October 11, 2007

Horse 814 - The Judas Sheep

Don't ask me why - but this was in the employment section of today's Australian:

MEATWORKERS BACCHUS MARSH - Required for the following:

Slaughterman for beef/lamb
Kill Floors
Boners/Butchers breaking lamb in the Boning Room
Labourers for Kill Floors, gutting and Boning Rooms

Long term day shift positions available. Excellent Rates.

This takes me back to one of the very first jobs I ever had. Although this is going to sound hideously ironic considering that I do not like the sight of human blood or medical procedures - cutting apart dead things; so long as they were dead didn't and still doesn't bother me. One of the first jobs I ever had was in an abattoir.

Admittedly we only really saw cows and sheep pass through and they'd come off of the truck and quite peaceably be either stunned, or lethally injected (with a specific neurotoxin) before they were cut up into their various components for leather and tallow, while elsewhere, butchers would prepare the carcasses for cutting into various cuts of meat.

One thing that you've almost probably never hears of is the concept of the Judas Sheep. Sheep by nature are timid and not very intellegent creatures. Anyone who's ever herded them up will tell you that they'll move quite easily when being led by another one of their own kind, they have this instinct to follow each other without thinking, even to the point of their own doom. The Judas Sheep will lead the sheep up the ramps such that they can be slaughtered and a good Judas Sheep will deliberately be set aside so that they can do this again and again.

A Judas Sheep may avoid being slaughtered itself for several years; being recycled around and around the system or so I'm led to believe. In some cases they've been marked for stud work and will often be set to breed. Invariably they too will eventually suffer the chop and succumb to being eaten.

I wonder if from a philosophical standpoint whether the Judas Sheep bears any relation to us as people or not. Are we as people really any different though?
These are the attributes common to humanity.

"As it is written, There is none righteous, not even one." - Romans 3:10

"For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God." - Romans 3:23

"All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all." - Isaiah 53:6

Did you read that? All we "like sheep" have gone astray. People are just like sheep. Sheep are very vulnerable animals, easy prey for a cunning wolf, and really really stupid. Every day on the news, we hear or read about people who have fallen victim one way or another because of this very fact, people simply following without thinking. One simply has to look at the media to realise that we even follow after our own Judas Sheep, be it for fame, money, politcal ideology, whatever, seemingly totally unaware of what is going on in this world.

And all destined for the Kill Floors and Boning Rooms.

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