Freedom From the
Q: What do you say to those who say that releasing ranch-raised or laboratory animals into the wild is consigning them to death in a world they are not used to?
A: Had I been born in this prison I'm now in
with my only future being a certain painful death, I think I would accept
the slightest chance of survival, knowing that the worst that could happen
would be the same fate I was destined in the first place. And if I knew
what my captors knew, as is the case with mink farmers, that indeed many
prisoners who have escaped have survived and lived natural lives, then
definitely any chance of survival is better than a certain death. When we
are talking about a species such as mink, fox, lynx, bobcat or any other
animal which contains within its DNA the memory of natural survival, there
can be no other form of liberation that is acceptable beyond rescue,
rehabilitation and release back to their natural environment. Many species
have the ability to survive without human help.
Q: Do you feel that there is pressure within animal advocacy and environmentalism to get arrested? And if so, do you think this is helpful to the movements?
A: I'm assuming you mean civil disobedience
(CD). Rather than pressure activists to simply get arrested, we should
first ask ourselves if the impact of the action we plan has an impact on
our target. I've seen a lot of activists get arrested doing CD mostly out
of peer pressure, or guilt-tripping people into believing that if they
don't get arrested they're not doing enough "for the animals" or "for the
earth." I also see many activists participating in CD with the sole
objective of gaining media attention for their cause when deep down inside
they feel their impact is insignificant. I believe we should only
participate in actions that we honestly believe will accomplish our goals.
Any action should speak for itself without the necessity of media coverage
to make it a success. When the ALF raids a lab and burns it down, it
doesn't matter whether it's reported or not. The animals are rescued and
that lab won't be torturing an animal for a long time.
Q: How have you coped in incarceration? What resources do you draw upon?
A: Right now I consider my imprisonment the
only vacation I'm ever going to get away from my social, ecological and
spiritual responsibilities. It is a time to rethink my strategies and
prepare for a lifetime of service to save what little is left. It is a
time to study the structure of our enemies to better understand and
discover their Achilles' heel. I also consider prison a rite of passage
for anyone who is serious about achieving animal and earth liberation,
because it is one of society's fears that if you step out of line, you
will be punished by prison. And if we're serious, then we have to overcome
our fears of imprisonment. After all, it is little compared to the price
paid by freedom fighters in other countries who are tortured or given
ridiculously long sentences for the least degree of resistance. And it is
nothing compared to the animals in zoos and aquariums who are sentenced to
solitary confinement without hope of parole, or the animals sitting in
labs, factories and fur farms whose only escape is death.
Q: What are your hopes and expectation for the future?
A: I have more hope now than I ever had before. I'm not saying that we'll ever see complete victory and the return to global ecological harmony, but that doesn't matter. Having utopian visions is important, but what really gives me hope and inspiration is to have discovered a power that only the earth and animals can give us. Victory for me is never betraying the powers I have been blessed to represent. Hope comes from seeing more and more activists turn away from the material comforts of the dominant society and look for something ancient and true that I believe they can find in wilderness and in the eyes of a wild lynx. The spirit of the earth is alive, and through her animal people we have much to learn. I have hope that as more of us restore our faith in our power, rather than giving strength to our opposition by believing and fearing them, then we will remember the wildness buried in our own DNA. I believe the wild spirit is the only hope for preserving planet earth and all life. But hope doesn't necessarily mean we will ever win, it just means we will never surrender. We can't. Too much depends on our unwillingness to compromise. It's time to make a stand, and choose where our allegiance lies; with earth and animals, or those destroying them. My hope is that many will join me, and follow their wildest desires and live the life that we believe only exists in myths and fairy tales. Reality is what we make it, and my expectation is for more and more warriors to swear allegiance to the liberation of the Animal Nations and the defense of Mother Earth. As long as we may live we may never get another chance to make as much difference in the fate of the planet as we now have. My greatest hope is that when I leave these prison walls behind there will be many more warriors to greet me than there were when I entered here.
You can write to Rod Coronado at 03895-000, FCI Unit SW, 8901 S. Wilmot Rd., Tucson, AZ 85706.