“I may not agree with what you have to say…
But I will defend to the death your right to say it.” – Voltaire
Seventeenth century philosopher, Voltaire was no stranger to controversy. Renowned for his wit and unique ability to shine a new light on previously recorded events, Voltaire’s perspective caused many to pause and reconsider all they once believed to be true.
Finding himself with almost nowhere to turn recently after crash landing at a mechanic’s workshop was a young rooster by the same name. Fortunately for the avian Voltaire, his public was a little more receptive, ferrying the young bird to a nearby vet after which he was Edgar’s Mission-bound.
Entering our care suffering a severe respiratory condition, underweight and in a poor state of general health, it took all of our knowledge and care to bring young Voltaire back from the brink. Now, having regained his health and his strength, in our midst is a determined and eager young bird, whose will to live is as strong as your or my own.
And whilst the exact details behind Voltaire’s abandonment remain unknown, as an organisation that goes barely a day without receiving a call about a rooster in need, we cannot help but question exactly when the flaw in our social contract with these animals arose. Truthfully, mankind’s relationship with chickens has never been one of kindness. Originally domesticating the birds for cockfighting and religious ceremony before moving toward raising them for consumption, the slope has been a slippery one indeed to today, where birds have been selectively bred to the point in which meat birds bear little resemblance to their fine boned ancestors and the egg laying industry sees millions of commercially bred hens suffer whilst the male of her species is a mere waste product.
Whilst many may label our idea of a kinder world as simple idealism, we will continue on. Just as the great 17th Century mind rewrote the much-accepted histories of those who had gone before him, our mission is to rewrite a kinder future for birds like Voltaire.
In the words of Voltaire, “Judge a man by his questions rather than by his answers.”
And to that we say, “If we could live happy and healthy lives without harming others… why wouldn’t we?”