[CattleNetwork.com - opinon]
I don't know if you've had occasion to visit the Web site for the
notorious Animal Liberation Front �
www.animalliberationspressoffice.org � lately. If so, it may have
struck you, as it did me, how ironic the group's "liberation"
For so-called revolutionaries, who say they want to change society's
entire relationship with the animal kingdom, they certainly seem to be
relying on the same discredited, retaliatory acts of violence that
have proven to be counterproductive for the last, what? Two thousand
As examples, here are a few snippets from the group's (alleged) "press
office," showing clearly that ALF is little more than thugs and
terrorists, cloaking themselves in the self-described nobility of
"Two FLA (Frente de Liberación Animal) strikes very early this morning
in Monterrey, Nuevo León (Mexico). The first target was a big fur
store, where all locks and doors were glued . . . The second target
was a KFC that was painted with paint bombs. In Support of all ALF and
ELF cells and dedicated to the SHAC 7."
However, all of the above is business as usual for the self-styled
outlaws who comprise the paint-spraying, fire-bombing members of ALF's
various "cells." (Of course, that last designation is how they
identify themselves � but don't call them terrorists!)
But the most egregious of ALF's recent operations occurred late last
month. In a communiqué (again, with the pseudo-revolutionary jargon)
issued on Dec. 20, ALF bragged that, "Last night we gave an early
Christmas present to around two hundred and fifty of our friends at
the Griggstown Quail Farm in Princeton, N.J.
"After clipping through the fencing we cut out large sections of the
canopy covering three pens, then flushed several hundred quail,
phesants (sic) and partridges out into the starry sky and freedom. The
farm is located by a waterway and open fields, and we wish our friends
the best of luck in establishing new lives.
Response. Every company involved in the meat and poultry business
ought to have several trained communicators and spokespeople who can
reach out to local media � certainly if an animal activist incident
takes place here they do business � and offer a perspective that
challenges the accusations of abuse, cruelty and whatever else that
are always lobbed at producers and packers.
Security. All facilities need to be fully secured along the perimeter
of the property and at all entrance points, loading docks and employee
access points. Video surveillance equipment needs to be installed.
Equally important, management needs to proactively reach out to local
police and emergency responders to discuss their security plans and
make sure the community's first responders are aware of threats posed
by ALF and others allied with them.
Support. There are numerous pro-industry groups out there working to
counteract the hatred, the violence and the propaganda generated by
animal activists. Perhaps your firm is a member. If so, that's great.
If not, why not?
But beyond paying your dues, how about getting involved? How about
attending meetings, appearing on industry discussion panels, becoming
active on the committees most groups have formed to deal with those
who oppose the very existence of the industry?
Make no mistake: This is a fight to the finish, and it's one industry
cannot afford to lose.
Dan Murphy, former editor of MMT magazine, is communications
integrator + principal at Seattle-based Outsource Marketing and author
of the forthcoming book, "Meat of the Matter."