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whole foods

Stories to Inspire, July: Rest in Peace, Mei Hua

Rest in Peace, Mei Hua

 

As she lay dying in my arms, Mei Hua lifted her head, stared intently into my face, and ever-so-gently pecked away my tears. When she closed her eyes that time, she never opened them again.

Mei was utterly unlike anyone I’ve ever known. Although I knew her for barely a year, she integrated herself so fully into my life that it seemed impossible that she would ever leave.

But she did leave -- almost a year to the date that she arrived. Her departure was as shocking as it was sudden. One week she was comforting a little white hen who was recovering from surgery; the next week, she was diagnosed with cancer. We ran test after test, hoping for another outcome but each one only further confirmed the grim diagnosis.

I’d hoped for a few more weeks -- maybe even months -- with Mei, but it was not to be. Within days, Mei’s food stopped digesting and her body grew frail. The subcutaneous fluids we administered pooled under her skin and failed to absorb, as her organs shut down.

It seems unfair that such a beautiful life was taken so soon, but that is the price of animal agriculture: Mei was never meant to live more than 18 months. As a hen born and bred to churn out obscene numbers of eggs, she was slated for death at just one tenth the lifespan of her wild counterparts.

Indeed, when she first arrived here, Mei was as close to death as one can possibly be. She could not lift her head; she could not drink on her own. She was covered with filth, and her body was cold and nearly stiff as a corpse. The only indication of life was a blinking eye and a slowly rising chest.

Although veterinarians thought otherwise, we knew she had a chance and that she, like all animals, wanted to live. We wrapped her battered body in warm blankets and laid her on a heating pad. We dribbled Pedialyte into her beak and administered subcutaneous fluids. We stayed up all night with her, ready to give her nourishment if needed, or comfort if her body gave out.

Over the next few days, Mei slowly came back to life. The first time she raised her head, we all held our breaths. When she dipped her beak into the bowl of water on her own, we breathed a sigh of relief. The day she took her first tentative steps, our hearts sang.

Slowly but surely, Mei’s life returned to her. It was not long before she was strolling throughout the house with a calm sense of purpose. It turned out that Mei had a sweet tooth. Her favorite snacks were sweet corn and watermelon, and she was even known to dip into a bowl of soy ice cream to satisfy her sugar fix.

But Mei remained scarred by her past. She had trouble flying up to perches, waiting each night to be carried up to her perching spot and each morning to be carried down. In this she was infinitely patient and calm, a perfect lady always.

Something else remained in Mei from the egg industry: cancer.  Like all domesticated chickens, Mei was genetically selected to lay eggs far in excess of what any bird would naturally lay. And as with 90 percent of all industry hens, the resultant ovarian cancer killed her at just a fraction of a normal hen’s lifespan. It didn’t matter that Mei Mei had never lived in a cage; her breeding made her a prisoner in her own, disease-ravaged body.

A part of me feels thankful that Mei lived so fully for one year, but the other part of me is consumed with a grief, not only for the loss of my beautiful friend, but also for the callous disregard for life that caused her -- and causes so many like her -- to die prematurely.

Mei cheated death once and managed to squeeze out another year out of life, but she deserved more -- as do all animals. It is the task of our generation to find a way to give them that.

(Anonymous)

Want to hear more about Mei? Check out our rescue video below. 

What Is Whole Foods Hiding? Portland activists detained by police, banned from all stores

What is Whole Foods Hiding? Portland activists detained by police, banned from all stores

By Ana Hurwitz

 

Mei Hua was barely clinging to life when she was rescued.

She is a hen whose name means "beautiful flower.” At the time of her rescue, Mei suffered traumatic head injuries, could not stand on her own two feet, was struggling to breathe, paralyzed from fear and helplessness, and only survived by eating the excrement that covered her while she was locked inside of a Whole Foods farm. Because of what she has endured, Mei has slowly had to relearn how to eat and how to walk.

This Whole Foods farm is a "humane" (humane-certified) farm where all chickens are "cage-free." It enjoys the approval of animal welfare non-profits like the Humane Society and ASPCA.

"Humane" is a word often understood as synonymous with compassionate. Yet the truth is that the living conditions on Whole Foods's "humane" farms, if inflicted unto any of us or our loved ones, would be considered crimes against humanity.

Animal abuse is not uncommon among humane farms, as a recent investigation into a Los Angeles Foster Farms shows. Whole Foods's animal welfare certification permits the slicing off of hens' beaks with hot razors as the company makes billions of dollars from selling murdered animal bodies— bodies of animals like Mei, who just want to live— and calling it compassion.

Earlier this year, an open investigation by the international animal rights network Direct Action Everywhere revealed the horrific conditions in which animals used by Whole Foods are forced to live. The investigation was part of a targeted campaign called "It's Not Food, It's Violence," which aims to expose to the public the realities of (so-called) humane farming.

Since the campaign started, an entire activist chapter in New Haven, Connecticut has been banned from all Whole Foods stores. Sixteen nonviolent demonstrators in Glastonbury, Connecticut were banned. Activists in Tucson, Arizona were served with citations and banned. Several people have been arrested for leafleting.

Now two activists in Portland, Oregon were detained by police, threatened with arrest as well as possible criminal charges, and banned from all Whole Foods stores. Portland activists were also banned from all Safeway stores just days later, for speaking out against animal abuse (Safeway has a similar “humane” animal welfare certification program).

Police were called at a Whole Foods market in Portland after animal rights activists staged a nonviolent protest inside the store with a message of animal liberation, carrying bullhorns and disseminating vegan leaflets. The Day of Action was coordinated with at least forty-four cities across the world. One activist declared, "We are all animals!" as another held a photograph of a (“veal”) calf on a farm and said: "It is time we live our ethics! It is time we widen our circle of compassion!"

So, what is Whole Foods hiding? These places are supposedly open to the public. Yet Whole Foods is clearly willing to use the police as its own armed security force, to protect its profits from the ways this campaign is exposing the blood on their hands. But for all of its guns and money, this international campaign is armed with something even stronger: the truth.

***

Ana Hurwitz is an organizer with Direct Action Everywhere Portland. She is a Jewish white and visibly disabled woman. She has been active with various revolutionary organizations and is a volunteer with Food Not Bombs in Portland, Oregon. Formerly, she was an organizer with an animal liberation group in Portland, contributor to Sister Species Solidarity, and and an anti-domestic violence and sex worker advocate. 


"An Opiate to the Conscience": Welfarism as a Step to Animal Liberation?

"An opiate to the conscience": welfarism as a step to animal liberation?

By Brian Burns

The American Colonization Society said that its moderate message, which sought to bring slaveowners and abolitionists closer together, would  eventually  lead to the end of legal slavery in the US. Why do modern historians say the opposite?

The American Colonization Society said that its moderate message, which sought to bring slaveowners and abolitionists closer together, would eventually lead to the end of legal slavery in the US. Why do modern historians say the opposite?

Advocates of welfarism often claim that while the “humane” use and murder of animals is not the end goal, advocating for welfare reforms while not challenging the notion of animals as property will make the public more sympathetic to animal rights, and thus move us towards animal liberation. Whole Foods CEO and self-professed “ethical vegan” John Mackey, for example, unapologetically frames Whole Foods as a groundbreaking progress-maker for both animals and public consciousness in response to an open letter by James McWilliams calling for the company to stop selling meat.

Is this correct? Is there historical evidence showing that a moderate message which appeals to those in the “middle of the aisle” will eventually push them closer to one end? To examine this question, I discussed trends in the antislavery movement in the US from the mid-1810s through the 1830s as part of a DxE open meeting on welfarism . Most of the information presented was gathered from Paul Goodman’s book, Of One Blood.

“An Opiate to the Conscience” - The American Colonization Society of the Early 1800s

From the early 1800s, the antislavery movement in the United States was dominated by a large, government-backed group called the American Colonization Society (ACS). As Paul Goodman writes, “The most important function of the ACS was to ensure sectional harmony by offering a platform sufficiently broad and vague on which both slaveholders and nonslaveholders, professed abolitionists and anti-abolitionists, North and South, could stand” (Goodman, 18). Despite its stated purpose - to improve the welfare of slaves in the South and convince their masters to free them to an ACS-created colony in West Africa, “the ACS renounced any intention of interfering with slavery in the United States. (Goodman, 16).” In fact, the society was extremely hostile towards those agitating against slaveowners: “It insisted that any agitation that placed masters under moral scrutiny or political pressure or questioned their Christian benevolence would chill the inclination to manumit … Nor must one ever speak too harshly of slavery itself, the suffering of the victims and the cruelty of the master, lest slavery become a moral issue for public discussion” (Goodman, 18-19). 

The American Colonization Society, far from pushing the public towards abolitionism, reduced both Southern and Northern tension surrounding the issue of slavery. From our talk on the psychology of welfarism, we know that discomfort and cognitive dissonance are essential to motivate people to change their deep-set beliefs - and the ACS was extremely efficient at reducing both of them. Goodman writes, “In the North, apathy and indifference toward slavery were the toughest barriers… For most, until abolitionist agitation pricked their consciences, [slavery] was a distant abstraction” (Goodman, 124). Despite the organization’s widespread popularity both in the South and North and consensus at the time that it was pushing towards abolition, the resolution of tension and feel-good consciousness created by the society were, according to Fogel and many others, some of the “toughest barriers” towards the end of legal human slavery in the US. 

The Importance of Agitation

By “abolitionist agitation,” Goodman refers to the explosion of grassroots antislavery activism in the 1830s. Sparked by activists who felt silenced by the ACS (many of whom were former members of the society), independent chapters of self-styled “immediatists” began to pop up around the country, learning from each other via long letters and word of mouth. The action taken by these activists was radical and dangerous: William Lloyd Garrison’s public burning of the US constitution, which he called a “covenant with death”, almost left him dead after a lynch mob attempted to murder him (ironically he was saved by the police, who seized him and threw him in jail for his protest). Goodman writes that “Abolitionism grew, by contrast [to the ACS], in the teeth of elite hostility, intense popular prejudice, and physical violence, and it required an exceptional organizational and ideological commitment.” 

Despite these obstacles, however, the radical abolitionist movement was extremely successful, growing from four to 1348 independent chapters in just six years - a 34,000% increase in activism (Goodman, 124). This exceptional growth coupled with a strong message and provocative activism had extreme influence on public dialogue and political action on slavery, pushing public tension to ultimately to the brink of the Civil War. And as the antislavery societies rose across the US, the ACS was put on the defense, eventually discredited as a racist organization opposing rather than acting for progress.

What Can We Learn? 

Despite its profound power, agitation can be extraordinarily difficult as social animals. The nice, middle-of-the-road approach is often much more appealing, and often may seem to be the more effective way to enact change, since it does not elicit backlash. No surprise then, that companies such as Whole Foods have capitalized on its appeal to consumers by offering the same products of violence - meat, dairy, and eggs - sold in a more “compassionate” way. 

Unfortunately, the appeal of “moderatism” is precisely the reason behind its failure; in order to motivate people to reconsider their deep-set beliefs, one has to make them uncomfortable by presenting very different alternatives, and disrupting routine to force attention to these alternatives. Sometimes, seeking to reform the periphery of the system without attacking its root is the best way to ensure it survives and thrives. Such was the case in the American antislavery movement in the early 1800s, and such may be the case in the animal rights movement today.

Vegan Options are Not Animal Liberation

Vegan Options are Not Animal Liberation

By Hana Low

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A well-known animal advocacy organization recently produced and published a humorous video gently mocking vegan consumerism. Widely shared and discussed by members of the vegan community, the video could have functioned as a viral advertisement promoting Whole Foods, and might as well have been produced by Whole Foods’ own robust marketing department. While satirical, the video does highlight some real limitations of how the animal rights movement is often framed.

In the video, entitled “29 Thoughts Every Vegan Has at Whole Foods," a young white man in his early thirties is shown on the telephone with his friend, saying that he is going to drop into Whole Foods to pick up some coffee. The next minute and a half of the video consists of him meandering about the grocery store, admiring produce and ogling various corporate goods. Mysteriously, he manages not to meander into any department that sells animal products— even though the chain generates $2.4 billion in meat sales and sells millions of animal bodies each year. He is so enthralled by the “vegan options” in the store that he selects and buys several products that he says he doesn’t even need.

The video succeeds in painting vegans as class-privileged, frivolous, shallow consumerist yuppies, rather than activists fighting for total animal liberation. This is a systemic problem in the animal rights movement, which tends to celebrate vegan options and treatment-centered reforms that in some cases strengthen industry by quelling criticism of animal slaughter. Judging by how he was depicted, the man in the video might not have been an ethical vegan or cared about animals at all. He gave no attention whatsoever to animal advocacy, only the consumer choices in front of him. The video did not educate about violence against animals, discourage buying animal products, or invite food justice activists who care about affordable healthy food access into our movement, which is often plagued by the myth that buying expensive specialty foods is necessary to eat a plant-based diet.

Some animal advocates will respond to these words with some feelings of frustration, saying that being vegan is taking direct action for animals. And while eschewing animal products is certainly the moral baseline, because eating animal products is not ethical, it is only the beginning. All we are doing, in being vegan, is preventing a few more dollars from going into the pockets of animal agriculture. Our impact on weakening the system is negligible. Each of our independent consumer choices little impact on animal agriculture.

This article isn’t about boycotting Whole Foods. Most people don’t live in an area that has an all-vegan grocery store, and vegan grocery stores, if they do exist where we live, often don’t have all of the staples that we need and often are more expensive than their not-exclusively-vegan counterparts. So while supporting all-vegan businesses is admirable, that’s not our request.

Vegans must always keep in mind that a corporation or restaurant that is “vegan-friendly” may not be "animal-friendly.” A steakhouse or a dairy ice cream parlor could be “vegan-friendly” if it offers a vegan meal or ice cream flavor that vegan humans can buy and eat. But just because a place has “vegan options” for your consumer pleasure doesn’t mean that it does not perform acts of tremendous violence and exploitation to nonhuman animals. Don’t let the halo effect of those swanky vegan options pacify you and prevent you, a human with a voice, from speaking out against violence and remembering that veganism is but one part of liberating animals.

Because we are only 2% of the population, our boycott has a limited impact and doesn’t even rescue animals from death. We must empower and educate others. Many of us have only begun to participate in the lifelong and multistep process of animal liberation:

  1. Boycott (refuse to financially support industries that exploit animals for food, clothing, entertainment, research).
  2. Disrupt speciesism (speak out to stop violence against animals).
  3. Save lives (by financially and physically supporting animal sanctuaries and fostering or adopting animals ourselves, so the survivors of these systems of exploitation can live lives free from violence).

Animal advocates should always center their actions and rhetoric around the plight of the animals, and their stories of both oppression and liberation. The video, though it was produced and published by an animal advocacy organization, did not even mention the exploitation of animals. Animal liberationists aren’t doing this work because the food is tastier or the clothes are more fashionable. We do this because nonhuman animal voices are silenced, and because we are liberationists fighting for human and nonhuman self-determination, bodily autonomy and justice.

Whole Foods, and other animalmongers that market themselves as green, ethical, compassionate companies, do not care about animals. Whole Foods cares about profit, whether the dollars they are generating come from vegans or animal eaters; so, they engage in expensive and complex humanewashing to deceive us all. We as a movement should be aware of how vegan consumerism and non-animal-centered messaging bolster Whole Foods’ reputation and play into their bloody hands.

Learn more about why DxE is targeting Whole Foods in our latest campaign.

Would Whole Foods Kill My Family?

Would Whole Foods Kill My Family?

By Lisa Zorn

 

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This is Frost. 

I met Frost in 2003.  We had just adopted our first rabbit, Fury, and we thought he needed a friend. We naively assumed that we could just find one for him, so we stopped at a fair and encountered a man with stacks of cages—multiple sections to a cage, each section the size of a rabbit. The rabbits inside the cages couldn’t move. It was upsetting; but we asked him what he was doing with them and if we could have one. He said he was selling them to someone there and sure, we could have one for $5.  (Note: Please adopt from shelters or rescues like SaveABunny.  I was ignorant in 2003.)  He took out a few and we looked at their teeth, then went home with Frost: a little tortoiseshell Netherland Dwarf with the letters ‘A39’ tattooed in her ear.

I don’t know what happened to the others, but it was probably something terrible. Frost came from a bad place.

On the car ride home, I held Frost in a towel, and she didn’t move much.  She must have been terrified.  When we got home, we introduced her to Fury, and he loved her at first sight (or sniff).  (Side note: rabbits can be very picky about other rabbits, so this is no little thing.)  Once Frost realized she was safe, everything changed.

Frost loved to gaze out of windows at the outside world.

Frost loved to gaze out of windows at the outside world.

Frost was an adventurous rabbit.  She was the opposite of Fury—she liked to leap before considering, to hurl her body through time and space and worry about the consequences afterwards.  She was the kind of rabbit who would bump into walls in her enthusiasm; who would chew a hole through the screen door to the balcony and go exploring; who would climb the shelves I put up for her so she could gaze out the window at the world.

Frost told us, in no uncertain terms, that being caged at night was completely unacceptable.  She would rattle the cage bars all night long; so we got rid of the cage. Frost loved all greens, especially broccoli.  Frost loved Fury (and Fury loved her).  Eventually, Frost grew to love me too, sitting next to me in bed at the crack of dawn and demanding that I pet her by pushing her head underneath my hand whenever I started to fall asleep.

Frost was a Netherland Dwarf, which is a tiny breed of rabbit with a blunt nose and little ears; they are typically bred for show and for the pet trade (and sometimes used as food for snakes).  The blunt nose of the Netherland Dwarf means they often have teeth problems (rabbit’s teeth constantly grow, and need to be worn down by chewing on hay), and Frost eventually developed a tooth infection.  We had several of her teeth pulled; but the infection kept spreading, and none of the antibiotics we tried worked.  Eventually we decided to euthanize Frost because she was in so much pain, and she couldn’t eat anything on her own.  My heart broke that day, and I will always miss her and always love her.

We gave her the best life we could, and she was happy.  In return, she and Fury transformed me. They taught me the meaning of unconditional love.  They woke me up; I realized that everyone is Frost—that every cow, every chicken, every turkey, every pig, every fish…They are Frost in the ways that matter: in their desire for bodily autonomy; in their feelings of joy and fear and love.

That’s why when Whole Foods started selling the flesh of rabbits last year, it felt to me like a punch in the gut. Not because rabbits deserve to live more than any of the other animals slaughtered by Whole Foods, but because rabbit meat is a fairly small market in the U.S, and Whole Foods is a large grocery chain with a lot of influence. This step just made the world a lot worse for rabbits. Already, rabbits tread a sort of middle ground; though many of us love them as family members, they are also exploited by almost every industry: fur, meat, medical and cosmetic testing.  The battle for personhood is often in the foreground for rabbits, and those of us who have rabbit companions are often at the receiving end of “jokes” about violence against our loved ones.

When rabbit advocates contacted Whole Foods expressing our dismay about the decision to start selling rabbit meat, Whole Foods routinely responded by saying:

Whole Foods being "sensitive to the companion animal issue," using the words reminiscent of children's books to sell violence towards our companions.

Whole Foods being "sensitive to the companion animal issue," using the words reminiscent of children's books to sell violence towards our companions.

“Whole Foods Market is sensitive to the companion animal issue and we understand this product won’t appeal to everyone. However, for those customers who have been asking us to carry rabbit, it’s our job to make sure we offer the highest-quality product from responsible sources. A number of shoppers have been asking Whole Foods Market to carry rabbit for years but conventional raising practices do not meet our rigorous animal welfare standards. To meet our customers’ requests for rabbit we needed our own set of animal welfare standards, and these rabbit welfare standards are a direct result of a rigorous four-year process to address the welfare issues in rabbit production. As we have done in the past, our hope is that our high standards will be a model for industry change.”

Rama , a well-loved New Zealand White rabbit at SaveABunny.

Rama, a well-loved New Zealand White rabbit at SaveABunny.

Whole Foods is breeding and killing New Zealand White rabbits, a domestic breed of rabbit that many of us know and love as companions.  Whole Foods suppliers take rabbits from their families and kill them at eight weeks of age, when they are barely weaned babies.  Spayed and neutered house rabbits typically live for 8-12 years.  Digging further into the “rigorous animal welfare standards” provided by Whole Foods, one finds: “Stocking density must not exceed 2lbs/square foot.”  This means that an eight-pound adult New Zealand rabbit could be housed his whole life in a 2-foot by 2-foot space. A mother and her eight babies could be housed in a 2 1/8-foot square space. These “rigorous animal welfare standards” are actually just routine.  Further, the standards make points about keeping the rabbits in groups but doesn’t require it for males or females.  Whole Foods sources their rabbits from Iowa and Missouri, both of which have passed ag-gag laws.

None of this really matters, though, because even if Whole Foods kept rabbit families intact, even if Whole Foods gave them lots of room to run and jump and play and binky (that’s the rabbit happy dance), even if Whole Foods gave them strawberry treats every night and workers gave them good morning kisses, it would not be ok. At the end of the day, a young rabbit is taken from her family and her throat is cut. She will never love or be loved again, just so Whole Foods can make a buck.

That is why I will speak up against the violence that Whole Foods perpetrates, that Whole Foods expands, that Whole Food promotes beneath a veneer of feel-good marketing.  I will fight for Frost, and all of her sisters and brothers, and all of beautiful beings exploited and killed by Whole Foods Market.  Until every animal is free.

The sign is down, so you can forget about the violence underneath it.

The sign is down, so you can forget about the violence underneath it. (By Kelly)

About a month ago, the Whole Foods stores in Lafayette, California, put up a sign over the dismembered body parts of victims of institutionalized speciesist violence that read: "A hearty helping of Animal Compassion with every order." PETA set up a petition to have the sign taken down and contacted the company. Though the bodies remain, the misleading sign above them was taken down, and the following is what the animal-killers said to the petitioners.

Dear Customers,

Thank you for contacting Whole Foods Market regarding signage in our meat departments. We were contacted by PETA about this and acted immediately on the same day as we agree with PETA. The signage was limited to four stores in the Northern California region who opted to use that language several years ago, and we agree the language was not appropriate. It has already been updated and we appreciate PETA for calling it to our attention.

We sell the largest variety of vegan and meat alternatives across the country, and we proudly promote those products. And like all other supermarkets, we also sell meat. However, we believe there are significant differences in the way animals are raised for food in the United States and that Whole Foods Market will continue to sell and promote animal foods that we believe have been raised with less pain and suffering than factory farm meats.  PETA worked with us for several years to develop the standards that we are currently using to source our products.

Thank you again for taking the time to share your concerns about this matter.

Sincerely,

Customer Communications Team, Whole Foods Market Global Headquarters

550 Bowie Street, Austin, TX 78703

My mind is swimming with the number, complexity and magnitude of problems in this letter, but I'll try to strip and simplify those thoughts for the purpose of this brief blog post:

1) "... regarding signage in our meat departments." The dismembered dead bodies of beings who did not want to die are not "meat" -- what's still in that same part of the store is actually innocent animals, victims of violence, artifacts of discrimination, and bodies of the oppressed.

2) "... we agree the language was not appropriate." Great. What about the violence that the sign referred to, that made it's language inappropriate?

3) "We sell the largest variety of vegan and meat alternatives..." Insert expletives. The animals don't care about people eating plants, they care about their lives and families and freedom. Hell, the cow next in line on the kill floor doesn't even care if you eat someone else, she just doesn't want you to enslave and kill her and her loved ones. The tempeh sitting on a shelf near the flesh of a baby pig did absolutely nothing for that infant, so stop trying to distract compassionate people from the nonhuman rights violations that you continue to commit on an unfathomably immense scale. Until there isn't one single body of an exploited being up for sale in your store, the tofu sitting beside it would be better positioned up wherever Whole Foods pushes it's vile exploitative excrement out of.

4) "... will continue to sell and promote animal foods that..." First and foremost, since animals aren't food, there's no such thing. Stop reducing my cousins to objects. But secondly: DO ANIMAL "RIGHTS" ACTIVISTS NOT SEE A PROBLEM WITH THE STATEMENT THAT THEY WILL CONTINUE TO NOT ONLY SELL, BUT PROMOTE PRODUCTS OF VIOLENCE? Is this not the real problem? Humanewashing sign or no, the violence has to go.

5) "... with less pain and suffering..." What about life? Compared to animals exploited on factory farms, do they have more or less of that when they are killed?

6) "PETA worked with us..." No comment necessary. But perhaps a quote: "No compromise with slavery; no union with slaveholders" (WLG).

Forget consumerism. And stop compromising. Speak up against injustice.

Our Enemies are Clever

Our Enemies are Clever

We CANNOT let animal killers divert our attention away from their violence.

Humanewashers like Chipotle are trying to manipulate the public into believing that killing someone who doesn't want to die is not only perfectly acceptable, but that if you're nice enough to that innocent individual first* then that greedy violence is a good, positive thing.

That insistence that speciesist violence is not only acceptable but a positive thing is moving our culture deeper into speciesism and complacency with violence, and further away from liberationism.

Which is why perpetuating the humane myth (and focusing on welfare, while ignoring the violence of the murder that life ends in, however nicely the animal was treated beforehand) is a threat to the liberation movement.

I'll also insist here that distracting liberationists from violence with plant-based options is a threat to the liberation movement. Being vegan-friendly =/= being animal-friendly, let's not confuse the two, nor let the former distract us from a failure of the latter.

I mean look, Chipotle even has us "animal RIGHTS activists" talking about plant-based food options for human consumers, instead of talking about the animals' rights, which are being violated beyond my human-privileged ability to even begin to comprehend in the slaughterhouses beside those tofu burritos and cute cartoons, RIGHT NOW.

That is why we have to target humanewashers. Utilizing the humane myth and offering plant-based options are a concerted effort by clever advertisers aiming to appease and distract the public so that no one challenges the company's speciesist violence. If Chipotle were genuinely moving our culture towards liberation, they would be challenging speciesism, and they would be saying that violence against innocent defenceless animals is wrong. But they're doing just the opposite, they're staying silent on speciesism (letting it perpetuate itself in its invisibility) and they're insisting that violence against innocent defenceless animals is a GOOD thing. What Chipotle is doing is not "a step in the right direction," it's a pull AWAY from liberationism, intended to keep people from realizing that the violence they engage in is wrong.

No compromise with slavery. No union with slaveholders. Especially the ones who are manipulating the public into believing that slavery and violence are positive things.

•Kelly

*To make matters even worse, this ideology of raising the exploited animals in pastures instead of factories is not one that Chipotle lives up to, but is merely a marketing ploy taking advantage of the lack of regulation in such advertising. Chipotle sources from Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations.