Blog #2: RBA Topics and Activism

Lack of scientific support and formal reasoning in social media activism for the animal rights movement.

Social media activism within the animal rights movement almost always consists of a picture of a cute animal and a catchy slogan or an infographic relative to the environmental consequences of the animal agriculture. Often these posts fail to connect with their respective audiences as they do not address underlying skepticisms that the viewers my hold. This brings up the question, would the addition of scientific support and formal reasoning to the existing animal rights social media template effectively address this skepticism or simply bore or scare the viewers away?

Activism vs. Activism! with respect to the animal rights movement.

Animal rights activists often set their goals too low, asking individuals and corporations to simple reduce their contribution to animal agriculture or to support “humane meat”. Such concessions can be seen as progress but reinforce the many of the ideas that are fundamentally contradictory to the animal rights movement. Jordan would have said that such individuals were merely settling for activism when they should be striving more activism!. Do the efforts of the activists trivialize the demands of the activists or is their collaboration more effective?

Violence and extremism in the animal rights movement.

As inspired by the ideals which they wish to make reality, most animal rights activists and organizations are peaceful and take actions through education and boycotting (veganism/vegetarianism). But there are some factions of the animal rights movement that take their activism to the extreme by damaging public property affiliated with the mistreatment of animals, threatening and blackmailing corporate officials, and throwing fake blood on people as they exit the burlington coat factory for example. Although these extremist actions may be well intentioned they give a bad image to the rest of the animal rights movement that do not condone violence and aggression. I argue that these violent few have come to characterize the public image of the animal rights movement as a whole as extremist, which that has marginalize the movements ability to connect and influence the decisions of the audience they are trying to reach. This topic is worthy of intellectual inquiry because if my claim were to be supported then it would serve as greater reason for the extremists that do exist within the animal rights movement to realize that their actions may be detracting from their cause. Ultimately such a realization could results in a more unified front in regards to the use of violence and aggressive actions, allowing the animal rights movement to reconcile their public image and more easily connect with their audience and cause change more effectively.

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One thought on “Blog #2: RBA Topics and Activism”

  1. Sol, I think we’re on the same page here in that your third idea has a lot of potential. I think it is very interesting to explore the image violent/extreme activism projects on the animal rights movement as a whole. Did you know that the FBI considers efforts by the Animal Liberation Front as legitimate acts of domestic terrorism? As a fellow vegan, I would fully support a more unified front in confronting animal rights issues, as reducing some of the stigma in presenting oneself as a supporter of the cause. Another idea I would consider in this research is PETA’s defense of their “violent” reputation, which is that those who oppose them, namely companies invested in increasing or maintaining the amounts of animal product consumption in the U.S., intentionally smear their reputation to reduce their credibility.

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