Anthony Marr's CARE-7 tour blog #15 - 14 May 2010
Arizona - -> New Mexico
After a 10 hour drive from Phoenix, Arizona, I'm now in Albuquerque, New
Mexico. It could have been a couple of hours shorter, but I took my time.
When I arrived at Mikkey's place around 8 pm, it was blowing up a storm, and
downright chilly, but now, it is still and warm.
Michelle Andria with 3 foster kittens
The last week or so at the Andrias has bonded me to the family. By the
last day, Chris had whipped me in every Risk game, but I checkmated him in
the last game of Chess. These alone had made us new brothers, but on top of
this he initiated a discussion with me on global warming, which in fact I
had stay away from. But since he brought it up, I showed him an article from
NASA titled "The Arctic summer could be ice-free by 2013". He took it in,
and we discussed a little about latent heat. Though he may not be totally
convinced, I felt that his mind has opened, which proved gratifying to me.
When I told Michelle about it, she seemed amazed. Later in the evening,
Chris brought in his 7 year-old daughter Serena, who took to me at once.
Yesterday morning, before she went to school, about an hour before my own
departure, she gave me not one, not two, but four rounds of hugs. When I
told Nicholas that Chris have become my new brother, Michelle said he could
now call me Uncle Tony. It is an extra privilege to be accepted by children.
Hugs all around before the farewell.
Cheena of Tucson
May 10th, in Tucson, Cheena treated me to a sumptuous vegan dinner where
I met Cindy Wines of "Free The Elephants", with whom I "shared cake", and
who made some connections for me in Baton Rouge regarding Tony the Tiger for
when I drive through on my way to New Orleans on May 24th, and contacted the
Big Cat Rescue people in Tampa FL for June 5th. At the end of the dinner, a
man came out from nowhere and said, "Mr. Marr, let me shake your hand." We
took a couple of pics together, and he was gone. To this day, I cannot
remember who he is.
Cindy Wines on right
May 13, I had dinner with Jan McClellan, the lady who organized the
Phoenix funeral motorcade, and learned that she was the lead singer and lead
guitarist of the 60s/70s all-female band The Debutantes, which went to
Vietnam to entertain the troops, and got their passports kept away by the
rascal of an organizer - for 6 months - so that they could entertain to his
heart's content. All these talents I've discovered on this tour, including
Catherine Garneau, who also used to be a band singer and guitarist. Good
thing I too used to play in a rock band ("Beyond Nemesis") in the
late-60s/early-70s when I was a UBC student (lead guitar, rhythm guitar,
back-up vocals, clarinet, some keyboard), or I'd feel totally out-classed.
On May 11, on the internet, our "band of brothers and sisters", which
includes Marla, Anthony D, Catherine, Paul Fusch, Tia and myself, hammered
out a plan to March on Washington on July 19 right after the Animal Rights
Conference. At first, I thought that it was towards passing bill HR 5092
only, which proposes banning crush videos while specifically exempting
hunting videos. So, I wrote them an email as follows:
Cacti on way out of Phoenix, their middle fingers are for hunters
May 11, 2010
This is shared just with a few trusted friends for now. I'm writing on my
own behalf, as well as that of the Global Anti-Hunting Coalition as its
president. The primary purpose of this letter is to share my view. It is not
a request, much less demand, that anyone should adopt it.
My dear friend Marla Stormwolf-Patty may recall that I confided in her a
few days ago in a personal email that I was wrestling with a moral dilemma,
about the outcome of which she may not be pleased. But I have done this
wrestling for long enough. Now, the thread originated by the brilliant post
by my dear friend Paul Fusch titled "Drink, blast off or march - pick one",
whose spirit of unity is exemplary, has forced the following conclusion:
As you all do, I abhor crush videos, and I will do anything within my
power and conscience to assist in banning them; this goes without saying. On
the other hand, I find hunting videos equally abhorrent. I do not find a
video depicting a deer shot by an arrow in the eye or the gut or the rump or
even accurately in the chest, or have its lower jaw blown off by a bullet,
to be any more acceptable than a video depicting a kitten crushed by a bare
foot or pierced by the heel of a stiletto pump, regardless of the legality
of hunting. In fact, legality to me is subservient to morality, and
therefore, I cannot accept, morally or legally, a law that specifically
exempts hunting videos, which essentially condones hunting. This is the only
position for the leadership of GAHC to take, if GAHC is to be strong,
powerful and true to its founding principle. GAHC is a hard line
anti-hunting coalition answerable to all anti-hunting member groups and
Right now I'm in Arizona on my tour, and the newly signed up GAHC members
have asked me to return in October to assist in winning a ballot slated for
November 8 which will decide on whether hunting should be entrenched in
Arizona as a constitutional right. It would be hypocritical of me if
meanwhile I support a bill that condones hunting, even if it opposes crush.
I have observed from the start that the whole thing, from the striking
down, by the Supreme Court, of the law banning all videos depicting animal
cruelty, to the proposal of a new bill to ban only crush videos while
specifically exempting hunting videos, to be a clever maneuver motivated by
the hunting lobby itself and supported by a prohunting court and congress.
If we successfully push for this anti-crush but pro-hunting law, and further
proclaim victory, the hunters would laugh all the way to the forest while
snickering about us being a ship of fools. And the anti-hunting movement
would have been dealt a heavy blow.
I understand the eagerness on everyone's part, including my own, to have
crush videos banned immediately or sooner. On the other hand, unity and
solidarity do not mean sacrificing one AR movement (anti-hunting) for
another (anti-crush). From the anti-hunting point of view, we would be doing
the hunters' bidding to support the pittance of a bill which legitimizes the
production and marketing of hunting videos with impunity. Pardon me for this
analogy, but to over-eagerly fall for this bill without question is
tantamount to a child eagerly accepting a piece of candy from a villain
while handing over his whole piggy bank.
Ideally, what we should do is to counter-challenge the court decision to
have it overturned. I understand that this will make the anti-crush campaign
more difficult and prolonged, but if the anti-crush movement truly seeks
solidarity with the rest of the AR community, it cannot sacrifice another
movement to attain a quick fix for itself.
I have a feeling that the whole thing hasn't been carefully thought
through, and the Big Picture has not been looked at. At first sight of a
bill proposing to ban crush videos, and we fall for it, line, hook and
sinker. I entreaty everyone to at least analyze the situation thoroughly
before taking this crucial step.
In response, Marla, Anthony D and Paul F explained that the exemption
clause in HR 5092 was not to legitimize hunting videos, but to clarify that
the bill refers to banning crush videos only, and not for banning hunting
videos, towards which other bills could be launched. Thereupon I wrote
another email as follows:
May 11, 2010
I'm glad we had our discussion. I think the whole situation is a lot
clearer for all concerned, both about the nature of the beast and my concern
about hunting videos.
My new understanding, correct me if I'm wrong, is that the new bill HR
5092 deals with crush videos only, and the hunting video exemption clause is
to clarify that this bill does not refer to hunting videos, and not a
blanket protection for hunting videos against all future attacks.
If this is true, I will throw the full support of GAHC into your fight
for HR 5092, with the understanding that if and when GAHC forces a new
similar bill to ban hunting videos, the anti-crush forces will rally behind
GAHC. I will likely have many speeches to make at the conference, and will
plug the March on Washington, but will also make clear that an attack
against hunting videos are in the stars. And, as Marla pointed out, the
March will be not confined to crush, but all animal abuse. Therefore, I will
also make a large banner saying "BAN HUNTING VIDEOS!"
So, all who read this blog, please do join us in the March on Washington,
and let your voice - for the voiceless - be heard, whichever animal(s) you
wish to champion, and pass the invitation on far and wide.
On the drive yesterday, I took a detour to visit Sedona - well worth the
extra time. A stunningly beautiful place to the eyes, and supposedly to the
I also drove to the meteorite crater near flagstaff.
I was there a few years ago, so did not spend the $15 to go back in to
see it again, but did take a picture of its external profile.
Here are some old pics, but the crater is timeless.
Thin dust cloud over freeway; the thick ones of which AZ is infamous have
been known to cause multi-vehicle collisions
All the electric cars in the world make no difference if electricity is
generated from these coal fire plants
This evening I will give a potluck speech in Albuquerque organized by
Adriana who heard my speech at the Animal Rights Forum in Long Beach and was
impressed, seemingly an eternity ago. Tomorrow, I will drive to El Paso,
Texas, for my early afternoon speech and funeral motorcade. I will have a
few busy days in Texas before venturing into the deep south.
rock formation near Albuquerque.
Anthony Marr, Founder and President
Heal Our Planet Earth (HOPE)
Global Anti-Hunting Coalition (GAHC)
www.facebook.com (search for “Anthony Marr Heal Our Planet Earth”
Touring cell: begin_of_the_skype_highlighting 216-386-7362
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