A Mother’s LovePosted by April Nockleby, ALDF's Online Content Manager on May 8, 2009
As a special tribute to all mothers, both human and non-human, I felt compelled to revisit ALDF staffer Paula Mullen’s blog post about the power of the mother/child bond. Here’s an excerpt:
We all cringe and can hardly stand to think about it when a human child is orphaned because of some catastrophe, illness or criminal act. “The poor kid,” we say, shaking our heads with pity, “Such a shame. Now she’ll grow up without a mother.” But many of those children have an extended family of adults who will at least be there to offer guidance, if not become surrogate parents. Possibly, they’ll even have a concerned community to support them, if the story makes the news and inspires a sympathetic public to action. And maybe they’ll even have some counseling thrown in to help them emotionally adapt to life without a mother and father.
And what do dairy calves have for support, these baby animals who are also so vulnerable, who have no way of understanding what is happening to them? And what cruel anguish do their mothers experience, having their babies torn away from them, over and over and over again? When I see the field, I’m not even directly seeing that part of the equation, or the part where those calves unfortunate enough to be born male suffer an even worse fate – forced into the lonely, tortured life of a confined veal calf. It’s terribly ironic that this cruelty happens every single day in a culture that claims to have such reverence for the mother/child bond.