We like to believe that in decades to come, our grandchildren and great-grandchildren will look back at us with pride. We hope they will marvel at the things we accomplished during our time on Earth.Unfortunately, we won’t be proud of everything they’ll look back on.
We’re certainly not proud of how America once embraced the practice of slavery. It’s a period we now recall with shame, regret and sadness. We likewise don’t fondly remember the days when American women were oppressed and denied the same rights as men.
In much the same way, Farm Sanctuary, the country’s largest and best known farm animal rescue and protection organization, believes future generations will one day look back at how we treated animals in industrialized factory farms and wonder, with shock and dismay, why we allowed it.
Leading up to “World Day for Farmed Animals” on October 2nd, Farm Sanctuary has launched an educational and fundraising campaign called “What Did You Do?” After all, our grandchildren may very well ask each of us one day: When you discovered how badly farmed animals were treated, what did you do?
“Unthinkable Pain and Suffering“ For 9 Billion Animals a Year
“From YouTube videos, to public education campaigns, to major network news coverage of the latest undercover investigations, we’ve reached a critical point in history where the cruel treatment of animals on factory farms is no longer a secret,” said Gene Baur, president and co-founder of Farm Sanctuary, in the group’s press release for this campaign.
“It’s now up to us to decide what our response will be to an industry that inflicts unthinkable pain and suffering on 9 billion animals a year,” Baur added. “When future generations look back on this moment in time, they will wonder, ‘What Did You Do?’ when you learned about this animal cruelty.”
There’s plenty you can do, of course. This campaign pulls together a great deal of information geared toward helping people make a real difference, beginning today. Here are just a few simple ideas to get you started:
- Go vegan (it’s easier today than it’s ever been)
- Start with “Meatless Mondays,” go vegetarian and then transition to vegan
- Write to Congress and your local newspapers about farm animal abuse
- Share an educational farm animal video with your social media network
- Volunteer your time at a veggie festival, animal sanctuary or farm animal non-profit group
- Hand out informational flyers at colleges, concerts and other gatherings
- Donate money
Celebrities Tell Us Their Own Answers to “What Did You Do?”
Farm Sanctuary’s “What Did You Do?” campaign has the support of a number of dedicated vegan celebrities, including Emily Deschanel, Kevin Nealon, Russell Simmons, Kristin Bauer, Fred Willard, Bonnie-Jill Laflin, Mayim Bialik, Leona Lewis, Joan Jett and Shannon Elizabeth. Hear some of their stories here:
Is this a cause that’s close to your heart? It’s definitely close to mine. How will you respond in 20, 30 or 40 years when someone asks what you did after learning what goes on in factory farms? Will you be proud of your answer?
You can be.
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