We say that we love animals. Seventy percent of us have an animal companion. Nearly three out of four say that we should “eliminate all forms of animal cruelty.” (http://goo.gl/wYEu2I
) And two thirds say that an animal’s right to live free of suffering is just as important as a human being’s. (http://goo.gl/ePQUL3
) But while the number of animal lovers has grown, so too has the number of animals being killed and abused. Our growing love for animals has come, strangely, with an increasing tide of violence. (http://goo.gl/HPx8Vr
Why? We are told – by our community, our culture, and by corporate marketing departments -- that we can “love” animals… while eating their mutilated bodies. Massive corporations such as Chipotle explain to the public that their animals are treated with respect and decency. They say that they are “pro-animal,” and that they raise their animals responsibly. Their website and videos are filled with happy animals in sunlit grassy fields. They’re so good to the animals, in fact, that animal lovers (even animal activists) feel compelled to support them!
But this is not a true “love.” Chipotle is perhaps the fastest-growing animal killer in the world and the third largest publicly-traded restaurant company. They deliberately use words such as “natural” and “raised with care” because they know that such words have no legal significance. (Even meat industry publications have pointed out that Chipotle sources from abusive “factory farms.”) More than any other company, Chipotle has preyed on the public’s most admirable feelings–kindness, compassion, and love – and twisted them to serve its engine of violence.
It’s time for that to change. Last month, we delivered an open letter to Chipotle’s CEO demanding that he fulfill his public promise to “run our business in a way that doesn’t exploit animals.” (http://goo.gl/iaTNON
) Now we turn to Chipotle’s customers. So many of them say they love animals. This month, we ask them to put their Love in Action.
We will go to Chipotle locations all over the world with the stories and faces of individual victims of violence who we, as activists, have taken action to protect. We will fill the Chipotle landscape with postcards that ask, “If you truly loved her, would you kill her? If you truly loved her, would you stand idly, and allow her to be tortured and killed?”
The “It’s not Food, It’s Violence” campaign has grown from 1 to 24 cities since it started at the end of October. We have received media coverage in multiple cities, forced a frantic response by Chipotle’s PR team, and inspired new activists and activism all over the world. The company’s stock price has stalled since we began our campaign on October 19. But we need your help to keep up the momentum.
Join us this month in our fifth day of action. Join us as we show Chipotle, and the world, that love is not violence. Love is not enslavement and mutilation. Love is liberation, and love is action.
SELECT CITY EVENT PAGES (MORE UPDATES SOON):
LOS ANGELES: http://www.facebook.com/events/1407593156155898
NEW YORK CITY: http://www.facebook.com/events/477680665687252/
Activists gather at a packed Chipotle in the evening.
FOR THOSE WHO HAVE BEEN SAVED: activists will converge on Chipotle locations with postcards with images of sanctuary animals who have been rescued and are living their lives in peace. They will deliver the postcards to all customers, leave them on tables, and otherwise saturate the Chipotle space with stories of true “love” in action. “We love animals by caring for them, not killing them.”
FOR THOSE WHOSE LIVES WERE LOST: after distributing the postcards inside, activists will gather outside for a demonstration. They will light a single candle for each animal killed by Chipotle daily at a single restaurant and remember the lives that were lost. “We love animals by honoring them, not eating them.”
(Note that this a model demonstration only! Please feel free to pick and choose elements of this for your own action. Even a simple leafleting event can be extremely effective for this campaign, as it's important that the company recognize that there are animal rights activists outraged by animal killing and humane washing all over the world.)
Read more about the "It's Not Food, It's Violence" campaign and strategy. (http://goo.gl/MtGe3j
Direct Action Everywhere (DxE) is a grassroots animal rights network which organizes creative demonstrations to protest speciesism and violence against animals. In early 2014, DxE will be launching the big one: for one month, we will release a series of creative protests every day -- protests that show the power of directly confronting speciesism anywhere and everywhere, with a strong community at our back. At the end of that month, we will execute another international demonstration with the Earthlings Coalition, which rallied thousands of activists in 41 cities around the world (http://goo.gl/soJEFf
), and launch a powerful campaign – replete with haunting investigatory footage, careful research, and a strategic plan of action –against perhaps the largest animal killer of them all: a company whose penchant for violence is matched only by its proclivity for deception.