Vegan Activists haven’t had the best public relations lately. They were nowhere to be found when floods in far north Queensland devastated livestock and were drowning in the mud.
PETA had a lot to say about Australia’s beloved eco-warrior Steve Irwin on his birthday which they quickly found was a poor, albeit calculated PR move, when the entire internet poured out their scorn upon them in return.
Now, Perth vegan activist group ‘Perth Cow Save’ have cancelled a planned protest in the cattle farming town of Harvey, WA because of ‘security fears’ after a tense confrontation between a local farmer and intrusive vegan activist James Warden of Direct Action brought strong negative reactions from the public.
Perth Cow Save has attempted to distance themselves from James, however as we have already established, they are all linked through their promotion of the documentary ‘Dominion’.
‘D.A.M The Direct Action Movement’ have also attempted to distance themselves from James’ behaviour towards primary producers, and even others within the activist community.
The various groups inspired by ‘Dominion’ and enabled by ‘Aussie Farms’ claim they engage in peaceful, lawful action. In the description for the Dominion documentary they begin by saying “Dominion uses drones, hidden and handheld cameras to expose the dark underbelly of modern animal agriculture” indicating that their tactics involve some level of espionage.
Many within the farming community are concerned that the documentary is a hit piece designed to evoke an emotional response in viewers by purposefully misrepresenting the industry by using a number of distressing examples of animal cruelty. There are almost certainly areas in which animal welfare can be improved and protected, and farmers in general do not work in the industry out of psychotic or sadistic desire to harm animals.
It is apparent that this issue is evoking strong emotions in many people, which does create the risk of individuals acting outside the law, whether that be farmers or activists.
It seems that there is a divide between those who are interested in animal welfare and are willing to act within accepted codes of conduct and respectful debate, and those who are willing to be more confrontational in their approach.
More developments are expected within this section of the activist community in the lead up to the planned nationwide protests on April 8 promoting Dominion on the one year anniversary of its debut.