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Animal Rights News Recap 6/23/2017

The New York City Council voted to prohibit the use of wild animals in circuses!

nyc ban on wild animals in circuses

ARTICLE HERE

Activists in Russia executed the first open rescue in their country, saving three turkeys and sharing their stories.

VIDEO HERE

DxE Toronto activists disrupted a community "Gone Fishin'" event that teaches participants how to kill fish who are loaded into a swimming pool.

fish feel pain

Nearly 300 activists came together in Ottawa, Canada's capital, to march for an end to all slaughterhouses.

ARTICLE HERE

Want to get involved? DxE is a grassroots network focused on empowering you to be the best activist you can be. Here are some steps you can take. 

  1. Sign up to our mailing list and share our content on social media. 
  2. Join a local DxE community (or, better yet, come visit us in Berkeley).
  3. Take the Liberation Pledge. And join us in building a true social movement for animals.

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Animal Rights Activist Profile: Tania Patricia Campos Suarez

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Animal Rights Activist Profile: Tania Patricia Campos Suarez

Animal Rights Activist Profile: Tania Patricia Campos Suarez

Q: What inspired you to first get involved with activism and/or to join DxE?

As a vegan and someone who knew that animals are just like us in all the ways that matter, I felt isolated. I found myself pleading with friends, family and coworkers to consider what animals are going through. I never had support or any structured outlet to channel my energy into. However, in June of 2016 I attended a Bernie Sanders rally in Modesto, CA and members of DxE came to disrupt it. They held signs and chanted as the Secret Service rushed to surround Senator Sanders and two activists unrolled a giant banner that said, "animal liberation is social justice". I went home that day and went to DxE's Facebook page and started sharing content and sending friend requests to activists. A few months later, I finally made it out from Modesto and attended my first DxE protest. It was a great experience and everyone was so welcoming and friendly that I kept coming to more and more actions whenever I could. Before long, I was contributing to working groups, moving in to an activist house in Berkeley and even marshaling my first protest.

Q: What is your favorite or most accomplished moment in activism or other DxE activity?

My favorite moment took place on the last day of DxE forum 2017. We learned at the action briefing that morning that all 200 of us would be participating in DxE's first broad daylight open rescue. We silently marched to a slaughterhouse in San Francisco and held white flowers and bore witness while activists walked in to the slaughterhouse and removed six hens one by one. I felt so empowered to be part of a community and a movement that was putting animal liberation into action. With each bird who came through those doors, leaving their property status behind, tears fell down my cheeks as I promised myself that I would keep fighting until the day we could remove all animals from exploitation everywhere.

Q: Are you a part of any working groups or unique activism in your chapter and how do they influence your activism?

I'm in a few working groups, but the outreach working group is one of my favorites! We organize New Activist Orientations, tabling events and we work on strategies to bring new people into our community. I think this is important because if we are able to mobilize thousands of activists, animal liberation will happen soon.

Q: How do you stay motivated as an activist?

I keep in mind two things: that this is a marathon not a sprint and that animals are suffering immensely and dying by the millions every day. I give myself space to get rest and to find a balance between activism, friends and my job, but I never lose sight of the fact that we are doing work that needs to get done.

Q: What advice would you give to new activists?

I would urge new activists to aim to be as effective as possible by finding something they're passionate about and working hard to apply it to our movement without fear of failure.

Q: Why Animal Liberation?

Because animal liberation is social justice. I am here to challenge injustice whatever it is. A lot of times that's injustice towards nonhuman animals. Other times that's injustice towards immigrants, injustice towards people of color or injustice anywhere we find it. I am here learning, working and fighting until everyone is safe, happy and free.

Want to get involved? DxE is a grassroots network focused on empowering you to be the best activist you can be. Here are some steps you can take. 

  1. Sign up to our mailing list and share our content on social media. 
  2. Join a local DxE community (or, better yet, come visit us in Berkeley).
  3. Take the Liberation Pledge. And join us in building a true social movement for animals.

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Animal Rights News Recap 6/16/2017

Amazon is purchasing Whole Foods for 13.7 billion dollars and will now have ownership over the violence and fraud of this humane-washing chain.

ARTICLE HERE

DxE Toronto and activists visiting from other DxE chapters disrupted the BBQ Eats Festival and brought a rescued victim of animal exploitation with them to share her story.

VIDEO HERE

Buzzfeed News covered DxE's recent open rescue of six hens from a San Francisco slaughterhouse.

VIDEO HERE

DxE Kiev joined with other animal rights activists in the Ukraine this week to demand justice in a case of animal abuse which involved the murder of several dogs.

 

Want to get involved? DxE is a grassroots network focused on empowering you to be the best activist you can be. Here are some steps you can take. 

  1. Sign up to our mailing list and share our content on social media. 
  2. Join a local DxE community (or, better yet, come visit us in Berkeley).
  3. Take the Liberation Pledge. And join us in building a true social movement for animals.

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Animal Rights News Recap 6/9/2017

At their second vigil, Bay Area Animal Save bore witness as trucks carried thousands of birds to slaughter at Petaluma Poultry.

Photograph by Michael Goldberg.

Photograph by Michael Goldberg.

Another new Save chapter has formed, this time in Philadelphia. 

The Parliament of the Czech Republic has passed a bill that will end fur farming.

fur ban czech

ARTICLE HERE

A dairy farm that was struggling to make ends meet has reopened as a nut milk producer.

nut milks

VIDEO HERE

Want to get involved? DxE is a grassroots network focused on empowering you to be the best activist you can be. Here are some steps you can take. 

  1. Sign up to our mailing list and share our content on social media. 
  2. Join a local DxE community (or, better yet, come visit us in Berkeley).
  3. Take the Liberation Pledge. And join us in building a true social movement for animals.

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What I Saw Inside a San Francisco Slaughterhouse

What I Saw Inside a San Francisco Slaughterhouse

By Jeweliette Pearson

Normally, there are only three types of people going into a place like Ming’s Poultry: customers, workers, and the victims. But not last Tuesday. For the first time in San Francisco history, a different group of people entered this horrific facility in the name of DxE Open Rescue. I was part of this group of animal rights activists who bore witness to the suffering taking place within those walls and who saved innocent lives.

Inside of Ming’s, we found birds in crates and cages stacked 5-6 feet high, all covered in feces. Walking past the crates, I witnessed pigeons gasping for air, as if they only had a few breaths left in them. We were horrified to see one pigeon suffering from what appeared to be a broken neck, nearly half-dead.

Some of the hens had their eyes pecked at by the other birds due to the extreme crowding they experienced in their cages. Blood was dripping from their eyes all over their faces. Other hens had eye infections and some had gone blind. One blind little bird I can never forget. They were running around the floor of the wire cage, poking their head out of one opening, and then the other, searching in vain for any way to escape their imprisonment.

Photograph by Michael Goldberg.

Photograph by Michael Goldberg.

There were pheasants crammed into cages so small that all they could do with their bodies was sit there in utter misery. Roosters were crammed so tightly that they couldn't turn around or even spread their wings. In several of the crates, there were birds standing over the dead bodies of those who had already died from starvation or from being crushed.

I followed Wayne Hsiung towards the back of this hell hole where the workers performed the slaughter. Upon entering this room, I looked down and there, next to my feet, were bins filled with the dead bodies of birds who had been de-feathered and had their necks slit. I had trouble breathing due to the lack of ventilation and the filth and feces that filled the air. As Wayne pleaded with the worker in Chinese to end these acts of violence, I couldn’t help but pity the worker. He didn’t say a word at first. The man stood there in front of the wringer with his head hanging down and his arms by his side. In that eerie room, I also stood still, filled with disbelief. How could this sort of outright violence be so normalized? I thought about my past visits to the city of San Francisco and how beautiful it always seemed to me. Yet, as I stood in that back room, I felt as if I was in a horror scene in a movie.

It was painful for me to witness the conditions of that facility. Still, as atrocious and scary as it was, I didn’t once feel tempted to run out of there. Those innocent birds needed our help. They were literally crying for help. As I stared into their eyes, they stared back into mine, and it was obvious that they were searching for an escape. These birds were only a few months old and had never experienced freedom or human kindness. As Wayne placed the first hen into my arms, the young bird kept still, and I felt the lifelessness within her boney body. I’ve volunteered at many animal sanctuaries and I can tell you that chickens don’t typically like being held. They love and value their freedom to run around and explore. Walking out with these liberated hens and feeling their weak bodies in my arms, joy chimed in with the pain I felt.

Joy because I knew that the very second Wayne removed these gravely ill hens from their cages and placed them in Hana’s and my arms, their fates changed completely. Instead of a violent death, these six rescued individuals would experience the freedom they deserve, the freedom that all the birds in that facility and throughout the world deserve. No one, human or non-human, was put on this planet to be treated so cruelly. For any reason. All animals have every right to be happy, safe, and free. The story of these six hens who were rescued from this facility will spread like wildfire, and the power of open rescue will be shared across the globe, exposing the violence of animal exploitation. Join the animal rights movement today and you too can change the world for animals!

Want to get involved? DxE is a grassroots network focused on empowering you to be the best activist you can be. Here are some steps you can take. 

  1. Sign up to our mailing list and share our content on social media. 
  2. Join a local DxE community (or, better yet, come visit us in Berkeley).
  3. Take the Liberation Pledge. And join us in building a true social movement for animals.

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250 People Staged The Largest Open Rescue in U.S. History - and You Can Be Next

Zoe Rosenberg receives a hen for rescue from the slaughterhouse. Photograph by Michael Goldberg.

Zoe Rosenberg receives a hen for rescue from the slaughterhouse. Photograph by Michael Goldberg.

250 People Staged The Largest Open Rescue March in U.S. History - and You Can Be Next

By Zach Groff

Flanked by street marshals in neon green jackets on one side and a virtual reality camera on the other side, nearly 250 DxE Forum participants stormed a slaughterhouse Tuesday as a half dozen activists rescued six of the most tortured victims of the slaughterhouse for veterinary care. The activists held flowers outside as activists Jewels Pearson, Hana Low, and Wayne Hsiung entered the slaughterhouse to aid injured hens with Shiki Wang, Conrad De Jesus, and Victoria Gu behind them. Within minutes, activists began passing injured hens - hens suffering from starvation, dehydration, and blindness - from the slaughterhouse until six hens were on their way to a life of safety.

Hana Low rescues a bird from the slaughterhouse as Aidan Cook films. Photograph by Alex Bez.

Hana Low rescues a bird from the slaughterhouse as Aidan Cook films. Photograph by Alex Bez.

The six activists and six hens have since made waves on social media, mainstream U.S. media, Chinese media, and vegan media, but the untold story of the rescue is the story of hundreds: hundreds of family members, college students, and everyday people who bore witness as the hens were transported to safety. In fact, widely respected social science shows that it's not a few leaders but large masses of people who change society. 

If it's masses of ordinary people who change the world, then this past week was very, very good news for the animal rights movement. With 370 people, six demonstrations, and dozens of hands-on training sessions in activism skills from working with media to conducting open rescues, the annual Direct Action Everywhere Forum exploded with the energy of a growing movement preparing to shake the world to its core.

Activists filled the famed San Francisco Ferry Building with a line from one end to the other before dying in and erupting in an echoing chant of "Animal Liberation Now" before hundreds of people. Activists enthralled hundreds more inside San Francisco's mall as onlookers stared down from six stories at the crowd below. Activists appeared to shut down a slaughterhouse in Petaluma, California for several hours simply by standing at the gates with candles and music.

Activists stage a vigil and blockade at a slaughterhouse in Petaluma, CA. Photograph by Michael Goldberg.

Activists stage a vigil and blockade at a slaughterhouse in Petaluma, CA. Photograph by Michael Goldberg.

Perhaps more significant than anything, the Forum saw the burgeoning of a broad coalition with Anita Krajnc of the Save Movement delivering a keynote address and activists with In Defense of Animals, Animal Justice, the Light Movement, and Alliance for Animals all coming together.

New DxE chapters are popping up in cities like Houston and Portland, and a new Save chapters is popping up in the Bay Area. Other Forum attendees are preparing to move to Berkeley to fight for animal liberation. Save and DxE organizers from across the U.S. and Canada are gearing up for targeted campaigns at upending powerful institutions.

The question is: will you join us?

Register for next year's Forum at a special discounted rate before space runs out.

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Animal Rights News Recap 6/2/2017

From May 24-30 DxE's annual Forum brought hundreds of animal rights activists together in Berkeley for talks, trainings, and of course, nonviolent direct action.

Kelsey Atkinson, activist with DxE Chicago, performing a beat poem as hundreds of activists sing the accompanying song. Photographs by Michael Goldberg.

Kelsey Atkinson, activist with DxE Chicago, performing a beat poem as hundreds of activists sing the accompanying song. Photographs by Michael Goldberg.

Inside of a Whole Foods, whose supposedly "humane" egg farms have been repeatedly investigated by DxE, activists held a funeral for two rescued hens who died because of the way they were treated on egg farms.

 

Activists held a vigil outside of a Petaluma slaughterhouse, and the Bay Area Save Movement was formed.

During one action of the Forum, 350 activists disrupted the Ferry Building and then took over the street, marching to Pier 39 to disrupt another place that promotes violence towards animals. 

 

The 2017 DxE Forum ended with an act of civil disobedience that made history and saved lives. Over 200 activists held a vigil outside of a San Francisco slaughterhouse while a handful of activists went inside and openly rescued six sick birds. 

DxE co-founder, Wayne Hsiung, being arrested after refusing to leave the slaughterhouse unless all the individuals there were released.

DxE co-founder, Wayne Hsiung, being arrested after refusing to leave the slaughterhouse unless all the individuals there were released.

VIDEO HERE

DxE Peru disrupted a busy supermarket in Lima for their May action.

VIDEO HERE

DxE UK and West Midlands Animal Save received two hens from a slaughterhouse worker and took them to sanctuary.

Want to get involved? DxE is a grassroots network focused on empowering you to be the best activist you can be. Here are some steps you can take. 

  1. Sign up to our mailing list and share our content on social media. 
  2. Join a local DxE community (or, better yet, come visit us in Berkeley).
  3. Take the Liberation Pledge. And join us in building a true social movement for animals.

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Vegan Friends Come Together at the DxE Community - Join Us!

Vegan friends come together in the dxe community - join us!

By Ryder Meehan - DxE SF Bay, Tech Team

Even living in San Francisco, California, one of the most progressive and vegan-friendly cities on the planet, I was feeling like a lonely vegan.  I had no vegan friends and none of my other friends wanted to listen to my lectures about it.  I tried going to a few other local vegan community Meetup events but it felt more like a one-time get-together than long-lasting vegan friends or a real vegan community.

Finally, I stumbled into the right community and knew I had found my new vegan friends network.  Direct Action Everywhere said all the right things - they were doing it for the animals but when the protest was over there would be potlucks, parties and jam sessions.  I was welcomed and immediately made my way into the DxE Tech working group where I felt like I could contribute the most.

DxE - San Francisco Bay Area

DxE - San Francisco Bay Area

DxE - Chicago

DxE - Chicago

In the Bay Area Chapter alone there were hundreds of members and they were all welcoming, awesome and shared a passion for a vegan lifestyle and animal activism.  There were events happening multiple times a week offering something for every type of person.  Then every Saturday morning there would be a regular Meetup at the Berkeley Animal Rights Center (ARC) to learn new and interesting things as well as meet even more cool people and get a glorious all vegan lunch out together - it finally feels normal to not eat animals!

so Why is it important to have vegan friends?

After finding veganism and the importance of animal rights, you may feel uncomfortable being around others who are eating animals or you may just want to talk with friends who understand.  There are many reasons if you think about:

  • Shared values in the belief that animals deserve to be happy, safe and free
  • Amazing, harm-free meals with friends
  • Never be made to feel weird for being vegan
  • Build a community with a shared passion for animal rights
  • Learn and share ways to spread the good word of veganism

Why Direct action everywhere?

One of the Organizing Principles that sets DxE apart is to create a community for vegans and animal activists.  One of the most common obstacles to going vegan or staying vegan is that most of society still normalizes eating and mistreating animals.  Unfortunately most other animal rights organizations do not have a true community that meets regularly or socially.  DxE is creating a community where it's normal to NOT mistreat animals.  We help one another out, share our challenges, and come together frequently for merriment and good times!  Think of it like a college fraternity or sorority - only less exclusive and without the hazing.  Oh plus the whole animal rights mission thing ;)

In one year being in DxE, I've been to a karaoke night, potluck, house party, Halloween party, Thanksgiving vegan feast, vegan ice cream social, cookie decorating contest and too many other events to count.  I went from zero vegan friends to having an entire community around me.

And if you're not in the San Francisco-Berkeley Bay Area, not to worry; there are dozens of DxE chapters across the county and the world organizing regularly and building vegan communities (veg-munities?) around the same principles.

So what are you waiting for?!  Come meet your new vegan friends within your own city!  Does your city not have a DxE Chapter yet?  Consider starting one.  And once a year all chapters come together at our global Forum where we meet, learn, share and empower our movement!

 

 

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Animal Rights News Recap 5/19/2017

China has banned the sale of dog meat at the Yulin festival for one week beginning on June 15th.

ARTICLE HERE

In South Alberta, Canada an independent group rescued Rose after investigating Feedlot Alley, where she and many other animals are trapped and exploited. 

VIDEO HERE

DxE Inland Empire disrupted Sprouts after DxE Colorado investigated a Sprouts "cage-free" egg supplier and found horrific conditions.

VIDEO HERE

DxE London brought the animals' perspective to a bbq that was taking place next to a petting zoo.

ARTICLE HERE

Anita Kranjc has had a second set of charges dropped for supposedly obstructing police while taking photos after a truck carrying pigs to slaughter flipped over and nearly 180 pigs died.

ARTICLE HERE

Want to get involved? DxE is a grassroots network focused on empowering you to be the best activist you can be. Here are some steps you can take. 

  1. Sign up to our mailing list and share our content on social media. 
  2. Join a local DxE community (or, better yet, come visit us in Berkeley).
  3. Take the Liberation Pledge. And join us in building a true social movement for animals.

 

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Animal Rights Activist Profile: Dayna Patik

Animal Rights Activist Profile: Dayna Patik

Q: What inspired you to first get involved with activism and to join DxE?

For me, community support was vital. I had been living as a pescatarian for years and in January 2015 I finally decided it was time to completely stop using animals. I reached out to connect with vegans, beyond my online community, to gain the real life support that my family and friends didn’t offer. With those connections, veganism and activism came naturally and immediately. I started doing outreach with a Madison based organization called Alliance for Animals and my journey as an activist began. About a year and a half later, my closest mentor became involved with DxE. I was skeptical but eventually decided to see for myself what the organization is all about. After meeting some DxE activists at Chicago Veganmania 2016, I went with a group to a local restaurant that sold the broken bodies of chickens. My heart raced while I held a sign that read “animals do not want to die” and I observed as activists told the stories of individuals who had been rescued from this system and of those who weren’t as fortunate. The experience was both overwhelming and empowering. On my way home to Milwaukee that night, I knew that my life was about to change again and that direct action was going to become a major part of who I am. Every disruption and community event thereafter has inspired me more and more. Speaking for animals and directly challenging normalized violence is one of the most powerful forms of activism I feel I can be a part of.

Q: What is your favorite or most accomplished moment in activism or other DxE activity?

My favorite moment was during the Midwest convergence last October. Entering a Costco with such a large group of activists felt incredible. Many people avoid eye contact with us when we are defending animals but that day I noticed some children looking right into my eyes. Regardless what their parents were or were not teaching them, they appeared to understand the simplicity of our message. One boy in particular, maybe 7 or 8 years old, looked at me with such a soft intensity and in that moment I realized the impact of our presence. Had I witnessed something like our demo as a child, it would have validated my compassion and helped me see that there is another way. I likely would have stopped eating animals much sooner in my life. As activists, we lift the curtain and expose the violence that is inherent in the use of sentient beings. As painful as this reality is, it’s a gift to empower others with the truth and to offer the support of our community.

Q: Are you a part of any working groups or unique activism in your chapter and how do they influence your activism?

Our chapter is fairly new so working groups are still being developed but I travel to Chicago as often as possible to collaborate with and learn from more experienced activists. I’ve learned a great deal about myself through co-organizing within DxE. Working with such a creative, diverse and compassionate community humbles me.

 Q: How do you stay motivated as an activist?

When I realized that I was born into a world that treats gentle, sentient beings with such disdain, it felt like a horrible nightmare and it still does. I’m ashamed that I was ever part of such a violent system of oppression. Every day I wake up with a degree of freedom that I once took for granted and now I ask myself, “What is the best use of this privilege?” Across the planet, non-human animals are treated as objects and there are few to no laws to protect them from horrific abuse and killing. The tremendous suffering they endure in the name of greed is inconceivable. Sadly, their plight is frequently met with denial or an “out of sight out of mind” mentality. Even those who live vegan often become complacent. Being vegan is great but animals need more because our silence ensures continued exploitation.

Some people say that my activism is too extreme or too uncomfortable. It’s true that activism is challenging and often uncomfortable but to me, there’s nothing more uncomfortable than living a life of “comfort” at the expense of another’s basic rights. The soul shattering pain and outrage caused by bearing witness to their anguish must be channeled to help them. Fighting for them is my only viable option and as long as I am living, I won’t stop until they are free.

 Q: What advice would you give to new activists?

Rely on and build community by showing up and reaching out. The amount of compassion, wisdom and resilience you will discover in others, and in yourself, will never cease to amaze and inspire you.

Push yourself. Fight for the animals the way you would want someone to fight for you but don’t forget to take care of yourself and your fellow activists. Every activist knows that this movement, like all social justice movements, is emotionally and psychologically taxing. The animals need us for the long haul and we cannot afford to burn out.

 Q: Why Animal Liberation?

When it comes to liberation, let’s refer to the golden rule or to moral consistency. All animals, regardless of species, have the capacity to suffer and the desire to be free. I happen to adore non-human animals but even if you don’t, at the end of the day, their basic interests are no different than ours. If we don’t want to be objectified, violated, held captive or slaughtered, subjecting others to such misery is unjust.

Want to get involved? DxE is a grassroots network focused on empowering you to be the best activist you can be. Here are some steps you can take. 

  1. Sign up to our mailing list and share our content on social media. 
  2. Join a local DxE community (or, better yet, come visit us in Berkeley).
  3. Take the Liberation Pledge. And join us in building a true social movement for animals.

 

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