ANIMAL RIGHTS ORGANIZATIONS' INVASION OF RELIGION - BOMBARDING OUR SACRED INSTITUTIONS
When you can’t change their beliefs, sue them.
This could be considered one of many techniques activists use in order to spread their agendas. Animal rights groups often try new methods of altering societal behavior, not exempt from these attacks are religious institutions.
Radical groups realize the power that the church holds because of the degree to which they impact people’s lives, but see the church as nothing more than a tool to complete their overarching goal: the end of all animal use by humans. They make false claims that the true believers of several different religions should be vegans, use a manipulated view of religious holidays like Lent to push their lifestyle onto others, and have even gone so far as to sue religious leaders to change traditional religious practices and rituals.
The contact these groups have with churches can be friendly at first, then turn sinister as they realize the church won’t stoop to their level.
One common way that they try to influences churches is by creating a religious outreach branch or council. These branches and councils try to change the practices of a church through communication and manipulation. Other ways they do so involve campaign ads that describe what a ‘real Christian’ should act like and they even have been known to take religious leaders to court over rituals and traditions. Much like they have tried to do with agricultural community, these groups are nothing more than a wolf in a sheep’s clothing or an outright enemy.
For example, The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), which should have no involvement whatsoever with religion, launched what they call a Faith Outreach program in 2007. According to them, its purpose is “to engage people and institutions of faith with animal protection issues, on the premise that religious values call upon us all to act in a kind and merciful way towards all creatures.” However, we all know that they do not care about how kind or merciful animals are treated, seeing as they fought legislation that would have ended kill shelters in America.
Simply put, they are trying to convince religious leaders to give them moral legitimacy and advocate vegan diets to end the use of domestic animals. It is important to note that most widely accepted religions in the U.S. establish Man’s Dominion over other creatures, a concept that animal rights activists and religious leaders supporting these groups have disregarded.
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) also have their version of a faith outreach group. Jesus People for Animals proudly boasts veganism on their homepage, “Because Animals Are Not Ours (They’re God’s).” Again, what happened to the biblical concept of Man’s Dominion? A great point was made by Will Coggin, a senior research analyst at the Center for Consumer Freedom, Jesus broke more than bread to feed the masses. These are just the semi-tame ways that organizations have tried to influence religion and religious individuals, however, with the more radical ones causing a much bigger uproar.
One ritual that they have been trying to see ended for many years is Yom Kippur. In this Jewish Day of Atonement, a Rabbi takes the sins of an individual and places them in a chicken, which is then spun over their heads three times and sacrificed. According to their religion, this gets rid of their sins and allows them to atone for them by using the chicken to donate to those in need. In some churches, the ritual has been altered to simply donate money. However, many churches prefer their traditional method, for easily understandable reasons.
In Brooklyn, New York, a group of radical animal rights activists called The Alliance to End Chickens as Kaporas didn’t think the process of phasing out tradition was moving fast enough. So, they are currently suing four rabbis, several Hasidic congregations, and the city to stop the annual ritual.
Although it is a simple and straightforward process, the claims against it are not. Since it is a religious practice and most of the city’s laws the group could use to end supposed ‘animal cruelty’ do not apply because of freedom of religion, the Alliance to End Chickens as Kaporas must show that it provides a health and safety risk for the people of the city. To do this they claim that the four rabbis and their congregations cause “Dead chickens, half dead chickens, chicken blood, chicken feathers, chicken urine, chicken feces, other toxins and garbage” to fill the streets, in turn creating “a substantial public health risk that could have catastrophic and epidemic consequences.” They are also suing New York itself for ‘aiding and abetting’ the actions of the churches.
Sounds scary right? It’s pretty hard to imagine the streets of New York running red or being turned into slaughterhouses... That could be because the claims are false. The local assemblyman, Dov Hikind, called out the Alliance’s description of what happened. He said,
“I represent this community. I live here walk around here, have an office in the heart of the community. And I don’t know what in God’s name they’re talking about. They make it sound like there’s blood running in the streets. It’s just not true.”He went on the say that if they were not careful about the sanitation, than he would “have no problem with police enforcing the laws. But chickens are not being killed on the sidewalks.” To add insult to injury, not only did he express that the public safety concerns do not exist, he said neither does the supposed animal rights abuses. It’s against the Jewish law to torture animals or cause them unneeded pain, and Mr. Hikind insists that it does not happen. Unfortunately, in this case it seems like the local NY media is taking the side of the activists.
At some point, people in America will realize that we don’t have to agree with others but we have to be culturally sensitive, at very least. It is insulting that these radical groups would sue these religious leaders just because they do not agree with their ceremonies, and taking them to court to change the practices of the church is just plain wrong if they do no harm to the people and do not inhumanely abuse the animals they use for ritualistic purposes.
But, as we showed previously, this is not one isolated incident. Animal rights organizations have kept a longstanding aura of disrespect in regard to God and the Church. On top of suing rabbis and forming corrupt outreach programs, groups have also created disrespectful campaign ads, some going as far as to compare the ‘plight’ of animals to the Holocaust. The PETA individual who created that particular campaign (Matt Prescott), who should have been fired, instead got offered a job at the holy grail of animal rights umbrella groups
– HSUS. That shows both the moral compass of animal rights organizations and the type of people working at HSUS.
This disrespect and manipulation of religion should not continue. Whether it is lying in a lawsuit to change ritual, creating horrible campaign ads, or outreach programs misusing holy words, the lack of ethics on the part of animal rights activists is appalling; but then again, has that ever stopped them before?
How do you feel about radical animal rights organizations attempting to wiggle their way into U.S. religious institutions and change longstanding rituals and tradition?