not just soft hearted

A few days ago my mother called me and told me about a cat that had been left at my uncles farm. Its a really common thing to see happen.  The cat was pregnant and only one kitten lived out of the litter, the problem was that the mother cat had no maternal instincts.  She had made no milk and the kitten was abandoned somewhere on the property.  Throughout the whole property you could hear it crying.  My mother kept saying that if I (myself) had been there, I would have looked for the kitten and I'd have bottle fed it and taken it to a shelter.
That is all completely true, I wouldn't have stopped looking for the kitten.  Why didn't she?
Knowing that it was out there should have been enough reason to go look, if it hadn't had anything to eat in days and it was still alive then its just inhumane to not go look.  If you knew it would be upsetting to someone to hear that you couldn't be bothered to help an animal that would die in a terrible way because you were to lazy, what good have you done?
I can't stop thinking about the kitten ,and it breaks my heart.  I've been caught in other situations where I've helped animals just to get laughed at my your typical townie pricks, and they always call you a softy/soft hearted.  At no point will it enter into the equation if what you did was right, you're automatically a "sissy" for caring about anything non human.  That kind of bullshit is just an extension of might-makes-right and the mindset that "its OK to eat animals because they're lesser beings".  Those same statements are why vegans/animal lovers get stereotyped as weak and feminized, which is just more connections to more macho  sexism and stereotypes that not only is compassion bad, but so is being female.
Being dismissive towards people for being compassionate is a huge societal flaw, which only degrades our potential for communication between different ideological groups and segregates social groups.  I'd rather be a soft-hearted animal lover than the alternative, but its still ridiculous for this to be some trope imposed on a group to make them seem bad.

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