March 2015

OTHER NATIONS VOICES

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

IN THIS ISSUE:

  • Blog updates: happy/sad rescues; say “rabbit rabbit”
  • AKC fights for puppy mills – MT’s bill is tabled
  • Kindness & compassion–on wheels!
  • “TYKE: Elephant Outlaw” – a circus tragedy (documentary) 
  • Lab animals: Increase in use means more to liberate
  • Recent rhino trophy decision: Kill ’em to save ’em, again 
  • Quick Links…just stuff FYI
  • The tail end: WAG IT!

Click for Facebook page

BLOG UPDATES: “Two animal rescues: 33 happy homecomings and one heartbreaker” – This is a tough one. Tough because not all rescues have happy endings. I was still grinning ear-to-ear after reading about 33 former South American circus lions heading to sanctuary in the U.S. when I stumbled upon the story of little Kwan–a malnourished Malayan sun bear who, tragically, never saw the sun. Find it here.  

“‘Rabbit, rabbit’ or ‘Night of the Lepus’–it’s your choice” –  Folklore, rabbits, and good luck (for humans, that is!); Whole Foods markets, rabbits, and bad luck (for rabbits, most definitely). And don’t forget a serving of schlock horror along with your Thumper cutlet. Hop on over to this post.

UnknownMT’s COMMERCIAL PET BREEDER LAW IS TABLED: Yet again, the exploiters prevail and Montana’s puppy/kitten mill bill never got out of committee. The American Kennel Club (AKC), supposedly the “dogs’ champion,” vigorously goes after state legislation that attempts to bring puppy mills under even minimal regulation. AKC’s opposition to HB 608 can be read here. Then check out this blog post at Chicago Now: “Why the AKC fights for puppy mills.” And there’s more–at the Other Nations’ puppy mill page. Montanans, if you’d like to send your thanks to Rep. MacDonald for sponsoring Montana’s bill (again), head on over to the Other Nations legislative page.

KINDNESS (& CHILIS) ON WHEELS: Here’s a heart-warming story about a compassionate mother-and-child project. True benevolence doesn’t exploit or harm ANYone–that’s why this mother and son distribute free vegan chili to homeless and hungry people on the cold streets of New York City. Read a brief story about their effort–here’s an excerpt: “We talk a lot about helping others, helping animals, helping people. If asked ‘What’s your purpose?’ Ollie replies, ‘To be a good guy.’” Sweet!!!  Facebook; website.

Creative Commons 3.0 Attribution; http://www.freevector.com/elephant-graphic/“TYKE: Elephant Outlaw” – Elephants and captivity don’t mix. Throw in forced performances, and nowhere is this more tragically apparent than in the “gripping and emotionally charged story of Tyke, a circus elephant who went on a rampage in Honolulu in 1994, killed her trainer in front of thousands of spectators and died in a hail of gunfire. Her break for freedom – filmed from start to tragic end – traumatised a city and ignited a global battle over the use of animals in the entertainment industry” (source).  View the trailer for this documentary, which will premiere later in April at the Sarasota (FL) Film Festival. 

11034257_10152587387350633_8711054663578401777_nGOT THE LAB ANIMAL BLUES – Back at the end of February, PETA released a study based on Freedom of Information Act inventory requests from National Institutes of Health-funded labs and “found about a 72 percent increase in the number of animals being used in federally funded labs between 1997 and 2012 — mostly mice” (NBC News). “Looking at the 25 top NIH-funded institutions, PETA found these institutions housed a daily average of about 74,600 animals between 1997 and 2003; that leaped to an average of about 128,900 a day by 2008 to 2012, a 73% increase,” according to ScienceMag.org. (Keep in mind that mice, rats, fish, and birds who are bred for research aren’t covered by the Animal Welfare Act and thus aren’t tracked–which is why FOIA requests for “inventory” were necessary.) That brings us to World Lab Animal Liberation Week (starts April 18th), brought to us by Stop Animal Exploitation NOW! (SAEN). Read about SAEN’s victories in their quarterly newsletter, and note that, according to a January 2015 Pew Research poll, more Americans now oppose animal experimentation than support it.Citizens are closely divided over animal research: 47% favor and 50% oppose the use of animals in scientific research. (Poll results here, including male/female stats.)

BLACK RHINOS: Kill ’em to save ’em –  The US Fish & Wildlife Service strikes again. You might recall that they’ve proposed listing the African lion as ‘threatened’ under our country’s Endangered Species Act while concurrently allowing the regulated importation of lion trophies. Now it’s black rhinos–with some 4000-5000 left in the world (down from 70,000 50 years ago). Learn how USFWS justifies the recent decision to allow importation of two rhino hunt trophies at this National Geographic article, with further explanation at this USFWS Q&A page.  AND GET THIS: Here’s how one trophy hunter explains the perverse, ghoulish obsession to own dead bodies: “It’s hard to say why hunters value the remains so much — respect, a memorial, the time you had with it,” Knowlton said. “I believe it’s all of that. A hunter’s relationship with wildlife is intimate” (source).

quicklynxQUICK LINKS: Just stuff FYI…without all the blather

  • “These gory new hunting competitions have taken the country by storm” – wildlife killing contests–in Mother Jones
  • “Animal rights activists protest use of animals in Yale labs,” Yale Daily News
  • From NPR: “Does being vegan really help animals?” (just in case someone still isn’t convinced!) – here
  • Nonhuman Rights Project (NhRP) update: Lawsuit re-filed on behalf of chimp plaintiffs used in research, petitioning for their freedom and release to Save the Chimps sanctuary.
  • 1:25 min. video explains the nonhuman rights being sought by the NhRP – here.

    Quick Links from the Other Nations Facebook page:
  • Anti-fur protesters crash Vancouver Fashion Week (you go, girls!) – video here
  • Former SeaWorld orca trainer appears on The Daily Show with Jon Stewarthere
  • 125-lb. woman devours world-record 5 lbs. of bacon in 5 miutes – here

tailendwagitThe tail end: WAG IT!

  • Cats & bunnies make best of friends – here
  • Pitbull bathes baby bunny (mmm, dog spit!) here
  • A “binky” is a rabbit’s expression of joy: here and here
  • Wild bunnies do binkies, too (and rock out to Led Zeppelin)! here
  • I posted this on the Other Nations Facebook page a while back–one man + one paraplegic dog = the definition of love