Because the animals do not care if you wear or not a mask
I have personally crawled through many fur farms, cattle rearing farms, poultry houses and pig barns and I am still surprised that all of this is real.
I have seen minks, ferrets and arctic foxes being killed so that an image obsessed slut could feel luxurious and sexy; lonely calves confined to small boxes, torn away from their mothers and their milk, because milk belongs to the business and calves to the slaughter houses; pigs sitting and gagging in shit, their own as well as others; purposely distorted chicks that are then called broiler chickens, who are advertised as healthy and tasty meat; and I have seen hens - madly cackling and half-lunatic egg machines - covered on feathers; and I saw that all is so damn hard. I have witnessed many other terrible abuses that the judiciary system as well as the mainstream society either endorse outright or are complicit with through their silence.
I could hope that one day a change will come and I can strive towards that future. It’s just that… what about the animals whose lives, at this very moment, are maimed?
I can feel empathy and I can pity them when someone has taken them as mere properties - as if they didn’t have own interests that makes it something unthinkable - but I have to leave them in that condition. That is what the law states.
The question is simple as is the answer. If the law goes against life what is more important, life or law? Life.
Chapter one: They call me a Terrorist
It is convenient as well as dangerous for a society full of lies and half-truths, following a policy of domestication, to criminalise and demonise and therefore disqualify any inconvenient action and apply to those acts the attributes of extremists or terrorists. Such manipulation of words leads to their meaning being lost.
Is there really no difference, or is it imperceptible, between me; who has never hurt or killed while reaching my targets and between those who maim people with their bomb attacks? Words are very flexible and easily misused and propaganda (as well as dull people) loves stigmas as it makes it possible to distinguish not according to acts but according to those stigmas.
If they call me a terrorist because I have cut a few fences, sometimes broken a door or a window so I could get into places where the sun does not shine, to expose and record that which cannot be seen in adverts; the immense misery and anguish normally hidden from view. And if I am called a terrorist because I take away animals from these places of anguish to where they are loved and safe, what should we call those who put the animals in there, spoil their lives, make business from their spoiled lives, kill them, eat them or defend all of it?
Not to break a law, if by breaking it one helps someone in need, in anguish or when their life is in jeopardy then I can see no virtue in that.
People took away from the (so called) livestock their personal and evolutionary freedom, reduced them to a production unit, shut them in the dark and concrete of the breeding farms and after a short life where their everyday reality is fear, boredom, pain and loneliness, they sent them to an execution line in a slaughterhouse. This is terror. It’s real and protected; by the culture, the economy and also by politics. It’s sacred by the superiority of the humans over any other kind of life and because of this superiority it’s also non-punishable.
To hell with this protection and sacredness.
Chapter two: What are laws good for where money rules? Gaius Titus Petronius
There is a lot we can do for the animal’s benefit without breaking valid laws but I am convinced that it is not enough and also that the belief in the change through a law - if the law is supposed to be the basic instrument and the goal - is counterproductive.
I cannot see what the future holds. It is only through my own thoughts and experience that I have reached the conclusion that the world as it is, while constructing and upholding the mentality of the labour camp, market-hall and slaughterhouse, cannot be distorted by agreement and cooperating. We must live against and away of such a mentality. In words and in acts we must sabotage and boycott the culture, economy and policy that abuses animals, including those that masquerades as their welfare. We must realise that an animal’s life is not measured as „goods”, nor as „commodities” and that life belongs to those who live it no matter who attempts to manipulate it or makes claims of mastery over it.
I do not believe that law and its repressive animal protection can offer any real solution because it is solution reached by force and fear. (The law is based on force and fear. Without these twin instruments it cannot function.) I do not believe in wooing the so called powerful (I call it the asslick strategy) because it leads to the selection of reasons (both emotional and rational) according to how pleasant they seem to be, with no or little consideration, to the level of verity and honesty and it will sooner or later corrupt every single thought and render every human being toothless, unless this wooing of the powerful is abandoned.
I am convinced, that animal liberation (if that is possible) as a real and long-lasting change is not possible to reach only by fighting for animal liberation because what is happening to animals is not separated or independent from the rest of the world, its problems and solutions.
Here is an example. What do you want from a woman who gets up at six in the morning, prepares a snack for her children, goes to work for eight or ten tedious soul crushing hours in a job that never challenges her own wit and intelligence but is afraid of the consequences of losing it anyway? After the savage fantasy of wage slavery she goes home to the economic reality of domestic struggle and counts money for food and for the kids school; she cooks, does the washing, switches off by watching a soap opera and then she watches the news where she can see pictures from a slaughterhouse where animals are beaten or are cut up alive and in the following coverage she finds out about the rising prices of energy and consequently all prices will go up. Food, rent, transport… Which news will be worse for her? How much space and power is left for compassion? How much space and power is left for making the connection?
Chapter three: Grab a hen and run!
Animal liberation is not a matter of opinion. It is a fight for life. If we lose this awareness, it will be only a discussion about wasted lives and dead bodies. And from time to time a petition.
It is important to do these actions and it is also important to talk about why we do them. To talk about why it is not normal to keep animals in such conditions and for the purpose of slaughter. But liberate them from such a life is normal.
To those who say that saving eleven or three hundred or one hen is only symbolical, I answer: If there was three hundred people drowning in water and you saved only one, would that be symbolical?
The direct rescue of animals changes the present instead of dreaming of a better future. This is not about abstract lives but about concrete lives. It holds to the real priorities and destroys the pretended ones. The immediacy of saving a life is more important than possession, law, the will of the majority or a democratic choice.
You can do direct action hidden behind a mask. I used to wear one and I still sometimes do. Thanks to a hidden identity you can work longer and do a better job because without your identity nobody can fine you, bully you or put you in prison. Why open rescues then?
Because it is a stronger form of resistance. It means more confrontation with society, its values and the rules that determine those values. I am (according to the law) on private land, I take private property so I am a robber; but I say that I am not a robber because the animals that I take are not property and cannot be claimed as property. I do not respect the status quo that protects, supports and legitimizes animal abuse. I do not run away, I do not hide my identity, I say my name to a camera, I say my ID number, I publish the recordings from the actions.
It is easier to identify with the horror of the slaughterhouse (which makes my fists clenched so much I could die) when what can be seen is a real human face that shares the sheer dread with the animals. With an open rescue it is also much more difficult to demonise the person or to idolise them.
Open rescues (as I understand and do them) are not a contradiction to the anonymous rescues. They support each other. Because the animals do not care if you wear or not a mask.
Support Animal Liberation Front.
Speech at Tierrechtskongress Wien 2008 (Austria), Nebudme zvery 2008 (Bratislava, Slovakia), Animal Liberation Fest 2009 (Brno, Czech Republic)