FOCUS

FOCUS: Thoughts from a true activist

From Vegetarian to Veterinarian
Guest Perspective ANONYMOUS*

An activist is someone who acts on behalf of people, places or things that have limited ability to act for themselves, regarding issues that directly affect their wellbeing and/or existence.

Action is intended to improve the current situation of the person, place or thing while also creating awareness by enlightening members of the community. Activism can take on many forms—common images include a protest in front of city hall with signs and megaphones, a march held on closed city streets, a fired up protestor or a celebrity who owns a foundation and travels the world, such as Leonardo DiCaprio.

However, as an activist for animal rights, I do not fit within these generalized images. I follow a strict vegetarian diet and promote this lifestyle to friends and family; I educate myself and others on the animal farming industry. I support brands that never use animal testing, I do not wear fur or leather, I encourage pet owners to buy their pets in pairs (as animals with companions of the same species are happier), I advise people on how to care for their pets and I visit animal shelters.

I step in when people interfere with wildlife, and I am in school with the intention of devoting my life to animals by becoming a naturopathic veterinarian.

Sure, there are alternate and more extreme ways for me to be an activist. I could volunteer as a participant in the documentary “Farming Humans,” where I would live as a farmed animal in a cage for 10 days and be branded or tattooed with a serial number. I could make visits to grocery stores, putting up signs and information on products known for causing animals harm. I could become a vegan at this very moment.

            Activism takes shape in many ways and in many actions. I do what I can to support my cause in ways I know best, and for that, I consider myself an activist.

*IDENTITY WITHHELD UPON AUTHOR’S REQUEST

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