|Enewsletter • February 13, 2008|
Notes from Vegan Outreach
Product of the Week
Vegan Outreach is happy to announce the availability of our latest booklet, Compassionate Choices (pdf). This booklet, which will replace Try Vegetarian, is essentially a less graphic version of Even If You Like Meat. The front cover is softer, the first two inside pages do not contain graphic images, and the slaughterhouse section is removed. This will be a good booklet to use for displays or at leafleting situations where the graphic images on the cover of Even If may be uninviting.
Thanks to Jon Camp and Lauren Panos for all their great work in creating CC!
You can order copies from the catalog.
Report from Mexico
Just came back from a long awaited trip to my homeland, Mexico. Don and I had been planning to start "Fuerza Animal" there, a small group dedicated to raising awareness about animal abuse. So, last Friday was our debut! Our target was my alma mater, UNAM (Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico), which is the largest university in Latin America. We gave away all we had in an hour -- people were very receptive, and we had many great encounters, including:
-Italia Millan, 2/3/08
Karen Johnson, an activist who distributes Vegan Outreach literature at tables throughout Cape Town, made the Cape Times, in an article entitled: "Vegan venture turned into magical experience of an exotic culture."
Report from Germany
Some people argue that Vegan Outreach should work more on reforms than promoting ethical eating. While we don't oppose the former, we recognize that as long as animals are regarded as food, there will be abuse.
A case in point: while the European Union is far ahead of the US in terms of animal protection laws, this report from Germany shows what goes on behind the walls (you don't need to speak German to understand the footage).
Thanks to Kristina Musholt, Vegan Outreach now has Warum Vegan? on our website.
More on Reforms: Report from California
Fallout continues from the undercover footage of the Chino slaughterhouse. See, for example, these articles in the Washington Post and Los Angeles Times. The latter makes the point, "The U.S. Department of Agriculture has 7,800 pairs of eyes scrutinizing 6,200 slaughterhouses and food processors across the nation. But in the end, it took an undercover operation by an animal rights group to reveal that beef from ill and abused cattle had entered the human food supply." USDA's inspectors have now been withdrawn, closing the plant. The key point, though, is that the inspectors were at the slaughterhouse the entire time the undercover investigation went on, a point repeated in this editorial.
Individuals generally evolve by small steps in their diet and activism; the same is true of how societies change. Reforms -- especially those that abolish some of the worst practices of modern agribusiness, as the Prevention of Farm Animal Cruelty Act in California would do -- are necessary, important, and inevitable; there is no other way to go from a carnivorous society, where farmed animals have virtually no protection, to a vegan society where they have near-total protection. But we have to keep in mind that as long as animals are viewed as food, and factory farms and slaughterhouses are closed to public inspection, tremendous suffering will occur.