always a welcome addition to the arena. I noted this blog some time ago but wanted to let the infant grow a bit before being assured that ennui and circumstance wouldn't snuff it out early on. Well Kara Kapelnikova (great name!) seems to be in for the long haul and has written some energetic and excellent posts. Her most recent prompts me to suggest that you read it and explore all the posts and information she has arrayed on her site.
She calls her blog VeganRabbit which is a name that automatically elicits my admiration and approval (Nessie Ray approves too) and she lives with several bunnies as well as some other animal beings.
She writes in this post about the obligation we each have to speak up and advocate for the other animals, that it isn't enough to live as an ethical vegan, we must do more. I think this is true.
While at some future point there may be enough of us that advocacy isn't necessary from everyone, right now I think there is an obligation to spread the word and stir the pot. To tell you the truth, I don't much like it. My own preference is to go my own way and do my own thing and let everyone else do theirs...but the horrors that most of my species are inflicting on the other animal beings and on our planet don't allow me, in good conscience, to stay on the sidelines.
I agree, absolutely, with the notion that each of us has a "social obligation" (her phrase, and a good one) to advocate. It's sort of like...I don't want to be a fire fighter but when the damn house is burning down...well...you get the idea. The suffering and doomed animals don't have the luxury of much of anything and me indulging my own preference to live my own life my own way is simply...in a very real way...abandoning them to a shitstorm of misery and destruction. That's just not ok, it isn't.
I'm not out in the street shouting, although that may be necessary at some time or another, but I do my bumper stickers, I actually gave a talk to a student group about animal rights (lots of blank looks, an orator I'm not), I keep vegan pamphlets stocked at our local library (there have been over a thousand of them picked up in the past 2 years) and I agitate and bother people that I know occasionally about their eating habits, etc. I've written a few letters to the editor, it isn't much, it isn't as much as I want to do and I will do more as time progresses...but it is something and I suspect, if each person that understands that other beings have the right to their lives, would do a few things...I suspect all those folks together doing some things...all that would begin to make a difference.
The full-timers are out there, Vegan Outreach, Mercy For Animals, Farm Sanctuary, United Poultry Concerns, Peaceful Prairie Sanctuary and on and on. They are there and working hard for the world we want, but it is going to be the individuals, you and me, that actually make it happen...and I don't see a way for that to occur unless we start doing some educating and advocating and agitating ourselves...each and every one of us...for as long as it takes...and as much as it takes.
I'll make it easy for you, click on this link and it will take you to a page where you can get a free TryVeg bumper sticker...no postage, no cost, no effort beyond providing an address to send it to. Get the sticker, put it on your car and...there ya go...you're a passive activist. Thank you.
Many of the folks that read this blog do much much more, Bea and DEM and Patty and HGV and Andrew and Harry to name just a few, they do much more than I do and I salute and admire them for it. I'm addressing any of you that are doing nothing beyond living as an ethical vegan. I think we have to go beyond that...how much beyond is an individual and situational thing that will wax and wane but beyond we must go...the crap has gone on too long and it is too widespread and too entrenched. Objections must be made, information must be spread and protests must be voiced by each and every one of us. Over and over and over...until the change occurs.
My thanks to Kara for calling me out, for calling all of us out...the other animals need us, the planet needs us...now and in the future. Like she said, this isn't about personal choice, ethical veganism is about justice...it's about being in a world that isn't a grotesque death camp, it's about being in a world not controlled by murderers and destroyers, it's about making life be about life...not about exploitation and misery and suffering and death.