lördag 9 mars 2013

Animals Australias campaigns send the message that there is such a thing as "humane exploitation". That is wrong. Killing and keeping animals in slavery is not ethical

Animals Australias campaigns send the message that there is such a thing as "humane exploitation". They never emphasize becoming vegan as the moral baseline.

"Simply put, ending factory farming in Australia will not markedly improve the situation for non-human animals. Buying animal flesh that has been “certified” as better in some way, might give you an inner glow, but it’s not improving the situation for nonhuman animals to any real degree. And even if animals were cossetted, fed treats, patted and cuddled, and then anesthetised prior to killing them, it is still a violation of other sentient beings, ones that have their own instinctive and considered goals and desires. It doesn’t matter how “nicely” we rob them of their autonomy, and then rob them of their lives. Using nonhuman animals for our entertainment, aesthetics, or palate pleasure is simply wrong. Which is, of course, simply another way of saying, “Go Vegan!” Not only do we need to go vegan personally, we need to let others know that using non-human animals is wrong; we need to spread veganism.

Not vegan? Please start here http://www.VeganKit.com "
Quote: http://veganismisnonviolence.com/tag/animals-australia/

"It is not “pragmatic” when someone claiming to “help” animals promotes “humane” forms of animal use. It is not pragmatic, because it is not consistent with the goal of ending animal use. Using animals “better” doesn’t stop use, it makes it acceptable. Barn-laid eggs just means that instead of putting chickens in cages, we cram huge numbers into a barn. They are still bred, male chicks still killed, still live an unnatural and awful life, are still slaughtered at the dictates of economics. They are still used. The fact that someone feels a little warm glow at choosing a “barn laid” or “free-range” box of eggs does not make their action more ethical. It does not “help animals”. Quite the opposite, it allows continued exploitation of non-human animals with less guilt.

Groups like Animals Australia claim to be pragmatic, because they are reducing suffering. If the goal is reducing guilt about animal use, they can be said to be pragmatic. If the goal is actually ending use of non-human animals then they are not pragmatic, they are counter-productive. Animals Australia mainly focuses on “better” use, with almost no mention of non-use. Their ideal seems to be a world in which animals are all “free-range”, in other words, their “solution” is keeping animals in paddocks, rather than in stalls. Certainly stalls are awful. That doesn’t necessarily make paddocks better. It doesn’t change much of the “management” practices: de-horning, branding, de-sexing males, cropping tails, taking babies away, ultimately killing these beings when they are “market-ready”. I live in a rural area where I see cows in paddocks. They aren’t happy, and they aren’t free, and they are still seen as an economic “crop” that will be harvested. They certainly don’t have rights. They are certainly not “liberated”.
Quote: http://veganismisnonviolence.com/tag/animals-australia/

Quote from Gary Francione (https://www.facebook.com/abolitionistapproach) :
A question that I received this morning from someone in Australia:

"What do you think of the "Ban Live Export" campaign of Animals Australia?"

My response:

Not much.

First, the campaign is not a vegan campaign; that is, it is not saying that we should end live exports as well as the killing or use of animals in Australia. It is a campaign that identifies the problem as exporting animals to be killed elsewhere. The message that is conveyed is about treatment and not about use. That is very clear and, indeed, that is exactly how Animals Australia characterizes it.

In testifying before the Australian Senate on the matter of live exports, Animals Australia Campaign Director, Lyn White was asked about whether Animals Australia wanted to end the killing of animals:

Ms White: Our position as an organisation is about improving animal welfare and preventing cruelty. Our position on this trade has always been to work towards replacing—
CHAIR: But my question is: do you want to end the killing of animals?
Ms White: Does our organisation want to end the killing of animals? Our organisation wants to end animal cruelty.
CHAIR: So you are not in favour, as some of your supporters are, of ending the practice of killing animals?
Ms White: Part of what we do is to provide information to allow people to make informed choices in regard to protecting animals from cruelty.

CHAIR: Are you dodging the question? Do you, Lyn White, want to end the killing of animals—not Animals Australia?
Ms White: What I want to do is protect animals from cruelty.
CHAIR: This is double-dutch.

Ms White: Senator, can I just say, it is something quite relevant: I have been working in Jordan in slaughterhouses in the middle of the night to actually improve the killing process of animals.

(Source: Hansard Official Committee Senate Reports; August 10, 2011, pages 12-13)

Second, these sorts of campaigns are based on racism and ethnocentrism: animal exploitation in Australia is morally preferable to animal exploitation in other countries that are explicitly or implicitly characterized as barbaric. I reject that. It's all absolutely terrible everywhere, including Australia.

As a general matter, Animals Australia promotes the idea that consuming non-factory-farmed animal products is morally acceptable and, indeed, desirable. For example, here's a quote from their website:

"When doing your food shopping, make kind choices. Avoid factory farmed, buy fewer animal products, or even go meat-free

Why this works: This is the most effective way you can end animal abuse. Factory farming is the only way to meet the current demand for these animals products. A demand that would never have occurred had consumers known how animals were treated. If you refuse to buy factory farmed products, the businesses which provide them will quickly get the message that there is no future in cruelty. The choices you make at the supermarket can ensure a kinder world for these animals."

I could say a great deal more about this campaign, but I think that these two points are key and respond to your inquiry.

In closing, I should state that I am not in any way maintaining that the people at Animals Australia do not sincerely believe in their position. I just sincerely believe that their position is misguided and wrong.

Gary L. Francione
Professor, Rutgers University


Animals Australia ran a national TV campaign claiming that Australians should 'ban live export' in order to keep slaughterhouse workers jobs 'at home'' last year. Their use of the term 'justice' in this campaign is misleading and offensive. Animals Australia's 'ban live export' campaign is a racist campaign that incites hatred, and clearly asks that Jacob, and others be killed and eaten 'at home'. That's not justice, that's further exploitation of Jacob and others for Animals Australia's benefit, in my opinion.

Hi Spencer,

Thanks for your answer!
Carolyn provided the evidence.

But apart from saying it explicitly, I think that the public is interpreting AA's campaign that 'happy exploitation'/some forms of animal use is justified. People from the outset have the opinion
that animal use is justified, including animals (which also have been reinforced by "Animal welfare" groups for a couple of centuries); and campaigns that are not challenging their beliefs, but are only pointing out one specific form of slaughter or other animal exploitation,
will only strengthen people's belief that so called "humane" animal use and "humane" slaughter is justified.
If AA didn't want people to think that they continue to kill, enslave, hurt and use animals, they would have to say this explictly. Nothing else than vegan education will make people understand that all animal slavery, all domestication, is morally wrong.
This is also my experience from debating with non-vegans on pages of Animal groups that have campaigns about for example "boycotting cage-free eggs".

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