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Animal Rights Activists Disrupt Exclusive Pig Roast Event in Washington, D.C.

August 8, 2017 by Leave a Comment


The News

Dozens of animal rights activists disrupted a event celebrating pig consumption at the Watergate Hotel in Washington, D.C. According to organizers, Cochon555 is “a nose-to-tail culinary tour dedicated to . . . educating chefs and diners about the agricultural importance of utilizing Old World livestock.” The event is held in 14 cities around the country. “Cochon” is French for pig.

“Cochon555 is working to make people feel good about eating meat by perpetuating the myth that animals can be slaughtered humanely,” said Amanda Houdeschell, one of the organizers of the protest. “It’s a fraud, and it’s giving people who might otherwise abstain from eating animals a free pass to turn a blind eye to the horrors inflicted on them.”

Cochone555 guests appear to be amused by the disruption. Activists speculate that, for many, nervous laughter was a defense mechanism.

Several minutes into the disruption, Cochon555 organizers turned off the lights in the hotel ballroom and turned up the volume on the music in an effort to drown out the protesters. While many of the guests at the carnivorous event appeared to be amused by the disruption, organizers were visibly jarred.  As protesters exited the hotel, one Cochon555 representative attempted to justify the pig festival to the activists: “No matter if you think it’s murder or whatever, we’re still honoring a product that is bred by breeders with their wholehearted integrity.” In response to his assertion that the pigs are “treated just like your kids,” TheirTurn’s Donny Moss asked, “Do we slaughter our children?”

One of hundreds of individuals killed and dismembered during Cochon555 tour


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Watch What Happens When Pedestrians are Offered $1 to Watch Video

July 28, 2017 by Leave a Comment


The News

Pedestrians lined up in NYC’s Union Square to watch a four minute video in exchange for $1, but many were so profoundly affected by what they saw that they declined to take their reward and instead engaged with the advocates on hand about transitioning to a vegan diet.

The “pay-per-view” event, organized by the 12,500 member NYC Vegetarian and Vegan Meetup Group, aims to expose New Yorkers to the cruelty of animal agriculture and help them transition to a healthier and more environmentally friendly plant-based diet. TheirTurn interviewed people who were willing to speak on camera about if and how the video, “Ten Billion Lives” (see below), would affect their behavior.

“One of the biggest challenges we face as advocates in our day-to-day lives is convincing people to watch footage of industrialized animal agriculture and slaughter,” said David Greene, who runs NYC Vegetarian and Vegan Meetup Group. “The ‘Pay-Per-View’ approach helps us overcome that obstacle and provides us with a platform to engage with a captive audience about making more compassionate choices.”

Activist Joyce Friedman conducts vegan outreach with a woman who was disturbed by the farm animal abuse in the video.

Here is the 4 minute video that the pedestrians were paid to watch:

Your Turn

If you live in the NYC tri-state area and would like to participate in pay-per-view events, other forms of vegan outreach or social events, please visit NYC Vegetarian and Vegan Meetup Group.


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Disruption of Hotdog Eating Contest Garners Widespread Coverage in Mainstream Media

July 7, 2017 by Leave a Comment


The News

Animal rights activists with Direct Action Everywhere (DxE) waited in line for five hours to get a prime spot at the annual hotdog eating contest at Nathan’s in Brooklyn, and their patience – and willingness to be manhandled – paid off.

After the activists disrupted the event and got arrested (see video below), several TV and print media outlets in NYC ran stories, and dozens of newspapers around the country published an Associated Press story. Notably, the New York Post, a paper frequently hostile to animal rights activism, reported on why the activists protested:

Several international newspapers also covered the disruption.  In Argentina, Flores Buenos Aires included the DxE statement from the NY Post article.

Animal rights activists have protested the infamous hotdog eating competition for the past several years, and have, each year, garnered at least some favorable media coverage. In 2016, the NY Daily News, another newspaper notoriously hostile to animal rights activists, published a story that included strong animal rights messages.

Ironically, the annual hotdog eating contest is held on Independence Day, in spite of the fact that the individuals who were consumed by the contestants spent their entire lives being held captive before being slaughtered.

Cattle are held captive in sheds and feedlots before being slaughtered

Matt Cataldo, one of five activists who was arrested and later released with no charges, told TheirTurn, “These people who stuff dead animals down their throats, vomit into their own hands and then shove it back in are regarded as athletes, but they are lazy cowards — exploiting innocent animals for money and fame. There is no excuse for animal abuse, and we will never stop fighting for their freedom.”

Police falsely arrest Matt Cataldo (left). Rocky Schwartz (right) and three other animal rights activists for legally protesting at Nathan’s hot dog eating contest on July 4th.

When she was released from jail, Rocky Schwartz, who was handled aggressively by police, encouraged her followers on social media to take a stand for animals. “Are you supporting the system that says my friends and I should be handcuffed for speaking out against violence–the system that glorifies the exploitation and killing of animals–or are you fighting against it? Because that is the choice each of us has to make.”


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Activists Worldwide Participate in National Animal Rights Day

June 9, 2017 by Leave a Comment


The News

On June 4th, animal rights activists in 22 cities around the world took to the streets to participate in the 7th annual National Animal Rights Day (NARD).

Animal rights activists in North America, Europe, Asia and Australia participated in 2017 National Animal Rights Day

According to the organizer, the non-profit organization Our Planet. Theirs Too., NARD “gives a voice to all animals” and will continue to do so “until all animals are free from enslavement and their rights are established and protected by law.”

TheirTurn documented the ceremony in New York City, which attracted hundreds of participants and onlookers.

NARD events consist of a memorial ceremony for the billions of animals killed each year by humans; the reading and signing of a Declaration of Animal Rights; and a rally with speakers covering topics from animal rights advocacy to making the switch to a cruelty-free lifestyle.

Participants in NARD’s NYC used deceased animals during the memorial service


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NYU Goes Vegan (VIDEO)

April 27, 2017 by Leave a Comment


The News

The Animal Welfare Collective at NYU and NYU Dining Services partnered to “veganize” a student dining hall for three days, serving plant-based, environmentally sustainable food in observance with Earth Day.

Anami Nguyen and Aneri Mehta, members of the Animal Welfare Collective, told TheirTurn that feedback they’ve received from non-veg students has been overwhelmingly positive. Even those who were disappointed to discover that the dining was serving exclusively plant-based foods returned to the buffet to refill their plates.

A student dining hall at NYU was “veganized”

While they wish that NYU’s vegan pop up was permanent, Ms. Nguyen and Ms. Mehta readily acknowledge that the event was ground-breaking and a sign that plant-based diets are becoming more and more mainstream.


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