An Animals' Charter By Noël Sweeney
From Book Reviews/Interviews

Author: Noël Sweeney

Several Reviews

Publisher: Alibi

An Animals' Charter
Available at Amazon


Noël Sweeney returns to investigate the network of hypocrisy, lies and laziness in which we live by our treatment of animals so as not to have to face bad news about ourselves. An Animals' Charter recounts the root of our prejudices and all those ideas and positions that we take for granted. Indeed, animal abuse, carrying centuries of reflexions, should be in our guidelines for the 21st century. Animal abuse constitutes unacceptable cruelty to non-human animals, just living beings, entities of their own, and Sweeney’s book helps us to develop a consistent argumentation. But I find it gripping that he leaves the reader at all times committed to common sense and their own knowledge of reality.
- Helena S.

An Animal’s Charter is a clarion call to humans to address the suffering of their non-human animal cousins, by granting them legal rights in the form of a charter. The reader is gifted with a reasoned, evidenced and enlightened narrative of the many ways in which billions of sentient animals are enslaved, tortured and maligned for human use. An animal holocaust. The Charter is timely indeed, reminding us that ‘Yet where animals are concerned we have still not learned that in the seeds of their destruction we sow our own’, this, as the world grapples with a global pandemic caused by a virus, widely accepted to have originated from the appalling conditions in which animals are kept and used. The Charter provides the answer to the origin of those familiar echoes, they are racism and sexism. Animals need An Animals Charter to remind us that ‘Animals exist for their own interests and their own reasons.’
- Carol C.

About the Author:

My legal practice as a barrister involves complex and serious cases for the prosecution and defence. The areas I cover include animal abuse, armed robbery, discrimination, drug-dealing and murder.

Since its introduction, I have taken a special interest in the Human Rights jurisprudence because of its impact on all areas of English Law. It has a direct relevance to the welfare and ‘rights’ of all of us and no less on whether an animal has a right to live.

I have lectured and written widely on the subjects relating to my practice. I have had a long-term interest in animal law, especially their legal role and status. Animals are treated as our ‘property’ as a matter of law. While ecologists and philosophers and environmentalists raise valid issues, the only method of changing the position of animals within our society is by law. Only the law can change their status so animals are accepted and valued in their own right as living creatures. Rights, whether they relate to humans or animals, run with life itself.

The Black Lives Matter movement gathered momentum following the murder of George Floyd. Yet when we say ‘All Lives Matter’, we limit the idea to humans. So I wrote An Animals’ Charter to analyse ‘animal rights’ as the major moral crusade of the 21st century. Animals are secondary to human interests because they do not have the ability to resist us. We make money subjugating animals much as slavers made money subjugating people. Animals are hamstrung by being denied a human tongue. They need An Animals' Charter to reflect the truth that Animals' Lives Matter too.

I wrote Doris and the Grumpy Judge for a new generation as a tale that parents could read to their children as a bedtime story. The story seeks to teach children the value of kindness to animals and the meaning of justice. Doris is a ‘rescue’ dog. Katy, her 9-year-old owner, claims Doris bit her. Doris appears before the Grumpy Judge who decides she is ‘dangerous’ and sentences her to death. Doris has no friends and no voice. The only one who can save her is the man who hates dogs: the Grumpy Judge.

The current crisis of ‘climate change’ has highlighted the significance of bees to our planet. In Defence of Bees shows although small in size, their rise and fall mirrors the health of our planet as bees are a bellwether for us and a lodestar for our law. In Defence of Bees proves the world can exist without us, but cannot survive without bees.

Straying from my academic work, I wrote a rock ‘n’ roll novel, English Hungers. Sam Spurns is a lawyer and a singer with the band, English Hungers. Spurns’ prosecutes three thugs who abuse an animal resulting in her death. They call their friends to support their false alibis and are acquitted. Spurns feels she betrayed the victim who died in vain. Spurns changes her life, burns her legal bridges, becomes an eco-outlaw Joan of Arc to wreak revenge on the animal abusers as a band of avenging angels.

Blue-bird sings the Blues is lightning-strike poetry that illuminates the roots of animal abuse. The poems analyse the connection between racism, sexism and speciesism including trophy hunting and a Suffragette force-fed as if she was foie gras. The poems include the English slave traders whose history is told in the Voyage of The Zong. The poems ask whether we are heading towards an Animals' Armageddon while the last Blue-bird sings the Blues?

My main interests outside of law are music and poetry. I have collaborated with the legendary Liberation Drummer on songs with an animal rights theme. I am keen on rambling and woodwork and have passed the time by making a carriage clock and a pendulum wall clock. Most of my writing is done at a desk I made of American black walnut. Many of my ideas ferment on my rambles as there are many wild sights to satisfy any mind while hiking beneath a sunny Somerset sky.

Countryside rambles are the catalyst for my writing as the images and sights that unfurl prove that by saving a single life you can save the entire world.


Blue-bird sings the Blues By Noël Sweeney

Return to Book Reviews