$30 to $100 [per specimen] – The going rate for a human life.

In 2007, Michael Vick was implicated, and later pleaded guilty, to federal felony charges which included an illegal interstate dog fighting ring. The public was devastated to learn that Vick had engaged in the hanging and drowning of dogs that did not perform well in bouts. Fans were rightfully OUTRAGED. Vick’s jersey was pulled from sale, he lost his NFL salary and all endorsements. He served 21 months in prison and 2 months of home confinement. The public rebuke was swift and punishment serious. Continue reading

Sustainable: How Sustainable are YOU?

Sustainable developement 2


Adjective: able to be maintained at a certain rate or level; able to be upheld or defended. (Miriam-Webster)

The word sustainability is derived from the Latin sustinere (tenere = to hold & sun = up), thus the Miriam-Webster definition of upheld or maintained.  In 1987 the Bruntland Commission of the United Nations (UN) defined the concept of sustainable development as “development that meets the need of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.”

Once the concept of sustainable development was loosely defined, it took off. Not only has sustainability turned into its’ own industry, but it is now a widely used marketing concept. We hear the concept of sustainability applied to food, cloths, fabrics, building materials and other piece goods. We hear the concept of sustainability also applied to plant and animal life. The World Society for the Protection of Animals (WSPA) even had an Animal Welfare and Sustainable Development Conference  in Brussels (2012) to discuss its’ Sustainable Development Strategy (SDS) through 2015, which it defined as “Continuing to promote high animal health and welfare standards in the EU and internationally.”

I take no issue with any aforementioned sustainable development plans. As a Christian woman I have a responsibility to God’s earth and the life found in it. Genesis 1:28

God blessed them and God said to them: Be fertile and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it. Have dominion over the fish of the sea, the birds of the air, and all the living things that crawl on the earth.

Genesis Chapter One reminds us that the whole human race is made in the image and likeness of God and has dominion over the earth. As a human, I must be respectful of the dominion given to me by God. The Lord is telling humans that we have responsibility to all living things on the earth; they do not have responsibility to us. For example, I have dominion over my cat Larry. It is my responsibility to take care of Larry; it is not Larry’s responsibility to take care of me.

Why do we apply this concept of sustainable development to everything from food to textiles but we don’t apply it to the human beings to whom God gave special dominion? We often don’t uphold or maintain human life and ironically this is done to support the sustainability of future generations. How does this make sense? Continue reading

The Catholic Woman: local, organic, sustainable.

Local, Organic & Sustainable.

We have all heard these words applied to everything from food to textiles. I have been known to visit the local farmers market or the certified organic grocer. I try to purchase items friendly to the environment and attempt to reduce my household waste. I understand the importance of supporting local merchants, putting chemical free foods into my body, and sustaining our environmental resources. I get it (most of the time).

Local, Organic & Sustainable. These three words have been used for so many different products and practices; their meaning is in danger of being lost. My mother, while having her hair colored at a salon, was informed by the stylist that the hair dye was not only organic and environmentally friendly, but vegan. Hair color so harmless that it is edible.

My husband and I were talking about this phenomenon.  We have come to expect these words when describing our purchases or lifestyles, but have become numb to their meaning. Through our discussion it occurred to me that outside the Catholic Church there is nothing more Local, Organic or Sustainable than the Catholic Woman. Continue reading