Occupy Wall Street Takes on Corporate Animal Abuse

Posted by Stephanie Ulmer, Guest Blogger on October 7, 2011

When the Occupy Wall Street protests began in Downtown Manhattan several weeks ago, not many paid attention. The mainstream media was very slow to react and give the movement any traction. That was then and this is now. On September 30th, the movement released its first official declaration, listing its demands, “Principles of Solidarity,” and “Documentation on how to form your own Direct Democracy Occupation Group.” The group cites that its movement and declaration come at a time when corporations, which place profit over people, self-interest over justice, and oppression over equality, run the government. The declaration goes on to say that the protestors on Wall Street have peaceably assembled within their rights to let certain facts be known. Among the facts listed is one that those familiar with the Animal Legal Defense Fund’s three-plus decades of work may already know all too well: “They have profited off of the torture, confinement, and cruel treatment of countless nonhuman animals, and actively hide these practices.”  

The Occupy Wall Street movement, that was at first portrayed by many as insignificant, is now spreading across the land, as more and more people voice their displeasure with such corporate behavior. A search of the news reveals that the movement has reached all corners of the country, and that protests are now taking place in Hartford, Philadelphia, Tampa, Minneapolis, Chicago, Los Angeles, Pueblo, New Orleans, and Santa Barbara, among others. From these unexpected corners, citizens are giving a voice to the truth about how animals are regarded by corporate America.

How many times has it been reported that a corporation has violated the law with respect to the way they treat, experiment on, house, and kill animals? Unfortunately, too many to count. Remember the great pet food recall and the many deaths associated with it? How about the many undercover videos of animals being tortured and terribly abused before being slaughtered for their meat? It has become more and more difficult to fight against such wrongs when there are so many loopholes and lobbies protecting these corporations. Incidents of mass abuse just continually get swept under the proverbial rug, while corporations continue to add to their bottom line.

Things need to change. There needs to be more protections for the animals, not the corporate fat cats, and most certainly, there needs to be more transparency. Today, more than ever before, we need to continue the campaign for animal rights and speak out against those who so blatantly disregard these rights, especially those who profit from their unlawful behavior. Any movement that recognizes these tenets deserves a voice.


5 thoughts on “Occupy Wall Street Takes on Corporate Animal Abuse

  1. Jean Clelland-Morin says:

    As a 6-afternoons-a-week volunteer at the local animal shelter, I am constantly heartbroken at what I see and hear. We cannot ignore the innocent beings that humans proliferate, exploit, abuse, abandon and finally euthanize the “leftovers”.

  2. Jean Bird says:

    Well said, it is about time that these corporations across the world were brought to justice with their complete disregard for the animal’s welfare. Their saying of ‘they’re going to slaughter anyway’ attitude needs to be changed and they need to treat animals, regardless of specie, with the respect and compassion they so deserve, they are slaughtered for ‘man’s’ benefit and should never be abused at that stressful time of their short, miserable lives, it is totally unacceptable. TIMES MUST CHANGE.

  3. Jon Denn says:

    Help assure the Animal Bill of Rights makes it onto the GREATER PLATFORM 2012, by rating it highly on http://www.aGREATER.US.

  4. BRAVO!!!
    Will you be represented at Zucotti Park in New York City, Occupy Wall ST., in person!
    I think there must be a group.
    For the media to see all that ALDF has said!
    This is the time to be heard and seen!!!
    Want to see this happen!!!

  5. Wendy Kobylarz says:

    Sorry, I respectfully disagree. We do not need more protections for animals who are exploited; we need abolition of all forms of exploitation. I find this commentary by the Occupy folks to be a great step in the right direction that falls extremely short of solving the problem. As long as people continue to demand and consume animals and their excretions, we cannot help but have factory farms. No small farm can sustain the levels needed to supply the insatiable appetites of the US public.

    I also find this step ignores the very real problem of the exploitation of other animals, who still are betrayed and suffer and murdered as a result of small farms, local farms and organic farms.

    I’m not sure it’s a good thing for activists to advocate for this or not because it does not tackle the root, just the branches. Sometimes to get the tree down you do have to hack unwieldy branches; I do understand that. Yet I’m not fully comfortable with focusing solely on factory farms (and not on vivisection, either).