Thursday, October 13, 2011

ARZone Podcast 18: Reflections on Bruce Friedrich

In our last podcast, ARZone interviewed Bruce Friedrich from Farm Sanctuary. In this episode, the ARZone team chat about issues that seemed to us to arise from Bruce Friedrich's podcast.



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Extra, Extra, hear all about it. A few minutes cut from the main podcast.



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7 comments:

Nick Pendergrast said...

Thanks for this very interesting discussion!

I really liked the idea of each ethical vegan being a victory as an alternative to welfare "victories."

Although I like this idea personally, from my research, it would not be as viable from an organisational point of view. The reason for this is that almost all animal advocacy organisations have a predominantly non-vegan member base - meaning "selling" ethical vegans as victories would be a tougher sell than welfare victories that are said to improve the conditions for the animals that most of these members are eating.

Barbara DeGrande said...

Nick, that is precisely why it is somewhat erroneous to call oneself an
Animal Rights organization or an animal advocacy organization if you are invested in appeasing your membership rather than engaging in educating people to liberate animals. Groups try all sorts of ways to rationalize this betrayal.

Perhaps it is time to quit supporting such organizations that really do not support ethical veganism then? If the group would take a stand, perhaps their members would become invested in identifying with the new standard? I know from my own small AR group that, while all are welcome, we are very clear that we support veganism and do not support any use of animals. However, we are all in different parts of our evolution and are not here to judge but to help and educate others, while we ourselves learn more all the time.

Carolyn Bailey said...

Hi Nick,

Thanks for your comment!

I think it would be a great idea too, but I agree with you. Creating more ethical vegans doesn't seem as "exciting" as some of the "victories" that are claimed at times. I think, unfortunately, many of these claimed "victories" are more about the humans feeling good about themselves and being able to back-slap each other, than actual victories for other animals.

Nick Pendergrast said...

Yeh, there is the "excitement" factor - although Animal Equality in Spain have carried out some pretty creative vegan campaigns/actions.

In terms of organisations supporting veganism - I think the larger organisations like PETA do support veganism - they'd be happy to find out that one of their members has gone vegan.

But they do not promote veganism as the least people can do to take the interests of other animals seriously. Organisations that do tend not to have as many members, paid staff, an office etc.

Nick Pendergrast said...

Hi Barbara and Carolyn (and anyone else who is interested), I have just published a conference paper which elaborates on my above comments:

http://hgsoconference.curtin.edu.au/local/pdf/Pendegrast.pdf

Barbara DeGrande said...

Nick, thank you for that most interesting and informative post. In some ways, even grassroots organizations have the same dilemma: how to interest enough people to be viable, how to gather funding and donations in a speciesist society, and how to get active in a way that promotes our goals without getting us shut down. I would say, however, that grassroots orgs have a different proportion of activity and energy with hopefully, more freedom (by design) to educate the public, take a stand for veganism, and stay true to purpose.

Nick Pendergrast said...

Cheers Barbara, yes these organisational considerations are an issue for most organisations, regardless of size. However, as you say, grassroots organisations have much more potential to promote veganism than larger organisations with paid staff etc. These larger organisations generally put very little effort into promoting veganism (if at all) - whereas for some smaller organisations, this is the primary focus.

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