Animal rights advocates across the planet have marked the 12th International Animal Rights Day on and around the 10 December with approximately 100 different events, including candlelit vigils to remember the billions of animals across the world who suffer in testing laboratories, factory farming and other abusive practices.
Inspirational reports of International Animal Rights Day (December 10) events are now flooding in! Here's the first set of dispatches. More will follow in the coming weeks.
In Bradford, West Yorkshire Animal Rights held a visual and noisy demo at the University of Bradford calling for a closure of their vivisection laboratories.
‘Bunnyhuggers’ in Edinburgh report:
The protest was very successful in raising awareness of the International Animal Rights Day and the campaign against real-fur sporrans in Scotland. Shoppers steered clear of any stores that were named and shamed during this protest - a clear message that abusing animals must come to an end and Animal Rights must be recognised. Over 5 shops were targetted during the 2 hours, nearly 500 leaflets handed out and lots of support from shoppers and passers-by.
In Leeds campaigners held a candle-lit vigil on the Parkinson Steps at the University of Leeds, so as to mark International Animal Rights Day and bring attention to the barbaric vivisection happening there.
Huge congratulations to Stop Wickham Animal Testing for their great demo. They held a mock funeral march to mark international animal rights day at the controversial animal testing laboratory, just exposed in an undercover investigation. Protesters gathered in Wickham Square dressed as funeral ushers and mourners, carrying a miniature coffin and gravestones to remember the animals murdered in Wickham Labs, near Fareham. The event gained local media coverage.
Two new protestors joined us at the gates of HLS for the candlelit vigil held in support of Uncaged’s International Animal Rights Day. As the candles flickered we stood and watched the workers as they drove away from the suffering they are responsible for. Driving off into the night to their warm and comfortable homes leaving behind tortured animals with feeble bodies and broken minds. Hundreds of them dying through the night whilst their torturers sleep without a second thought for the awful suffering, loneliness, confusion and fear that the animals that they make their money from go through! We stood together united with so many others all over the world in our grief and anger at what these animals are exposed too but also determined as ever to never stop fighting for their freedom.
In Uncaged’s hometown of Sheffield we held our own candlelit vigil outside the Town Hall, showing our powerful ‘Why Animal Rights’ video. With the help of local campaigners, including Sheffield Animal Friends, the event advanced a positive case for animal rights and attracted over a hundred new supporters to the cause. It was clear from many comments that the event opened the public eyes to the true ordeal suffered by billions of animals and encouraged them to question how we treat our fellow creatures.
In Crewe, protestors from the group Facct were at the office of pro hunt MP Edward Timpson for IARD. Very handily, the offices of the Crewe Chronicle were just next door so a photoshoot and interview was arranged. On IARD, Timpson's link to the barbaric hunting fraternity were exposed right outside his own door. Clearly his staff were rattled as they put up 'Business as Usual' signs after the megaphone informed his constituents of his unethical support for this slaughter of wildlife. Facct will be back at Timpson's office and the offices of other pro hunt MP's, in the run up to the election, to expose those who condone cruelty. The indefatigable campaigners then travelled to Chester, where they marked IARD again by targetting a city centre wine shop over the sale of foie gras.
In Dublin, Ireland, the Animal Rights Action Network (ARAN) staged their third inspirational rally in Dublin on December 6th, 2009 in support of International Animal Rights Day. It was a massive success that generated huge support.
In the Croatian city of Rijeka, Animal Friends premiered their new short film on animals, which shows animals and their pain, which we often fail or even refuse to see. A projection screen was set up within a fully covered tent and Animal Friends invited visitors to peep through its small openings, straight into the world that remains hidden from our eyes and our conscience.
Our friends in Brazil have just sent us a report of their great IARD action which they carried out in São Paulo on Sunday, 7th December. With their message and demo outside McDonald’s, they made the very pertinent point that cattle farming, particularly in deforested areas of the Amazon, is causing devastation to the atmosphere through greenhouse gas emissions. It is becoming more and more evident that abusing our brethren in the animal kingdom is damaging to our species’ wellbeing, making people more open to the animal rights message.
Equanimal held IARD protests in Madrid, Vigo, Bilbao, as well as New York and Berlin. Their protest in NY against bullfighting and their Madrid event enjoyed particularly widespread media coverage. Their Berlin protest action took place at the Brandenburger Tor in the centre of the city. With the background of the celebration of 20 years since the Fall of the Berlin Wall, Equanimal aims to expose the situation of countless animals that stil suffer behind all the other "walls" of slaughterhouses, animal labs, etc, and will vindicate the fall of a greater wall, the wall in our minds that separate "humans" from "animal" and denies moral consideration to the latter.
In New York, in front of the statue of the Charging Bull, Equanimal held a protest action against bullfighting. In the performance, a group of activists with "banderillas" "stabbed" their bodies to represent the suffering of the bulls. We consider this action important as a great deal of the bullfighting audience are tourists rather than Spaniards, so we think New York is a good place to expose this situation.
Also in the USA:
To recognize International Animal Rights Day (IARD), Triangle Vegan Action (TVA) held a demonstration on 12 December in downtown Carrboro, North Carolina, USA, to raise awareness of nonhuman animal exploitation and advocate rights for all animals. Despite the cold and cloudy weather, it was a positive experience doing outreach in this politically progressive area. We stood on the street corner near Weaver Street Market food co-op with our signs and passed out "Why Vegan?" pamphlets with IARD leaflets inside them.
Thank you to all the dedicated campaigners who are standing up for animal rights! For more information about the protests visit our site.