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The Yom Kippur Massacre of 2016 (VIDEO)

October 31, 2016 by Leave a Comment


The News

Before Yom Kippur, the Jewish day of atonement, tens of thousands of ultra-Orthodox Jews in Brooklyn, New York, partake in a sacrificial ritual called Kaporos. During Kaporos, practitioners swing a live chicken around their heads while saying a prayer to transfer their sins to the animal, who is then slaughtered. In 2016, hundreds of animal rights activists disrupted the massacre. https://youtu.be/KpY7ec9ie0g Slaughtering animals on public streets is illegal, as it violates 15 city and state health, sanitation and animal cruelty laws, but NYC's elected officials and the agencies that report to them, including the NYPD and Department of Health, turn a blind eye because the ultra-Orthodox Jewish communities that partake in the ritual vote in blocs. NY-based attorney Nora Constance Marino is suing the City of New York on behalf of local residents and the advocacy group The Alliance to End Chickens as Kaporos for failing to enforce both city and state laws. [caption id="attachment_10437" align="alignnone" width="2156"]Shimon Shuchat, who was born into the Hassidic community but has since left, encourages a Kaporos practitioner to swing coins instead of live chickens. Shimon Shuchat, who was born into the Hasidic community but has since left, encourages a Kaporos practitioner to swing coins instead of live chickens.[/caption] Animal rights activists in New York, Los Angeles, Miami and Jerusalem, cities with large populations of ultra-Orthodox Jews, are  campaigning to ban Kaporos.

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Activists Around the World Protest Hindu, Muslim & Jewish Animal Sacrifice

October 13, 2014 by Leave a Comment


The News

Tis the season to sacrifice animals for God, and activists around the world are rallying on behalf of the victims. Their protests are peaceful, and their message is simple: "Scripture doesn't mandate sacrifice. Please use an alternative to animals." During the Gadhimai festival in Nepal, which takes place once every five years, Hindus slaughter about 500,000 animals, including buffalo, pigs, goats, chickens and pigeons. The sacrifice is made in honor of Gadhimai, the goddess of power, who "brings prosperity" to those who participate. [caption id="attachment_3671" align="alignnone" width="500"]Gadhimai Festival (photo: Gemunu Amarasinghe) Gadhimai Festival (photo: Gemunu Amarasinghe)[/caption] Animal Welfare Network Nepal, which staged a 50 person protest in Kathmandu on Sunday in advance of the mass animal slaughter, said, "We want to show that religious activities can be carried out without causing harm to animals.” According to the group, activists protested the festival in 24 countries. In the following video, one practitioner says, "I am praying to Gadhimai that my name becomes big in the engineering field." http://youtu.be/vnkbSRXHhPA During Bakra Eid (Festival of the Sacrifice) on October 4th and 5th, Muslims slaughtered cows, camels, goats, sheep and rams  to honor Abraham's willingness to sacrifice his only son to God. In India, a Muslim woman from PETA, who promoted vegetarianism near the site of the slaughter, was mobbed by angry worshippers and arrested for “outraging religious feelings.” Dozens of media outlets reported on the incident, which brought her message of peace into millions of homes around the world. [caption id="attachment_3670" align="alignnone" width="529"]Peaceful protester attacked for promoting vegetarianism Peaceful protester attacked for promoting vegetarianism[/caption] Before Yom Kippur, the day of atonement, some sects of ultra-orthodox Jews transfer their sins to chickens by swinging them around their heads and slaughtering them. Protests in Brooklyn, where over 70,000 of hungry, dehydrated and weak chickens are killed each year, received international media attention. http://youtu.be/N9QNYaDIiJA In all three religions, practitioners invoke the name of God while killing her creatures. Attempting to counter "God said we should do this" with messages about compassion feels like a losing battle, but raising awareness, lobbying decision makers and shining an international spotlight on the abuse will slowly chip away at these barbaric religious rituals.

Your Turn

Please sign the following Change.org petitions: 1. Petition to stop animal sacrifice at the Gadhimai festival in Nepal 2. Petition to urge enforcement of laws being broken by Kaporos (chicken swinging) practitioners in New York

 

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Bloodshed in Brooklyn – Video from the Final Night

October 2, 2014 by Leave a Comment


The News

After spending several days stuffed in crates with no food or water, tens of thousands of chickens were swung in the air and slaughtered during the final night of Kaporos, the Yom Kippur ritual of transferring one's sins to a live chicken. [caption id="attachment_3284" align="alignnone" width="1280"]Ritual practitioners line up to slaughter sin-filled chickens Ritual practitioners line up to slaughter sin-filled chickens[/caption] [caption id="attachment_3281" align="alignnone" width="1280"]Slaughter in the streets of Brooklyn Slaughter in the streets of Brooklyn[/caption] Following is a short video of the chaotic scene during the final hours of the ritual - the chickens, the butchers and the ritual practitioners debating the protesters. http://youtu.be/N9QNYaDIiJA [caption id="attachment_3289" align="alignnone" width="1280"]In a bit of irony, a Mitzvah (good deed) mobile was parked near slaughter tent In a bit of irony, a Mitzvah (good deed) mobile was parked near slaughter tent[/caption]

Opinion

[caption id="attachment_3282" align="alignnone" width="1209"]Protesters clash with Kaporos practitioners Protesters clash with Kaporos practitioners[/caption] [caption id="attachment_3287" align="alignnone" width="1280"]By and large, the practitioners cannot relate to the protesters' concerns about the chickens By and large, the practitioners cannot relate to the protesters' concerns about the chickens[/caption] The 2014 Yom Kippur street protests are over, but the Alliance to End Chickens as Kaporos will, throughout the year, continue its fight to outlaw this barbaric ritual. Because of its size and voting power, the ultra-Orthodox Jewish community is very powerful, but, through legal strategies, outreach to sympathetic rabbis, public relations and education, the Alliance is convinced that the chickens will ultimately prevail.

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Lawyers File Emergency Order to Shut Down Chicken Swinging (New Video)

October 1, 2014 by Leave a Comment


The News

Lawyers for the Alliance to End Chickens as Kaporos filed an emergency order with the City of New York arguing that the swinging and slaughtering of tens of thousands of chickens in the street should be shut down because the ritual causes immediate, irreversible damage to public health and violates animal cruelty and sanitation laws. A judge is expected to issue a decision on Wednesday. Following is a one minute video of the ritual taken on Tuesday, the first of three days of chicken swinging that lead up to Yom Kippur, the Jewish day of atonement. http://youtu.be/GCdjrdhwQOA On Tuesday night, a few dozen activists clashed with hundreds of Orthodox Jews who were "transferring their sins" to live chickens while swinging them around their heads. The activists were contained in a pen and were surrounded by Kaporos practitioners who are always eager to debate. [caption id="attachment_3221" align="alignnone" width="901"]Protesters & chicken swingers square off Protesters & chicken swingers square off[/caption] This barbaric scene that takes place year after year is heart-breaking for activists, but the community has hope. Karen Davis, the founder of United Poultry Concerns and who traveled from Virginia to participate, says: “As more and more animal rights activists get involved, and with legal challenges in the works, many Orthodox rabbis are publicly condemning Kaporos on grounds of animal cruelty and sacrilege.” [caption id="attachment_3215" align="alignnone" width="1280"]Kaporos Thousands of chickens will be held in crates for several day with no food or water[/caption] Animal rescuers, including Jenny Brown from the Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary, were on hand to save as many chickens as possible and transport them to sanctuaries to live out their natural lives in the company of with hundreds of other farm animals who escaped from slaughter. [caption id="attachment_3255" align="alignnone" width="774"]Woodstock tends to injured chicken rescued from Kaporos Woodstock tends to injured chicken rescued from Kaporos[/caption]

Your Turn

Please sign the Change.org petition urging NYC to enforce the laws being broken by Kaporos practitioners.

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Renewed Efforts to Stop Chicken-Swinging Ritual During Yom Kippur

September 23, 2014 by Leave a Comment


The News

Before Yom Kippur, the Jewish Day of Atonement, hundreds of thousands of observant Jews across the world partake in Kaporos, a religious ritual in which participants swing live chickens around their heads while saying a prayer to transfer their sins to the animals. After the ceremony, a ritual slaughterer cuts their throats and stuffs them into inverted cones, garbage bags or dumpsters where they bleed to death, taking the sins with them. [caption id="attachment_2944" align="alignnone" width="237"]Kaporos Chicken Swinging Ritual photo: Carol Guzy, The Washington Post[/caption] Each year, dozens of activists protest at Kaporos sites in Brooklyn, which is home to tens of thousands of Orthodox Jews. During the protests, activists plead with participants to perform the ritual with coins intend of live chickens, an option offered in Jewish scripture. The participants argue that live chickens must be used, according to God. [caption id="attachment_2945" align="alignnone" width="300"]Photo: Carol Guzy, The Washington Post Activists & Participants, Face-to-Face (Photo: Carol Guzy)[/caption] What angers and mobilizes activists is not only the barbaric ritual but also the conditions in which the animals are held for days. Stuffed into milk crates, the chickens are unable to move and are deprived of food, water, protection from the elements and the ability to clean off the urine and feces of the chickens stacked above them. It is in this weakened state that participants grab them by their fragile wings, often breaking them, and perform the ritual. [caption id="attachment_2947" align="alignnone" width="300"]Chickens immobilized in crates; no food or water Chickens immobilized for days in crates; no food or water[/caption] This 2 minute clip shows the ritual and the protests: In 2010, Kaporos supporters vandalized the home of Rina Deych, a founding member of the Alliance to End Chickens as Kaporos. Ms. Deych argues that the ritual "violates Jewish mandates and imperatives" and that, "each year, more and more Orthodox rabbis are speaking out against using chickens." [caption id="attachment_2953" align="alignnone" width="300"]Rina Deych home Rina Deych in front of Her vandalized home[/caption]

Your Turn

The Alliance to End Chicken as Kaporos has been working since 2010 to eliminate the barbaric ritual through education and protests and by begging for mercy. This year, they have employed a new approach -- petitioning the local government to enforce the health codes that would shut down Kaporos and stop the river of blood from flowing in the streets. Please sign the petition. To learn more about Kaporos, please read this article by Karen Davis, the Founder of United Poultry Concerns, who travels each year from Virginia to New York to help lead the Kaporos protests.

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