Abolitionist Approach Podcast: On the Misuse of “Abolition”

Dear Friends:

Here is a podcast that Anna and I did on the misuse of “Abolition”.

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If you are not vegan, please go vegan. Veganism is about nonviolence. First and foremost, it’s about nonviolence to other sentient beings. But it’s also about nonviolence to the earth and nonviolence to yourself.

If animals matter morally, veganism is not an option — it is a necessity. Anything that claims to be an animal rights movement must make clear that veganism is a moral imperative.

Embracing veganism as a moral imperative and advocating for veganism as a moral imperative are, along with caring for nonhuman refugees, the most important acts of activism that you can undertake.

The World is Vegan! If you want it.

Learn more about veganism at www.HowDoIGoVegan.com.

Gary L. Francione
Board of Governors Professor of Law, Rutgers University
Honorary Professor (Philosophy) University of East Anglia

©2018 Gary L. Francione

Play

Abolitionist Approach Podcast: On Anthony Bourdain, Veganism, and Bad Behavior by Some “Animal People”

Dear Friends:

Here is a podcast that Anna and I did on Anthony Bourdain.

I was sitting too far away from the device. The dogs were walking around the room. We will do better!

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If you are not vegan, please go vegan. Veganism is about nonviolence. First and foremost, it’s about nonviolence to other sentient beings. But it’s also about nonviolence to the earth and nonviolence to yourself.

If animals matter morally, veganism is not an option — it is a necessity. Anything that claims to be an animal rights movement must make clear that veganism is a moral imperative.

Embracing veganism as a moral imperative and advocating for veganism as a moral imperative are, along with caring for nonhuman refugees, the most important acts of activism that you can undertake.

The World is Vegan! If you want it.

Learn more about veganism at www.HowDoIGoVegan.com.

Gary L. Francione
Board of Governors Professor of Law, Rutgers University
Honorary Professor (Philosophy) University of East Anglia

©2018 Gary L. Francione

Play

A Short Essay on the Meaning of “New Welfarism”

Many of those who are new to thinking about animal ethics get very upset when I say that a group or individual is “new welfarist.” Part of the problem is that these people do not know the history of the animal movement or understand the various ideologies involved. Indeed, many of them reject out of hand any need for theory. But that is silly and most ill-advised. One needs a theory to understand what action to take. Action without theory is, at best, chaotic and confused. And, in a culture where animal exploitation is both pervasive and accepted, action in the absence of theory almost always reinforces the prevailing paradigm.

The classical welfarist position is that animal use is morally acceptable as long as we seek to treat animals in a “humane” manner. The focus of the classical welfare movement is on welfare reforms. Classical welfarists also traditionally promoted certain single-issue campaigns, such as the campaign against fur.

In the 1990s, many groups that claimed to reject classical welfarism–the so-called “animal rights” groups that arose in the 1980s–decided to promote the same old donation-generating welfarist campaigns and single-issue campaigns but claimed that they were doing so as a means to the end of achieving “animal rights.” I identified that position as “new welfarism” and argued that it was morally problematic because it was speciesist. We would never promote “humane [fill in the blank with any sort of fundamental human rights violation]” as a supposed means of achieving recognition of human rights. Welfare campaigns were also problematic from a practical point of view: not only would they not lead to abolishing animal use, they would actually make people more comfortable about continuing to exploit nonhuman animals. People who think that exploitation has been made more “humane” feel better about, and are encouraged to continue, participating in animal exploitation. Moreover, because animals are chattel property, any welfare reforms are likely to be very minor, make animal exploitation more economically efficient, and be the sorts of things that rational institutional exploiters would adopt anyway.

Single-issue campaigns are problematic because, by targeting a particular animal use, particularly in the absence of a clear, unequivocal, and consistent condemnation of all animal use, they necessarily promote the idea that some forms of exploitation are worse than others and, by implication, that other forms of exploitation are morally better or morally acceptable. Single-issue campaigns substitute one form of exploitation for another. A good example of the problem is the anti-fur campaign, which has been going on for decades now and, in addition to being relentlessly sexist and misogynistic, has conveyed the notion that fur is worse than, say, wool. It is not uncommon to see people at anti-fur demos wearing wool. People who protest foie gras eat steak, chicken, and fish, and think that they are acting in a morally better way.

I wrote about these topics in the 1990s in my books, Animals, Property, and the Law (1995), and Rain Without Thunder: The Ideology of the Animal Rights Movement (1996). More recently, the book I co-authored with Anna Charlton, Animal Rights: The Abolitionist Approach 2015, discusses these issues.

More recently, some who claim to be “Abolitionist” have gotten upset when I say that their position or the position of the group in which they are involved, is “new welfarist.” They reply: “But I don’t promote welfare reforms.” That may be true in one sense, but statements like:

* “I am an Abolitionist and do not promote welfare reform myself but I don’t want to be divisive and I don’t criticize groups that promote welfare reform,” or
* “I don’t promote welfare reform but I seek to build bridges with the groups that promote welfare reform,” or
* “I don’t promote the consumption of cage-free eggs but I have respect for those who do because I think they sincerely want all egg consumption to end”
* “I don’t promote welfare reforms but I work with groups that do and we do projects together”

are new welfarist positions because these statements acknowledge the validity of welfare reform as a supposed means toward Abolition. These positions promote animal exploitation.

If someone says, “I am opposed to all animal use but I ask people to sign petitions to companies so that they stop ‘abusive’ practices and comply with various regulations,” that is new welfarist. Campaigns against “abusive” practices and demands to comply with regulations send a very clear message: animal use can be morally acceptable under the right circumstances irrespective of what the speaker intends.

Advocates who promote single-issue campaigns are promoting new welfarism because they are necessarily substituting one form of exploitation for another. Moreover, many single-issue campaigns rely on various sorts of human discrimination: sexism, racism, xenophobia, and ethnocentrism.

Finally, many people do not understand that Abolitionism, at least as I have developed that idea, involves Six Principles: Every sentient being has a right not to be used as property (Principle 1); Abolitionists should never promote welfare reform campaigns or single-issue campaigns (Principle 2); Abolitionists should promote veganism as a moral imperative (Principle 3); Sentience and no other cognitive characteristic is necessary to have the moral right not to be used exclusively as a resource (Principle 4); Abolitionists should reject all forms of discrimination–human and nonhuman (Principle 5); and Abolitionists should reject violence and promote nonviolence (Principle 6).

I understand that we live in a time of video games and Twitter, and many people cannot be bothered to learn anything. They don’t care about what has happened in the past. They don’t care about ideology. They think that reading is a waste of time. They just want to be “activists.” Indeed, they often say things like, “You are putting philosophy ahead of action.” Anyone who would say such a thing knows nothing about how social movements function and is more interested in entertainment than in social change. We live in a world of limited time and resources. One cannot identify what actions one should choose in the absence of a theory that identifies those actions that are consistent with the moral basis of the movement.

It is terribly troubling that so many “animal advocates” know nothing about the history of the movement. All I can say is to repeat what philosopher George Santayana said: “Those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”

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If you are not vegan, please go vegan. Veganism is about nonviolence. First and foremost, it’s about nonviolence to other sentient beings. But it’s also about nonviolence to the earth and nonviolence to yourself.

If animals matter morally, veganism is not an option — it is a necessity. Anything that claims to be an animal rights movement must make clear that veganism is a moral imperative.

Embracing veganism as a moral imperative and advocating for veganism as a moral imperative are, along with caring for nonhuman refugees, the most important acts of activism that you can undertake.

The World is Vegan! If you want it.

Learn more about veganism at www.HowDoIGoVegan.com.

Gary L. Francione
Board of Governors Professor of Law, Rutgers University
Honorary Professor (Philosophy) University of East Anglia

©2018 Gary L. Francione

The Death of Activism and the Rise of Branding Spectacle in Animal Advocacy

The traditional animal welfare groups never bothered much with activism. These were charities that just wanted donations.

Then, in the 1980s, the “animal rights” movement arrived in the U.S. Although the movement started off with a focus on grassroots activism, the movement morphed into the new welfarist movement–a conglomeration of corporate charities that talked about abolition as the end goal but promoted the same donation-raising welfare reform campaigns and single-issue campaigns as a supposed means to that end. The primary form of “activism” became writing a check to support these campaigns. If individuals sought any input into the direction of the movement or, perish the thought, challenged it in any way, they were told to stop being “divisive.” They were told that we needed “movement unity.” That was all code for: “shut up and make a donation.”

And now, we have the new groups that proclaim that they are all about “activism.” And what does that mean? It means “instant activism” You don’t have to learn anything. You don’t have to understand anything about animal rights theory, what abolition means, or about why veganism is a moral imperative. You don’t even have to be a vegan. You just have to show up at events and stand silently, wearing a mask and holding a laptop, or screaming at people in restaurants, or delaying the arrival of truck to the slaughterhouse so that you can “bear witness.” These “activist” groups even promote the new welfarist corporate charities in various ways. “Activism” has become: “show up and help us do events that brand us.” “Activism” is all about branding, social events, and entertainment.

And we have a “new” brand of “leader”: celebrity “activists” with Patreon accounts who want you to provide them with a living so that they can have a career in “activism.” You know, just like the executives over at the corporate charities.

Have some people gone vegan as a result of the “activist” groups and Patreon-funded “leaders”? I have no doubt some have. But that is not the point. Some people have gone vegan as a result of the new welfarist groups and their “happy exploitation” campaigns. The point is that if the people who are involved in these “activist” and new welfarist groups actually educated themselves and got involved in clear, unequivocal abolitionist vegan advocacy, we’d be getting many more people to go vegan. And we would have a movement that presented veganism as something that people did not find strange and alienating.

Showing violent videos is not new. Animal people have been doing that for years. Indeed, many of the new “activists” do not seem to know that during the 1990s, there was a campaign to show violent videos in public using a kiosk. The general problem with violent videos is that, in a society in which animal use is taken as a given, these videos have the overall effect of getting people to support things like CCTC cameras in slaughterhouses, “undercover” investigations of factory farms, and all of the things that are part and parcel of the “happy exploitation” movement. That is precisely why the large corporate charities also use the violent imagery–it is useful in getting support for their new welfarist campaigns. The new “activists” are getting their video footage from the new welfarist corporate charities. Think about that for a second.

We have “activists” stopping trucks on the way to the slaughterhouse so that “activists” can “bear witness.” Animals en route to slaughter are terrified. Stopping a truck so that “activists” can stick cameras, petting hands, or crying faces in front of the animals may create a spectacle but it does nothing for the animals. Indeed, to prolong their distress is to harm them.

In 1989, PETA started with the “I’d Rather Go Naked Than Wear Fur Campaign.” In many ways, that was the beginning of moving activism away from substance and in the direction of a branding spectacle. And we are now reaching a stage where “activism” is branding spectacle. “Activism” is more about events that involve a formula that is identified with one group or another and that serve to reinforce a brand. “Activism” is more about providing some “experience” for people than it is changing the paradigm in which nonhuman animals are things.

Do you want a vegan world? You need to do three things: (1) you need to be vegan; (2) you need to educate yourself about animal rights and abolition, and about why veganism is a moral imperative; and (3) you need to become a creative and nonviolent educator in your community. We need a grassroots movement where each of us is a “leader” who incorporates our veganism into every aspect of our daily lives. And our educational efforts should always focus proceed in a context that clearly promotes nonviolence and rejects human discrimination. We should seek to become a new, and more inclusive, peace movement.

We need to get away from the idea of “activism” as spectacle that brands particular groups and the development of yet another group of Patreon-funded careerist “leaders.” We need to resurrect the grassroots movement that started in 1980 but that was replaced by corporate charities and street theater.

Real activism is hard work. But it is the only way things will change. There is a great deal of current interest in veganism. Let’s take advantage of that interest in funnel it in a productive direction.

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If you are not vegan, please go vegan. Veganism is about nonviolence. First and foremost, it’s about nonviolence to other sentient beings. But it’s also about nonviolence to the earth and nonviolence to yourself. If animals matter morally, veganism is not an option — it is a necessity. Anything that claims to be an animal rights movement must make clear that veganism is a moral imperative. Embracing veganism as a moral imperative and advocating for veganism as a moral imperative are, along with caring for nonhuman refugees, the most important acts of activism that you can undertake.

If you are already vegan, educate yourself so that you can go out and educate others.

The World is Vegan! If you want it.

Learn more about veganism at www.HowDoIGoVegan.com.

Gary L. Francione
Board of Governors Professor of Law, Rutgers University
Honorary Professor (Philosophy) University of East Anglia

©2018 Gary L. Francione

Animal Rights and “Pets”

Oxford University Press published a collection of essays by philosophers, Pets and People: The Ethics of Our Relationships with Companion Animals. I reviewed the book for the Journal of Value Inquiry. You can find my review here.

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If you are not vegan, please go vegan. Veganism is about nonviolence. First and foremost, it’s about nonviolence to other sentient beings. But it’s also about nonviolence to the earth and nonviolence to yourself.

If animals matter morally, veganism is not an option — it is a necessity. Anything that claims to be an animal rights movement must make clear that veganism is a moral imperative.

Embracing veganism as a moral imperative and advocating for veganism as a moral imperative are, along with caring for nonhuman refugees, the most important acts of activism that you can undertake.

The World is Vegan! If you want it.

Learn more about veganism at www.HowDoIGoVegan.com.

Gary L. Francione
Board of Governors Professor of Law, Rutgers University
Honorary Professor (Philosophy) University of East Anglia

©2018 Gary L. Francione

Tom Regan and the Animal Rights Movement That Once Was

Between the Species, an online journal for the study of philosophy and animals, did an In Memoriam issue focused Tom Regan, who passed away February 20917.

Here is the lead essay, Reflections of Tom Regan and the Animal Rights Movement That Once Was, which I was invited to contribute.

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If you are not vegan, please go vegan. Veganism is about nonviolence. First and foremost, it’s about nonviolence to other sentient beings. But it’s also about nonviolence to the earth and nonviolence to yourself.

If animals matter morally, veganism is not an option — it is a necessity. Anything that claims to be an animal rights movement must make clear that veganism is a moral imperative.

Embracing veganism as a moral imperative and advocating for veganism as a moral imperative are, along with caring for nonhuman refugees, the most important acts of activism that you can undertake.

The World is Vegan! If you want it.

Learn more about veganism at www.HowDoIGoVegan.com.

Gary L. Francione
Board of Governors Professor of Law, Rutgers University
Honorary Professor (Philosophy) University of East Anglia

©2018 Gary L. Francione

Adventures in Confused Thinking About Sexism

Someone sent this PETA poster and PETA’s reply to the claim that this sort of thing commodifies women. According to PETA, it is “misogynist” to claim that this poster commodifies women because it fails to respect the decision that women make to participate in making a poster like this.

To call that confused reasoning on PETA’s part is the nicest thing I can say about it.

In a patriarchal society (which this undoubtedly is), woman are–by definition–viewed as second-class citizens whose primary function is to provide sexual services. Although that is changing to some degree, anyone who thinks that is not still the (very) dominant paradigm is dreaming. To say that this poster does not represent self-commodification is absurd. No one is questioning whether women are “free” to do this. Of course they are “free” to do so. Patriarchy *encourages* women to self-commodify. In a patriarchal society, the choices of women are shaped by sexist norms. That’s the problem.

This sort of poster blatantly and transparently encourages people to think of women as “meat.” That is wrong in itself–and it will *never* lead to our stopping people from thinking of nonhumans as “meat.” In a patriarchal society, commodification and self-commodification are inevitable. But using the wrong of sexism (supposedly) to educate about speciesism is something we should not do.

In order to see the absurdity of PETA’s position, consider this analogy. This is a racist society. There can be no doubt of that. Actors of color are very often playing stereotype parts that reinforce the racist narrative that people of color routinely engage in criminal and violent actions. I saw a black actor interviewed who was asked why he always played a drug pusher or a pimp. His response was to the effect that those are the roles he is offered. Do these actors play these parts “voluntarily”? Sure.They get paid a lot of money. But their choices are limited by racism. Do these depictions reinforce racist stereotypes? Of course. Is it “racist” to point this out? Of course not. We have an obligation to call out this sort of thing.

The same reasoning applies in the sexism context.

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If you are not vegan, please go vegan. Veganism is about nonviolence. First and foremost, it’s about nonviolence to other sentient beings. But it’s also about nonviolence to the earth and nonviolence to yourself.

If animals matter morally, veganism is not an option — it is a necessity. Anything that claims to be an animal rights movement must make clear that veganism is a moral imperative.

Embracing veganism as a moral imperative and advocating for veganism as a moral imperative are, along with caring for nonhuman refugees, the most important acts of activism that you can undertake.

Never use racism, sexism, or any form of discrimination to promote animal rights. All forms of discrimination are morally wrong.

The World is Vegan! If you want it.

Learn more about veganism at www.HowDoIGoVegan.com.

Gary L. Francione
Board of Governors Professor of Law, Rutgers University
Honorary Professor (Philosophy) University of East Anglia

©2018 Gary L. Francione

Guest Essay on Ecorazzi.com: Veganism as a Matter of Justice: A Short Reply to the Welfarists

Here is a Guest Essay I did for vegan site, Ecorazzi.com:

Veganism as a Matter of Justice: A Short Reply to the Welfarists

When I promote the position that veganism is a moral imperative (veganism is something we are morally obligated to do) and that justice requires that we be vegan, some welfarists respond: “But you buy your vegan foods at a store that sells animal products and, therefore, you are being unjust so you can’t take the position that justice requires veganism.”

The idea here is that, by buying vegan food in the supermarket and thereby giving money to an animal exploiter, I am no different from those who consume “compassionately” and choose cage-free eggs or crate-free pork, or do “meatless Monday” or “vegan before 6,” or who cheat and eat animal foods “now and then” or who eat them all the time but eat “just a little.” The welfarists claim that I have no business saying that veganism is a matter of justice or is a moral imperative because I am being unjust and I am not recognizing veganism as an obligation.

But that argument does not work. It has no limiting principle and leads to an absurd conclusion.

All money is dirty. So even if I buy my vegan food in a vegan store and not in a general supermarket, if that store employs people who are not vegan, or if the vegan store gets deliveries from people who deliver animal products to other stores, or if the vegan foods sold in the vegan store are grown or produced by non-vegan farmers or producers, or by vegan farmers and vegan producers who employ non-vegan workers, I am, following the reasoning of the welfarists, supporting exploitation.

Therefore, the welfarists are committed to the position that until we have a vegan world, we can have no obligation to go vegan because as long as we don’t have a vegan world, no matter what we do, we will be giving money to animal exploiters.

But that is clearly absurd.

The welfarist position is no different from saying that we cannot promote the idea that sexism or racism is unjust if we patronize a business that is owned by people who are sexist or racist. Given that many businesses are owned by corporations, and corporations are owned by shareholders, and given the level of sexism and racism in the population, that means that 99.99% of the time, when we shop, we are patronizing a business that is owned by sexists or racists. And even if that business is not owned by racists or sexists, there are racists and sexists who have some connection to that business into whose pockets our money is going. Therefore, we cannot say that sexism or racism is unjust because we are always putting money in the pockets of racists or sexists somewhere along the way.

But no one would say that we should not talk about equality as a moral imperative because we have not yet achieved equality. Most people would see the complete absurdity of that position. But “animal people” promote this absurd position when it comes to animals. How very speciesist.

The welfarists also claim that we cannot be “100% vegan” because there are animal products in plastics, road surfaces, tires, and many other things with which we cannot avoid being in contact. Therefore, we cannot insist on veganism as a moral imperative and as a principle of justice because there is no difference between a person who has a cell phone that is made of plastic and contains some animal by-product, and a person who eats a bit of cheese, or free-range eggs, or has chicken stock in otherwise vegetable soup, etc.

Again, this position is absurd.

First of all, being vegan means not eating, wearing, or using animal products where practicable—where one has a meaningful choice. We can decide what to eat and wear, or what products to use. Justice requires that we not choose to consume things that contain the body parts of exploited persons—human or nonhuman—whenever we do have a choice. We do not have a choice about what is in road surfaces or how plastics, which are used for almost everything that exists, are made.

Second, the reason that there are animal by-products in everything is that we kill over a trillion animals worldwide on an annual basis. The by-products of slaughterhouses are cheap and readily available. And that will continue as long as we continue to consume animal products.

Third, we would never accept such an argument in the human context. Consider the following: in a racist and sexist society, white people and men benefit because racism and sexism effectively transfers wealth (money, job opportunities, etc.) away from the people who are discriminated against and to those who are in the classes or groups that are privileged. If we applied the welfarist argument to this context, we would have to conclude that white people cannot argue that racism is unjust because privileged white people have no choice but to benefit from racism (just as vegans have no choice but to use the roads provided). We would have to conclude that men cannot take the position that sexism and misogyny are unjust because men benefit from sexism and misogyny just by virtue of being men (just as vegans come into contact with plastics that are in everything).

But no one would take that position in the human context.

It gets worse. The welfarists claim that, because we cannot avoid animal by-products in everything around us, we cannot claim that it is unjust to choose to consume those products when there is a choice. The welfarist position is exactly like saying that, because white people benefit from racism, there is no difference between the white person who opposes racism and the white person who engages in “just a little” racist conduct. The welfarist position is exactly like saying that, because men benefit from sexism even when they oppose it, there is no difference between the man who opposes sexism and the man who actually assaults women now and then.

Again, no one would take these positions in the human context.

We should reject the welfarist position for the blatant speciesism it so clearly is.

If you are not vegan, please go vegan. It is a matter of a moral imperative. It is a matter of justice.

(Ecorzzi.com essay ends here.)

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If you are not vegan, please go vegan. Veganism is about nonviolence. First and foremost, it’s about nonviolence to other sentient beings. But it’s also about nonviolence to the earth and nonviolence to yourself.

If animals matter morally, veganism is not an option — it is a necessity. Anything that claims to be an animal rights movement must make clear that veganism is a moral imperative.

Embracing veganism as a moral imperative and advocating for veganism as a moral imperative are, along with caring for nonhuman refugees, the most important acts of activism that you can undertake.

The World is Vegan! If you want it.

Learn more about veganism at www.HowDoIGoVegan.com.

Gary L. Francione
Board of Governors Professor of Law, Rutgers University
Honorary Professor (Philosophy) University of East Anglia

©2018 Gary L. Francione

Two New Essays on Open Democracy

We have two new essays on the progressive and highly-respected Open Democracy site:

Why We Must Respect the Rights of All Sentient Animals

It’s Time to Consider the Meaning of ‘Animal Welfare’

These essays appear on the Transformation page of the Open Democracy site.

We hope that you enjoy these essays and that you will share them with anyone who cares about nonhuman animals.

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If you are not vegan, please go vegan. Veganism is about nonviolence. First and foremost, it’s about nonviolence to other sentient beings. But it’s also about nonviolence to the earth and nonviolence to yourself.

If animals matter morally, veganism is not an option — it is a necessity. Anything that claims to be an animal rights movement must make clear that veganism is a moral imperative.

Embracing veganism as a moral imperative and advocating for veganism as a moral imperative are, along with caring for nonhuman refugees, the most important acts of activism that you can undertake.

The World is Vegan! If you want it.

Learn more about veganism at www.HowDoIGoVegan.com.

Gary L. Francione
Board of Governors Professor of Law, Rutgers University
Honorary Professor (Philosophy) University of East Anglia

Anna E. Charlton
Adjunct Professor of Law, Rutgers University

©2018 Gary L. Francione & Anna E. Charlton

NEW BOOK: ADVOCATE FOR ANIMALS! AN ABOLITIONIST VEGAN HANDBOOK

Just out! Available in paperback and Kindle at Amazon.com:

This book is a call to action.

Since the beginning of time, there have been—in total—about 110 billion humans who have lived and died. We kill more nonhuman animals than that every single year. Think about that for a second. Our exploitation of nonhumans represents violence on a scale that is unparalleled. The largest number of animals we kill is for food—about 60 billion land animals and at least one trillion sea animals killed annually. And there are many billions more killed every year for various other reasons, including biomedical research, entertainment, and sport.

One thing is crystal clear and undisputable: this horrible and pervasive animal exploitation is not going to end anytime soon.

For the past two hundred years, animal advocacy has focused on treatment. That is, animal advocates have campaigned to get supposedly more “humane” treatment standards, or they have focused on things like the use of animals for fur. But that approach has been a failure and has only made people feel more comfortable about continuing to exploit animals.

The Abolitionist movement concerning animals, which arose in the 1990s, takes the position that the problem is not treatment but use. It’s not a matter of making exploitation more “humane.” It’s not a matter of targeting fur, which is no different from wool or leather. It’s a matter of abolishing animal exploitation.

What does this Abolitionist movement involve?

Abolition involves embracing an animal rights position and maintaining that, just as we reject the chattel slavery of humans, we must reject the status of nonhuman animals as our property. Only then can they be recognized as nonhuman persons. Abolition involves a clear and explicit rejection of the animal welfare position—the idea that it is morally acceptable to use animals as long as we treat them in a “humane” way.

And in order to abolish animal exploitation as a social matter, we must abolish animal exploitation from our individual lives. That means that, if we believe that animals matter morally, we must go vegan. We must stop eating, wearing, or using animals and animal products to the extent practicable. And we must engage in creative, nonviolent vegan advocacy in order to convince others to go vegan.

In Advocate for Animals! – An Abolitionist Vegan Handbook, Gary Francione and Anna Charlton, two of the original pioneers of this Abolitionist movement, provide a practical guide about how you can become an effective voice in this most important movement for justice. They give you all sorts of ideas of how to advocate, and provide many examples of actual discussions so that you can see the sorts of approaches you can use in your own discussions with others.