Steve Best, PhD is Associate Professor of Philosophy and Humanities
at the University of Texas, El Paso. Author of numerous books and
articles on social theory and philosophy, he is also President of the
El Paso animal rights group, Voice for All Animals, and Vice
President of the Vegetarian Society of El Paso.
Undoing False Oppositions: Lessons From the Social Revolutionaries.
This talk provisionally defends recent "reforms" such as fought for
in the PETA campaigns against McDonald's, Burger King, and Wendy's,
and argues that "welfarism" and "reforms" are not logically or
practically separate from "revolution" and "rights." He examines
lessons we can learn from the 19th and 20th century Marxist tradition
for how we might rethink these oppositions and develop a coherent
strategy for the animal rights movement.
Bruce Friedrich is the Vegetarian Campaign Coordinator for People for
the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA). Before coming to PETA, Bruce
spent more than 6 years working in a shelter for homeless families
and soup kitchens in inner-city Washington, D.C. While in Washington,
Bruce has been arrested many times, and has spent a total of 3 years
incarcerated for civil disobedience in the Gandhian tradition.
Welfare v. Liberation: Mutually Exclusive? Bruce will discuss PETA's
campaigns against McDonald's, Burger King, and Wendy's, and will
discuss PETA's work with Tricon (parent company of KFC, Pizza Hut,
and Taco Bell), Safeway, Kroger, the National Council of Chain
Restaurants, and the Food Marketing Institute. He will contend that
animal rights activists should support such efforts, and that such
efforts are one excellent method of advancing the cause of animal
liberation in society.
Lee Hall is a lawyer who investigates how and why the law has failed
to accord oppressed groups-including slaves, non-citizens, and
nonhumans-the valuation of respect that is extended to constitutional
persons. Hall has published articles on the subject in Spanish and in
English, in both philosophical and legal journals. Hall is an author
of an article that appeared this year in the Seton Hall
Constitutional Law Journal. A model U.S. Supreme Court brief on
behalf of a non-human plaintiff, it is the first article of this
style to be published in the legal literature. The article is
designed to spark further debate, to enhance ethics courses, to be
cited in court, and to be used in an actual case on behalf of a
non-human plaintiff and her class.
Beyond Paternalism. Lee will argue that it is morally unjustifiable
to treat sentient individuals as chattel property, and that legal
welfarism's focus on the level of suffering after the animal's status
as property has already been accepted and codified into law is
superficial and ineffective. Lee will describe the effects of this
acceptance on the contemporary animal rights movement. In an
interactive dialogue with conference attendees, rights theory will be
discussed in light of successful emancipation movements.
Joe Miele has been an animal rights activist since being exposed to
the cruelties of factory farming in 1991. Since going vegan 9 months
after his introduction to the movement, Joe has worked on a range of
projects for the New Jersey Animal Rights Alliance (NJARA). In
addition, Miele writes "The Fur Trade Today," an email newsletter for
activists interested in the fur trade. He is a member of the Board of
Directors of the Coalition to Abolish the Fur Trade, and he is on the
Board of Directors of Pets Alive, a no-kill shelter and sanctuary for
homeless animals in Middletown, New York.
Getting Back to the Core of the Animal Rights Movement. Several
animal rights groups have lowered their campaign standards by
accepting welfarist reforms within animal abusing industries as signs
of progress for other-than-human animals. Groups that once vocally
pushed veganism have recently softened their message to one of
seeking improved welfare rather than demanding rights for animals.
The acceptance of "less cruel" killing or confinement will lead to
the end of the animal rights movement as we know it. Only by getting
back to the core of the animal rights movement will we hasten the day
when all animals are freed from human tyranny.
Kirsten Rosenberg is a lifelong animal advocate and a vegetarian
since the age of 12. She has been professionally involved in the
animal protection movement since 1991, when she began working for the
L.A.-based Ark Trust. As Project Assistant, Kirsten helped produce
the annual Genesis Awards ceremony and TV show, while also serving on
California's veterinary state licensing committee. In 1996, Kirsten
joined The Animals' Agenda as Assistant Editor. Now the Managing
Editor, she oversees the production of each issue. Kirsten is
currently the Chairperson of the Summit for the Animals' Executive
Committee. She is a founding member of the Animal Rights Legal
Foundation, a new nonprofit organization dedicated to educating
attorneys, law students, and the public about laws and cases
concerning animals and their status in society.
Throwing the Baby Out With the Battery Cage: Looking Out for Animals'
Welfare in the Pursuit of Rights. What do animal rights advocates
want? For most avowed rightists, that's easy: The complete liberation
of animals from human exploitation as quickly as possible. Yet while
we work diligently to achieve such a status for animals over the long
term, we also have a duty to respect the "rights" of those
individuals who are currently suffering to a life less miserable. To
dismiss opportunities to ameliorate their pain and distress is to
treat those animals as mere abstractions rather than as sentient
beings inherently worthy of consideration now-a position, ironically,
often held by the very exploitive institutions we seek to overturn.
Joyce Friedman has worked as Northeast Campaign Coordinator for In
Animals for 3 years. In NYC she works extensively on anti-animal circus
campaigns and on vegan outreach using Faunavision- the showing of video
footage of factory farms and slaughterhouses to the public on a
level. She has also worked on companion animal campaigns involving
overpopulation, animal shelter and "pet" store issues. She was successful
organizing the liberation of birds held on display as property at
department store and placing them in good homes. She regularly works
with other groups on local campaigns, such as in helping to organize the
Free Macys Tour in NYC. She has recently begun to work with politicians
getting a bill introduced in NYC to ban traveling animal acts.
Saturday, December 8th, 8 AM - 5 PM
8:00 - 8:30 Registration.
8:30 - 8:45 Welcome by Karen Davis, United Poultry Concerns.
8:45 - 9:45 Kirsten Rosenberg, The Animals' Agenda: "Throwing the
Baby Out With the Battery Cage: Looking Out for Animals' Welfare in
the Pursuit of Rights."
9:50 - 10:50 Joe Miele, New Jersey Animal Rights Alliance, "Getting
Back to the Core of the Animal Rights Movement."
10:55 - 11:10 Coffee Break.
11:15 - 11:45 Paul Shapiro, Compassion Over Killing, Video
Presentation of Hope for the Hopeless: An Investigation and Rescue at
a Battery Egg Facility.
11:45 - 12:15 Discussion.
12:15 - 1:15 Vegan Buffet Luncheon.
Sunday, December 9th, 9 AM - 2 PM.
1:15 - 1:25 Introduction of Afternoon Session by Karen Davis, United Poultry Concerns.
1:25 - 2:25 Steve Best, Steve Best, PhD, Associate Professor of Philosophy and Humanities, University of Texas
, "Undoing False Oppositions: Lessons From the Social Revolutionaries."
2:30 - 3:30 Lee Hall, Attorney, "Beyond Paternalism."
3:35 - 3:50 Coffee Break.
3:50 - 5:00 Discussion led by P.J. McKosky, Animal Advocates of
9:00 - 9:15 Welcome by Karen Davis, United Poultry Concerns.
9:15 - 9:25 Announcements.
9:30 - 10:30 Bruce Friedrich, People for the Ethical Treatment of
Animals, "Welfare v. Liberation: Mutually Exclusive?"
10:35 - 11:35 TBA
11:40 - 11:50 Coffee Break.
11:50 - 12:45 Discussion led by Joyce Friedman, In Defense of
12:45 - 2:00 Vegan Buffet Luncheon and Visits with the Sanctuary
2:00 The End.
With thanks to everyone who participated in United Poultry Concerns'
Third Annual Forum!
United Poultry Concerns, Inc.
PO Box 150
Machipongo, VA 23405-0150
(Presenters, Topics & Schedule UPC Forum 2001:Do Animal Welfare Campaigns Hurt Or Help Animal Rights? )