“Oh my god, that’s so cruel”… really!?

I like watching documentaries about animals and nature. I always find it fantastic to discover the secrets our planet hides! Quite often when people watch these documentaries, or other media with animals, the sentence “oh that’s so cruel” comes up (for instance because a cute baby animal dies or something like that). You see what I mean? Good.

First, animals

And it’s true, nature can be cruel and tough. It usually doesn’t give much chance to the weak creature. Just look online and you will find plenty of examples showing us how animals can be cruel:

  • Some spiders lay their eggs in other spider’s bodies, and keep it alive until the babies are born and eat the spider from the inside.
  • Plenty of species are known to kill babies to have increased chances of survival.
  • Primates are known to have big fights to lead their clans.
  • The worst one I can think of: some fish eat their own children!

What about us?

Pretty rough right? No one can argue this is not cruel!! But you know what, even if I agree, I think there is worse… us! Let’s take a look at our species:

  • We kill people just because we want to… there can be a reason, but well, it doesn’t make it right anyway.
  • We torture people.
  • We insult and maltreat people because they are different and because it’s “funny”.
  • We let and watch millions of people suffer and starve to death. We know it, but barely anyone gives a shit and does something about it.
  • We destroy the planet we live on for our own purposes.
  • We destroy the habitat of thousands of animals by doing that.
  • We also kill other animals, sometimes to eat, but also just for fun or to get richer.
  • We bread animals, maltreat and torture them, so we can laugh or enjoy some nice pieces of meat on our plates (read my previous article to learn a bit more about this subject).

I’m sure this list could go on and on for a while, feel free to add anything you want in the comments and I’ll update it. But I’m going to stop here, I believe you got my point!

So, who wins?

If we compare, we could say we are as cruel as animals, after all, we are animals! But there is, in my humble opinion, a fundamental difference between them and us… we are totally aware and conscious of what we do. Animals act most of the time by instinct, and they often kill to survive. Us, humans, have evolved like no other species on Earth. We developed an intelligence which allows us to do extraordinary things. We can perform some acts of kindness and solidarity like no other species could, and at the same time, we are probably one of the worst (if not the worst) thing that has happened to our planet!

PS: I’m currently reading the book Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind by Yuval Noah Harari. It gives us a really interesting insight of how and why we became what we are now… I hate history, but I strongly recommend this book (I’ll do another article when I’ll have finished it).

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