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Keynote and Panel from One Struggle (Animal Rights Africa)

Footage from Steve Best’s keynote as well as the panel discussion from One Struggle (Animal Rights Africa) is available here. Though they live a world away from me, the activists’ issues weren’t a world away at all. From struggling to get other movements to recognize animals (not to mention other causes) as connected to theirs, to how we go about achieving animal liberation ("You can’t just tell everyone to go vegan," said one), to of course getting people to rethink the idea that we should take care of people first and deal with animals and the environment later, One Struggle launched a discussion that I’d like to see a lot more of here.

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  1. davedrum #

    What I saw on the video, was "DOCTOR" Best telling things we all know…as if he was talking to HS students (nothing wrong with that). Does he have "passion"…yes! Yet,I've seen his passion for those that cause harm to others as well. I've seen him say that "he" himself won't take part in SHAC or ALF…but that he supports their efforts. I still know…and believe…that he "draws" in…the weak…to make them do what he can not do himself… He'll NEVER take responsibility for the actions he wants "others" to do… yet that "HE" in fact "gets" them to do….

    Watching this video was much like seeing a "lecture" being given to a Jr. High School class….(talking about how Factory Farming in the #1 cause of global Warming….we ALL know that here)…. nothing to be learned by any of us here… yet there's nothing wrong in teaching those that DO NOT KNOW…to me…he's just not the one to be delivering this message. Not when they'll one day "follow" him and do the "other" things he preaches….yet is too sissy to take part of.

    Why constantly blow SMOKE up "DR" Best's $$$??? His speech was weak…

    Was there ANYONE here that learned a thing from it? Anything new?

    This is how he does things…

    Draws in "others" to do his own "dirty work"….

    That is just how I believe he works. Call me wrong, that's OK… Yet I'll never be a fan of his…for I in believe many things he does…until he tries… (as he has never shown this)…TRIES…to save all things living through PEACE…"FIRST"!!!

    September 20, 2008
  2. I don't think "everyone" thinks of animal rights as part of a larger web of issues, davedrum. That was the part most interesting to me: the questions and issues the other activists had that we here also struggle with. Many people are single-issue driven.

    Also, I think you give Best too much power and insult the intelligence of the people he speaks to–as if he is some kind of svengali. It seems to me that he's an intelligent person who has a firm grasp of history, isn't dogmatic, and never forgets the war being waged against sentient nonhumans and the planet.

    Finally, to say Steve Best does not believe in "trying peace first" is to not have read his writing.

    September 20, 2008
  3. Bea Elliott #

    Hi davedrum, I must be one of the ones in the HS audience that Best's lecture was aimed at. I'm relatively new to issues concerning Animal Rights, especially as it relates to other social and environmental issues…

    I do know however that injustices to human and non-humans and how they relate to each other, can never be over-stated. Whatever opportunity one has to expose the evils of hierarchal exploitation, it needs to be done. Does Best encourage groups to violence? I'm not aware of any information to believe so… can you offer any reason or proof to believe differently?

    September 21, 2008
  4. davedrum #

    Bea, I think it is clear to say that best "supports" groups that practice violence. Here's the thread from this blog:

    He clearly supports both ALF and SHAC. He asks that people send them money, etc. To call them "non-violent" is very much like saying Saddam was capable of spreading more violence and death with his WMD's that they "knew" he had.

    Scroll down to the comments section on that thread and you'll have the proof that I provided…. that these ARE violent groups that DO in fact harm people and not just property. He even disregards the recent fire bombing that took place when there were children at home. Read Bunny's post as she quotes him there. He clearly supports these groups and their actions. Yet more animals die from factory farms and from labs around the world each and every single day…

    Best is going in a direction that is doomed to fail. It's just sad that he himself is too weak and a coward to take part in the actions he supports. Yet he will ruin countless young lives as he steers people onto paths that need not be followed.

    September 22, 2008
  5. Once again, and I vow for the last time, I recommend reading what the activists themselves say. Some of them have changed their minds and their tactics as a result of their experiences. Some haven't. Read Terrorists or Freedom Fighters. Read Igniting a Revolution. Rather than reading quotes from activistcash about Brian Cass and SHAC, read about the situation from the activist side at . And read about what they do at HLS here: .

    Read activist interviews at Read what Jeff Luers has to say at . Decide for yourself rather than allowing the rumors, assumptions and ad hominem attacks sway you.

    Read Will Potter at religiously. And of course, read Steve Best if you care to. His language can be harsh and he's clearly very angry. You might not agree with him, but at least it'll be because you know what he stands for and you've decided for yourself, based on his work. And if you want to call him, the ALF, SHAC supporters, OR ANYONE ELSE, a bunch of names, go for it.

    Somewhere else. That gets embarrassing.

    September 22, 2008
  6. Bea Elliott #

    So Best did not discredit activists whose "physical violence" frightened children and upset the neighborhood. From what I just saw at Huntington I'm more likely to defend their actons as well. I don't think these demonstrations or infractions are significant enough to dismiss Best's wisdom.

    I have a hard time on where to draw the line on violence. I'd like to think I'm a peaceful person. However, I also observe the Mega-Transglobal Corporations… These giant human/animal and land abusers grow more powerful and destructive every day. Pacifism doesn't really stand a chance. And so I believe *future* violence is inevitable.

    Animal Rights are my specific concern as it's the crux to all liberation… I am certain Abolition will come at the cost of human lives as well. I believe that when the Movement is deemed a sufficient "threat" to "economic stability" – activists will be sacrificed… Lives will be lost… and a nation will be divided. Anyone who thinks the meat-eating culture along with Cargill, Smithfield, Conagra, Huntington Science, etc. are going to permit their animal industries to fail isn't paying attention.

    There's going to be a heck of a fight… National stability and financial markets will be at risk – causing every citizen to choose sides of ideology. Best speaks of "Revolution"… As we hope for a peaceful change in the next dozen centuries, we can continue to put a vegan brochure in every hand on the planet. But in the end I'm certain, a violent conflict will be brought to us…

    Otherwise peaceful people will have no choice but to defend their cause with equal force. SHAC and ALF "front line" fighters witness the horrors first hand, I can understand why they are sufficently moved to call the time for change as "now"… Come to think of it – it's long overdue.

    September 22, 2008

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