Author Topic: Turkish vegetarians call for animal rights during Eid  (Read 754 times)

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Turkish vegetarians call for animal rights during Eid
« Reply #1 on: August 21, 2012, 12:54:03 PM »
Turkish vegetarians call for animal rights during Eid 
Cihan Ozan

16 November 2010   ISTANBUL:

Turkish vegetarians are taking their calls for greater animal rights to new levels this week, calling for an end to the Islamic sacrifice this Eid al-Adha, or Kurban Bayram in Turkish.

Members of the Vegetarians Club in Istanbul has called on Turkish citizens to avoid sacrificing animals during the ritual slaughter.

“Although sacrificing will keep being practiced on religious grounds, one must make sure this is not turned into a painful process,” Berfin Melikoğlu, an ethics professor at Ondokuz Mayıs

University’s Veterinary Faculty in the Black Sea province of Samsun, told the Turkey’s Daily News.

Zeinab, a 26-year-old animal rights activist and practicing vegan, she wants to see an end to the sacrifice of animals, saying there are other ways to go about showing one’s faith.

“I have been a vegan for a few years and here in Turkey the idea that we should be slaughtering animals for any reason is disgusting,” she told Bikya Masr. “We are all living creatures and we deserve the dignity to be treated well by all.”

The ritual slaughter has become a point of contention in Turkey in recent years, with many believing it is people’s right to slaughter animals as God proscribed.

“We are fulfilling our duties to God, so anyone who would say otherwise would be missing the point of sacrifice and faith,” said religious studies professor Arda Mehmet in Istanbul. He argued that vegetarians, under Islam, have a right to abstain from meat, but “they shouldn’t be forcing their views on others.”

Zeinab argued that “meat eaters have long forced their beliefs on others and to have a voice that goes against this tradition of murder is important for any society.”

Turkish vegetarians like Zeinab and others are not only focusing their attention on the ritual slaughter, but for animal rights in general. They argue that only through a better educational program and media attention is the situation to change.

“We live in a violent society that puts humans first, but at the end of the day, Islam and other religious tell us of the importance of compassion for animals and ourselves,” Zeinab continued. “There should be a new way of performing the sacrifice that does not involve the unnecessary deaths of many animals.”