The Price of Entertainment

Being more disciplined in my blogging has changed the way I think. Hear me out. I blog about my life for several reasons: one, that I don't forget it (if you know me, you know I don't remember much); two, to practice my writing and potentially inspire myself-by default-to write something people might one day pay to read; three, to entertain; four, to share my life in the hopes of potentially bettering others-even ever so slightly-by my experiences, through the good, the bad, and the ugly, assuming my writing yields slivers of wisdom. (I am sure that is a run-on sentence...perhaps I should extend that list to encompass grammar and mechanics lessons.)

In between blogs, I look for life experiences that stick out as a bit more exciting or purposefully symbolic of something greater than just my presence. Here is one such moment.

This moment came as a product of my search for normalcy. Usually I am up and out of the house before most people I know ever hear their alarm clock. I am a strong advocate that such a practice is just wrong. Nevertheless, this past week I haven't had any students at work and so on Monday I decided to tune in to the Today show. Oftentimes I imagine myself doing this in my fantasy world of being a stay-at-home wife/eventually mom: watching Matt Lauer and folding clothes and/or making coffee and eggs.

One segment on Monday was exceptionally disturbing. Plain and simple, it featured a Chinese attraction where the public can pay to see Siberian Tigers-in a facility intended for preservation and breeding-exist in restrained freedom. Here's the clincher. For some extra cash, visitors can be entertained by viewing the tigers being fed live prey: ducks, chicken, sheep, and, for 300 dollars, even a cow.

When I was a kid, trucks would pass my house filled with cows and return empty. After seeing the look in my mom's eyes when I questioned where all the cows were going, I cried. I totaled my first car by stopping for turkeys in the road. The stop just so happened to be too late and too near my friend's car. Many jokes have spawned from this unfortunate circumstance. My mother would tease that I would grow up to be a professional "Watch for Animal Crossing" sign distributor along our nation's roadways.

I eat meat, even if it is a rare occasion usually involving only turkey or chicken. I have a heart for the humane treatment of animals. I believe in capitalism and I do enjoy being entertained. However, I believe morals, integrity, and good, humane character decisions are not to be thrown out the window for the sake of capitalism and entertainment. I am appalled by the choices of the aforementioned Chinese tourist attraction. Watch the video and decide for yourself: entertainment or cruelty?