A Naga lady trolled on Facebook for seeking puppies for adoption. "Think before you give up your puppies for adoption as she is from Nagaland," writes one user. "Just because a Naga person is asking for a dog doesn't mean it's for meat..plz stop being so judgemental and racial," hits out another against the trollers
Why are we biased against the people from Nagaland, and why do we assume that they adopt dogs only to eat them and not to keep them as pets?
Consuming dog meat is not a crime and some people in Nagaland have been eating it for centuries, but does that mean they can’t keep dogs as pets?
We assume that every Naga person eats dog meat, so we should not allow anyone from Nagaland to adopt a dog if we have one up for adoption.
"Think before you give up your puppies for adoption as they are from Nagaland," commented a Facebook user when I responded to an adoption appeal on a popular animal rescue and adoption Facebook page.
The lady, who had asked for a puppy for her daughter, is a native of Nagaland, and I was "warned" by this animal lover only because people in Nagaland eat dog meat.
The Facebook user assumed that being a Naga lady, she would cut the puppy after adopting it.
There was a barrage of comments against her and some even said that her methods of seeking adoption were "suspicious".
However, there were a few Facebook users and group members who stood up for her and lambasted those who spoke ill of the Naga lady.
Please refrain from being so judgmental and racial. However, a house check before giving any dog for adoption is a must no matter what race that person belongs to, " wrote a user.
Yes, a house check before an adoption is mandatory, but racially abusing a person is not acceptable at all.
I've seen a lot of stereotypes in the group when it comes to adopting dogs in tribal areas. Some people right out claim that they only adopt the dogs to eat them later, "wrote a user named Arindam Kapinjal.
"That alone shows how negligent these people are. Not everyone eats dogs, and they would not adopt a dog and bear its transportation cost if they could simply get dog meat at a much lower rate in some markets," he added.
"There are a huge number of dog lovers in these areas as well, and tbh, the number of animal cruelty cases is much lower in those areas compared to areas where dog meat is taboo," the post added.
The ironic part here is that the one who has been abused is from the Northeast and the ones who have hurled abuses are from the Northeast, and we complain that the Northeast and Northeasterners are racially abused in other parts of India and that we are regarded as second-class citizens.
If a person from the Northeast is racially abused in his backyard, then what can we expect to get in someone else’s backyard?
I love meat, and I have also tasted dog meat once. Now, does it give someone the right to judge me and say I don’t love animals?
And if people are screaming because there is a myth surrounding the people of Nagaland that every single person eats dog meat, then let me tell you one thing- people in Europe, Australia, North America, and Africa also eat dogs.
So what would you do if the former Australian cricket team captain, Michael Clark, put up a post seeking a dog for adoption?
As I was searching the internet to find countries that eat dog meat, I came across an interesting Fox News article, where they named countries that eat dog meat.
There is a paragraph in the article which says, "While many people often associate eating dogs with Asian or African cuisine, the practice is still common among farmers in the Appenzell and St. Gallen districts of the country. The practice is legal as long as the animal is killed humanely and the meat is not sold for commercial purposes. "
Any guesses which country it is? It’s Switzerland!
The simple Facebook post made me realise one simple thing: the Northeast is far from being united.
We are still ignorant about our region, hold biases against each other and a sense of animosity brews underneath.
Nagaland is not the land of dog eaters. People in the state love dogs as much as we love them. And to abuse someone because dog meat is consumed in the state is ethically wrong.
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Partha Prawal (Goswami) is a Guwahati-based journalist who loves to write about entertainment, sports, and social and civic issues among others. He is also a published author.