Animal Rights Zone

Fighting for animal liberation and an end to speciesism

Justice for Animals, Respect for Advocates Ideas too dangerous for corporatized animal advocacy? By James LaVeck and Jenny Stein

August 15, 2012

Two weeks ago, events transpired at a conference hotel in Alexandria, Virginia, that many observers felt marked the end of an era for the US animal rights movement. People and organizations that controlled the agenda for this year's national Animal Rights Conference (also known as AR 2012) engaged in active suppression of an alternative seminar that Tribe of Heart helped organize in collaboration with other experienced activists, titled Justice for Animals, Respect for Advocates. Actions were taken by AR 2012 organizers, both publicly and behind the scenes, that served to protect the interests of those openly collaborating with the animal exploitation and killing industry.

As with many such efforts to censor a message of conscience, the effect was mixed. As the suppressors intended, far fewer people gained access to an alternative viewpoint. However, those who did needed no convincing that something has gone terribly wrong with the US animal rights movement. They were able to see the mindset and methods of corporatized advocacy playing out right in front of their eyes -- co-option of the cause of justice, stifling of dissent, and manipulation of well-meaning educators and activists. The end result was a practical exercise in grassroots resistance to corporate domination and control. For those of us who had worked together to offer the alternative seminar, and for most who were there to witness and learn, our resolve was only strengthened. We emerged from the experience determined to help bring the animal rights movement back to its core values of integrity, truthfulness, authentic community, and respect for the individual.

The events that precipitated the need for the Justice for Animals, Respect for Advocates seminar represented a new low point in a growing trend of wealthy corporate advocacy organizations commingling their affairs and interests with those who profit from the use and killing of animals. This disturbing trend of self-described "vegans" participating in the exploitation of animals was set in motion in 2005, when a handful of animal advocacy "leadership figures" met behind closed doors and made the decision to partner with Whole Foods CEO John Mackey on the development and promotion of "humane" and "compassionate" animal products. Then, as now, the meat industry managed to aggressively insert itself into the affairs of the animal rights movement, with truly devastating effects.

PLEASE READ THE REST OF THIS IMPORTANT ARTICLE HERE: http://tribeofheart.org/humanemyth/room1212.htm

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Hi Billy.  I just added a post from HumaneMyth about the same event.  Apologies, should have added the link to your discussion.  (-:

In the interests of fairness and rational discourse, FARM have made this statement in response to the controversy surrounding AR2012:

http://arzone.ning.com/forum/topics/clearing-the-air-a-response-fro...

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