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Earthlings (2003) 2is an eerie documentary narrated by Joaquin Phoenix detailing abuses of animals and the larger philosophical issues regarding speciesism. As earthlings we might think of ourselves as equally deserving of life and existence. Go Further (2006) is a film portraying delightful comedic road trip with Woody Harrelson in a hemp-fueled bus. A raw vegan chef the crew nourished while Woody explains ecological, organic, and plant-based living. The Vanishing of the Bees (2008) documentary on the human beings disruption and devastation of bee life. Manipulation of bee’s natural state has lead to massive depopulation will greatly affect the pollination of crops and ultimately all life forms. The informed decision to avoid honey is espoused by people who care about this tragedy and recognize the theft of honey as inherently cruel. Schumacher’s Furs closure The crusade against fur has taken many forms in the last few decades. Activists quickly ascended into news headlines with buckets of red paint or sensational campaigns with the motto “I’d rather go naked than wear fur.” The issue is complicated as fur use was already on a decline perhaps owing to its classist connotations, and climate issues play a part as well. Only a few years ago there was a deliberate push in fashion to promote fur and make this retro fashion new and vavavoom. Some people who disdain fur might find it socially acceptable if it is recycled fur because there is no direct economic sponsorship of the barbarity involved. Fur trim on sweaters or handbags might appear less controversial or more acceptable to some, despite the fact that it might be sourced from house cats. Anal electrocution is a common method of killing animals for the fur industry. Cruelty-free living demands a boycott of the fur industry. 30-60 animals might die for one coat. The animals often have sad lives deprived of necessary social relationships and basics such as adequate water. Fur is conspicuous sadism. It also often plays into a culture which degrades women as well. In what outdated world do women have to dress as a raccoon, or a fox to gain respect among their peers? Fur is a static reminder of a bygone era when women’s rainments demonstrated familial wealth. A successful action against Portland Oregon’s local furrier Schumacher Furs involved vigilant multi-media protests of the span of almost two years. A car-battery powered television played brutal footage of fur farms in China where animals are skinned alive. Passersby could watch the footage themselves on the street and converse with demonstrators. The protests took on various forms with chants, cheers, flyering, person to person education, refreshments, boom box musical inspiration, police violence, Northwest Constitutional Law Center legal support and observation, arrests, pepper spray directed at the mob by a deranged security guard, personal sexist attacks by a less than classy Schumacher family. Fois Gras ban in California APRL (Animal Rescue and Protection League) operates in San Diego. They perform direct action campaigns against industrialized animal cruelty. Founders Kath and Brian
Rogers organize letter campaigns sending heartfelt personal letters to head chefs of fois gras serving restaurants with pictures of the painful torture the geese undergo during force feeding. The protests outside the restaurants helped to highlight the barbarity of this cruel delicacy. A revision in California law will go into affect to prevent the extremity of torture the geese experience. In order to produce fois gras, literally “liver of fat” unlucky geese undergo brutal tubal forcefeeding of corn mash. The force-feeeding tube often ruptures the esophagus. The geese are incapable of regurgitating, and suffer the discomfort of an overfull stomach. This process goes on for weeks until slaughter. The liver is a detoxifying organ of the body, and thus harbors residues of pesticides and other toxins. The unnatural explosion of fat induced by barbaric force-feeding is considered a delicacy only by unthinking people or deliberate sadists. Fois gras plates can sell for over $200. Some restaurants serve it because it is controversial, even among meat-eaters Fois Gras farming is on the way out and proposed restrictions in other municipalities belie a groing awareness of animal suffering. When famous chef Wolfgang Puck pulled fois gras from his menu and replaced it ith a fava bean pate, he was responding to direct action from the humane society and other anti-fois gras campaigners. It is worth noting that restaurants might take fois gras off the printed menu, but continue to serve it by request. OHSU primate experimentation slated for acceleration. Compound like a concentration camp. Animals communicated very clearly to me their fear that I ould hurt their children, their desire for freedom. Lewis and Clark University in Lake Oswego has the only animal rights law program in thhe United States. . . . Matt Rossel is a hero in the crusade against animal abuse. As the founder and head of In Defense of Animals has vigorously fought the primte torture at Oregon Health Sciences University, the commodification of cruelty at Schumacher furs, and the suffering of zoo animals. He can be heard on local radio and has a powerful level of commitment to animal rights having worked undercover at a fur farm and the primate testing facility. Against circus animal abuse and against the treatment of animals in zoos. He is a part of the anti-fur movement in Potland and IDA provides assistance to the protesters in the form of excellent graphic posters and literature. Anti-fast food protests also abound in North east Portland. Sidney outside KFC in chicken costume Indymedia as excellent resource for animal rights activism. Worldwide anti-mcdonalds day Literature on nutrition and veganism Vegan outreach is a generous group which will provide excellent flyers to anyone who can distribute them. They have flyers in Spanish “Por que Vegano?”
Stella Mccartney’s fashion sensibility eschews leather and fur and proves that high fashion can coexist with cruelty free living. She has brought the issue of leather’s dominance in fashion to a mainstream audience. Why is it so? How can we change it? With the likes of Natalie Portman zooming in on the trend and designing vegan footwear, the options will abound for style conscious people who realize cruelty should never be a mark of taste. Vegan designers. Eco-handicraft in general . . .NYTIMes article about recycled yarn or recycled refashioned clothing. For people who’s vegalitarian thoughts also share an environmental underpinning, less less less is the way to go!!!!! Raw food culture as a bourgeoning development in wellness. The growing niche market often harmoniously incorporates vegalitarian standpoint. Popular as a key to youth and beauty, vegan raw food has attracted the attention of celebrities. As middle America follows suit . . .Chefs attain near celebrity status as their work takes off. Often informal potlucks or dinners originate and idea that becomes a restaurant or . . . Wearers of wool may be totally unaware that sheep-farming has a dark side. The genetic manipulation of sheep strains to exhibit extra skin surface area in folding layers of skin to maximize wool output, has lead to the unfortunate practice of mutilating the folds of skin under the sheeps tale in a process of unanaesthetized surgery. After the wound heals the chances for skin infections decrease, but the whole process is a barbaric reminder of the way animal industries exploit for profit. This little known phenomenon has become more understood and now people are demanding reduced-cruelty wool with the promise of no museling. Like conflict free diamonds, the demand for museling free wool is now taking off. While most vegans would shun the use of wool often the process of respecting animals is a matter of degree and gradual admition of another beings capacity to suffer. Honey. While no truly undevastating method of taking bees’ honey exists, because of growing awareness, certifications have developed to assert the relative integrity of the honey harvesting process. This gradual emerging consciousness which would respect the honeybees dwelling and livelihood is a sign of progress. The harvesting of honey, bee pollen, and royal jelly often results in the mutilation and dismemberment of bees and bee fragments remain in those products. Who’s ever worked at a slaughterhouse? I have a friend who has done so. Already, a vegetarian for years, there is no need to convert my friend. He works for Tyson , one of the nations largest meat packing plants and employers of immigrant labor. When the issue of animal rights becomes entangled with human rights sometimes people start to take notice. One might argue that the conditions for the workers are so horrendous that factory farming might be forsaken purely on the grounds of human rights. Workers lose fingers and limbs. Their immigration status is exploited to drive down wages and instill submission. Dave told me of how the pigs when strung upside down from their hind legs, often try to bite their killers. Dave said he secretly rooted for the pigs and
understood their frustration. He was sent to the Emergency room with pig juice splattered in his eye. After four hours waiting to be examined and get antibiotics he was dismissed back to the packing floor to package the remaining kill, even though it was four in the morning. A talented musician, dave is now plagued by trigger finger, or locked joints, repetitive stress injuries. His hands suffer. When human beings are locked into interminable near-slavery by an industry that offers unsanitary conditions and a wealth of likely injuries, people should stand up for other people. I don’t know when Dave’s karmic health will improve. . . . the pigs squeal so loud the workers wear earmuffs. 10,000 a day die at his plant. When consumers purchase meat, they sponsor the suffering and exploitation of immigrant laborers who labor in heinous conditions. Jainism came to my attention as the concept of fruitarianism appealed to me. Jains are view all life as sacred, including insect life and the life of plants. They eat only fruits or nuts which leads to seed dispersal but but not the death of the plant. The integrity of the plant remains. Before walking down the street they might brush the insects from their way, to prevent incidental deaths. A screen over their mouth would prevent the inhalation of tiny insects. The Jain concept of ahimsa, or nonviolence, is the most radical. It involves total disengagement from activities causing harm to all life forms. There is a new movement of young Jains. While commonly understood as a religion, Jainism is a non-thoecratic philosophy of respecting life. No deity need be invoked. Mahatma Ghandi’s mother raised him with a Jain mindfulness. The Story of My Expiraments with Truth is a wonderful autobiography detailing Ghandi’s youth, political struggles, and personal quest. In his way of looking at things truth is the highest principle. Ahimsa/nonviolence is the way to truth/satya. Common issues: Where do you get your protein? Oh the dreaded question belies such little understanding. The array of plant sourced proteins abounds. New hits take off. Hemp protein is a miracle for athletes and lentil sprouts are my new love. Excessive protein is a cause of multifarious illnesses. Kidney stones, stroke, heart attack, hypertension . . . Animal enterprise terrorism act is an obvious handout to animal exploiting industries. Government protecting business at the expense of others is nothing new. the critical issues at hand are . . . why is this ideological shift occurring? Why do some people seek to expand the concept of rights to the non-human sentient world?
A new study has found many organic personal-care products contain the carcinogenic ingredient 1,4-Dioxane. Products by Kiss My Face, Jason, Giovanni, and the Whole Foods line all contained the toxic byproduct. Nymag 3-23-08
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