Archive for December, 2009

Moon Bears: Life in a Coffin—–Story by: alicia graef

Original Article Posted Here: Moon Bears

Thousands of Asiatic black bears, known as moon bears because of the white crescent markings on their chests, are confined to suffer on bear farms, some trapped in cages no larger than a telephone booth for their entire lives.

Bear farming was started as a way to collect bile from the bears’ gall bladder, which is used in traditional Asian medicine, and was considered as a way to protect the number of moon bears in the wild through captive breeding. However, bears are still showing up with injuries indicative of being illegally trapped in the wild. Some bears also have their teeth cut back or their claws removed
to make them easier to handle.

Bile extraction may be performed by permanently implanting a catheter in a bear’s abdomen or by the newer “free dripping” technique.

The “free-dripping” technique is now the only permitted method of bile extraction. This method involves surgery to create an open hole or fistula in the abdomen through which bile drips out. While this is promoted as “humane” and appears more aesthetically
pleasing than a metal catheter implant, Animals Asia’s investigations and veterinary assessments show that this technique is as inhumane, if not more so, than the older methods and causes a high mortality rate on the farms.

Unfortunately, bear farming is legal and requires owners to be licensed by the government. The World Society for the Protection of Animals estimates that approximately 12,000 bears are currently suffering on bear farms around Asia, with an estimated 16,000
left in the wild and are considered an endangered species.

Under the Convention of the International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES), the commercial export of bear parts is illegal, including gall bladders and bile. Wildlife DNA Services has created a protein detection kit that is being tried in Canada and Australia by customs and wildlife officials.

The active ingredient in bear bile, UDCA, can be synthetically created without the use of animals. Additionally, a report by the Chinese Association of Medicine and Philosophy and EarthCare has established that there are at least 54 herbal alternatives to bear bile, including Chinese ivy stem, dandelion, chrysanthemum, common sage and rhubarb. The alternatives are both cheap
and effective, according to Animals Asia.

Since October 2000, over 40 bear farms have been closed down by the Government and over 245 bears released into the care of Animals Asia’s Moon Bear Rescue Centre in Sichuan. The World Society for the Protection of Animals is working on a similar campaign to encourage Asian governments, practitioners and consumers to promote alternatives to bear bile.

The compassion with which we’ve been given as humans, the only creature on earth who is able to help other life, includes the knowledge that healing does not come at the injury of another life. It includes the concept of respect for the living conditions of others.

You can help by:

Writing a letter to Chinese officials

Downloading a petition

Signing Care2 member Jacqueline Wall’s petition to stop bear farming

For more information on moon bears and how to help, visit Animals Asia Moon Bear Rescue campaign and the WSPA.

Read more: bears, animal welfare, WSPA, moon bears, bear farming, bear bile, animals asia

I Had An Affair With Tiger Woods…(Thank You

Give Pagans Back Our Holiday

I signed the petition "GIVE US BACK OUR HOLIDAY. December 25th does NOT
belong to Christians!". I’m asking you to sign this petition to help us
reach our goal of 1,000,000 signatures. I care deeply about this cause,
and I hope you will support our efforts.

Happy Holiday vs. Merry Christmas

I have a few things to say about the "christmas season":

   1. Christ was born in the fall or spring not in December.
2. December 21-25 is the time of celebration in the Pagan faith. (Celebrating the change between the light and dark days of the year) the pope (in the 1300’s I believe) admitted to "stealing" the timing of christmas from the pagans, in hopes of getting more people to join the church (convert from
Paganism to Christianity)

   3. The word Holiday is traditionally pronounced Holy day. So saying happy holidays has the same meaning as Merry Christmas only it isn’t christians only who can celebrate the Holy days.

   4. This time of year is suppose to be about peace and acceptance so to all you cranky christians, accept that not all of us are celebrating christmas but we are celebrating some Holy Day of our own faith.

   5. So regardless of weather you say Happy Holidays, Merry Christmas, Season’s Greetings, Happy Hanukkah, Joyous Noel, Happy Kwanzaa, or etc. etc. etc. the meaning behind each is the same "may this time of year bring peace and joy to you and your’s"

As a pagan I don’t care if someone says "Merry Christmas" to me. It’s just words, and more importantly it should be the meaning behind the words that we care about. (Which in most cases is a wish for you to enjoy the season.) So relax, and enjoy the season, regardless of what you celebrate

Yule Ritual and Feast

SunGreetings Jolly Pagans!!Sleeping half-moon

ESSNS invites you to our Yule Ritual and Feast on December 19th, 2009, from 6:30pm to 9pm.

Tickets for the Feast are $6 for adults, and $4 for Youth (12 to 17). We will be doing a desert potluck again!

If you plan to only attend the ritual, we will pass the hat to cover hall rentals.

Join us in the end of the dark, and the coming light, at the UU Church – 5500 Inglis Street, Halifax.

Please feel free to pass along to lists you are on, announce on the air, and spread the word!

See you there!