Muzzling a Movement: The Effects of Anti-Terrorism Law, Money, and Politics on Animal Activism By Dara Lovitz
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Author: Dara Lovitz

Several Reviews

Publisher: Lantern Publishing

Muzzling a Movement
Muzzling a Movement: The Effects of Anti-Terrorism Law, Money, and Politics on Animal Activism
Available at Lantern Books
ISBN-10: 1590561767
ISBN13: 9781590561768


HonestVegan (Amazon review)
A must read for animal rights or welfare and environmental activists, as well as anyone who cares about constitutional rights, particularly free speech. How can we achieve social change if the government chooses unpopular messages to target for harsher criminal laws? Why is it worse to commit arson in pursuit of environmental justice than it is out of pure spite? Though no doubt arson should be criminal, why are certain activists being targeted for harsher punishment?

But beyond that, what impact do these terrorist labels have on non-violent and lawful activism? And might you be doing something that you thought fell within legal free speech that is grasped by the AETA or a state version of the same? That's the really scary part.

This is a quick, but empowering read. The seasoned animal activist can breeze through some of the initial discussion, which is designed to provide helpful background to people who aren't as in tune with the animal rights and welfare movements and the animal exploitation that drives them.

Buy a copy now, or ask your library to carry it (or both). This is an important and insightful assessment of the impact of anti-terrorism laws on domestic activism.

Brett (Amazon review)
This well written book tells about how the federal government is trying to stop the activities of animal activists by labeling them as terrorists. Is there a connection between liberating a puppy from an animal testing laboratory and crashing an airplane into the WTC? According to the feds, both are terrorists. This book is an eye opening read about how the activities of animal activists have been severely restricted since 9/11.

Peacegal (Amazon review)
Animal advocates of all stripes won't want to miss this slim, but eye-opening, volume. At first, I surmised Muzzling a Movement would not contain information particularly applicable to my life as a quiet, law-abiding, letter-writing activist. The author clearly makes the case that some industries and government agencies are painting all activists with the same broad brush, and they may not be pleased until all are silenced--from the militant to the mainstream. Early on, the author gives a brief roundup of the many ways animals are used and abused in modern society.

This will be nothing new to animal advocates, but to newcomers it will give an idea as to why some people dedicate their lives to helping other beings. I was pleased to see the author seems to be a part of the movement itself; I felt I was speaking with a knowledgeable peer instead of an "outsider looking in," as in some other animal rights law books. The rest of the book is mostly dedicated to the federal Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act (AETA) and its predecessors, and the law's effects on animal activists and organizations. Of most interest to me was the author's meticulous reporting on the various Congressional hearings on the animal rights and environmental movements. (I had no idea they cared about us so much!) Perhaps not surprisingly, the government's main targets are those activists who act outside the law.

However, it soon becomes clear that legislators are out to attack even the most mainstream humane organizations. And why not? Lovitz outlines the huge campaign contributions animal-use industries bestow upon the lawmakers who spew the most vitriol against animal protection. Unimaginable profits are at stake.

Rachel Wechsler (Amazon review)
Ms. Lovitz did an outstanding job of researching, analyzing, and synthesizing the evidence relating to the governmental and media role in chilling animal rights activism. The book is eye-opening and well-written. I highly recommend it for anyone who is concerned about animals or who simply values his/her First Amendment rights.

About the Author:

Dara Lovitz is an Adjunct Professor of Animal Law at Temple University Beasley School of Law and the Earle Mack School of Law at Drexel University. She received the designation of “Rising Star” by the Super Lawyers magazine. She earned her B.A., magna cum laude, from the University of Pennsylvania and her J.D. from Temple University Beasley School of Law, at which she was the recipient of both the Law Faculty Scholarship and the Barrister Award. Ms. Lovitz served as special prosecutor in Commonwealth v. Esbenshade, the pivotal Pennsylvania case in which the Court determined the criminal liability of an egg factory owner and supervisor. She is a board member of Four Feet Forward and Peace Advocacy Network. In addition to serving as counsel for animal advocacy organizations, she is also an active member, organizing several fund-raising endeavors and participating in various anti-circus and anti-horse-carriage demonstrations in the Philadelphia area. Ms. Lovitz has written and lectured extensively on a variety of animal law topics, including eco-terror laws, most notably the 2007 Michigan State University law journal article, Animal Lovers and Tree Huggers are the New Cold-Blooded Criminals?: Examining the Flaws of Ecoterrorism Bills.

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