We asked Can Başkent about the interfaces of Atheism and Animal Rights

8 Questions – that we asked Can Başkent about the interfaces of Atheism and Animal Rights

We have asked Can Başkent about the visible and the invisible forms of violence against nonhuman animals and the environment carried out in religious contexts, and if an ethical veganism should entail a rejection of a top-down hierarchical view on the evolution and existence.

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Can Başkent was born in Istanbul, Turkey. He studied math and philosophy as an undergraduate, received his masters degree in logic in Amsterdamand his doctorate in computer science in New York. He continued his academic path at the Sorbonne and the École Normale Supérieure in philosophy and worked at the French Institute for Research in Computer Science and Automation (INRIA) as a researcher. As an activist Can has published a wide range of texts on anarchism, atheism, veganism and animal rights, he’s been engaged with the “Food not Bombs” campaign and launched a campaign to support the vegan prisoner of consciousness Osman Evcan. In 2011 Can founded the “Propaganda Press” (http://propagandayayinlari.net/), in 2013 he co-authored together with the vegan journalist Zülâl Kalkandelen (http://veganlogic.net/) the first enchiridion in Turkish about the political and economic aspects of ethical veganism: “Veganizm: Ahlakı, Siyaseti ve Mücadelesi” (Veganism: its Ethics, Politics and Struggle: http://propagandayayinlari.net/vegan.html). Can’s website is at  http://canbaskent.net/.

Tell me, did you think it was easy to be an atheist in this country, with the main problem being that offending the religious sentiments of others has been branded as a “crime”?
Ramazan’da Ateizm / Ramadan atheism, http://www.canbaskent.net/politika/86.html

Today religious discrimination is recognized as a violation of human rights. While it has been forgotten that religion is itself is a violation of human rights.
Bir Devrimcilik Olarak Ateizm / Reformist atheism, http://www.canbaskent.net/politika/85.html

Can: I’ve always thought that people panic for no reason inTurkey. As an atheist, I had no real difficulty or a problem except from receiving some ridiculous threat emails. The thing inTurkey is that such law is applied only to those people who are very popular. Unless you are on TV every now and then, be on newspapers all the time, prosecution does not care if a regular random citizen violates the law or not. So, it is safer than it looks, and we should not hide behind the fear of law.

1. Witnessing an act of killing

In your text ‘The Festival of the Sacrificed’ (Kurban’in Bayrami, http://www.canbaskent.net/vegan/19.html) you question why an argument of cognitive dissonance in a human being, who does not want to become aware of his/her own cruelty, (because he/she does have to become aware of it), could not be fully applied in the case of public animal sacrifices, so that the notion: ‘if slaughterhouses had glass walls, people would go vegetarian’, seems to be wrong at the annual Feast of Sacrifices for example. It seems there is a social acceptance for an outlived and visible brutality to nonhumans when such an event represents a tradition within the context of a religious praxis.

In the secular West the visibility of the kind of speciesism that is going along with the “killing for ‘meat’” (specifically) is a modified one: killing itself tends to stay mostly or partly invisible, being delegated to be carried out by others. Yet in a mass event of a ritual killing in the name of a religion, the same callousness: Animal = Meat and Animal = Sacrifice is directly visible for anybody, if he/she wants to see it or not. And if someone is willing to partake in the act, he/she can do so and kill a nonhuman on the street. These events have a strong public visibility and count as tied to specifically religiously coloured traditions.

Some people argue that it would be more honest if everybody would have to witness the killing of nonhumans. Is the killing of nonhumans, when it is sanctioned if not encouraged by a religion still the more basic act of speciesism, as being something deeply engrained in our society, while the killing of nonhuman animals for generating “meat” carried out mostly by the butchers or in a slaughterhouse represents a modernism of speciesism, which needs to be deciphered in different terms?

Can: First of all, I never thought that the reason why most people are not vegan is epistemological. It is not because people do not know or are not aware that what they eat/kill is sentient animals. You know, real psychopaths kill their victims physically facing them. Eating those animals, which is beyond hunting for instance, is a similar act. It is more violent, more “manly”.

Clearly, the religion simply reflects this dictum. As there is no god, as the religions were not really sent by a so-called-god, the “holy” texts simply reflect the dominant paradigm.

I have never thought that prioritizing different reflections and practices of speciesism can be a useful idea. However, as they are different reflections, they must be fought against in different terms.

Here is another piece of thought. Understanding the religious practices, the fear behind them, the neediness that established them are important steps in really comprehending as to why people really engage in such horrible acts. You cannot dissolve such crimes without crashing the ideal of “heaven”, fear from unpredictable, etc. So, there is a “humane” and “social” reason as to why it is rational why people sacrifice (young girls, animals, etc.) under these assumptions. So, as long as you cannot smash these assumptions, the rest cannot follow.

2. Coming to terms with entrenched positions?

Ethical vegetarianism can look back on a long history and tradition, dating back before the big monotheistic religions (Islam, Christianity and Judaism). Yet, it’s these religions that take a leading role in our discourse today about the ethics of life and moral behaviour.

The ethical critique against the general society (in the secular sense) phrased by vegan Animal Rights proponents is normally met with different grades of either dismissal and rejection (speciesism) or a relative open-mindedness and willingness to reconsider the questions about the dramatically problematic constitution of society in regards to nonhumans and the natural environment.

With religious belief-systems it seem we only can expect an opening for fundamentally new conceptions to a lesser degree, since their dogmas and principles have already been fixed in their goals in the historical past of the religion – and this would also include the evaluation of live and the determination of hierarchies of beings/existence: fauna, flora and the earth overall stand below God and below the human and will have to be either protected or tyrannized. Also, religious practices and traditions (apart from the dogma) bind the believer to the belief-system, and often imply a view on animals and nature as objects that must be dominated, and that “Man” can handle with benevolence but also with ignorance, without having to fear any further social reproach.

Religions don’t list the destructivity towards our fellow beings and the environment as a top sin, but claim an entitlement of their positions as moral instances and ethical signposts in every question of life. Can this claim of the big world religions, to be able to hand out ethical answers about the entire purpose and meaning of life, be authoritative and/or helpful at all, in times in which society increasingly develops a sensitivity towards the questions of animal- and environmental ethics?

And, to what extent do we have to allow religiously driven positions to access and shape our own ethical debate? Equally: to what extent can we, as Animal Right proponents, simply dismiss them as mainly anthropocentric positions?

Can: Pragmatically, who can deny the dominance of religious vegetarianism inIndia? As you can see, sometimes religions provide some pragmatical benefit, but it is, in the case of Hinduism, entirely coincidental. However, the real problem with people avoiding killing animals for religious reasons, is simply because it is a limited point of view. Yet, most people, religious or not, have limited point of views in life. What I mean is if we politically ignore or refuse the religion as a sociological fact, we risk losing the majority in our political struggle. A revolutionary political struggle can have one of its foot on reality while keeping the other on the future.

Religion is a social phenomenon enabling ruling people. It has an economical side as well as a “moral” side. Thus, it is not difficult to see that the moral code helps the clergy to gain economical (sexual, governmental, etc.) benefits. Thus, we cannot even call it an honest morality.

Politically, there must be a balance, I have to grant. If most people are somewhat believers, and if those people are your target in the animal liberation movements, you have to formulate anti-religious perspectives delicately and directly. This is more or less an art.

After all, in the animal liberation movement, people like you are not my targets, as you are already there. What I am trying to change is the people who eat sausages every day and go to church every week. If I annoy them, it means that more animals will die due to my arrogance and wrong strategy. This is a cost I am not willing to take.

3. Is the apex of existence where “Man” is?

Animal Rights and the protection of natural spaces and habitats for all living beings make up other political, social and moral goals than the goals that the main big religions pursuit, which hold men, being made in the “image of God”, at center-stage. Contrary to this, our non-anthropocentric and anti-speciesist resistance movements phrase new questions about ‘hierarchies-of-being’. Is the questioning of the ‘hierarchies-of-being’ – namely that man can’t dominate the world acting as a “crown of the creation” – a necessary paradigm shift in our thinking, or would it be enough for humans to just pledge to take more responsibility for their co-world and fellow beings, even if that would still just take place with that sense of anthropocentric hubris?

Can: Perhaps now it is a good time to underline that an anthropocentric approach is not an evil in itself. After all veganism is also anthropocentric. People / anthro does not have to be an evil. Thus, it is neither philosophically nor practically useful for us to think or act as non-humans. We have to be humans to be vegan, in other words (forcing your pets to be vegan does not count, for obvious reasons). That said, I believe in a variety in such movements: some people can be more people oriented, some can be more animal/ecology oriented, which is fine. This is [also] relevant to a broader and perhaps more heterodox understanding of god. This is a delicate issue.

If people come up with a harmless notion of god, what would I think? In my opinion, harm is not the only evil associated with god, and removing the harm element does not immediately make it alright. But, in practice, it can help humans and non-human animals. As I said before, we have to be alert when it risks losing animals for political correctness.

I hope you can see the paradox here: animal rights activists sometimes (indirectly) sacrifice animals too, for political correctness. This is an important point to consider.

4. Borders / Barriers?

Religions speak of the indirect duties that we have towards nonhumans and the environment as the compassion and reverence that we ought to have with Gods other creation, and this would count as a human virtue that is favored by God. In the animal liberation movement we form equations that describe nonhumans and the environment in their independent and autonomous dignity, we seek to describe them in their own value, and in this way we postulate different foundations that serve their protection and their defence.

If we confront the animal advocacy- and the environmental movements (as non-anthropocentric ethical frameworks) specifically with the religious belief-systems, as two different social epistemologies that are defining ethics, does the departure from anthropocentrism (the demand of the Animal Rights and parts of the environmental movement) contain a potential of conflict at the moment in which religion (as an anthropocentric framework) takes up a larger space within a society?

In other words: Does religious dogma and authoritarian aspiration (as aspects of religious belief-systems), create restrictions when it comes to the ethical debates that consider anthropocentrism as a barrier in ethical thinking?

Can: No. First of all, the religious philosophy is a very rich and broad field. There are so many great minds who spent their lives writing amazing treatises trying morality with religion. Averroes and Abelard are the first mind coming to my mind. Religion is more complex than what most atheists think, it had many many more great minds than what most atheists think as well. Of course, not every believer is like Abelard (one wishes that), but religious morality can create a crazy and very smart philosophy, and it did.

Of course, in practice, 99.9% of believers consider religious dogma as a framework of restrictions and taboos. In such a world, rational reasoning becomes impossible.

5. A duty to protest?

Can we presuppose a fundamental moral right to create our own spaces for perspectives in freethinking, in which nonhuman animals and the environment are included into the ethical centre, even if this puts us into an antagonist position in particular to strongly religious people and religious communities?

And going a bit further: Can such a freedom in thinking about the human-animal and the human-environmental-relation, exclude us from a “societal contractualism”?

Can: No. Any presupposition in morality can lead to an authoritarianism. If you look at all fascist and dogmatic moralities, you can always find such an essentialist point: they may assume people are evil, or in contrast, they assume people are good in spirit. Clearly, this makes the philosophy easier to construct and digest, but, it simply adds yet another metaphysical assumption to the moral philosophy and risks essentialism. Human and non-human contractualism is a very dangerous field in my opinion, which takes veganism beyond its realistic boundaries and reconstructs it, well, religiously. Namely, I advocate an empiric, dynamic and interactive morality that does not need a foundational assumption or right, that includes the right to live.

6. If there is no golden mean?

If both: religion and animal liberation could be connected in specific points, would we not have to worry that Animal Rights/Liberation and environmental protection again would only have to be contingent/conditional ethical concerns, and that through making compromises or through the combination of animal rights ethics and anthropocentric religion, we would again miss out on the desired fundamental shift in thinking?

In other words: Is it a legitimate fear that in a society, that is ethically and morally strongly influenced by religion, no really new and just perspectives and politics “beyond Homo sapiens” can be evolved?

And connected to this: Does a strongly biologistically assigned field (that is: all the subjects that evolve around nonhuman animals and their natural habitat/the environment) even require a fundamental shift in its ethical, social and political variables?

Can: Well, evolution is a continuous phenomenon. I cannot imagine how the animal liberation movement will be in a hundred years. Even in the past century, we have read an insane amount of good and original ideas supplemented with exciting revolutionary practices. I don’t see any reason why we would consume all future possibilities.

7. A utopia?

Could an anthropocentric religion be stretched and modified so far in its interpretation, that for example, the human alone wouldn’t have a privilege of being an “image of God”, but that instead the entire world would represent a value that needs to be equally merited with the highest respect and reverence?  Would religion even be able to maintain its own meaning, in their ability to create a form of exclusive or/and exceptional identity, if it didn’t have these hierarchical views on worldly existence?

Can: Of course. Many different interpretation of each major religion (including Islam and Buddhism) has this taste. Heteredox Islam provides quite interesting and cool examples on this for instance where every organism is seen as a reflection of god’s good.

8. Physical instincts vs. abstract mind?

With nonhuman animals we define sentience as the decisive and main criterion (in the secular and scientific context) to qualify the meaning and value of their lives in the world. These qualifiers are solely based on the biological constitution of a being and on our understanding of the biological traits.

In the great Abrahamic religions the meaning of live depends on God’s decrees and on the concept of “sin”. The notions of right and wrong, value and non-value, are measured against the parameter “God”.

So, on the secular, scientific plane we have the biological sentience of animality on the one hand, and on the other hand we have an abstract human framework of mind and belief in the religious view of “Man”. Aren’t such separations between sentience and mind perhaps the very point, that keeps the hierarchies and distinctions, that we deal with in speciesism, arbitrarily alive? Isn’t “feeling” also “mind”? The concepts of “Nature” and “God” thus create a dichotomy between a devalued bodily physicality and a God that is the upvalued mind of non-earthen-being. Is the reductionary and narrow concept of “instinct”, i.e. that the animal body should exclusively be ascribed sentience, but not vital mind and spirit, not the necessary conclusion of a religious past, which had already pinned down nonhuman animals as the despised nature-physique of a mindless and non-intelligent earthenly existence?

Can: These are very difficult questions to answer in one paragraph. There are examples for each cases ranging from Spinoza to Averroes, from Abelard to Siddharta. However, the Cartesian approach to animals has been refuted countless times, thus the philosophy adopted a broader and more scientifically oriented approach.

Thank you so much for helping us out with these questions Can!

Can: Thank you for these difficult questions :)

All links have been last accessed on: Oct 12th 2014.

Note: The German translation of this interview will later be published in TIERAUTONOMIE.

Anti-Semitism in the Animal Liberation movement cloaked as pacifism

Anti-Semitism in the Animal Liberation movement cloaked as pacifism

An article on the website Resistance Ecology: Animal Liberation Against Israeli Occupation, We Stand With Palestine (08/13/2014) asks us to assume that all Israeli animal advocacy is in reality Israeli propaganda, and that only Israel (and the US) are culprits to blame for speciesism and ecocide. Really? For the sake of peace we are gonna buy that, the same old scapegoating that all evil is to blame on a (quote): “Zionist program”?

Someone quoted that article on a ethical vegan anti-racist facebook group – that’s how I came across it:

“Although there is a growing movement for animals in Israel, it is important to recognize that this cannot be separated from the colonial policies of the occupation. The dominant narrative is that the Palestinian people are unwilling or incapable of animal advocacy, that they are “primitive” and “barbaric” and thus deserving of occupation by the “green”, “humane”, and “progressive” Israeli state. The reality is that Israel is overwhelmingly destructive to animals, the land, and the people, and has displaced traditional systems and indigenous land to pave way for urban expansion, polluting industries, animal agriculture, road development, water scarcity, and the brutal oppression of the Palestinian people.”

You would think there would be critique of this kind of rhetoric, yet there wasn’t. So I really wonder why anti-semitism, when it’s in the context with the Gaza conflict, goes unnoticed even on anti-racist forums?

I wonder what people really think …

a.) What do they think about what led to the founding of Israel?

b.) Would someone really be willing to assume that all Israeli vegan AR activists are basically doing propaganda and not wonder him-/herself if she/he might hold a rather extreme prejudices against others?

c.) What about other wars now and in history, why are people making wars at all?

d.) This is a difficult question but: Why are we more critical when anything has something to do with the newer ethics of veganism and AR? Why do we tend to undermine such newer efforts when there is no predefined ethical space for them in society yet and additional conflicts occur?

Finally: Do we discuss other forms of atrocities and propaganda going on in the same finger-pointing fashion these days?

There is so much anti-semitism going on. I am really irritated about finding such a direction within the Animal Liberation movement. The mistakes of Israeli politics and the role of religious conflicts given in this context are one thing, but now saying that all vegans and AR people in Israel are having a fake agenda and would be only doing colonialist and settler politics, ignores historical backgrounds and, along with that, evokes bigotry.

Palestinian and Israeli activists have been working together in veg/AR. Look at how these new plants are being crushed amongst the big conflicts. To incite such a witch hunt on fellow AR activists, from anywhere, is unpacifist.

The Israeli group 269 posted on their FB page:

Today,the 27th of June 2014, 269Life Israel joined their Arab brothers and sisters in the Arab village of Shefa-‘Amr (شفاعمرو), to protest for animal liberation.

Many of the passersby were very supportive and took brochures to read further on the issues and hopefully it will bring about more change in the region.

Politics and nationalism means nothing, as long as the animals are suffering and dying by the billions, all over the world. We fight as one, unified and in coexistence.

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=661177933976915

 

 

Svarteskerm: Christian punk and veg*ism as being a constituent part of the love for the Creation

Elof from the Swedish Christian punkband Svarteskerm told us about their stance on the ethics of veganism and vegetarianism:

For us as a band inspired by the teaching of Jesus compassion is a big deal. How do we as humans (individually and as a community) grow and develop our compassion? Vegetarianism/veganism is one of the things that we believe is a way to grow your compassion. How can you respect the Creator If you abuse the creation?

Not all of our members are vegan/vegetarians but all is in a process to grow in compassion towards all of Gods creation.

For us it’s important not to judge people but to inspire and help them take steps towards a more compassionate lifestyle, if someone stops eating animal products completely and another starts to have vegetarian Mondays from listening to our music we’re happy to have helped. On every journey there’s a first step and a second and a 113th… We can only help people take a (small or big) step, not change them altogether.

With that being said, eating meat is both stupid, cruel, egocentric, harmful (to animals, creation and humans and yourself) so please stop doing it!

Svarteskerm – Maktlös

Connect via

Bandcamp: http://svarteskerm.bandcamp.com/
FB: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Svarteskerm/36537262026

Holy on their AR veganism, on belief systems and intersectional approaches


Holy vegan hardcore from Milan

Stefano, singer of Holy told us about animal rights, veganism, belief systems and intersectional approaches:

The four of us approached veganism in very different ways and time, I think that mostly what we share is that we all became vegans because we have a critical view of the world around us.

The biggest strength of the meat industry is the “don’t question” approach, consuming animals or animal product is something that in most cases is done without consciousness, no one ever wonders about how cows turned into steak, it’s not something considered questionable at all. Just part of the everyday normal life.

It happened in a certain moment of our life that we started questioning it, of course punk has had a huge influence in the process of making this choice. It’s because of punk that we perceived veganism for the first time as a political choice, and not only as some kind of fashionable hippy diet. When we started this band, we’ve put our opinion about animal rights in the spotlight, so we knew that there could have been misunderstandings about our band name’s origin and meaning.

During these years, more than once we had to make ourselves clear about the fact that we are not a religious band, but we are 4 rationalists/atheists. The way we practice veganism, as I said, is as a conscious lifestyle, and I can’t imagine anything further from this than religion.
It is a CHOICE, not an act of faith, and we’re committed to this not to save our souls, or empower our karmic whatever. We are vegan because we care both for human and for non-human life; we don’t see humanity as the center of the universe, nor the top of food chain.

I grew up in Italy, which has still a Catholic culture. This made me think how deep the roots of speciesism are. If you try to think about the idea that men are created in the image and likeness of God, you realize that this people is basically telling you “you are not an animal.” You’re something above all life, and below God only, and this is not only because this is written in the Old Testament, this is because the Catholic Church is still against evolution theory, and still supporting and spreading this shitty idea of creationism. This is a hetero-normative patriarchal Church of a god that created man out of clay (but not women of course, who are just a product of an extra rib.)

You have to know that in Italy the relations between church and state are still regulated by a 1929 agreement Between Mussolini and Pope Pio IX. Catholicism is still considered the main religion, is still a class in primary school (although it is optional), and we still have crucifixes in our classrooms. This means that the Christian imprinting is pretty effective on children at first, and also on the whole population.

Some eastern religions are known for being more “animal friendly” or even for preaching explicitly not to eat meat. Through the years these religions fascinated western people because for some reason they’re perceived, as more “human” and peaceful compared to monotheist religions.

What really depress me is not religious people themselves (as an Atheist, I stand for the freedom of questioning), but the fact that most of the people (to be honest 100% of the ones I’ve met) who approached vegetarianism through religion, seem to be incapable of connecting it to other aspects of life and politics. I mean, I don’t care if the Bhagavad Gita tells you to eat cheese and yoghurt, but how can you consider yourself and intelligent person if you stop eating meat to spare animal lives on one side, and on the other you are still contributing to death, consuming dairy products, because your god told you so? An act of faith is weak by definition: an individual makes choices and reinforces those choices, themselves, even thou it’s oblivious that the choice could be wrong.

This is one of the many ways of how veganism is intersectional to me, it’s both the result of many choices that lead me to what I am today and one of the foundations of what I will be tomorrow. As a thinking person, not just as a vegan.

Asleep

Give us today / our poisoned bread / our daily piece of trash / our dose of forgiveness / altars for those who torture / gallows for those who care / how long will the lambs / be so bloodthirsty? / the sleep of consciousness / built cities and gold paved streets / monuments to its own failure / to praise / to bless / to sleep / forever.

Album: Self Titled 12″ released by Hell Yes! (2012 release)

FREE DOWNLOAD: www.mediafire.com?a5bt7rzkz7rhnae

Restless

I’ve been told a better place awaits
I’ve been told we’ll lay and rest in peace
I’ve been told love lasts forever
Over our dead bodies
I’ve been told no more suffering
I’ve been told no more pain
I’ve been told but if I ask now nobody answers
And my knuckles hurt, my nails are worn
There’s no gold at the end of the road
I’ve been told but if I ask now
Nobody answers
Is anybody out there?
It’s only gravity
Pushing us down so fucking down
Until the ground will swallow us

Album: The Age Of Collapse (2013 release)

Live at Aladdin Jr in Pomona CA (USA) June 2013

Connect via:

Bandcamp: http://holyvegan.bandcamp.com/
FB: https://www.facebook.com/holyvegan

Orel Ofoi, singer of Paris-based vegan band FTA, on animal ethics and veganism as global ethics

Orel Ofoi is the singer of the Paris-based vegan band FTA. We asked Orel about how she sees animal- and vegan ethics and their contexts:

My idea of the ethic regarding the respect of animals and animal protection is really a global ethic: The respect for animals will have an impact on environmental protection and on the respect for human beings themselves.

In the Judeo-Christian religion, for instance, the majority of people read the biblical text with the notion that humans stand at the centre of the world, and that they have to dominate the earth and the animals, thus dismissing the image of the human as a shepherd: who is a friend and protector face to face, on the same ground with the environment and other lives … .

I think that we should see the relationship between humans and animals as a relation of “co-creatures”, based on respect, love and protection of the others.

The Earth is our mother, and the human is the most dangerous animal for her and her environment.

An individual awareness all over the world would be necessary to see a real evolution; one, by fighting those who’ve become cancerous to the planet, who murder us physically and alienate us on a daily basis; I speak about Monsanto for example or also the lobbyists (pharmaceutical or agro food, etc.).

I believe that it is necessary to support ethical producers and to not hesitate with sharing the message, because we need to stick together and to be united to see a real revolution and a real ethical evolution.

Standing Point. Intersectional vegan hardcore from Piracicaba, São Paulo, Brazil!

Standing Point. Intersectional vegan hardcore from Piracicaba, São Paulo, Brazil!

Standing Points voice Alex Peguinelli tells us on the intersectionality of ethical veganism:

Well, we are a third world band, so we see veganism and animal rights in a particular way. We have so many problems here in America Latina, that people don’t even think about the non-human animals, so being a vegan, straight edge and anarchist band here is very necessary.

Beyond the band we are involved with vegan anti-consumerist collectives and the struggle for public transport. We think that talking about veganism is talking about anti-consumerist politics, anti-capitalist issues and a lot of other things that are directly connected with the human and non-human animal liberation.

Our Album ‘Work. Consume. Die.’ talks about the inability to live a free life in a world that offers you only prisons.

Standing Point – Loveless

“People who talk about revolution and class struggle without referring explicitly to everyday life, without understanding what is subversive about love and hate, live and DIE, and what is to refuse their limitations, these people speak with a corpse between their teeth.”

Loveless

I threw myself from the highest cliffs
from the most beautiful mountains
I threw myself from the largest buildings

Always knowing that the ground
would be the (final) destination
That the fall would be the path

And the wind would lead life
like carrying pieces of paper

What can we do with the crumbs of theories?

(Normality can properly
Teach people how to live
And how to die)

What can we do with the crumbs of theories?

I tried to hold the air
I tried to hold in the air
I tried to leave the flight
a rough landing
inevitable and painful

And then life became
a scenographic city
if you pull to strong
the walls fall down

Now I see through
these falling walls
That love is the only reason of life
Love for struggle
Love for resistence
Love for freedom

No Compromise
No Excuses

Freedom
By any means necessary

(We turn again to the streets
But we have changed
And the streets mean something different now
We walked and these moments changed us
We saw buildings burning
We were touched by death
We loved and we felt alive
We saw the moon rising behind the barricades
We heard the echo of our voice in the voices of others

We do not walk today
asking the power for grant
They had never legislated peace or freedom
Now their armies cannot occupy our dreams
And their prisons cannot contain our number

This is our world
And these streets belong to us

We are the other,
We are the unemployed,
We are the hungry,
We are the homeless,
We are the thieves,
We are the saboteurs,
We are taking the streets,
We are destroying corporations,
We are taking control of the factories,
We are walking through the night carrying a heart on fire.

all of us,
we are everyone,
we are one.)

Standing Point – The Real Change

Connect through

Bandcamp: http://standingpoint.bandcamp.com
FB: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Standing-Point/240527789340168

We asked the vegan hardcore band Eat Me Fresh about veganism and intersectionality

We asked the vegan hardcore band Eat Me Fresh about veganism and intersectionality:

Just like we do think there is no place for racism in hardcore and in the world as it is, so we think there is no place for speciesism.

Being a vegan doesn’t mean that we just don’t eat meat and dairy products, it means a lot more like that we care about the planet we live on, and that we don’t want to waste it.

And the thing is, that people think that they are so clever, and they just don’t mind that we weren’t the first on this planet. We are as ”immigrants” as every species is, but every species became a member on this planet, in another time or on another place.

We don’t own the planet, the planet owns us. And as we behave to it, it will behave to us.

Sexism, Racism, Speciesism, Nationalism and much more of these evil things should be over.

THIS IS THE 21st CENTURY. PLEASE PEOPLE WAKE UP!

STAY FRESH.

https://www.facebook.com/eatmefresh

Eat Me Fresh, themselves being from the Czech Republic, have been touring Europe this year. They released their track INSIDE OF US this August 2013 on Bandcamp http://eatmefresh.bandcamp.com/.

The 19th century anti-vivisectionist Martin Eduard Staudinger

The 19th century anti-vivisectionist Martin Eduard Staudinger

I have mentioned the 19th/early 20th century anti-vivisection activist Martin Eduard Staudinger before, writing:

The grave site of Martin Eduard Staudinger, German Animal Rights advocate and anti-vivisectionist. His grave is on the Hauptfriedhof in Frankfurt am Main, Germany. He shares a grave site with his grandmother Dorothea Staudinger geb. Behrends.

On a memorial site for the people who lie resting on the Hauptfriedhof his grave is mentioned as: “146 Grabmal für Martin Eduard Staudinger (1842-1910), Kämpfer gegen die Vivisektion, Gewann C 59″ (http://www.bomas.de/buecher/brauchitsch-frankfurt.htm, accessed on the 24.08.13)

The inscription on his tombstone reads: Im unermüdlichen Kampfe gegen die Vivisektion und für die Rechte der Tiere = In the untiresome fight against vivisection and for the rights of animals. (http://ar-civet-cat.blogspot.de/2010/07/martin-eduard-staudinger-1842-1910.html)

However here is the exact inscription:

Dem unermüdlichen Streiter für
das Recht der Tiere, seine Freunde
im Kampfe gegen die Vivisektion

The untiresome fighter for the right of animals, his friends in the struggle against vivisection.

Below the text body, on page 5 and 6 are two photos of his gravesite.
However now we finally found some more info about him, of particular interest is one of his translation for the British National Anti-Vivisection Society in 1905.

Read more … PDF file (link opens in a new window)

Vegan Bands: we asked Mariana Cerovečki guitarist of the Brainfuckers about the importance of vegan intersectionalism

Why is intersectional ethical veganism is ‘the way to go’? What’s most important to you in ethical veganism?

We asked:

Mariana Cerovečki the guitarist of the Brainfuckers, vegan band from Zagreb, Croatia:

I think the most important part is to be active in all parts of oppression: veganism, animal rights, human rights. We cannot fight for a better world if we forget about the suffering of humans also. That is why we sing about animal rights but also about human rights (poverty, injustice, LGBTIQ rights, feminism, etc.). We want people to make the connection and fight in every movement where there is oppression and injustice. As for veganism, of course for us the most important part is animal freedom and abolition of animal exploitation, empty cages and nothing less.

Brainfuckers – The Torture

every day
brings another torture
let them stare again and again
it wont be long
until we all
face the same
reality

it wont be long
until we fade away

I can’t sleep no more
I used to dream of freedom and family
but who am I now?
another victim of reality

how does it feel
to be alive?

how does it feel
to be alive?

the terrible creatures arrive
the terrible creatures arrive
the terrible creatures arrive
to shut down another life

they say there is no meaning to my life
they say there is no meaning for my body

the terrible creatures arrive
the terrible creatures arrive
the terrible creatures arrive

and now we’re falling together in
death

I can’t sleep no more
I can’t sleep no more
I used to dream of freedom and family
but who am I now?
another victim of reality

how does it feel
to be alive?

how does it feel
to be alive?

the terrible creatures arrive
the terrible creatures arrive
the terrible creatures arrive
to shut down another life

Lyrics: Mariana Cerovečki. Performed by: Mato Kutlić, Staša Pintarić, Mariana Cerovečki and Martina Šaravanja.

Mariana Cerovečki, apart from being a vegan musician, is also a visual artist Animal Rights Art and anti-speciesist activist as the founder and head of Stop Specizmu, tweeting @marianavegan.

People like this: Camas Davis

People like this: https://twitter.com/CamasD prove that speciesism can indeed be compared to racism, sexism … as far as the fact is concerned that the problem lies 100% in the deranged psyche of the perpetrator. It’s a given pretext that is employed to make things look as if the targeted subject had features, characteristics or otherwise such an ‘essence of being’ that the very obvious injustice inflicted by the oppressor against a chosen victim would be thus justified (yeah really usually the gravest forms of injustice are brought about by some rational argument – rational in the view of the oppressor).

The reasons of course why a victim is chosen by a sadistic human group has political implications, each in own complex forms.

Nonhuman animals are picked as victims, in the case of a speciesist agenda, to seek dominance via the complete physical annihilation in order to make the own species “manifest” as the winner species, as the super-ordinate god-like form of existence, as an all knowing, an all controlling species, that can even declare “the other” to be “just a piece of meat” – which is but something digestible and palatable. (see for that: Eating, crushing, as a form of wielding power over other living beings … Elias Canetti in ‘Crowds and Power’ pp. 210-211.

This female person works for http://wusthofedge.com/ and she runs her own “meat collective” in the state of Oregon where she seeks to intellectually make speciesism look like a necessity for the human condition.

Instead of accepting human cultural (and thus ethical) re- and evolution, this person puts all her fantasy and physical eager into trying to get us where nobody except the sadist even came from: she literally takes carnism to a wannabe intellectualized level.

A sad horizon for anyone

She goes to “humane” farms, dares to put her sadist hand onto the nonhumans to “stroke” them, to later involve their tortured bodies into her group-driven-ritualistic abstractions of what is one of the most extreme forms of speceisism that I’ve seen to date.

The severity of speciesism in her case bases on an idea of promulgating flesh-handling in connection with the ideologization of objectifying nonhuman animals as a form of a supposed overall human ethical enlightenment. She is one of those speciesist ideologists that wish so hard to undermine the very ethics and morals that base on the pure and undeflected commonsense human form of reasoning.