Celebrating World Wildlife Day

A dog may be trained as a guardian, but so long as this cooperation is conditioned it is not a friend. Nor is the ox who bears the yoke for the serf, nor the serf a friend to their King. What, then, is a spouse or child who is afraid of punishment or desiring reward? What, then, is the man who obeys laws only to avoid jail, or performs their duties for money, power or honor? Is this a freeman? You are not truly free so long as you desire pleasure or avoid pain.

Pleasurable rewards condition behavior. Deprivation or other pain condition behavior. Conditioning behavior by manipulating instincts is an effective means of enslavement, whether in ensnaring other animals or other humans.

Animals, plants, and other beings weren’t created to serve humanity's needs, or for our food - they hold no special obligation to us. Rather, having evolved the strongest species, humanity has a special obligation to protect the freedom and happiness of all weaker beings. As strong people have obligations to the weak of their society.

Other beings are not resources to be developed and exploited. Respect the sacrifice of their lives they make for our lives as our food, the sacrifice of their wildlands they make for our homes and prosperity.

We must protect wildlife we have endangered. We must provide refuge for the people and cultures we have endangered.

The songbird sings by your window, the cat protects your grain, the wild plums ripen without reward or punishment – because that is their nature, their duty. Know the duties of your humanity. It is possible for each of us to perform our duty free of desire or fear. It is possible to permit all beings to live so freely, if we will only not cause them harm.

World Wildlife Day 2017 encourages the world to rally together to address ongoing major threats to wildlife including habitat change, over-exploitation or illicit trafficking. Governments, law makers, enforcement officers, customs officials and park rangers across every region are scaling up their efforts to protect wildlife. It is also up to every citizen, young and old, to protect wildlife and their habitats. We all have a role to play. Our collective conservation actions can be the difference between a species surviving or disappearing. http://wildlifeday.org/