July 2014

OTHER NATIONS VOICES

“…living by voices we shall never hear” (see our slideshow)

IN THIS ISSUE:

  • Blog updates: The logical next step; dressing sheep & scrambling chickens
  • Don’t “mini” me: Micro pigs–another human folly
  • Is freeing fur farm minks terrorism?
  • Honey, does this zoo make my elephant look fat?
  • Killing wolves to save wolves: Video gets ON scat pile
  • Chimp attack survivor takes message to Congress 
  • Quick Links
  • The tail end: Wag it!

10345932_506210819504735_7455239291110114017_nBLOG UPDATES: “Reproductive rights, civil rights…and animal rights.” A Supreme Court ruling and the anniversary of the Civil Rights Act finds us taking the logical next step: Applying social justice expectations to animals. Find it here.

“Sheep dressing, pig wrestling, chicken scrambling: Bullies are made, not born” – It’s summer fair season and “livestock” had better beware as kids learn the ins and outs of speciesism–disguised as good, old-fashioned fun! Three pre-teens reveal their strategy for winning glory by being first to force a pair of shorts on a struggling, panicked sheep. Yee haw. Find more on this absurdity here.

UnknownDon’t “mini” me! – I’ve never been a fan of miniaturized animals (unless they’ve been abandoned and adopted as rescues, of course!). It seems that miniature animals have two purposes: to make money for breeders and to satisfy the whims and desires of humans who want a unique “pet”–until they tire of said “pet,” that is, or the animal becomes inconvenient, or larger than expected. That’s why I was surprised to see Mercy for Animals promoting this YouTube video of a darling micro pig getting a bath. (While I believe they meant to engender love and empathy for pigs, it’s nonetheless promoting another kind of exploitation, IMO).  Here’s the other side of the cuddly coin: a short video on saving Germany’s unwanted micro pigs after the fad took hold there, and an article from England about Percy the pig, abandoned on the streets of Leicester. According to Best Friends Animal Society here in the U.S., “So-called teacups are actually potbellied pigs who are either underfed so that their growth is stunted, or who are sold under false pretenses.” Ultimately, the question is this: In whose best interest is animal miniaturization? As is the case with all animal exploitation, we already know the answer.  Photo: public domain wallpaper; click.

minkfarmTerrorism: You think you know what it is. Flying planes into buildings. Bombing churches, synagogues, and federal buildings. Pillaging, raping, and killing with political motives. But…does it include opening cage doors and freeing minks from fur farms? In the U.S., under the ill-conceived Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act (AETA), freeing minks is terrorism. Two animal activists were arraigned on AETA charges in Chicago recently. From Truthout: “If Tyler Lang and Kevin Olliff trade their freedom for that of the animals who were freed, let it not be in vain. Let us take a good long look at ourselves and ask what kind of society allows a fur farm to exist anyway.” You can read the full opinion piece here, written by a plaintiff in Blum v. Holder, a challenge to AETA. (The author served 40 months in federal prison under the precursor to AETA.) To visit the Support Kevin & Tyler website, click here. Visit the Other Nations AETA page for more background info.

isacat-animal-rights-zoos-teachDoes this zoo make my elephant look fat? Seems that U.S. zoo elephants have joined the more than 2 out of 3 American adults who are overweight or obese (and 1/3 of kids ages 6-19).  Seems that their weight gain is threatening their fertility, which, in turn, threatens their breeding capacity for zoos. Zoos like to tout their contributions to the conservation of species by breeding ever more captive animals…as if keeping genes in circulation is all there is to it. Predictably, incarcerated elephants will become research subjects for their captors. But zaftig zoo eles isn’t the problem–poaching is. If zoos really want to see elephants thrive in the wild, shouldn’t they be putting their effort there–and on habitat conservation? Read Last Chance for Animals’ take on zoo “conservation” and see also the protecting elephants page from International Fund for Elephant Welfare. And from the Nonhuman Rights Project: “Zoos aren’t leading the way in conserving elephants globally. They can’t even conserve their own elephants.”  Illustration credit: Click.

Other Nations scat pile

Other Nations scat pile

Killing wolves to save wolves: Here’s a recently-posted YouTube video from the local wolf-killing cadre (“Why is wolf hunting necessary” [sic]). Listen for the usual hyperbolic talking points in this anti-predator propaganda: “I’ve seen the devastation…they’ve done to the deer population…and to the elk numbers here”; elk numbers have “fallen off the charts”; “it is the hunter who will be the longterm answer to the survival of wolves”; and finally, a bit of sad truth about hunters’ motivation: “they’re just a great trophy animal…” Watch as the two hunters make much ado about nothing while standing over a wolf-killed elk carcass, using words intended to condemn: “Look at that!…they hamstring ’em…they drag ’em down, that’s the first place they always eat out…look at that wolf print–full of blood…look at these tracks, geez!” and so on. Listen as they take credit for restoring and “saving” the herds from the excesses of their human predecessors then assert that they have to “balance out the scales here in favor of the elk,” as if nature just isn’t up to the task. Good grief.

Don’t forget that Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, featured in the video, is vehemently anti-predator, having co-sponsored at least one coyote killing contest in Utah and maintaining that wolf pups will have to be gassed in their dens.

Chimp attack survivor testifies before Congress: This past January’s newsletter contained an item on Charla Nash, the woman blinded and disfigured by Travis, a “pet” chimpanzee belonging to her employer. Nash eventually underwent a face transplant (see a slideshow of her amazing reconstructive surgery results at previous link). Earlier this month she appeared in Washington to urge Congress to pass the Captive Primates Safety Act. “It would amend the Lacey Act by adding ‘nonhuman primates’ to the list of animals that cannot be traded or transported across state lines as pets. Currently, the Lacey Act puts such restrictions on big cats, such as lions and tigers.” Commodifying wild animals as status symbol “pets” or for any other purpose is wrong. If you’d like to support the Captive Primates Safety Act by contacting your congressional representatives, visit our Act! page.

quicklynxQUICK LINKS: Just stuff FYI without all the blather

  • Purchase Animal Legal Defense Fund’s windshield sunshade and send an important message about dogs and hot cars. Awesome idea! Details are here
  • Vegan is the New Black is a short video “inspired by the opening title sequence of Netflix’s hit show Orange Is the New Black.” Brought to you by Mercy for Animals.
  • New National Museum of Animals & Society draws attention to animal rights – Huffington Post
  • Seaworld, Southwest Airlines ending partnership; airline under fire from animal rights groups” – here
  • “Make it possible” – a 1-minute TV ad from Animals Australia. Chokes me up every single time. Here.
  • Visit the Other Nations Facebook page for more items like these!

tailendwagitTHE TAIL END: WAG IT!

  • Restore your faith in humanity in 4 minutes flatvideo
  • “Chips the baby bobcat” – Rehabbed after being caught in a wildfire, this kitten is eventually returned to the wild – video.
  • Dogs annoying cats with friendshipvideo