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We have a two-faced attitude to Spring lamb

We humans can be a hypocritical bunch. Take our stance on Spring lambs, for instance.

On the RTÉ main evening news the other night, there was a report from Kerry on an extremely rare event: two sheep, on the same farm, within 24 hours of each other, gave birth to quadruplets.

There was, of course, the stock-in-trade footage of the cute (yes, my word) day-old lambs, barely able to stand, fluffy toys wobbling around the barn, suckling at their mothers’ teats. And Sharon Ní Bheoláin, back in the studio, remarking with her endearing smile – ‘Now wouldn’t that gladden your heart?’

The lambs are without question – to the empathetic human eye – cute and cuddly.

Unfortunately, we do not treat them as we treat dogs and cats, our preferred animals; no, we slaughter them when they are, in a human comparison, barely out of nappies.

Lambs are brought into the world so that they can be slaughtered and eaten. I’m sorry if that bare fact doesn’t gladden this heart.

How about cutting out the cute and cuddly talk and be honest with ourselves?

Breeding and raising and killing lambs is a heartless business.

Gerry Boland


Co Roscommon

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