One hundred years ago, women were fighting for their rights. 200 years ago, slavery was still legal. I wonder what people living one hundred years from now will think when they look back at our lives in the 21st Century.
What attitudes and practices that we accept blithely now as just part of the necessary arrangement of the world will seem horrific to the future generations?
What will we be morally arraigned for tolerating by our more pristine descendants? This article on the BBC website arrives at a tentative list of four such horrors.
The first is mass cruelty to animals in the pursuit of food. The industrial farm, the industrialised slaughterhouse - for all that we have been told of these things, we still effectively hide away this truth from ourselves and from our sight. The conditions of animals - chickens forced to spend their lives motionless, pigs, such sentient and feeling beings, crowded into pens and slaughtered on assembly lines of panic - may seem to our descendants as unspeakable as that of the slaves in the middle passage seem to us.
When we turn a blind eye to the suffering of others, we grow numb to something important in ourselves and succumb eventually to a spiritual paralysis.
Leo Tolstoy adds:
The wrongfulness, the immorality of eating animal food has been recognized by all mankind during all the conscious life of humanity. Why then have people generally not come to acknowledge this law? The answer is that the moral progress of humanity is always slow; but that the sign of true, not casual Progress, is in uninterruptedness and its continual acceleration. And one cannot doubt that vegetarianism has been progressing in this manner.
And finally, a spoken song to broaden views and help make a change.