Podcast – Josh Harper Interview on the Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty (SHAC) Campaign

Solecast 38 is an in-depth interview with former animal liberation prisoner Josh Harper. Josh is one of the SHAC7, and he went to prison for his work against Huntington Life Sciences. Huntington Life Sciences at the time was one of the biggest companies doing tests on animals and was targeted for their usage of “live vivisection.” The tactics employed by the SHAC campaign were wide ranging and effective; they went after every link in the supply chain to bring this company to the verge of bankruptcy. Josh is currently living in the Pacific North West and helps run The Talon Conspiracy which is an online archive animal rights publication from the recent past.

Topics Discussed:

  • Josh’s involvement in the Stop Huntington Animal Cruelty campaign & animal liberation struggles
  • Lessons from SHAC for current struggles against Trump & fascism
  • The conflict between mass movement building & effective interventions
  • The approach, philosophy and tactics emplyed in the SHAC campaign
  • Some thoughts on the political moment we are in
  • Comical anecdotes about the Talon Conspiracy & him briefly being a suspect for the 9-11 attacks
  • Thoughts on being a political prisoner and how important support is, inside and out

Here is a bonus video of one of Josh’s talks:

Further Reading:

Josh Harper discusses animal rights history, welfarism and “Star Wars”

 

The Rise of Vegetarianism and Veganism in China

Sixth Tone has an in-depth interview with Zhang Si, CEO and co-founder of Veg Planet, an online platform for China’s rising number of vegans and vegetarians, on the challenges she faces promoting vegetarianism, veganism and animal rights in her home country:

being-vegan-related-animal-welfare-z4

In early 2013, WeChat launched its public account feature, and I created an account called Veg Planet, hoping to inspire people to change their stereotyped impressions of vegans. I translated a lot of vegan-related English articles, recipes, and information about environmental impact and animal welfare. The platform equipped vegans who face resistance from their family or colleagues with this information, and also provided products to meet their needs.

The platform attracts more people to consider a vegetarian diet and then begin to enjoy it. At the very beginning, 80 percent of our followers were vegetarians, and now 30 percent of our 300,000 readers are nonvegetarians who are considering giving it a try.

Lots of respect and support going out to Zhang and her team for their hard work! You can feel the positive impact she’s having and I believe this is the start of some major social changes in China!

Berkeley Council Votes To Ban Fur Clothing Sales!

The city of Berkeley, California, has passed an ordinance that bans the local sale of fur apparel products:

Berkeley Coalition for Animals founding member Jay Quigley said in a statement, “The millions of poor foxes, rabbits, minks and other animals who are bred for their fur typically spend their entire lives in cages barely bigger than their bodies. Then they’re slaughtered by gassing, neck-breaking or electrocution.”

Quigley said, “This brutal industry is radically inconsistent with Berkeley’s values.”

Fantastic news and hopefully more cities will follow!

‘Fake’ fur being sold on British high street is actually from cats, rabbits, and raccoon dogs, investigation reveals

The Telegraph reports on some disturbing news that real fur is turning up in products marketed as fake fur!

Items bought from popular stores Missguided and House of Fraser, which were labelled as faux fur, were found to be real after tests by a fibres expert.

Sky News found that a pair of gloves bought from House of Fraser were found to have fur likely to be from a rabbit.

Missguided sold a pair of pink stiletto heels decorated with pom poms to shopper Donna Allison. After testing the pom poms were found to have been made with real fur, most likely to be from a cat.

This is far from the first time this has happened. Today reported in 2014 on a similar finding across American retailers!

Some of the nation’s biggest retailers, including Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom Rack, Belk, Jacadi and Gilt Groupe, advertise “faux fur.” But a Rossen Reports investigation found that some of the items they’re selling actually come from the fur of real animals, including rabbits, coyotes and raccoon dogs.

The Fur Free Alliance also produced a report on large retailers pulling the same bullshit in 2016!

Fur Free Alliance member The Humane Society of the United States asks the Federal Trade Commission to bring enforcement action under federal consumer protection laws against the 17 retailers for false advertising of fur garments. Amazon, Neiman Marcus, Kohl’s, Nordstrom are among those facing potential civil or criminal penalties.

So there you have it: unless you’re in the business of genetically testing the fake fur you want to buy, best stay away from it altogether. Keep in mind that, in Asia at least, its often cheaper to produce real fur than fake fur.

Also consider that most people won’t know you’re wearing fake fur and you’re basically promoting the fur industry everywhere you go!

The HSUS have a field guide to telling animal fur from fake fur, if you still insist upon it for some reason!

Canada – Hundreds of Birds Frozen to Death Again at Maple Lodge Farms

Mercy for Animals reports on another case of shocking animal abuse by a slaughterhouse:

Maple Lodge Farms, one of Canada’s largest meat companies, has been caught a second time allowing hens to freeze to death en route to slaughter. The latest offense involved thousands of hens forced to suffer subfreezing temperatures in Quebec. A staggering 860 hens died. The Federal Court of Appeal in Canada fined the company $6,000.

$6.97 per hen that froze to death. Wrap your head around that.

Chickens are, by far, the most abused and slaughtered animals on the planet, with 51 BILLION killed globally each year.

Free From Harm lists 17 Chicken Facts the Industry Doesn’t Want You to Know, including:

  1. 151.4 billion chickens are artificially hatched, fattened up and slaughtered as 42-day-old babies every year globally. A chicken’s normal lifespan is 10–15 years. 
  2. Chickens and turkeys together represent 99% of land animals slaughtered for food in the United States.
  3. Chickens bred for meat are arguably the most genetically manipulated of all animals, forced to grow 65 times faster than their bodies normally would, and the industry continually seeks to increase their growth rate.

The HSUS also have a great article on the cognitive abilities of chickens:

When mom sends out her food call, her chicks respond by pecking at the ground. In one study, hens learned that red-colored food was good while their chicks were given blue-colored food. When the hens saw their chicks eating the wrong color, they began scratching, pecking, and vocalizing to convey the perceived error. Notes Shields: “It’s one of the true teaching examples that we have data for in the animal kingdom.”

We can end this madness right here and right now!

GO VEGAN!