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No flesh since 99'
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When one becomes involved in this type of "activism", one must be prepared to face the consequences. 10 years is the maximum, if they have never been in trouble before, they will likely receive significantly less prison time, but may be slapped with huge fines/restitution. These farms not only just got a HUGE insurance payout, but they'll be getting restitution payments for a very long time, probably all totaling more than they would have made of the fur in the first place. Not to mention there are now captive-bred non-native species running loose recking untold havoc in delicate local ecosystems. I am sorry, but I do not support this kind of behavior because it always ends up being counterproductive and damaging to the vegan movement.
 

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Let me ask a simple question. If say this was the 1800s and the activists were destroying property, killing slavers and freeing black people(although it's illegal) what would you say?

I understand your argument about the minks being loose on the environment. Forget about that part for a moment and assume they were rabbits or something.
 

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Let me ask a simple question. If say this was the 1800s and the activists were destroying property, killing slavers and freeing black people(although it's illegal) what would you say?

I understand your argument about the minks being loose on the environment. Forget about that part for a moment and assume they were rabbits or something.
The nobility in an act of civil disobedience lies in willingness to bear the consequences of committing an illegal act. Or, in this case, the consequences of apparently many illegal acts. It would be noble for them to forfeit their own liberty in exchange for that of the animals they "liberated." As it would be noble to sacrifice your own life or freedom in the struggle to help captive people win their own. And no, it would not do to disregard the ecological toll of putting mink into the wild. Trappers have a field day, so the mink suffer, sometimes horribly. The ones not trapped will either starve or live by chasing down rodents, fish, crustaceans, frogs, and birds, which some will manage to do if their instincts kick in after a lifetime of cages, water bottles and Purina Mink Chow. And the prey animals eaten by the surviving mink, or the animals losing out to the mink as they compete for the same scarce resources: What gives these activists the right to decide those animals' interests are less valid than the interests of the animals being set loose? Do you start to see why these issues are all interconnected?

Rasitha, you asked me to assume they were all rabbits. When I was in college a laboratory on campus was raided by animal rights activists who freed dozens of white rabbits and set them loose in the woods close to campus. Our school paper ran a feature on the biology students going into the woods and picking up the rabbits, who were calmly sitting around looking very white against the greenery and calmly letting themselves be scooped back up and taken back to the Science building. Not sure what the activists were hoping for, but pretty sure they didn't accomplish it.
 

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way to deflect the question man.
Joan's got a point. The issue is much more heavily layered than most people would probably consider.

That said...

Kiwibird08 said:
it always ends up being counterproductive
That's an absolute fact is it? When you say 'this kind of behavior', specifically what are you referring to?

Kiwibird08 said:
and damaging to the vegan movement.
What do you mean by damaging to the vegan movement? Do you mean actions such as these ALWAYS contribute to the killing and exploitation of animals, or do you mean it casts vegans in a negative light and may discourage people from becoming vegan?
 

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No flesh since 99'
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Let me ask a simple question. If say this was the 1800s and the activists were destroying property, killing slavers and freeing black people(although it's illegal) what would you say?

I understand your argument about the minks being loose on the environment. Forget about that part for a moment and assume they were rabbits or something.
It's not that their hearts weren't in the right place or that they committed some evil act, however I do not think they thought their actions through very well. In the example of slaves, if someone were to free say 10 slaves, those 10 people may or may not have made it north and gone on to have happy lives, or they may have been recaptured and beaten to death or even died of some other cause like exposure or disease. Thats 50/50. However, the ramifications for the killing of slave owners and releasing of those slaves could affect the lives of thousands of other slaves negatively as other slave owners further restricted them and possibly beat them more or chained them ext... The *better* choice in that scenario was (as it did eventually happen) to change laws to where people could no longer keep other people as slaves. Does that make sense?

And it really doesn't matter WHAT they were, any species in a non-native environment has the potential to become invasive. In some parts of the world, non-native rabbits have in fact become invasive and have wrecked untold damages on natural ecosystems. Or another modern example is all the constrictors in Florida that were released and are now really causing damage (and are having to be killed because they are killing off local wildlife, including the natural apex predators in the region). There is unfortunately no real way to predict what impact a non-native species will have, but one can assume either way, many animals will suffer as a result. Even more than would have been killed by the fur industry may end up meeting unnatural and cruel deaths if they multiply, become invasive and eradication programs must be implemented.
 

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No flesh since 99'
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Joan's got a point. The issue is much more heavily layered than most people would probably consider.

That said...


That's an absolute fact is it? When you say 'this kind of behavior', specifically what are you referring to?


What do you mean by damaging to the vegan movement? Do you mean actions such as these ALWAYS contribute to the killing and exploitation of animals, or do you mean it casts vegans in a negative light and may discourage people from becoming vegan?

I would argue that 99 times out of 100 this kind of thing ends up being counterproductive in some way. So not an absolute, there are always exceptions, but for the most part it is safe to assume these kinds of activities cause more problems than they solve.

By damaging to the vegan movement, I can think of several ways off the top of my head why this kind of behavior is arguable whether or not it was the most compassionate option (see above post Re: invasive species and eradication programs, and also consider non-native creatures dying of starvation, disease or exposure), and it definitely casts vegans in a negative light. On the surface, this sounds like a good deed, and in certain ways, it was. However, there is still just as high of a potential for animal suffering (and perhaps, in time for even more individuals to suffer if the animals released reproduce). And while no vegan is going to be outraged over freed animals who were being abused and would meet a terrible death, the people who produce and purchase fur products will be. The price of their coat just increased, the fur farmers may have gotten insurance payouts (maybe not) but they have to get another breeding stock, their insurance rates just went up and they'll likely be adding extra security (which all costs $$$). In short, releasing these animals has done nothing to help sway the portion of the population that doesn't already agree with a cruelty-free POV, and in fact may have made them angry and LESS likely to become vegan and possibly made some people "empathize" with the fur farmers and purchase an extra fur product to show their support.
 

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Sometimes direct, forceful action is required

I do not see animal liberation acitivist as mere civil disobedients. they are heros who respond to a vital and timely ethical call to action. without their brave efforts, we might not be here today, discussing veganism.

if you were an animal trapped inside a research lab or factory farm, would you care who come to rescue/free you? would you care what "legal penalties" your liberators might face? I doubt it. We have no right to hold these animals hostage and the liberators have the right idea.
 

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I would argue that 99 times out of 100 this kind of thing ends up being counterproductive in some way.
Possibly, but saying that 99% of the time the good outweighs the bad is extraordinarily unrealistic.

Kiwibird08 said:
By damaging to the vegan movement, I can think of several ways off the top of my head why this kind of behavior is arguable
So can I.

Kiwibird08 said:
invasive species and eradication programs, and also consider non-native creatures dying of starvation, disease or exposure
The biggest reason I asked those questions was specifically because your answer appeared to assume that the animals would always be released into the wild. You're aware that there are activists who don't just throw the animals into the nearest patch of woods, right?

Kiwibird08 said:
and it definitely casts vegans in a negative light.
We don't need any help with that. Veganism is already a joke in popular society. No amount of animal liberation to date as done as much damage to our image as your average PETA campaign.

Kiwibird08 said:
And while no vegan is going to be outraged over freed animals who were being abused and would meet a terrible death, the people who produce and purchase fur products will be. The price of their coat just increased, the fur farmers may have gotten insurance payouts (maybe not) but they have to get another breeding stock, their insurance rates just went up and they'll likely be adding extra security (which all costs $$$). In short, releasing these animals has done nothing to help sway the portion of the population that doesn't already agree with a cruelty-free POV, and in fact may have made them angry and LESS likely to become vegan and possibly made some people "empathize" with the fur farmers and purchase an extra fur product to show their support.
If you're balancing the merit of actually saving animals' lives over the merit of not offending people off of veganism for the purposes of maybe saving more animals' lives, I think that's an extremely uncertain gamble.

On one hand you do nothing, just standing by as the animals die, with the hope that your pacifistic banner-waving and video-sharing will convince more people to join your cause.

On the other hand, if handled properly, those animals are saved, protected, and you've struck an indelible blow against the company. In terms of producing more vegans, there exist videos on the internet that show anonymous activists recording video of the animals before and after their raids, providing a night and day contrast between the animals that might have been mercilessly mistreated beforehand, and are now rehabilitated and living in activist shelters.

The matter of insurance is a bit of a misdirection, since no money leaves an insurance company's hands without assurances that they'll being making more than that back. It's entirely possible that a kennel gets raided and the target company pulls their insurance in to cover, replace, and reinforce what they lost, but it's not easy, it's not free, and it'll cost them even more next time it happens.
 
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