Farming in Bhutan is mainly mixed farming. That is crop cultivation and livestock rearing. Both crops and livestock have traditionally sustained rural life. And majority of Bhutanese are said to be farmers who live off the land either cultivating crops or rearing livestock and selling farm products.
Today this traditional livelihood is under attack directly from so called Tsethars and indirectly by the Dratsang. Yak herders love their yaks and it pains every Yak herder family to sell a Yak or two for slaughter. As simple and pure heart Buddhists, they are more aware than so many purported holier than though campaigners of animal life, about the sins of taking life. However, to sustain their livelihood and also to enable them to look after the larger number of their herds, few are sacrificed every year so that rest find sustainability. The Yak herder family does not sell their Yak for the pleasure of creating pain and they do not sell it for making profit. The herder family is not into commercial venture like some of you nor do they have steady monthly salary.
Do not humiliate farmers who rear livestock whether yaks, cows, pigs or hen. Sometimes look inward and tell us from where or how did you make the money to enable you to practise that grandiose tsethar deed so publicly advertised. Was it donation, profit from business, sweated out like farmers on fields and in harsh weathers of wilderness?
The Department of Animal husbandry is invited to make a study of what happened to those animals other than fish that those so called Tsethars have saved. How were such animals cared for, thereafter?
Protesting against commercial butchery is one whole world away from persecuting ordinary farmers and herders with your high profile hugely publicised tsethar interferences into the livelihood ways of farmers in Bhutan. If some of you cannot bear to tolerate the traditional livelihood of rural Bhutan, I invite you to provide an alternative means of livelihood. And if you are not in position to provide a decent alternate livelihood, please stay in peace and stop interfering and obstructing traditional livelihood.
Do not preach what you cannot help to practice. Livelihood of farmers are not hobbies that you publicise as your good deeds. Farming whether in crop cultivation or rearing livestock is for sustainability in rural Bhutan. Not at all comparable to extracurricular public show of those better placed urban few.
You want to seek forgiveness for your private sins, do something else other than victimising herders and other farmers . Sponsor a Moenlam Chhenmo or Kanju Reading every week if you want to please your Tsawi Lams or visit banks and settle loan accounts of those in true desperate situation or sponsor few rural students for college studies if you are sincere in social goodness.
You may despise me for writing this. But do not be too sure that the reasons behind your public tsethar activity are all that laudable.