Neurodiversity Awareness/Appreciation

Neurodiversity Awareness/Appreciation

Saturday, July 14, 2018

To See Or Not To See?

Wow, I've been out of the Blogosphere for a while!  I am trying to make my big comeback and start blogging again. I've been wanting to for a while and just haven't gotten around to it, but when I found myself starting to write a really long Facebook post, I realized that it was turning into a blog entry... and so here I am. 

Anyways... Last night I got to be one of the first people to watch "Dominion", a new documentary about how animals that are raised for food are treated.There was not a dry eye in the theater! Some people were worried that I might get too upset if I saw it... and they were right, it was very upsetting... but it is sort of like, EVERYONE should watch it and we SHOULD be upset.

As you know, animals are my main "special interest." More than that, animals are my heart. But I am going to switch directions suddenly and without warning right now, to bring you the following information. In Sweden, a group of people that call themselves STHLM Panda routinely film pranks and social experiments. Recently they decided to do a more serious social experiment than usual. They wanted to find out how people would react to witnessing domestic violence happening... in, of all places, an elevator, where they could not just ignore it or walk away. The group predicted that about 50% of the witnesses would intervene. The man who was portraying the abuser was even prepared to get punched a few times by other men who would defend the woman.

Instead, out of 53 witnesses who rode the elevator at various times and saw the domestic abuse taking place, only one person made any attempt to intervene. One witness even asked the man to let her (the witness) get off the elevator before he abused his victim. Does that seem sort of surprising?

What would you do if you were in this situation? Would you try to think of some way to diffuse the man's anger or distract him? Would you try to physically defend the woman? Would you grab your phone and dial 911? Or would you ask to be let off the elevator so you would not have to witness the woman's pain and would not have to take the responsibility of doing something to help her?

Okay, back to animals. Now you are trapped on an elevator, but this time it is with a man who is punching a lamb in the face repeatedly while roughly shearing the lamb's wool in a way that leaves her bleeding. Or he is throwing live newborn chicks into a grinding machine, or kicking a piglet in the side while using an electric rod to electrocute him in the head, or he is killing a mother goat while her newborn kid bleats helplessly. What do you do? Do you say something? Do you beg him to stop? Do you try to get help? Or do you get off the elevator and walk away, trying not to think about it?

The reason I wanted to see "Dominion," despite knowing ahead of time that it would break my heart, was because if I purposely didn't see it, I would feel like I was choosing to ignore it. I did bawl through most of it. It was hard because I have friends who are animals, so when I saw the baby cows and goats being stolen from their mothers I was thinking about Popcorn and Spock the cows, and Moxie and her goat babies, and so on down the line... every animal reminded me of someone I know. But I am glad I saw it, because it is better to see something than purposely not see it. (Does that even make sense?)

"Dominion" isn't usually in movie theaters. You have to go to a private screening I got to see it because I am in with the in cool crowd I got invited by my friends who run Odd Man Inn. You may be able to find a private screening in your area by going to this page and searching for your city or state, or you can even request to host a private screening. You can also rent it online here.

The thing that upset me most about it was that the people in this movie seemed to be enjoying hurting and killing the animals. They were purposely being cruel to the animals. It is horrendous enough that the animals are being killed, but these people were laughing and calling the animals names in the process. It is overwhelming to think about how many animals go through these torturous deaths every day.

The documentary is so upsetting, that the website actually has a page on self-care that urges people to get help if they find themselves having trouble processing their feelings about what they saw.

If you see it, I'd be interested to hear what you think of it!


  1. Totally agree.

    I have a theory that more of us on the spectrum are vegetarian than those who aren't...Can't quite back it up with evidence...YET!

    Great post!!!!

    Thanks and love,
    Full Spectrum Mama

    1. Ah, yes, but we have no empathy, remember? (Also we can't use sarcasm!) LOL!


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