>>> Fringe Benefits
By staff writer J.M. Lucci

January 6, 2008

From the Book of Modern Prophets, Chapter 16, Verses 7-8

And so it was said by the Black Comedian of Funk, Eddie Griffin, “Dogs are the slaves of the animal kingdom.” Tyrone took this message to heart, and for the rest of his days never once, owned a dog.

I hate pet owners.

Dogs, cats, snakes, rodents (of unusual size or otherwise), and other feral creatures—all are a waste of time, effort, and money to keep and maintain. Even more so, the enslavement of another species for personal or communal enjoyment at the expense of the animal isn't just ethically cruel, but stands tall as an indicator of the master's own neediness, loneliness, and personal insecurity. Look into your hearts, pet owners among my Devout Readers, and ask yourselves: are you doing the pet a favor by caging it within your personal realm, or yourself a favor?

PETA is hypocritical. They radically fight to give animals civil rights akin to humans, but at the same time keep pets themselves. These pets are companion slaves, forced to endure constricted feeding and pooping schedules, minimal interaction with other pets of the same species, neutering, leashes, and all the while still be available whenever the master beckons. Doesn't seem like much of a life, huh? I ask again, who's really doing who a favor when you purchase a pet? (Plus, the majority of pet owners bought their pets…kinda like the slaves.)

“How can you be 100% certain your animal slave, in the tiniest bit, actually loves you?”

If you want to be humane, don't keep pets. Acting as an arbiter of security for one’s brood is the same rationalization that despots use to assert control over their proletariat masses. Pet owners are ruthless, localized despots wielding infinite power over creatures that are emotionally crippled into obedience. These animal masters follow in the footsteps of Stalin and Aidid.

Some people say that pets honestly love their masters. That’s ridiculous. As an example, look at how blacks in America were treated in the decades after Reconstruction. If they didn't want to suffer vigilante persecution, they had to adapt to their environment and, reluctantly or not, changed who they were to please those who could do them harm. Uncle Tom may be a derogatory slur for shunning one's culture, but the term’s origins come from mannerisms developed by those who saw this environmental camouflage as a means to stave off a lynching.

The same can be applied to pets, especially dogs and cats born and raised from infancy. They are conditionally trained, berated, and coerced until they become complacent, grinning Uncle Toms. Anyone who deludes themselves in the far-fetched belief that animals maintain any semblance of independence during their relationship with their master is preposterous. The poor pets are reduced to show-and-tell exhibits of idol worship, and any other perception is fogged by the perceiver’s own prejudices toward the matter.

The pets are not free. The pets are oppressed. Therefore, using the word “pet” instead of “animal slave” in reference to your owned animal is not only self-denial, but also a means to sugarcoat your draconian, despotic ways.

What is the number one reason people buy pets? Companionship, right? Why can't people just make friends? Because they're socially inept, that's why. Yeah, I said it. If you buy a pet to have a friend and companion, it’s the same as calling up escort services for “dates,” except you’re constantly shelling out additional fees to keep the escort in your house, eat your food, and shit on your carpet. You suck on your own, and the only way to achieve friendship is to pay for it. Pet owners are losers, and I try to not associate with losers.

Of course, this radical, perhaps militant stance against the ownership and/or admiration of pets doesn't score many points with the ladies. Whatever. I’d rather not deal with those types of women. They're so wrapped up playing “den mother” that they can't take five minutes out of their day to look in a mirror and see the braided whip in their hands. Invisible though it may be, it is still a specter of doom to their animal slaves. Not to say men aren’t the same, because my brothers of humanity are probably worse, most especially with dogs. Men are more apt to use corporal punishment when dealing with theiranimal slaves, too. These masters see themselves as protectors and friends to their pets, but historically hasn't every despot seen him or herself as the shining beacon of morality in their respective regions?

Think about it, pet owners. Think deep and hard about the relationship you have with your animal slaves. How can you be 100% certain your animal slave, in the tiniest bit, actually loves you? Perhaps everything your animal slave does is a conditional response to your training, both emotional and intellectual. For example, whistling is a conditional catalyst for dogs to stop whatever they’re doing and come to their master. How happy is that dog, really? It can’t communicate on the same level as you. How can you be sure?

You can’t. And until it becomes a possibility, owning an animal and emotionally chaining it to your being is unfair, cruel, and just another form of slavery. Nobody likes slavery. If you hate slavery, then don’t buy pets.