A bird’s-eye view of the animal protection movement reveals progress on many fronts. Legislation protecting animals, failed attempts to cover up the abuse of animals, historic criminal convictions of people for abusing animals, victories reducing the shipment of primates to laboratories, consumer trends indicating increasing interest in plant-based, organic food, and the birth of innovative companies on the verge of changing the food industry and saving billions of animals’ lives all suggest a more humane world on the horizon.
There are many ways to show compassion for animals and we should take satisfaction knowing that millions of people advocate for some form of kindness every day and it results in better lives for animals as a result. We see it in the family who refuses to patronize the circus, the friend who used to eat animals and now lobbies others to stop, and the co-worker who proudly tells us she bought a product labeled “cruelty-free.” Thoughtful decisions come in all forms and they always matter.
At the same time, despite progress in many areas, the problems of cruelty remain on a massive and devastating scale. Although we may never end acts of barbarism entirely, there remains significant opportunity to move the cause forward. Undercover videos that reveal the unanswered screams for mercy remind us of the urgency of now and should serve as motivation to act.
After significant contemplation about how to best propel the movement, I’ve decided to organize a peaceful march to rattle the world’s conscience. People need to know that the treatment of animals is so unthinkable, pressing, and preventable that ordinary, law-abiding, tax-paying citizens of all political persuasions, races, faiths, and professions are marching in the streets to stop it. Our fellow citizens can do so much better if we inform and inspire them to make changes to benefit animals, their health, and our planet.
The 2013 Florida March Against Cruelty to Animals aims to bring throngs of Floridians together who care about animals, from Key West to Tallahassee and Tampa to Orlando, to march in the streets to raise awareness about the plight of animals in our society. People from all over the world are invited to join us in solidarity on Saturday, November 16th at 12:00 pm in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The purpose of the march will be to ask people to learn about, think about, and stop supporting cruelty to animals in all forms. Interests represented will include people opposed to animal agriculture, zoos, circuses, hunting, rodeos, puppy mills, greyhound racing, animal testing, horse racing, seaquariums, and more. Hopefully the success of the march and media coverage will inspire people to organize the same march in their state and it will become an annual event that will raise awareness and save lives.
The atrocities against animals deserve no less than all us spilling into our streets to protest their senseless confinement, abuse, exploitation, and slaughter. We may not win every battle but let the history books reflect we never failed to try. This march is for the pig languishing in the slaughter plant, the abused dog wailing in pain, the force-fed geese and ducks shuddering in factories, the monkey enduring Joseph Mengele-like experiments, the elephant cowering from a circus trainer’s bullhook, the animals taken from their families and caged in a zoo, and the billions of other animals who rely on us as their only hope.