Cercenar, from the Latin circinare, is a verb that refers to cutting off the limbs of something. The term can also refer to shortening or diminishing something, either physically or symbolically.
For example: “After fishing the shark, the man did not hesitate to cut off his fin to display it as a trophy”, “The murderer first shot the victim, then hit her with a stick and finally cut off her upper limbs”, ” The owner of the company asked to cut expenses to avoid greater losses.
According to DigoPaul, the retrenchment or curtailment may apply to a body human or animal. If we take the case of a psychopath who, in addition to killing his victims, decides to cut off their arms and legs as if it were a ritual, it could be said that this criminal cuts off those he murders.
A hunter also tends to cut off his prey. A man who hunts a wild boar and who is about to eat it, must go through a series of steps before he can cook his meat. One of them will be to sever the animal, separating its limbs.
The curtailment can be carried out on matters that are not material, such as a budget or a time period. People in charge of bringing money into a household can ask others to cut down on superfluous expenses so that everyone can travel on vacation in the summer. In a similar vein, the organizer of an arts festival can cut a singer’s performance time, limiting it to half an hour compared to the 45 minutes originally planned.
This term highlights a phenomenon that characterizes us in a regrettable way: the same acts of violence that we repudiate between human beings, we accept as normal and necessary when the recipients are animals of other species. In the previous examples, it is shown that the use of the verb to cut between people can only be given if the person doing it is a psychopath, a murderer, a sick person.
However, if the mutilated being is a non-human animal, there is no social problem: no one in their right mind would show a child a video of one person cutting the arms of another, but the most normal thing is that the whole family goes to supermarket and stroll among the meat refrigerators, where a wide variety of cuts are exhibited and even some animals that retain an appearance very similar to the one they had before being killed, such as pigs.
But the contradiction can not only be appreciated when there are children involved: except for individuals with vocations related to medicine, it is not normal that someone can endure a scene of extreme violence, which includes a mutilation of a human being, although the majority of people normally chop up the meat they buy in neat labeled trays.
How do you explain such a difference in reaction, especially considering that many human beings have a very deep attachment to dogs, cats and horses, for example, which are not so different from cows, pigs and chickens? In the answer, two fundamental factors stand out, which are the culture and the organization of the market.
On the one hand, they instill in us from a young age that meat is necessary for our food, that it has a large number of properties that we cannot find in vegetables, which is why we depend on it to live; It has shown that this is untrue in more than one study, as there are many vegans who lead healthy lives without touching a single product of animal origin.
With regard to the way in which the market is organized, animals are not killed in front of consumers, but rather the entire process of exploitation, which includes torture such as overcrowding, occurs on a plane that for many is almost abstract; The media shows us a smiling cow, happy to give us milk and meat, and we accept it because it is more comfortable than seeking the truth and going against centuries of customs.