READING - ORGANISATIONS
Question 92: What are appropriate books and
periodicals to read for more information on AR issues?
There are hundreds of books that could be recommended. We provide
a sampling of books and periodicals below. Please refer to question #94
for further book references and reviews. Space limitations forced us to
avoid children's books. Refer to the guide books listed for full
Animal Production and Factory Farming
Jim Mason and Peter Singer
AAVS, 801 Old York Rd, Suite 204, Jenkintown, PA 19046-1685, $12.95.
Facts and photos on farms that mass produce animals for meat, milk, and
eggs. [1980, 1990]
"Factory Farming: The Experiment That Failed"
Animal Welfare Institute
P.O. Box 3650, Washington, DC 20007.
Fact-packed indictment of factory-farming on welfare and economic grounds.
"Waste of the West: Public Lands Ranching"
P.O. Box 5784, Tucson, AZ 85703.
"Do Hens Suffer in Battery Cages?"
The Athene Trust
5a Charles St, Petersfield, Hants GU32 3EH
Scientific evidence of hen suffering. 
"Alternative to Factory Farming"
Earth Resources Research
Factory farming challenged on economic grounds.
"Chicken and Egg: Who pays the price?"
Green Print Publishers, London
A criticism of the poultry industry. 
"Taking Stock: Animal Farming and The Environment"
Alan Durning and Holly Brough - Worldwatch Paper 103
1776 Mass. Avenue N.W., Washington, DC 20036-1904
The environmental cost of animal farming. 
"Assault and Battery"
Pluton Publishers, London
Effects of farming on animals, humans and the environment. 
Vincent Stuart Publishers, London.
The first book on factory farming. 
"Facts about Furs"
G. Nilsson, et. al.,
Animal Welfare Institute, (op. cit.).
On fur-farming and trapping. 
"Pulling the Wool"
Hale and Ironmonger Publishers
The Australian wool and sheep industry. 
Animal Rights History
"All Heaven in a Rage"
E. S. Turner
Provides a history of the animal protection movement up to the 1960's.
Fontana Publishers, London.
The rise of direct action for Animal Rights. 
"History of the Humane Movement"
Charles D. Niven
Johnson Publishers, London
From antiquity to today. 
Blackwell Publishers, Oxford.
Overview of the history of AW and AR movements. 
"The Animal Liberation Movement: Its Philosophy, Its Achievements
and Its Future"
Old Hammond Press Publishers, Nottingham, 
"Man and the Natural World"
History from 1500 AD to 1800 AD. 
Animal Rights Legislation
"Animals and their Legal Rights"
The Animal Welfare Institute, Washington D.C. 
"Animal Rights, Human Wrongs"
Lennard Publishings, Harpenden, UK.
An RSPCA officer's experiences demonstrate the lack of adequate
animal legislation. 
"Up against the Law"
J. J. Roberts
Arc Print, London. 1986
Public Order Act and its implications for Animal Rights protests. 
"Animals and Cruelty and Law"
Alibi, Bristol UK.
A practicing barrister argues for Animal Rights from the legal standpoint.
Animal Rights Philosophy
"The Case for Animal Rights"
University of California Press. 
"The Struggle for Animal Rights"
International Society for Animal Rights, Inc., Clarks Summit, PA. 
PETA Merchandise, P.O. Box 42400, Washington, D.C. 20015
The book that popularized Animal Rights. [1975, 1990]
"In Defense of Animals"
Henry Salt, AAVS (op. cit.), $6.95.
Written a century ago, a true classic, anticipates many of today's arguments.
"No Room, Save in the Heart: Poetry and Prose on Reverence for
Life - Animals, Nature and Humankind"
Free, AAVS (op. cit.), $8.95.
"The Unheeded Cry: Animal Consciousness, Animal Pain and Science"
Bernard Rollin. 
"Created from Animals: The Moral Implications of Darwinism"
James Rachels. 
"Morals, Reason and Animals"
Steve Sapontzis. 
"Political Theory and Animal Rights"
Clarke and Lindzey (Eds.).
This book provides interesting excepts from thinkers since Plato to Regan
on the issue of our relations and duties towards animals. 
"The Nature of the Beast: Are Animals Moral?"
"Animals, Men and Morals"
Godlovitch et. al. 
Fox Press Publishers, Winchester.
Includes a well-known indictment of pet keeping. 
"The Moral Status of Animals"
Oxford University Press Publishers, Oxford.
The roots of humans' treatment of animals in sentimental fantasy. 
"The Savour of Salt--A Henry Salt Anthology"
G. and W. Hendrick
Centaur Press Publishers, Fontwell. 
"Animals and Why They Matter: A Journey Around the Species Barrier",
Penguin Publishers, London. 
"Beast and Man"
Harvester Press Publishers, Brighton. 
"Animal Rights - A Symposium"
David Paterson and Richard Ryder,
Centaur Press Publishers, Fontwell. 
"Inhumane Society: The American Way of Exploiting Animals", Michael
St. Martins Press, New York. 
"The Sexual Politics of Meat: A Feminist-Vegetarian Critical Theory"
Carol J. Adams. 
"Rape of the Wild: Man's Violence against Animals and the Earth"
Andree Collard with Joyce Contrucci. 
"The Dreaded Comparison: Human and Animal Slavery"
Mirror Books, NY. 
Animal Rights Theology
"Christianity and the Rights of Animals"
Crossroad, New York. 
"Animal Sacrifices - Religious Perspectives on the Use of Animals
Tom Regan (Ed.), Temple University Press, PA. 
Circuses, Rodeos, and Zoos
"The Rose-Tinted Menagerie"
PETA (op. cit.), $16.50.
Describes behind-the-scenes action in circuses, aquariums, and zoos.
"Animals in Circuses and Zoos--Chiron's World?"
Little Eco Farms Publishing, Basildon, UK.
Investigation into the treatment of animals by zoos and circuses. 
"The Last Great Wild Beast Show"
Bill Jordan and Stefan Ormrod,
Constable Publishers, London.
How animals are snatched from the wild to be shipped to zoos worldwide.
"Beyond the Bars"
Virginia McKenna, William Travers, Jonathan Wray (eds.),
Thorsons Publishers, Wellingborough, UK.
The immorality of animal captivity. 
"Diet for a New America"
PETA (op. cit.), $12.50 post-paid.
Examines problems with animal-based food systems with solutions, info on
the link between diet and disease.
"Compassion: The Ultimate Ethic"
American Vegan Society, NJ, USA.
Exploration of veganism: its roots in eastern and western philosophy. 
"Food: Need, Greed and Myopia"
Earthright, Ryton UK.
World food problem seen from a vegetarian/vegan standpoint. 
Panjandrum Books, Los Angeles. 
Guides, Handbooks, and Reference
"Save the Animals! 101 Easy Things You Can Do"
Ingrid Newkirk, PETA (op. cit.), $4.95.
"67 Ways to Save the Animals"
Harper Perennial, $4.95. 
"The Animal Rights Handbook - Everyday Ways to Save Animal Lives"
Berkley Books, New York, $4.50. 
"PETA's Shopping Guide for Caring Consumers", PETA (op. cit.),
A must have! Lists names and addresses of cruelty-free companies.
"Keyguide to Information Sources in Animal Rights", Charles R.Magel,
AAVS (op. cit.), $24.95.
"A Shopper's Guide to Cruelty-Free Products"
Bantam Books, New York, $4.99. 
"Animal Rights: A Beginner's Guide"
Writeware Inc., Yellow Springs, OH, $14.95. 
"The PETA Guide to Action for Animals"
PETA (op. cit.), $4.00.
"The Extended Circle: A Commonplace Book of Animal Rights"
Provides hundreds of quotes and short excepts from thinkers throughout
"The Animal-Free Shopper"
R. Farhall, R. Lucas, and A. Rofe A. (Eds.),
The Vegan Society, 7 Battle Road, St. Leonards on Sea, East Sussex, TN37
7AA, UK. 
"The Animal Welfare Handbook"
C. Clough and B. Kew
4th Estate, London, UK 
Laboratory Animals and Product Testing
"Vivisection and Dissection in the Classroom: A Guide to Conscientious
Gary L. Francione and Anna E. Charlton
AAVS (op. cit.), $7.95.
Legal citings, sample pleadings, and letters.
"Animals in Education: The Facts, Issues and Implications"
Lisa Ann Hepner
Richmond Publishers, Albuquerque NM. 
"Entering the Gates of Hell: Laboratory Cruelty You Were Not Meant
AAVS (op. cit.), $10.00.
"Animal Experimentation: The Consensus Changes", Gill Langley
MacMillan Publishers, London. Collection of essays outlining the
change in morality. 
"Slaughter of the Innocent"
Civitas Publications, Swaine, NY. 
"Naked Empress: The Great Medical Fraud"
CIVIS, Klosters, Switzerland.
Why vivisection is a major cause of human disease. 
"Victims of Science: The Use of Animals in Research"
National Anti-Vivisection Society
Centaur Press Publishers, Fontwell.
Classic denunciation of vivisection. 
"The Cruel Deception: The Use of Animals in Medical Research"
Thorsons Publishers, Wellingborough, UK.
Detailed study of
the barbarity and uselessness of vivisection. 
"Free the Animals!"
Ingrid Newkirk, PETA (op. cit.), $14.00.
Story of the Animal Liberation Front in America.
350 Huntington Ave., Boston, MA 02130.
"The Animals' Agenda"
P.O. Box 6809, Syracuse, NY 13217-9953.
P.O. Box 205, Shushan, NY 12873.
"The Animals' Voice"
P.O. Box 341-347, Los Angeles, CA 90034.
"Between the Species"
P.O. Box 254, Berkeley, CA 94701.
"Bunny Hugger's Gazette"
P.O. Box 601, Temple, TX 76503-0601.
A Magazine of Vegetarianism, Environmentalism, and Animal Advocacy
P.O. Box 138, Prince Street Station, New York, NY 10012 [monthly: $10 for
12 issues 9/19/96]
"The Politics of Extinction"
L. Regenstein, Collier-Macmillan, London.
Classic denunciation of the wildlife carnage. 
"Wildlife and the Atom"
L. Veal, London Greenpeace, 5 Caledonian Road, London N1 9DX, UK.
The use of animals by the nuclear industry. 
see also question 1, 94
Question 93: What organizations
can I join to support AR?
There are hundreds of AR-related organizations
scattered around the
globe. In addition, there are many vegetarian and vegan groups. This
FAQ is already too long to list all of these groups. This FAQ gives only
AR-related groups in the United States and the United Kingdom. Later
editions of the FAQ may cover other countries. For a full listing of
vegetarian and vegan groups worldwide, refer to the excellent FAQs
maintained by Michael Traub (Internet address email@example.com).
The following data on US organizations comes from the book:
"The Animal Rights Handbook", Berkley Books, New York,
1993, ISBN 0-425-13762-7.
U N I T E D S
T A T E S
Alliance for Animals
P.O. Box 909, Boston, MA 02103
American Humane Association
63 Inverness Drive East, Englewood, CO 80112-5117
American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA)
424 E. 92nd St., New York, NY 10128
Animal Allies, P.O. Box 35063
Los Angeles, CA 90035
Animal Liberation Network
P.O. Box 983, Hunt Valley, MD 21030
Animal Protection Institute of America
P.O. Box 22505, Sacramento,
Animal Rights Mobilization
P.O. Box 1553, Williamsport, PA 17703
Animal Welfare Institute
P.O. Box 3650, Washington, DC 20007
Citizens to End Animal Suffering and Exploitation (CEASE)
P.O. Box 27, Cambridge, MA 02238
Defenders of Animals
P. O. Box 5634, Weybosset Hill Station,
Providence, RI 02903, (401) 738-3710
Doris Day Animal League (DDAL)
227 Massachusetts Ave. NE, Suite 100, Washington, DC 20002
Focus on Animals
P.O. Box 150, Trumbull, CT 06611
Friends of Animals
P.O. Box 1244, Norwalk, CT 06856
The Fund for Animals
200 West 57th St., New York, NY 10019
Humane Society of the United States
2100 L St., NW, Washington, DC 20037
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA)
P.O. Box 42516, Washington, DC 20015-0516
World Society for the Protection of Animals
29 Perkins St., P.O. Box 190, Boston, MA 02130
The Anti-Cruelty Society
157 W. Grand Ave., Chicago, IL 60616
Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (MSPCA),
350 S. Huntington Ave., Boston, MA 02130
Progressive Animal Welfare Society (PAWS)
15305 44th Ave. W,
P.O. Box 1037, Lynnwood, WA 98046
San Francisco Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SFSPCA),
2500 16th St., San Francisco, CA 94103
SPORTS AND ENTERTAINMENT
Committee to Abolish Sport Hunting
P.O. Box 44, Tomkins Cove, NY 10986
Performing Animal Welfare Society
11435 Simmerhorn Rd., Galt, CA 95632
Food Animal Concerns Trust (FACT)
P.O. Box 14599, Chicago, IL 60614
Farm Animals Reform Movement (FARM)
10101 Ashburton Lane, Bethesda, MD 20817
PO Box 150, Watkins Glen, NY 14891
Humane Farming Association
1550 California Street, Suite 6, San Francisco, CA 94109
United Animal Defenders
Inc., P.O. Box 33086, Cleveland, OH 44133
United Poultry Concerns
PO Box 59367, Potomac, MD 20889
Alternatives to Animals
P.O. Box 7177, San Jose, CA 95150
American Anti-Vivisection Society
801 Old York Rd., Suite 204, Jenkintown, PA 19046
In Defense of Animals
21 Tamal Vista Blvd., No. 140, Corte Madera, CA 94925
Last Chance for Animals
18653 Venture Blvd., No. 356, Tarzana, CA 91356
National Anti-Vivisection Society
53 W.Jackson Blvd., Suite 1550, Chicago, IL 60604
New England Anti-Vivisection Society
333 Washington St., Boston, MA 02135
Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF)
1363 Lincoln Ave., San Raphael, CA 94901
Association of Veterinarians for Animal Rights
15 Dutch St., Suite 500-A, New York, NY 10038
National Association of Nurses Against Vivisection
P.O. Box 42110, Washington, DC 20015
Physician's Committee for Responsible Medicine
P.O. Box 6322, Washington, DC 20015
Psychologists for the Ethical Treatment of Animals
P.O. Box 1297, Washington Grove, MD 20880-1297
Scientists Center for Animal Welfare
4805 St. Elmo Ave., Bethesda, MD 20814
Scientists Group for Reform of Animal Experimentation
147-01 3rd Ave., Whitestone, NY 11357
Committee for Humane Legislation
30 Haviland, South Norwalk, CT 06856
The National Alliance for Animal Legislation
P.O. Box 75116, Washington, DC 20013-5116
United Action for Animals, 205 E. 42nd St., New York, NY 10017
MARINE LIFE PRESERVATION
American Cetacean Society
P.O. Box 2639, San Pedro, CA 90731
Center for Marine Conservation
1725 DeSales St., NW, Washington, DC 20036
P.O. Box 3720, 1436 U St., NW, Washington, DC 20007
Marine Mammal Fund
Fort Mason Center, Bldg. E, San Francisco, CA 94123
Defenders of Wildlife
1244 19th St., NW, Washington, DC 20036
Earth Island Institute
300 Broadway, Suite 28, San Francisco, CA 94133
International Fund for Animal Welfare
P.O. Box 193, Yarmouth Port,
Rainforest Action Network
301 Broadway, Suite A, San Francisco, CA 94133
Wildlife Information Center, Inc., 629 Green St., Allentown, PA 18102
American Horse Protection Association
1000 29th St., NW, Suite T100, Washington DC 20007
Bat Conservation International
P.O., Box 162603, Austin, TX 78716
The Beaver Defenders
Unexpected Wildlife Refuge, Inc., Newfield, NJ 08344
Friends of the Sea Otter
P.O. Box 221220, Carmel, CA 93922
167 Saddle Hill Rd., Hopkinton, MA 01748
International Primate Protection League
P.O. Box 766, Summerville,
Mountain Lion Preservation Foundation
P.O. Box 1896, Sacramento, CA 95809
Primarily Primates, P.O. Box 15306, San Antonio, TX 78212
Save the Manatee Club
500 N. Maitland Ave., Suite 210, Maitland, FL 32751
Feminists for Animal Rights
P.O. Box 16425, Chapel Hill, NC 27516
International Network for Religion and Animals
P.O. Box 1335, North Wales, PA 19454
Jews for Animal Rights
255 Humphrey St., Marblehead, MA 01945
Student Action Corps for Animals (SACA)
P.O. Box 15588, Washington, DC 20003-0588
U N I T E D K
I N G D O M
7 Castle Street, Tonbridge, Kent TN9 1BH, UK
62 Old Dumbarton road, Glasgow G3 8RE, UK
Animal Liberation Front Supporters Group
Box BM 1160, London WC1N 3XX, UK
Animal Research Kills
P.O. Box 82, Kingswood, Bristol BS15 1YF, UK
5a Charles Street, Petersfield, Hants GU32 3EH, UK
Beauty Without Cruelty
57 King Henry's Walk, London N1 4NH, UK
Blue Cross Field Centre
Home Close Farm, Shilton Road, Burford,
Oxfordshire OX18 4PF, UK
Born Free Foundation
Cherry Tree Cottage, Coldharbour, Dorking, Surrey RH5 6HA, UK
British Hedgehog Preservation Society
Knowbury House, Knowbury, Ludlow, Shropshire SY8 3LQ, UK
British Trust For Ornithology
The Nunnery, Nunnery Place, Thetford, Norfolk IP24 2PU, UK
British Union for the Abolition of Vivisection
16a Crane Grove, Islington, London N7 8LB, UK
Campaign for the Abolition of Angling
P.O. Box 130, Sevenoaks, Kent TN14 5NR, UK
Campaign for the Advancement of Ruesch's Expose
23 Dunster Gardens, London NW6 7NG, UK
Campaign to End Fraudulent Medical Research
P.O. Box 302, London N8 9HD, UK
Cat's Protection League
17 King's Road, Horsham, West Sussex RH13 5PN, UK
P.O. Box 338, London E8 2AL, UK
Disabled Against Animal Research and Exploitation
P.O. Box 8, Daventry, Northamptonshire NN11 4QR, UK
Slade House Farm, Salcombe Regis, Sidmouth, Devon EX10 0NU
Dr. Hadwen Trust for Humane Research
6c Brand Street, Hitchin,
Hertfortshire SG5 1HX, UK
Earthkind, Humane Education Centre
Bounds Green Road, London N22 4EU, UK
Elefriends, Cherry Tree Cottage
Coldharbour, NR Dorking, Surrey RH5 6HA, UK
Environmental Investigation Agency
2 Pear Tree Court, London EC1R 0DS, UK
Fund for the Replacement of Animals in Medical Experiments
Eastgate House, 34 Stoney Street, Nottingham NG1 1NB, UK
Green Party Animal Rights Working Party
23 Highfield South, Rock Ferry, Wirral L42 4NA, UK
Horses and Ponies Protection Association
Happa House, 64 Station Road, Padiham, N. Burnley,
Lancashire BB12 8EF, UK
Humane Research Trust
Brook House, 29 Bramhall Lane South, Bramhall,
Stockport, Cheshire SK7 2DN, UK
Hunt Saboteurs Association
P.O. Box 1, Carlton, Nottingham NG4 2JY, UK
International Association Against Painful Experiments on Animals,
P.O. Box 215, St Albans, Herts AL3 4PU, UK
International Primate Protection League
116 Judd Street, London WC1H 9NS, UK
League Against Cruel Sports
83-87 Union Street, London SE1 1SG, UK
International League of Doctors for the Abolition of Vivisection,
UK Office, Lynmouth, Devon EX35 6EE, UK
National Anti-Vivisection Society
Ravenside, 261 Goldhawk Road, London W12 9PE, UK
National Canine Defence League
1 Pratt Mews, London NW1 0AD, UK
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals
P.O. Box 3169, London NW6 2QF, UK
Royal Society for the Protection of Birds
The Lodge, Sandy, Bedfordshire SG19 2DL, UK
Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals
Causeway, Horsham, West Sussex RH12 1HG, UK
Student Campaign For Animal Rights
P.O. Box 155, Manchester M60 1FT, UK
Teachers For Animal Rights
29 Lynwood Road. London SW17 8SB, UK
Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society
19A James Street, Bath, Avon BA1 2BT, UK
Cherry Tree Cottage, Coldharbour, Dorking, Surrey CR0 2TF, UK
Question 94: Can you give
a brief Who's Who of the AR movement?
Professor of Philosophy at North Carolina State University.
His book "The Case For Animal
Rights" is arguably the single best recent
work on animal rights. It is a demanding text but one that is well worth
the effort to read and study carefully. Everybody that is seriously
interested in the issues should read this rigorously argued case for AR.
It starts with some core concepts of inherent value theory, the same
concepts that played an important and significant role in the progress
human civil liberties since the 17th century and which began to be
extended to nonhumans during the 19th century. The notion of inherent
value continues to be vital and important for progress in both human and
animal rights. A less demanding but still informative book by Regan is
"The Struggle for Animal Rights". One might wish to first read
before tackling Regan's more difficult text.
Professor of Philosophy at Monash University, Melbourne.
Singer is best known for his book "Animal Liberation",
probably the most
widely read book on AR philosophy. Singer, unlike Regan, is not an
abolitionist as many people incorrectly surmise. His utilitarian position
allows for the possibility or necessity of killing animals under certain
circumstances. What is often lost sight of is that the obvious and patent
abuses of animals covers so much ground that both Regan and Singer share
common views on far more issues than those on which they differ. Other
important books by Singer include "In Defense of Animals" and
Senior Lecturer of Philosophy at the University of Newcastle.
Midgley's book "Beast and Man" has not been given the
attention that it
deserves. She deals with the contemporary facts of biology and ethology
head-on to provide an ethical argument for the respectful treatment of
animals that takes seriously scientific discoveries and thoughts about
animals. The "Humean fork" (or so-called logical divide) between
values is here carefully crossed by observing that we are foremost
"animals" ourselves and that the similarities between ourselves
animals is more important and relevant for our ethics and
self-understanding than are the often over-inflated differences.
Adams' book "The Sexual Politics of Meat" has made a
in combining cultural and ethical analysis by pointing out the political
implications of the metaphors we unthinkingly employ. The primary
metaphors she analyses in her book relate to meat. Such metaphors have
been applied to women, but the most insidious aspect of the metaphors is
the way that they hide the life that is killed to produce meat. Instead
"cow", we have "beef" on our plates. Adams argues that
the system that
kills animals is the same system that oppresses women; hence, there is
important and striking connection between vegetarianism and feminism.
Senior Clinical Psychologist at Warneford Hospital, Oxford.
Ryder is the originator of the key term "speciesism".
"Animal Revolution" provides both an historical perspective and
critical analysis of animal welfare and attitudes towards animals.
Salt was a remarkable social reformer who championed the humane
schools, prisons, society, and our treatment of animals. He also exerted
critical and important influence upon Gandhi. His book "Animals' Rights"
was the first to use that title and therein he gives voice to almost all
of the essential arguments for AR that we see being advanced and refined
today. The book provides an excellent biography of earlier European
writers on animal issues during the 18th and 19th centuries.
Moran's book "Compassion the Ultimate Ethic" makes a
regarding the less discursive but perhaps more fundamental intuitive basis
for animal rights.
Spiegel's book "The Dreaded Comparison" is a slim but
comparing the treatment of African-American slaves and the treatment of
nonhuman animals. In text and pictures, Spiegel discloses remarkable
similarities between the two systems. A picture of slaves packed into
a slave ship is matched with a photograph of battery hens. A picture
of a woman in a muzzle is paired with a picture of a dog in a muzzle.
The parallels are striking and revealing. Few other writers have been
as open or as unequivocal as Spiegel in likening cruelty to animals to
traffic in human beings.
It is hard to keep a Who's-Who list at a reasonable length. Here are
a few other prominent people:
STEPHEN R. L. CLARK
Professor of Philosophy at Liverpool University.
MICHAEL W. FOX
Vice President of Humane Society of the US, nationally known veterinarian,
and AR activist.
Founder of the Animal Liberation Front (ALF).
Attorney and journalist.
Co-founder of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA); prominent
Co-founder of PETA; exposer of the Silver Spring monkeys abuses.
Founder of ALF in the United States.
Question 95: What
can I do in my daily life to help animals?
Indeed, the buck must first stop here in our own daily lives with
elimination or reduction of actions that contribute to the abuse and
exploitation of animals.
Probably the single most important thing you can do to save animals,
help the ecology of the planet, and even improve your own health, is to
BECOME A VEGETARIAN. It is said that "we are what we eat". More
accurately, "we are what we do" and what we do in order to eat
profound consequence on our self-definition as a compassionate person.
long as we eat meat, we share complicity in the intentional slaughter of
countless animals and destruction of the environment for clearly trivial
Why trivial? No human has died from want of satisfying a so-called "Mac
Attack", but countless cows have died in order to satisfy our palates.
On a more positive note, vegetarians report that one's taste and enjoyment
of food is actually enhanced by eliminating animal products. Indeed, a
vegetarian diet is not a diet of deprivation; far from it. Vegetarians
actually eat a GREATER variety of foods than do meat-eaters. Maybe the
best kept culinary secret is that the really "boring" diet actually
out to be the traditional meat-centered diet.
Next, STOP BUYING ANIMAL PRODUCTS LIKE FUR OR LEATHER. There are plenty
of good plant and synthetic materials that serve as excellent materials
for fabrics and shoes. Indeed, all the major brands of high-quality
running shoes are now turning to the use of human-made materials. (Why?
Because they are lighter than leather and don't warp or get stiffen after
There are many less obvious animal products that are being used in many
of our everyday household and personal products. After first attending
those obvious and most visible products like leather and fur, then
consider what you can do to reduce or eliminate your dependency on
products that may contain needless animal ingredients or were brought to
market using animal testing. Two very good product guides are:
Shopping Guide for the Caring Consumer, PETA, 1994.
A Shopper's Guide to Cruelty-Free Products, Lori Cook, 1991.
Then GET INFORMED AND READ AS MUCH AS YOU CAN ON THE ISSUE OF ANIMAL
RIGHTS. Besides reading about animal rights from the major theorists,
also read practical guides and periodicals. Question #92 lists many
appropriate books and periodicals.
Finally, you can GET INVOLVED IN A LOCAL ANIMAL RIGHTS OR ANIMAL WELFARE
ORGANIZATION. Alternatively, if you lack the time, consider giving
donations to those organizations whose good work on behalf of
animals is something you appreciate and wish to materially support.