In January of 2014, James Aspey started his journey of not speaking for 365 days. It was in honor of all the abused animals (for lab testing, breeding, etc.) and slaughtered animals (killed unnecessarily for food, religious ceremonies and sport) that don’t have the ability to speak on their own behalf. With compassion & commitment, James achieved his goal of not speaking for a full year — but he wasn’t silent. He spent the entire year spreading a powerful message of awareness & non-violence for the animals that don’t have the same opportunity to do so.
If an animal could talk, what would it say? Would it yell for help when being tortured in laboratories for the testing of products for humans (examples here)? Would it ask repeatedly not to be tied up or crammed into small crates (examples here)? Would it try to convince those who snatch its newborn babies not to take them (examples here)? Would it plead for its freedom when enslaved by breeders for profit (examples here)? Would it beg for its life just before its throat is slit (examples here)? What would you say, if you suffered the plight of these animals? Would you speak out and try to save yourself or those you love?
If we can say we love animals, or love other living beings, or embrace the idea of peace on earth and equal rights — then I think we need to be honest with ourselves; is our exploitation of animals necessary or fair? Or is it cruel, and based on old traditions, food addictions and insensitive actions?
The thoughts I shared above all came to mind, as I was putting this blog post together. And they are part of a thought-wave I’ve shared on Sunday Is For Lovers over the years. You can find similar trains of thought here, and here, and here. I am so grateful for James Aspey, and the year he spent in 2014. And for all of the other animal rights activists (most of them never acknowledged or named, many of them working in secrecy or anonymously for others) that make a difference in the world. Whether they are cheered, seen or ever acknowledged, their every action has a ripple effect. This blog post is one very small example of that effect. So are the millions of people that have changed their lives after becoming more aware. (There are over 7 million vegetarians in the USA alone. Meat-less food alternatives are now a multi-billion dollar industry, because of the demand for vegan & vegetarian options. Each day the number of people that eat this way grows, and the examples of people living healthy & fulfilled lives, without the need to eat animals or animal products, becomes more evident.)
You can get to know James and his work via the videos below. James is very open with his contact information. So if you have any questions for him, you can find him via the links I share in this blog post. Also, his direct email address is listed on his website.
And don’t forget, you have a resource in me as well. If you have any questions on how to transition to a vegan or vegetarian diet, I would love to help you. I have over 25 years of experience (it includes both raw and cooked diets, so I can answer questions and share tips from both perspectives). I’m happy to help you, and it’s absolutely free of charge. You can find me via my contact page.