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|Lynx Issue 18: Peter Young Monday, Shrine Circus, Butler Spay Neuter|
|Wednesday, 26 March 2008 00:00|
In this week's edition:
Peter Young Speaking Next Monday!
Don’t forget that next Monday, March 31st, at 7:00 PM, animal rights activist and former political prisoner Peter Young will be speaking at the University of Pittsburgh, 120 David Lawrence Hall, 3942 Forbes Avenue.
Peter Young spent two years in federal prison on charges of 'animal enterprise terrorism' for releasing and conspiring to release over 8,000 minks from six fur farms across the mid-west in 1997. He will be speaking on political repression, the 'green scare', direct action and animal rights and liberation. The talk is sponsored by the Pitt Law National Layers Guild & Voices for Animals of Western Pennsylvania and endorsed by the Pittsburgh Organizing Group and Students for Radical Change & Liberation.
Don’t miss this sure-to-be exciting and powerful event! The documentary Behind The Mask will also be shown immediately following Peter Young’s speech.
Peter Young is an animal rights activist indicted by a federal grand jury in 1998 on charges related to fur farm raids in Iowa, South Dakota & Wisconsin in 1997. Young remained underground for seven years until being arrested in 2005 and sentenced to two years' imprisonment on two charges of 'animal enterprise terrorism.' Before his sentencing he had the opportunity to show remorse for his actions and refused to do so, instead telling the fur farmers that he would "forever mark those nights on your property as the most rewarding experience of my life." For more information about Young: http://www.myspace.com/supportpeter.
The Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act (AETA) is a federal law targeting animal rights and environmental activists introduced in 2005 to stiffen penalties and expand the Animal Enterprise Protection Act of 1992. The Act creates new crime and sentencing guidelines for anyone who travels in interstate or foreign commerce to intentionally damage or cause the loss of any property (including animals or records) used by or in connection with animal enterprise, or conspires to do so. The AETA was passed by the House under a suspension of the rules voice vote with only six house members present, unanimously passed by the Senate and signed into law by George Bush two months later. For more information about the AETA: http://www.greenisthenewred.com.
Behind the Mask: The Story Of The People Who Risk Everything To Save Animals is a 2006 documentary film about the Animal Liberation Front (ALF) created by animal-rights lawyer Shannon Keith, owner of Uncaged Films and ARME (Animal Rescue, Media & Education).The film has won several awards including best documentary feature at the Venice Film Festival, the Independent Features Film Festival and the Santa Clarita Valley Film Festival and was an official selection at Santa Cruz Film Festival and ReelHeART International Film Festival. For more information about the film: http://www.uncagedfilms.com.
Shrine Circus Protests Next Week!
Along with Peter Young, another important event upcoming next week is the Shrine Circus protests. The Shrine Circus will be at the Mellon Arena from April 4th-April 6th.
The Shrine Circus is no different than any other circus that abuses and exploits animals used in their performances, except for the fact that the Shrine doesn’t “own” the animals, but rather leases them out from outside companies such as Hawthorn Corporation, Circus Holywood, and the George Carden Circus. This means that the Shrine escapes having USDA citations listed in its name. However, some of the worst and most notorious circus incidents occurred under Shrine Circus exhibitors, such as when Tyke the elephant snapped from the continuous abuse he was living under, and went on a rampage, resulting tragically, in him being gunned down.
Shrine tries to justify using an animal circus year after year by making the claim that they are helping sick children because the ticket sales are funding children’s hospitals, even though the ticket sales actually go to fund Shrine administrative costs. Even if the funds were going to the hospitals however, there are plenty of other fundraisers the Shrine could choose without resorting to animal exploitation, including contracting out with an animal-free circus.
Cruelty and abuse is inherent to using animals in circuses. Free-roaming animals live with members of their own species in normal social relationships, eating natural foods, and can engage in behaviors that fulfill their biological and individual needs and desires to exercise, roam, forage, socialize, and play. Animals held captive in the circus are kept shackled in chains by one front leg and one back leg (if they are elephants) or kept locked in cages so small they can barely turn around, and trucked around from city to city in boxcars with no heat or air conditioning. In order to get the animals to perform unnatural, uncomfortable, and often dangerous tricks, they are beaten into submission using whips, electric prods, and bullhooks. Stereotypic behaviors such as swaying back and forth, head-bobbing, pacing, bar-biting, and self-mutilation are common signs of mental distress.
Keeping animals captive in the circus has no place in a just and compassionate society. Please come out next week and protest the Shrine Circus for refusing to give up this archaic practice. A separate alert detailing protest times will be sent out soon.
URGENT! This Thursday: Support Operation Spay Neuter in Butler
The following alert was sent to us by Operation Spay Neuter Inc. (OSN), a non-profit group working out of Butler, PA. If you can, we urge you to come out and support their efforts to provide an alternative to Triangle Pet's "trap-and-kill" by attending the Butler Council Meeting on Thursday (see details below), or by writing a supportive letter to Council.
When: Thursday March 27, 2008, 7 pm
OSN offers low cost spaying and neutering for tame or feral animals to people who can not afford it. OSN is presenting an alternate option to Triangle Pets’ stray animal pick-up and disposal program before the Butler City Council and the Mayor of Butler, Thursday March 27th. It will be telecast.
At present Triangle Pet is being paid by the town of Butler to deal with stray animals. They trap them or have others trap them. They check with local animal rescue groups to see if there is space in their programs to take them. If not they are killed. These animals are tame/feral, kittens/puppies, old/young and often adoptable. Spaying and neutering animals is the only way to address this constantly growing problem.
Operation Spay Neuter is hoping to get personal support from you, or your group/business, by way of writing letters of agreement and/or helping to show your solidarity by attending the March 27th meeting. We would appreciate an RSVP if you consider attending this meeting. We are also looking for funding from the Town/County of Butler, local businesses and the people of Butler for local Spays/Neuters and Spay/Neuter clinics. You may contact us at 724-287- SPAY (7729) or 724-283-0762 for more information about this. If you would care to make a donation to OSN you can make it in care of Operation Spay Neuter Inc. You may mail it to the above address. Thank you for your time and consideration. We appreciate your support.
Animals in the News
In this weeks edition we feature two articles. One of them is not so much about animals but rather not about animals. It's about how a diet free of animal products has been shown in recent research to ease Rheumatoid arthritis as well as other immune problems and disorders. In the article Vegan diet may help ease rheumatoid arthritis: study, the researchers not only mention that results were supportive of the benefits of a vegan diet, but that they are in line with previous studies showing that the vegan diets can "lower blood pressure, lower body mass index and lower incidence of cardiovascular disease" as well. This support for the vegan diet dispels the myth that vegans are unhealthy or lacking in essential nutrients. They often prove to be far healthier than their meat eating counterparts as they did in this study. Granted, the diet was balanced for nutrients, as any person's diet should be, regardless of vegetarianism. But this study goes to show that the vegan lifestyle is not only one free of cruelty, but is a healthy one as well. Read the entire article here: http://www.sciam.com/article.cfm?id=vegan-diet-may-help-ease
On a less positive note, our next article calls to attention the dwindling population of an endangered species of porpoise. The vaquita is a small Mexican porpoise whose existence is being threatened by the commercial fishing industry. Although they are timid animals who are rarely seen, they are being caught in fishing nets at a faster rate than they are able to reproduce. This is yet another reason to boycott the fishing industry. Although the government is trying to persuade fishers to shift their business to wildlife sight-seeing tours rather than fishing (which usually yields just as much profit), the fishermen are not being cooperative, stating "We've been fishermen all our lives. It's what we do." It is important to note the wide impact that the industry has on the world around it. It is not just the fish who are eaten who suffer the consequences of commercial fishing, but all the wildlife in the area including endangered species like the vaquita. The extinction of this species will affect everything around it as does the extinction of most species. Extinction is forever and it is important that we keep this in mind when making choices in our own lives. Read the entire article here: http://www.sciam.com/article.cfm?id=tiny-mexican-porpoise-nea
Check out the Tiger Ranch Rescue website: www.tigerranchrescue.info The site is dedicated to helping the cats rescued from Tiger Ranch by providing information on where to send donations, and by providing -- through photographs and video -- reminders of the conditions from where the cats came.
Monday, March 31st, 7:00 pm: Animal Rights, the 'Green Scare' & the Crackdown on Social Activism (w/ Peter Young), 120 David Lawrence Hall, University of Pittsburgh, 3942 Forbes Avenue
Friday-Sunday, April 4th-6th: Shrine Circus Protests & Leafleting, Mellon Arena, Downtown (stay tuned for further details)