Animal Rights Collective Blog


Volunteer Day & Tour @ Poplar Spring Animal Sanctuary by christine

Join us and Compassion for Animals as we volunteer to help care for the rescued animals at Poplar Spring Animal Sanctuary.

VOLUNTEER…ENJOY A PICNIC LUNCH…MEET THE ANIMALS…

or all of the above!

Sunday August 28, 2011

Compassion for Animals is organizing a combination “volunteer day” and guided tour at Poplar Spring Animal Sanctuary. Please sign up for either event or both by RSVPing to info@compassion4animals.org.

Volunteering starts at 9am, and the tour starts at 1pm; there will be a lunch break in the middle. The tour can accommodate up to 40 people—bring your friends! Details below.

We’re especially interested in attracting people who have never been to this wonderful, peaceful place—but anyone can sign up!

Poplar Spring is a 400-acre oasis near Poolesville, Maryland, about 45 minutes from DC. The residents of Poplar Spring are 200 “farm animals” rescued from abuse, neglect, abandonment, and cruelty. Their stories are often heartbreaking, but their resilience and recovery—and the compassion they’ve received from caring humans—is inspiring.

Come meet the chickens, turkeys, cows, pigs, goats, sheep, rabbits, and other animals who live freely at Poplar Spring. You may be amazed at some of their personalities.

Volunteers:

There are lots of chores to be done at the sanctuary, and on the weekends they’re done by volunteers. We’ll spread hay, clean barns, refill water bowls, brush horses, and—yes—shovel poop. It usually takes about three hours to get all the tasks done.

Volunteers may want to bring an extra pair of shoes and socks, and maybe an extra shirt, as well as a pair of work or gardening gloves. You may also want to bring some water, although you can buy bottled water at the sanctuary.

Although we’ve helped out at Poplar Spring for years and have never seen any accidents, and you’ll be led by experienced, safety-conscious sanctuary directors and volunteers, the sanctuary does ask that first-time volunteers fill out this volunteer application form AND waiver form (both are necessary); you can either mail them back to Poplar Spring or bring them with you when you show up. The work is not particularly strenuous; it is more like house-cleaning than aerobics. Volunteers on any given day may range from teenagers to those drawing Social Security; you can participate at your own pace. The environment at Poplar Spring is very friendly and supportive. Volunteers under 16 years old must be accompanied by an adult.

You’ll likely get a chance to rub a pig’s belly, hold a chicken, and pet turkeys, goats, and other animals. Very cool stuff. But please do so under supervision, as the long-time volunteers and sanctuary directors will have useful tips and will know which animals like (or do not like) that sort of interaction. If you’ll also be taking the tour, there will also be opportunities to interact with the animals then.

Note: We have to limit the number of volunteers for sanctuary chores to about 10, so it’s important that you RSVP.

Lunch:

People volunteering or taking the tour are invited to bring a vegan (no animal ingredients) picnic lunch. We’ll eat lunch from the time we finish the morning chores until 1 pm. Compassion for Animals will bring some vegan food to share, including desserts. There are picnic tables, as well as wash-up facilities and a place to buy water and iced tea on the grounds. So here’s the schedule:

9 AM-noon — Sanctuary Cleanup

Noon-1 PM — Lunch

1-2PM — Guided Tour

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Poplar Spring Animal Sanctuary

15200 Mt. Nebo Rd.

Poolesville, Maryland 20837

[map and directions]

When you arrive, open the gate to drive in, then close the gate behind you. Drive about a mile along the gravel road until you get near the end and can see some of the buildings on the property. We’ll gather there. You can park your vehicle on the grass by the side of the road.

We can probably arrange some carpooling. Let us know if that’s something you’d be interested in.

RSVP: info@compassion4animals.org

We hope to see you there! 


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Field Trip! ARC @ Poplar Springs by christine

On Sunday April 10th, members of ARC joined Compassion for Animals on their biannual tour of Poplar Spring Animal Sanctuary. Poplar Spring is a non-profit refuge for farm animals and wildlife on 400 acres in Poolesville, Maryland. All of the animals have been rescued from abhorrent conditions that denied even their most basic rights, and where once their only value was in the weight of their slaughtered flesh. Thanks to Poplar Springs and their own tenacious spirits, they now get to live out their lives in peace. Their charming personalities begin to shine through as they are treated with dignity and respect, and it always amazes me that they can learn to trust humans once again.

Here’s a photo essay of our tour:

Piles o’ Piggies!

Due to genetic manipulation to meet the demands of the animal agriculture business, pigs have been “designed” to grow too fast too quickly. Their bodies cannot keep up and this inevitably causes arthritis and joint problems. We watched as one piggie had a very difficult time getting around, even despite veterinary care and medication.

Don’t interrupt! Deep conversations…

Founder and Director Terry, tells us their incredible stories…

Heidi outsmarted the thieves! She has escaped death, quite a few times, including jumping out of a barn window…you tell ’em honey!

Wynne gets cow smooches!

The Worldwide Vegan Bake Sale Ambassadors

Cuddle Fest

After meowing all morning and then frantically chasing a guinea hen as a result of a love triangle turned sour, this peacock decided to finally see what these humans were about.

Goats!

Malcolm and Wynne

Malcolm and Gabby

For the Animals!

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Also, make sure you check out Gabby’s incredible photos HERE!



Ringling Bros. Circus Protest Outreach by christine

Not in Our Name! Ringling Circus Protest Outreach

Last Saturday, ARC rockers Gabby and Wynne used their creativity to help fight for the animals by painting this cube outside of Southside dining on the GMU Fairfax campus. Ah-mazing work, thanks liberantionistas!

Animals belong in their native habitats, not in the circus!

In order for animals to perform circus tricks, they are beaten with metal bull hooks, shocked with electrical devices, tied down with ropes, and whipped. They are either stolen from their wild habitats, or they are bred in captivity and removed from their mothers before their first birthday. These animals spend their lives in chains and travel eleven months of the year, through weather conditions considerably different from their native habitats.

These animals are caged, routinely beaten to incentivize their performance of tricks, and suffer both mentally and physically during their captivity in the circus. Their performances do not educate children about animals. Rather, it sends a message that animal abuse and dominion is acceptable.

FACTS:

– Ringling was cited in 2010 by the USDA for failure to maintain proper vet care and failure to control animals
– 55 of Ringling’s 63 elephants were poached from the wild
– Ringling boasts 27 elephant DEATHS since 1992!

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Please come and lend your voice to these animals!

Each protest will be about one hour long, signs and leaflets provided. Meet at the West entrance of the Patriot Center.

** PROTEST SCHEDULE (ROUND 1) **
Thurs, April 14 – 6pm / Vigil 9pm
Fri, April 15 – 6:30pm / Vigil 9:30pm
Sat, April 16 – 10:30am, 2:30pm, 6:30pm / Vigil 9:30pm
Sun, April 17 – Noon, 4pm / Vigil 7pm

** PROTEST SCHEDULE (ROUND 2) **
Tues, April 19 – Vigil 9pm
Wed, April 20 – Vigil 9pm
Fri, April 22 – 6:30pm / Vigil 9:30pm
Sat, April 23 – 10:30am, 2:30pm, 6:30pm / Vigil 9:30pm
Sun, April 24 – Noon, 4pm / Vigil 7pm



“Green” Eggs and Ham? by christine

For those of you that missed his presentation at the UPC Conference, Vasile Stanescu blew more than a few peoples’ minds as he presented his academic discourse on the myths of the locavore movement.

“The essay confidentially identifies and lays bare the faulty reasoning that underpins the increasingly popular locavore movement, and makes explicit the need for truly progressive causes to seriously consider the intersections of speciesism, gender, race, class and citizenship on the national and global level.” – Dr. Richard J. White, Journal for Critical Animal Studies

“Green” Eggs and Ham? The Myth of Sustainable Meat and the Danger of the Local

Vasile Stanescu, Journal for Critical Animal Studies

In the New York Times bestseller, The Omnivores Dilemma, Michael Pollan popularizes the idea of a “local” based diet, which he justifies, in part, in terms of environmental sustainability. In fact, many locavores argue that a local based diet is more environmentally sustainable than a vegan or vegetarian diet and concludes that if vegans and vegetarians truly care about the environment they should instead eat sustainably raised local meat. However locavores are incorrect in their analysis of the sustainability of a local based diet and in its applicability for large scale adaptation. Instead locavores engage in the construction of “a literary pastoral,” a desire to return to a nonexistent past, which falsely romanticizes the ideals of a local based lifestyle. They therefore gloss over the issues of sexism, racism, speciesism, homophobia and anti-immigration sentiments which an emphasis only on the local, as opposed to the global, can entail. In this manner the locavorism movement has come to echo many of the same claims that the “Buy American” movement did before it. The conclusion is that a local based diet, while raising many helpful and valid points, needs to be re-understood and rearticulated.

More…



Ohio Dairy Farm Cruelty by christine

Mercy for Animals recently released footage from their undercover investigation of a dairy farm in Ohio. From April to May, they documented the cruel and sadistic abuse of dairy cows by farm workers at Conklin Farms in Plain City.

Documented abuses during the 4-week period:

  • Violently punching young calves in the face, body slamming them to the ground, and pulling and throwing them by their ears
  • Routinely using pitchforks to stab cows in the face, legs and stomach
  • Kicking “downed” cows (those too injured to stand) in the face and neck – abuse carried out and encouraged by the farm’s owner
  • Maliciously beating restrained cows in the face with crowbars – some attacks involving over 40 blows to the head
  • Twisting cows’ tails until the bones snapped
  • Punching cows’ udders
  • Bragging about stabbing, dragging, shooting, breaking bones, and beating cows and calves to death

Geoff Ball, DVM

“This has to be the most shocking and malicious video of animal cruelty that I have seen … There is no need to explain how the actions shown are unusually cruel and [show] amazing levels of stress and neglect unto these animals.

“In many cases the attacks seem to be made just for the sake of causing pain. The [workers] shown should be viewed as a threat to all species of animals and should be investigated as far as [their] potential to strike the same sort of suffering on humans as well. This footage should be seen as a red flag for child, spousal and other forms of violence.”

Gene Baur, President and Co-founder of Farm Sanctuary

“This video should be an eye-opener to anyone still unsure of what all the fuss is about concerning the treatment of farm animals in Ohio. The cruel and violent behavior depicted in the video is indicative of an attitude that sees farm animals as mere production units, rather than as living, feeling animals. Undercover investigations at farms in Ohio and elsewhere routinely turn up instances of systemic cruelty.

Bad has become normal on today’s farms … The cruelty and violent behavior that is now common on farms where animals are seen as commodities is outside the boundaries of acceptable conduct in our society.”

Sign the petition to shut down Conklin Dairy Farms and to charge Gary Conklin!

Learn More:

Although many of the abuses documented at Conklin Dairy Farms are sadistic in nature, numerous undercover investigations at dairy farmspig farmsegg farmshatcheries and slaughterhouses have revealed that violence and abuse to farmed animals – whether malicious or institutionalized – runs rampant nationwide. Compassionate consumers can end their direct financial support of farmed animal abuse by rejecting dairy, and other animal products, and adopting a vegan diet.

Mercy for Animals: Ohio Dairy Farm Investigation

How Does Drinking Milk Hurt Cows?



ARC at Poplar Springs by christine

On Saturday, May 15th the ARC joined CfA for a tour of Poplar Springs Animal Sanctuary in Poolesville, MD. Poplar Springs is a non-profit sanctuary for rescued farm animals and wildlife. Their mission is to:

  • Offer care, rehabilitation, and permanent sanctuary for neglected, abandoned or unwanted farm animals
  • Provide protected habitat for wildlife
  • Furnish information to the public regarding farm animal and wildlife issues
  • Promote compassion and humane treatment for all animals

The exquisite 400-acre property is home to rescued pigs, cows, goats, chickens, turkeys, peacocks, horses, sheep, rabbits, geese and ducks. Terry and Dave do an amazing job caring and advocating for these animals. We heard some amazing survivor stories that testified to both the strength and forgiveness of these creatures, it is amazing how they can learn to trust and love humans again. They reminded us to live compassionately and reaffirmed why a society based on animal exploitation is so wrong. To learn more about the animals and their rescue stories, click here.



Know Your Rights! by christine

Thanks to the Hippo House Book Collective (Frederick, Maryland) and a badass lawyer in a Mass Movement of the Moth t-shirt for providing an insightful and informative “Know Your Rights” training. Cops lie, lawyers lie – it’s up to you to know your shit! Here are some resources…

The Midnight Law Collective has a bunch of KYR information sheets, including:

Dealing with the Police

Basic Legal Info

“Know Your Rights” Trainer’s Manual

Other Resources:

If An Agent Knocks – by the Center for Constitutional Rights

Operation Backfire: Legal Manual for Animal Rights and Environmental Activists – by the National Lawyers Guild

Demonstration Manual – DC Justice and Solidarity Collective

ACLU Know Your Rights Card

Analysis of the Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act (AETA)  by Will Potter, greenisthenewred.com

Animal Rights Activists Face Higher Sentences than Racist Cross Burners by Will Potter (and rapists, and murderers…)