovereign foreign country the Australian Government has no control thereafter whatsoever.
Such abysmal 'bureaucrat-speak' provides zero comfort for those animals facing a shattering fatal future, nor for animal lovers whilst-so-ever this heartless trade is plied. It seems that those strict rules will occasionally be flouted as our national shame continues and our political masters impotently discover breaches after the event.
Capitalism at its worst
This is an example of capitalism at its worst. Ruthless men gain only wealth. (Proverbs chapter 11 verse 16).
It remains depressingly unknown how many Aussie animals still await a similar agonising and bloody fate.
Gavin Lawrie is a retired Barrister and Solicitor from Tweed Heads NSW and author of the book 'THE EVIDENCE OF EVOLUTION: Uncovering The Faulty Science Of Dawkins' Attack On Creationism." He is married to Jan with two adult children and they are grand parents.
Gavin Lawrie's previous articles may be viewed at http://www.pressserviceinternational.org/gavin-lawrie.html