The animals in this instance just kinda provide a backdrop for the dumbassedness.
First, a touch of background info:
When the Taliban was largely in charge of Afghanistan, animal fighting was Verbotten. Seems that Islam doesn't look favorably on pitting animals against each other for sport, so the practice was banned. That ban didn't mean, of course, that the public's appetite for the blood sport wanned at all. As the Taliban proceeded to get knocked off its perches throughout the countryside, animal fighting enjoyed a resurgence.
These are elaborate, popular affairs with the masses. Many Afghan people celebrate the new year with games of all types, including animal fighting. The animals are often decorated with graffitti and colorful harnesses to identify them and their owners/tribal affiliation.
I say "animal fighting" as opposed to "Dog Fighting" or "Cock Fighting" because the Afghan people don't limit themselves to just the two forms of animal combat best known in the US. They also enjoy Ram Fighting:
As well as Camel Fighting:
Which brings me to the oddly useless website that I stumbled upon the other day.
I happened upon a website called the Care2 Petition Site. Apparently, this is a place where people can go and sign petitions of all sorts. They have petitions for and against pretty much anything you can think up. Mostly against. Thousands and thousands of people look over the issues presented and then decided whether to sign the petition, or not. Their catch phrase is "Start a Petition, Change the World!"
One of the petitions currently up for "signatures" is this one calling for the halting of Camel Fighting in Afghanistan.
I shit you not.
It should be pretty obvious that I'm not a fan of animal fighting (to put it mildly). You wouldn't think that I would need to state that outright given what I've spent a great deal of my life for the past 16 years doing every day, but some people are dense and will leap to the conclusion that because I make fun of the people who sign petitions against Camel Fighting - I clearly must be in favor of animal torture.
Now that we have that out of the way...
People, people, people..... Do you want to change the world? Well, it's gonna take more than signing your name to a petition online. It will take more than "hope". It will take more than casting a single vote for someone you think has "vision". It will take more than wishing upon a star, or clicking your heels together...
Bringing about actual change takes lots and lots of work, or lots and lots of time, and often lots and lots of both. We've apparently spawned an entire Generation that is laboring under the assumption that if they want something bad enough, it will simply manifest itself for them with a little Poof! and some Confetti. Some folks are very disappointed when they discover the truth, and feel bad that bringing about "change" isn't quite as easy as they thought.
Doesn't bother me one little bit.
I'm personally glad that broad, world altering "Change" isn't as easy as flicking on a light switch. It should be hard. Or maybe "hard" isn't the word I'm looking for. It shouldn't be possible to bring it about at a mere whim, would probably be a better way to put it. If you don't agree, just spend a little time browsing through the comments section on any issue oriented, liberal leaning blog. Or any conservative leaning blog, for that matter.
Would you want your world transformed into someone elses vision of utopia so effortlessly that it could happen just because of a few digital signatures on a website petition?
Push button "Change" hasn't worked out all that well for us recently, and that should be a lesson to everyone.
Probably won't be, though.
And now, a few of my favorite
1:55 pm PDT, Jul 8, Philippa Nugent, Australia - No animals should be killed and no animals should be used for anything in anyway at all.
5:35 am PDT, Jul 1, Name not displayed, United Kingdom - I'd prefer to set the humans who organise on this on eachother - to kill themselves to the death - would solve it. meanwhile we must put with these 'humans' infecting the planet with their 'sport' - i hope petition works
Jun 30, 2010, Jo Tohara, New Zealand - Would you want to see this? Would camels have feelings? And what are your feelings on this topic?
Why do people find pleasure in watching these cruel and inhumane sports? Why does no one stop them?
Jun 22, 2010, Alice Anderson, Indiana - These poor animals are beautiful and not to be killed for sport. Please end this practice immediately--it would show that Afghanistan is a humane place for animals and not a cruel killing place.
Jun 19, 2010, Suzie Desrochers, Canada - That's a really dumb activity... The bastards who want the animals to fight for their pleasure should be the ones fighting to death and that way, bad people would die before they can hurt animals.
Jun 19, 2010, Riou Gwenael, Armed Forces Europe - STOP THAT IMMEDIATELY!
I'm particularly fond of the one that hopes the organizers of animal fighting "kill themselves to the death".
I lol'd :)
Don't worry folks.... I'm sure the people of Afghanistan just weren't aware that you disapproved of animal fighting. Now that you've explained to them that animals have feelings just like you and me, I'm sure they'll hold domino tournaments next year instead.
I mean, just look at this crowd:
A Draconian Religious Zealot Government couldn't stamp out their love of animal fighting, under pain of public stoning and execution... but I'm sure they'll all be very sensative to your feelings and wishes on this matter.
*Post title compliments of Judy Garland and Mickey Rooney. At least they put a little effort into their plans to save the farm.