Monday, April 21, 2014

Violent rhetoric in response to Trophy Hunting, Wolf Hunting, Whale hunting, or Dolphin slaughter on Twitter, Facebook, or Google Plus carries the potential to invoke violence against the advocate. 

Where do you draw the line between passionate activism, and extreme radical speech?

We need to be careful folks. 

Tossing around “kill the hunters” banter online carries weight, and can be viewed as a death threat, not simply an activist's expression of dismay.

We have seen recently in the Bundy ranch stand off in Nevada, that the extremist militia minded mentality does not stop at words, there are firearms and ammunition involved as well.

We’ve also witnessed death threats being lobbed by pro wolf activists at residents in Idaho over the coyote/wolf hunting derby. Death threats leveled at people whose only grievous sin is living in Idaho and going to work that day, or because they are a child of an employee who was targeted because their company was somehow associated with the coyote/wolf derby in the small town of Salmon, Idaho.

January 2. 2013

The group named Idaho for Wildlife advertised and sponsored a Coyote and Wolf Derby on December 28 & 29.2013, to take place in Salmon, Idaho.

Within days there were no less than 6 petitions to protest this event.
Wild Earth Guardians filed for a restraining order to halt the derby from occurring on public land on December 23. 2013. Days later, a federal judge ruled that the derby would be permitted to proceed.

Within this week threats of violence and vitriolic conversations took place online between the pro wolfs and the anti wolfs. 

A vehicle was vandalized during the Derby, 21 Coyotes were killed, and no one in Idaho slaughtered a wolf.
The news of this event was covered in the Chicago Tribune, the New York Times, and I've been told picked up by the BBC, although I can't find it.
Think it is safe to say that this event put Salmon, Idaho front and center of the ongoing pro and anti wolf controversy. No need to post every article that was published, a Google search will provide that.

Yesterday I posted this article about the aftermath of the derby in Salmon, Idaho. It was well worth reading as it allowed us to see what happened from a Salmon citizen's point of view.

Aftermath of Idaho Wolf Derby For Residents

Posted on January 1, 2014

Immediately after posting it, there was a comment from a pro wolf on Google plus saying that someone should "kill the hunters", followed by another pro wolf saying "I agree." 

Seeing that I had just posted a request asking folks to seriously consider the effect of their words online, and that it was ignored, I became frustrated and deleted the news in order to remove the threat comments.

This is why: A wolf hunter posting on the Wisconsin Wolf hunting Facebook page stating that if he found the source of the death threat in Idaho, he would suggest a pre-emptive strike ~ kill the person who made the threat.

These targets of passionate activist “expressions” do not know for certain that the advocate is not serious in their intent when they say “Kill the hunter”, or “Death to the poachers”, or “do away with Romanians” because there is an epidemic of horrific dog slayings in Romania. 

Let’s not forget hating ALL people in Japan because of Taiji dolphin hunts, or scouring another activist because they question a boycott of all of Japan. For heaven’s sakes, I’ve seen Tweet4Taiji activists suggest dropping another Atom bomb on Taiji, sending anthrax to the children of Taiji fisherman in Christmas cards, and raping Japanese wives of Taiji fisherman to “clean up” the genetic bloodline. Actually, other words were used for fisherman, and Japanese lineage, but there is no way I’m repeating those racist vulgarities. Not my speed.

This has got to stop before an activist is harmed. Guilt by association applies here.

At this point I consider myself to be a passionate animal right’s activist, but not willing to interact with anyone carelessly typing one of these sentiments online, even if we considered one another to be friendly alliances prior.

No intention of taking a hit because one of my anipals tagged me in a violent tweet, whether it's being placed on an eco terrorist watch list or having a rock crash through my living room window.

This is a very real danger.

Wake up, people, and think before you post online.
Anything you say on the internet STAYS on the web somewhere, irregardless if you delete it after you post it.



Posted on April 20, 2014 by othernations

From Huffington Post; click here for article & original photo credit

Kathleen Stachowski ~ Other Nations
One woman (sporting a Safari Club International cap), one gun, one dead giraffe. One pump-my-ego photo posted and then shared hundreds of times on animal rights Facebook pages, generating thousands of sad or angry comments.

Many–distressingly many–of the responses to these vile, celebratory trophy photos are vile and violent themselves. When the killer is a woman, the comments can also be terribly misogynistic: “Stupid brainless b*tch!” “This fat ugly b*tch should be shot!” “Shoot this b*tch!” 

Another woman, another gun, another dead giraffe. Another ain’t-I-somethin’-special photo–this time, she’s grinning from atop her trophy’s body. Thousands of Facebook shares and more than 14,000 comments: “I hope someone puts a bullet in her head the weak pathetic b*tch!” “…the dirty tramp!” “Hope she dies by gang giraffe rape!” Other comments included epithets so vulgar and repugnant that I won’t even hint at them with missing letters.

What’s going on here? I mean, I get it: I’m as revolted by the gratuitous killing of animals as anyone, and I, too, struggle with feelings of contempt for these conscienceless, ego-driven killers. But responding to violence with still more violence–even if it’s just rhetorical–proves only that animal advocates can sink to a shamefully base level themselves. As for responding to speciesism with sexism–I’m at a loss. Yes, I’ve seen the comments that call into question the manhood of male trophy hunters, comments suggesting that their big, powerful guns are stand-ins for their own minuscule personal endowment. But I’m aghast at the misogynist, verbal violence directed toward women: gang giraffe rape?!? OMG.

I don’t fault the animal rights Facebook pages dedicated to posting trophy photos–they graphically remind us that callous indifference to animals is a strong, wide current running through our ocean of humanity; that people with enough money and little enough conscience are eager to lay waste to the lives of sentient others–aided and abetted by safari and hunt providers pursuing their own trophy–the cash cow. Pages like Stop Trophy Hunting Now!
and Animal Shame
(and probably many more) remind us that we have so much work to do combatting speciesism, and inspire us to get a move on because animals are dying.

But other than considerable Facebook traffic and abundant ill will vigorously expressed in feeding frenzies of anger, what is gained by the commentary of outrage? Preliminary research offers some indication:

One study assessed whether individuals felt calmer or angrier after ranting on an Internet site, and whether people who frequent rant-sites are more likely to have problems related to anger. The second study evaluated how people reacted emotionally to reading and writing rants online—whether they became more or less happy or angry.

“The two studies seem to indicate that both reading and writing on rant-sites tend to be unhealthy practices, suggesting persons with maladaptive expression styles”… ~from Science Daily

It appears that not much of value is gained–neither for animals nor our own emotional well-being.
I don’t typically peruse these commentary threads–they’re too distressing and life’s too short. But as a relative Facebook newbie (just over six months–late to the party again!) who just recently stumbled upon these two trophy photos via Facebook, I’m discovering the depth of malice that members of my own species are willing to express toward others. I find that I actually don’t know how to end this post because I don’t know where to go with sentiments like, “Hope she dies by giraffe gang rape!”

But here’s what I hope: I hope for more than an onslaught of online words from the multiple thousands who express their public sorrow at an animal’s death or spew their anger at the killer. I hope these many animal defenders are also acting constructively for animals–no matter how small or large those actions might be. Imagine the difference we could make! From simply speaking up for justice when the opportunity arises to going vegan–and everything in between–actions speak so much louder than words, no matter how vehemently those words are delivered.

Speciesism will be vanquished not by impassioned quips posted to photos, but by passionate acts of conscience and courage.


Report Shows Sharp Rise in Murders of Environmentalists, Only 1% of Killers Convicted

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