Due to recent events, we feel that we should clarify a few things. There are a multitude of different kinds of people with varying intentions and opinions or ethical and moral values responding to the broad selection of topics we have tackled on our website and on Twitter, which is usually very refreshing and for which we are very grateful. Whilst we value the freedom of opinion, we have to distance ourselves from some of the comments and commenters, who seem to have at the very least misunderstood or misinterpreted, unintentionally or intentionally, certain topics, most likely to suit their own agenda.
The line we draw is when it comes to any form of ‘violence’. As stated numerous times before, we are committed to the principal of holistic nonviolence. This means that we are questioning all forms of oppression, aggression and violence. We are ‘refusing to intentionally take away the dignity, bodily integrity, freedom, or the life of another individual, no matter how they may differ from ourselves, be they a fellow human or a fellow animal.’1 This obviously includes any intentional use of non-human animals and animal derived products.
Let us put this moral and ethical standard into the context of one our campaigns, namely of not letting pet cats unsupervised and freely roam. This campaign is aimed at the education of pet cat owners and guardians to enable them to ‘make the connection’ and to subsequently not letting their pet cats freely roam, whilst at the same time providing their pet cats with a supervised, safe, enriched and enjoyable living environment. This logical step will protect our native wildlife, but will also make sure that beloved pet cats are kept safe without being potentially put at risk of being seriously injured or even killed on busy roads. However, despite our first hand knowledge and in depth experience regarding the damage roaming pet cats do to our native wildlife, we strictly condemn the intentional killing or harming of roaming cats, regardless whether they are pet or feral cats. Cats are sentient beings too, and pet cats at least, have guardians or owners. And these guardians and owners are the ones we want to encourage to supervise their pets with the aim to avoid harm to both, pets and our wildlife. In the same context, we also condemn any form of violence or discrimination towards pet cat owners and guardians, and we will only support a respectful and non-violent exchange of opinions.
Similarly, we are against any form of hunting, culling or lethal methods of so called ‘pest control’, regardless of the perceived reason and regardless of the species concerned. Again, this also means that we are against any form of violence against misguided hunters or pest controllers. We are also strictly opposed to blood sports like pigeon or horse racing, or the use of non-human animals for educational purposes or scientific experiments, for the same before mentioned reason that we are against the intentional use of non-human animals. We are advocating to treat human and non-human sentient beings with the respect they deserve, regardless of how much they may differ from ourselves, meaning regardless of race, species, age, gender identity, sexual orientation, nationality, ethnicity, language, religion or any other status. Abolishing all violence and oppression is the ultimate goal, which needs to be achieved in a peaceful way.
And there is another thought we would like to mention. The problem is not how we exploit non-human animals. The problem is simply the fact that we exploit non-human animals in the first place. Therefore the solution is not to reduce animal abuse, the solution is to eliminate animal use. Slightly larger cages are not saving the life of an imprisoned sentient being, when this life is prematurely ended anyway. And this is where everyone can make a difference. Everyone can make the difference between life and death for the individual sentient being concerned. No charity or government input is required.
We are adhering to the principals of a zero tolerance approach. We will not tolerate harassment, discrimination and bullying. Aggressive behaviour, be it violent or abusive, may result in the offending person being blocked, posts or comments being deleted, and in extreme cases the Police being contacted.
- Tribe of Heart – Introducing Holistic Nonviolence – https://www.tribeofheart.org/sr/hnvintrosub_english.htm