Untapped Animal Rights expertise and Animal Rights as an immediate concern to human individuals
A fragment by Palang L. Arani-May. Download as a PDF.
We want and we need to empower people in terms of thinking and speaking about their positive relations to the ‘nonhuman animal world’, and our broad goal is to include a rights language for nonhumans into our democratic political systems and into legislation.
I think we are moving too far in two different opposing extremes as what regards the message that we are bringing out to our newfound allies in AR, and that is also the message that will form a basis for Animal Rights politics in the future.
We express specific alert and we give answers:
- On one hand we hand out leaflets and make demos confronting people about issues in the way of showing our protest and raising awareness to those who are no yet much familiar with AR issues and concerns.
- On the other hand we lead (or some lead) a relatively detached expert-based approach to thinking about and discussing Animal Rights related issues.
Where does that leave the thinking individual who is starting to make AR a top subject for themselves?
We could say that’s their problem, they can either join a group to demo, donate, sign important petitions or become an expert and hold a talk / write a paper, or do both, or … ?
Inasmuch able to reflect on the rights of your nonhuman “next”, as about your own rights …
What I would hope to see is that we encourage others to understand that they are already able enough to phrase their own positive theses and opinions about AR. We all have a lifetime experience that we can draw upon, we can think, we can speak. We can transport our knowledge and thoughts about AR related issues to other people as a form of activism.
If we want to break the speciesist divides, we must overcome separating immediate human rights concerns from an immediate relation and understanding that anybody is inasmuch able to have about the rights of his – nonhuman – next.
To defend rights we have to postulate them. But we can only postulate and claim due rights (to live, to be free, to not be labelled as property, etc.), if we learn to stand for Animal Rights just like we stand for our own Human Rights.
People do have reasonable and common sense answers and solution for problems such as: whose life is “more important” in a specific situation where you have to decide about life and death (i.e. both lives are as important), or is something morally wrong or right, or how can we change difficult societal constellations, or how can we find new approaches to deep-rooted problems, etc, etc, etc.
I believe we need to create rather a councilsystem that enables and empowers, to increase the potentiality in society to thus create a healthy revolution with the goal of embedding Animal Rights and extending and readjusting our “own” ethics.
Image: Oil on canvas painting by Farangis Yegane.