ANIMAL RIGHTS circa 1958 on Network Television!!!
I just finished watching an episode of Leave it to Beaver entitled “Beaver’s Poem” (Season 2, Episode 1) and was amazed by the two poems presented on the show. The first, written by The Beaver’s dad, Ward Cleaver—in what he felt would have been The Beaver’s own words—and the second written by Theodore “The Beaver” Cleaver himself. I think you too will be amazed by the language used in these poems:
The Bear: I would like to be a bear, gay and happy free from care / That’s the life like no other, climbing trees with my mother / Though they call me beast of rage, I’ve never put things in a cage / Or set a trap since time’s begun, or shot a human with a gun.
~ Ward Cleaver (October 2, 1958)
The Duck: Once I wished I was a duck, ’cause mostly ducks have lots of luck / They swim around all day in a pool, and mostly never have to go to school / Then I saw a duck hanging in a butcher store, and I didn’t wanna be a duck no more.
~ Theodore “The Beaver” Cleaver (October 2, 1958)
Think, then Go Vegan!
There is little that separates humans from other sentient beings—we all feel pain, we all feel joy, we all deeply crave to be alive and to live freely, and we all share this planet together. The water, air, earth, and plants belong to no one except the community of life which connects us all.
If there is anything that differentiates humans from other living beings it may simply be the factor of choice. We have the option to heal or harm, nurture or destroy, respect or rape, protect or kill. The ability to choose does not necessarily elevate the human species, nor should one infer that it is a trait unique to humans. The capacity to choose should perhaps oblige us to be more responsible for our actions toward others. It is our duty to choose wisely, both collectively and individually, if we are ever again to find peace at any level.
Veganism advocates harmony, justice, and empathic living by acknowledging and respecting the interconnectedness of all life. It is an ethical beacon which can illuminate our moral path and steer us back toward reuniting with our global family. Its tenets can teach us how to live at peace with our world by becoming an integral part and defender of it.
~ Jo Stepaniak (1998)
Because of their belief in Ahimsa (Sanskrit: Non-Killing, Non-Injuring, Harmlessness), vegans are naturally inclined toward pacifism, and many take an active part in opposing all kinds of aggressive activity, but veganism has no connection with any political party or system, national or international. Similarly, individual vegans may be deeply religious, perhaps devout Christians or disciples of one of many other faiths and creeds in this world, but this is not a requisite of veganism, which is an everyday, fundamental way of life concerned with living without hurting others. The hereafter may, or may not, solve all our problems; but what we do now certainly affects all those around us.
~ Eva Batt (1964)
We should all consider carefully what our Group, and our magazine, and ourselves, shall be called. “Non-dairy” has become established as a generally understood colloquialism, but like “non-lacto” it is too negative. Moreover it does not imply that we are opposed to the use of eggs as food. We need a name that suggests what we do eat, and if possible one that conveys the idea that even with all animal foods taboo, Nature still offers us a bewildering assortment from which to choose. “Vegetarian” and “Fruitarian” are already associated with societies that allow the “fruits”(!) of cows and fowls, therefore it seems we must make a new and appropriate word. As this first issue of our periodical had to be named, I have used the title “The Vegan News”. Should we adopt this, our diet will soon become known as a VEGAN diet, and we should aspire to the rank of VEGANS. Members’ suggestions will be welcomed. The virtue of having a short title is best known to those of us who, as secretaries of vegetarian societies have to type or write the word vegetarian thousands of times a year!
~ Donald Watson (November, 1944)
Please think about the following quote by Woodrow Wilson the next time the debate between welfare (i.e., pursuing the regulation of slavery) versus abolition (i.e., pursuing the end of slavery) comes up:
I would rather fail in a cause that will ultimately succeed than succeed in a cause that will ultimately fail.
~ Woodrow Wilson
Think, then Go Vegan!
Vivisection, for all its horrors, is only one of the many ways in which the human tyrant exploits the animal creation. We have been at war with the other creatures of this earth ever since the first human hunter set forth with spear into the primeval forest. Human imperialism has everywhere enslaved, oppressed, murdered and mutilated the animal peoples. All around us lie the slave camps we have built for our fellow creatures, factory farms and vivisection laboratories, Dachaus and Buchenwalds for the conquered species. We slaughter animals for our food, force them to perform silly tricks for our delectation, gun them down and stick hooks in them in the name of sport. We have torn up the wild places where once they made their homes. The million-year Reich of the master-species continues.
~ Ronnie Lee (April 4, 1975)
In the course of his development towards culture man acquired a dominating position over his fellow-creatures in the animal kingdom. Not content with this supremacy, however, he began to place a gulf between his nature and theirs. He denied the possession of reason to them, and to himself he attributed an immortal soul, and made claims to a divine descent which permitted him to annihilate the bond of community between him and the animal kingdom.
~ Sigmund Freud (1917)