All posts by Jean

Get ready to march on the UW again

The group No New Animal Lab is organizing another important event: the second March on the University of Washington on Friday, October 2nd at 2 pm.

The timing lines up with the first week of the term, and students and faculty will be returning to campus. Let’s show them what’s going on at their school.

At the first march, back in April, 500 people marched through the UW campus and neighboring streets to show their support for the animals and against UW and Skanska’s plans. It was a watershed moment for the animal liberation movement.

The April March on UW

This time, on October 2nd, let’s increase the numbers. People of all ages and from all walks of life will be traveling from around the country to join the match and show their solidarity.

Please share the event widely on social media—Facebook, twitter, Instagram—and use the hashtags #MarchOnUW and #NoNewAnimalLab to spread the word and encourage people to attend.

For more info, read the latest post from No New Animal Lab, and check out their Facebook event page.

Be there and be a voice to animals!

 

UNITY, the film (and a special interview with director Shaun Monson)

In his new film, UNITY, writer/director Shaun Monson (the man behind EARTHLINGS) takes an in-depth look at what it truly means to be human. The film presents a message of love, tragedy and hope, all set against the backdrop of some of the most compelling 20th and 21st century footage imaginable.

It’s a one-night cinematic event, playing in multiple locations nationwide on August 12, 2015.

Watch the trailer
Get your tickets

UNITY features a dizzying array of 100 celebrity narrators including Ellen Degeneres, Kevin Spacey, Adrian Grenier, Joaquin Phoenix, Selena Gomez, Adam Levine, Pamela Anderson, Ben Kingsley, Common, Deepak Chopra, Geoffrey Rush, Dr. Dre, Zoe Saldana, Aaron Paul, Jennifer Aniston, Jeff Goldblum, Moby, Susan Sarandon.

We were lucky enough to interrupt Shaun Monson’s busy schedule for an interview.

NARN: Can you tell us a little bit about yourself (where you grew up, what you did before making documentaries, are you vegan and if so, what made you decide to go vegan? If you aren’t, why not)?

SM: I was born and raised in Southern California. I always wanted to be a movie director, but it was a difficult industry to break into. I got my first chance directing a public service announcement commercial. I have been a vegan for around 15 years. I became one after seeing footage of animals being slaughtered for food.

NARN: Why did you decide to make Earthlings? What did you hope to accomplish? Are you happy with its impact?

SM: I made the film Earthlings because at the time, I was not aware of any film that tackled all of the issues involving human abuse of animals for economic purposes. With the movie Earthlings, I hoped to accomplish awareness of this exact issue. I am happy with the impact. It outdid what I had expected the film to do.

NARN: Why did you decide to make Unity? What do you hope to accomplish with it’s release?

SM: Unity is an extension of Earthlings. Earthlings focuses on the achievement of one group of beings (mainly animals), while Unity focuses on the perception of all beings. Like the last question, I hope to accomplish increased awareness.

NARN: I really like that this movie mentions social justice and other systems of oppression in addition to animal exploitation. Can you say a bit about why those issues are important to you and why you wanted to include them in your movie?

SM: Any time we deal with dominion, it is because a group of beings oppress another for whatever reason. On the surface, it may be social justice, but at the core, they deal with the same problem–dominion and all of its forms.

NARN: What other animal- or environmental-related documentaries do you admire?

SM: I like all of them. I commend anyone who is making an effort to raise awareness of suffering, dominion, injustice and other related issues.

NARN: How widely will Unity be distributed? How can we see it? How can we convince all of our friends to see it?

SM: For starters, theatrical distribution will be worldwide. But, since only a small percentage of the world lives within driving distances of a theater that is playing it, another worldwide release will occur online in the fall. As for encouraging friends and family to see it–tell them that if they are to see one documentary this year, please let it be Unity.

NARN: How did you get all of those celebrities to narrate it?

SM: It started with one, then two, then four, then eight and so on. It kept on multiplying. It took many years–not just to record, but to edit together.

Please watch Unity in theaters tomorrow!

Support legislation for modern, non-animal testing

Animals suffer in the name of science.

Today, companies are legally required to conduct animal testing on chemicals. Hundreds of thousands of animals, including rabbits, guinea pigs, mice, and rats suffer painful burns, ulcers, or vomiting and convolutions, and ultimately, death.

They die in vain, because the required tests are inefficient and don’t accurately predict toxic effects in humans. Animal testing isn’t the best way to test for safety in humans. It’s not good for animals, and it’s not good for people.

Fortunately, a new bipartisan bill, The Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act (S. 697), is being introduced. The bill does two things: it strengthens oversight of potentially dangerous chemicals; and it also features strong provisions to modernize the way testing is conducted.

The bill includes with sections that instruct government agencies to implement alternative methods to animal testing. This is more cost-effective, and innately more humane.

Action:

Find your Senator in the list in this link, and contact them to let them know that  you support modern, non-animal testing methods. Ask them to support S. 697, The Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act.

You can also fill out this form from the American Anti-Vivisection Society. It will be sent directly to your representative.

Cecil the Lion

Cecil the Lion, as he was known, was a lion who lived in Zimbabwe. You’ve probably seen the media storm and public outrage this week about his murder. A wealthy American paid to hunt down Cecil—at night, by luring him out of a preserve—and shoot him with a crossbow.

a lion similar to Cecil

It was nothing but a cowardly act by a small-minded trophy hunter, hell-bent on proving his sense of worth by killing others.

What I learned from the frenzy this week is that it pays to have a name. Cecil was a lion who’d been photographed by tourists for years (he was 12 or 13). He was GPS-collared and was part of an Oxford University study. But he was no different from many other lions that wealthy westerners (usually Americans) pay to kill. Six hundred lions are killed in trophy hunts every year, according to National Geographic.

Cecil sparked public outcry because he was well-known. In the same way we mourn for a celebrity’s death, but not the random people who also die.

For most people, the lion is a majestic creature. King of the jungle. We don’t associate them with food or clothing. That’s another thing Cecil had going for him. People around the world have issued hate mail and death threats to Cecil’s killer, and vigils and protests have sprung up at the man’s business.

Most of the people disgusted with Cecil’s death likely also eat and wear other animals. It’s a disconnect. Melanie Joy addresses this topic in-depth in her book, Why we Love Dogs, Eat pigs, and Wear Cows. This phenomenon (of loving some animals and eating others) she calls carnism. The book explains how people compartmentalize and justify this discrepancy.

It’s okay to mourn for Cecil. His death was a tragedy. His pride is in jeopardy, and his cubs will likely be killed by competing lions. But we need to also mourn for the millions of dogs and cats who are euthanized each year because they have no homes. And for the billions of farmed animals whose lives are brutal and short. They are all as precious as Cecil and as deserving of life.

We can’t stop evil people from hunting (although signing the petition to ask Zimbabwe to stop issuing hunting permits or the petition to include lions on the endangered species list would help). But we can adopt dogs and cats and never buy from breeders. And we can choose to not eat animals.

If you’re not already, please go vegan—for the countless animals just like Cecil, who are worthy of our admiration and who want to live.

Help save the New York Blood Center chimps

You may have heard about a group of chimpanzees who are in a horrible predicament. They’ve spent their lives as research subjects in Liberia.

If that wasn’t bad enough, the New York Blood Center (NYBC), the organization that exploited the chimps in the name of “science” recently walked away from its obligation to feed and care for the chimps for the rest of their lives.

NYBC had been spending $30,000 a month on 66 chimps, who are no longer being tested on and are living on secluded islands near the country’s capital, Monrovia. But they cut funding and the chimps, many with hepatitis and other viruses, are at risk of dying from dehydration and starvation.

image of chimps in Tanzania c/o "Gombe Stream NP Mutter und Kinder" by Ikiwaner - Own work. Licensed under GFDL 1.2 via Wikimedia Commons - https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Gombe_Stream_NP_Mutter_und_Kinder.jpg#/media/File:Gombe_Stream_NP_Mutter_und_Kinder.jpg

TAKE ACTION:

1)  DEMAND CIPRIANI CANCEL NYBC FUNDRAISING GALA:

Cipriani, an upscale event space, is hosting an NYBC fundraising gala on November 5 with sponsorship levels up to $150,000.

CALL (646) 723 0826 and ask for an event planner. Politely explain why you are calling and let them know you are part of an ongoing campaign to have Cipriani cancel this event.

POST to Cipriani Facebook page

2) DEMAND HOWARD MILSTEIN REINSTATE FUNDING:

CALL: 212-842-7300 and demand Howard Milstein, Chairman of the NYBC Board of Trustees, reinstate funding for the abandoned chimps.

Milford Management is Howard Milstein’s real esate company

3) TWITTER CAMPAIGN:

Use these automated tweetsheets to contact NYBC donors and the media. You can also draft your own tweets to the recipients in these sheets:

Tweetsheet
Additional Tweetsheet

For more info about the abandoned chimps, read:

Elephants and wolves need your help

(From HSUS)

Soon, the U.S. House of Representatives will vote on a spending bill containing riders that are harmful to both elephants and wolves.

wolf pup

TAKE ACTION

Please make a brief, polite phone call to your U.S. Representative today and urge a “yes” vote on the Grijalva-Hanna ivory amendment and Tsongas wolf amendment to the Interior Appropriations bill.

Look up your legislator’s phone number.

You can say: “I’m a constituent and I would like you to protect wolves and elephants. Please vote “yes” on the Grijalva-Hanna ivory amendment and Tsongas wolf amendment to the Interior Appropriations bill.”

After making your call, check out the HSUS page where you can fill in and submit a form to send a follow-up message. Legislators receive a lot of email; be sure to edit your message so it stands out.

Thank you!

Please support the Humane Cosmetics Act

The Humane Cosmetics Act–a bill that would end animal testing for cosmetics in the U.S.–has just been introduced in the House of Representatives! Ask your representative to co-sponsor this important legislation.

white rabbits

Animals in laboratories endure painful and deadly experiments to test cosmetics. The Humane Cosmetics Act (H.R. 2858) will make this a thing of the past by prohibiting animal testing for all cosmetic products manufactured or sold in the U.S.

Alternatives to animal testing already exist: Humane and safe cosmetics can be made using thousands of existing ingredients, and several non-animal safety tests are already available for new ingredients. These non-animal alternatives are often cheaper, faster, and more reliable.

More than 30 countries have phased out cosmetic animal testing, including Norway, Israel, India and every country in the European Union.

TAKE ACTION

Please make a brief, polite phone call to your U.S. Representative to urge support for H.R. 2858, the Humane Cosmetics Act. Look up your legislator’s phone number. You can say, “I’m a constituent and I urge you to co-sponsor the Humane Cosmetics Act, if you haven’t already done so. This bill would prohibit animal testing for cosmetics manufactured or sold in the U.S.”

After making your phone call (please do not skip that crucial step!), fill in and submit this form send a follow-up message.

Washington State Parks are killing geese again

In 2014, over 1200 geese were killed in local and state parks. And it’s starting again.

canada geese

(from Peace for Geese Project)

Washington State Parks has joined the interlocal agreement to kill geese throughout the Puget Sound region. After hiring Wildlife Services in 2013 to kill geese at Lake Sammamish State Park, Washington State Parks stated they had no plans to kill geese in 2014. However, in 2014 they once again paid to have geese killed at Lake Sammamish State Park and also at Deception Pass State Park.

Interlocal agreement members need to stop the killing. And, they need to be held accountable for accepting obvious discrepancies and inaccuracies in the record keeping and reporting provided by Wildlife Services.

Please contact Washington State Parks to ask them to stop killing geese.

Washington State Parks and Recreation Commissioners and Director’s Office
Phone: (360) 902-8502
E-mail: Commission@parks.wa.gov

For more info, check out the Peace for Geese Project on Facebook.

Leading military contractor abuses animals and service members

New disturbing information has surfaced about horrific animal abuse at Deployment Medicine International (DMI), a military trauma training contractor. For all the info, see the details at all-creatures.org.

Deployment Medicine International (DMI), the self-proclaimed “largest trainer of US military forces in operational medicine,” is the subject of an exposé by PETA, in which thousands of live animals are violently shot, stabbed, dismembered and killed each year.

Eyewitness video footage released by PETA and related documents reveal shocking abuse of animals, racism, homophobia, sexism and reported physical and sexual assault of military service members by a leading military training contractor.

The investigation documented a training course attended by members of the Navy, Air Force and civilians led by DMI. In the eyewitness video, instructors shot and cut up live pigs for disgusting “training” exercises.

One DMI instructor told students that Muslims “would be even better” than using pigs for the training. Other DMI staff made inappropriate sexual and homophobic remarks to the students during the course.

The Virginia Board of Medicine recently suspended the medical license of DMI’s president for his alleged sexual assault and other physical abuse of service members.

Shooting, stabbing, and otherwise maiming animals is an ineffective and crude way to teach human medicine. Please speak up.

Action:

Tell your Congressional Representatives to SUPPORT the Battlefield Excellence through Superior Training (BEST) Practices Act (S. 587/H.R. 1095) which will finally end the use of animals in crude military training courses.

Find and contact your U.S. Senators

Find and contact your U.S. Representative

For more, please visit http://www.peta.org/features/cruelty-racism-alleged-sexual-assault-in-military-training/

Take action against Primate Products Inc.

Primate Products Inc. is not just a primate dealer. It’s a house or horrors for the primates confined there. PPI, in Hendry County, Florida, imports, warehouses, and sells monkeys destined for experiments. They have federal contracts worth more than $13 million (including by the NIH, the Army, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention).

This horrific operation neglect, abuse, and terrorize monkeys. They’ve been cited by the USDA for violating animal welfare regulations–yet the abuse continues.

Please click this link and sign the petition at the end of the page. The content isn’t pleasant, but please think of the monkeys trapped in this hellhole. Do it for them.

It’s your opportunity to ask officials in Hendry County, Florida, to take action against PPI and close it for good.