Behind the façade of beautiful images of horses on American rangelands lies a group of animal extremist ideologues. The group, the American Wild Horse Campaign, is determined to undermine every step the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and other organizations take to help solve the animal welfare crisis occurring in the American West. The American Wild Horse Campaign (AWHC) was originally founded by animal extremist activists Neda Demayo and Virginie Parant who are also founders of the animal extremist sanctuary, “Return to Freedom”. The name “Return to Freedom” is a misnomer in itself as they don’t actually return horses to freedom and instead warehouse them on their 300-acre facility in Lompoc, California.
The American Wild Horse Campaign states on their website, “Our efforts include working collaboratively with other advocacy groups, meeting with members of Congress on Capitol Hill and their district offices and mobilizing and empowering our supporters to reach out to their elected officials on behalf of wild horses and burros.” Their goals also include repealing the Burns Amendment. The AWHC lists animal extremist groups such as the ASPCA, the HSUS, In Defense of Animals, the Animal Law Coalition, The Animals Voice, The Cloud Foundation, Last Chance for Animals, Southern Sun Farm Sanctuary, and the World Wildlife Foundation as members of their coalition.
Contrary to what their website suggests when seeking donations, “Act now to save the Mustangs,” the American Wild Horse Campaign has invested considerable donation funds on litigation instead of actually working to help horses on our American rangelands. Their litigious activities have done nothing to help prevent horses on the rangelands from dying from starvation and dehydration, nor have their activities increased adoptions significantly or helped to curb the overpopulation crisis in any meaningful way. Their website has a “Litigation” tab and when opened it displays a list of over 20 lawsuits and legal actions they have taken against the BLM and other organizations that are working to manage the populations and improve the welfare of rangeland horses. They have even inserted themselves into lawsuits against ranchers in Nevada and Utah as well as the state of Wyoming.
The American Wild Horse Campaign works with the “public interest firm” Meyer Glitzenstein & Eubanks which is a legal organization that represents other radical animal extremist and non-governmental organizations (NGO’s). Included in the list of groups they represent are: PETA, HSUS, the animal extremist based group Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM), the Center for Biological Diversity, In Defense of Animals, Defenders of Wildlife, International Fund for Animal Welfare, and the Rescue Freedom Project-formerly the Beagle Freedom Project which is founded by a convicted arsonist. Meyer Glitzenstein & Eubanks also partners with the Animal Legal Defense Fund on litigation. Of note, a simple Google search will reveal that Meyer Glitzenstein & Eubanks seems to be a training ground for lawyers willing to represent radical animal extremist groups.
The connections to animal extremist organizations are deep within the American Wild Horse Campaign. These connections range from having past members of radical groups on staff, being featured in articles and on radical animal extremist websites like Animal Liberation Front, to donating over $100,000 to the animal extremist group PETA. They also publicly support domestic animal extremist terrorists with criminal convictions for arson.
On a fairly consistent basis, the AWHC publishes guest articles by the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) staffers. They also share other articles directly from HSUS on their website to push the unethical and inhumane contraceptive insecticide, PZP.
Unlike some other animal extremist organizations, the American Wild Horse Campaign does not reveal its animal extremist culture to the typical website visitor. However, with some searching online, it is easy to discover the true ideology of its Board of Directors and staff:
Phipps Price is listed on PETA’s 2014 Year-End Report under the “Directors Circle” for donating between $25,000 and $49,999 to the organization. In 2011, she was listed under PETA’s Campaigners Circle donating up to $9,000. Phipps Price also donated $100,000 to the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC) in 2011 and is on their Global Leadership Council. The NRDC is one of the largest environmental NGO’s known for promoting alarmist junk-science and was accused publicly of fraud during the apple scare they created in 1989. The NRDC is also known for its “sue and settle” tactics as a way to raise money off of the federal government (your tax dollars). The website, Activist Facts, reports that the NRDC has been involved in nine such “sue and settle” cases, according to a 2011 report from the Government Accountability Office, “between 1995 and 2010, taxpayers reimbursed the Natural Resources Defense Council to the tune of $252,004.”
Zill’s animal extremist roots run deep. She was a featured speaker at the 2014 National Animal Rights Conference and a public supporter of domestic terrorist and convicted criminal Kevin Tubbs, calling him a “Hero.” Kevin Tubbs was a member of a radical group called “The Family” which is a Eugene, Oregon cell of the Earth Liberation Front and Animal Liberation Front. According to the Los Angeles Times, Tubbs plead guilty to conspiracy and arson charges connected to a string of 20 arsons in five states that did a total of $40 million in damage. This is her comment on the Los Angeles Times website about Tubb’s case:
Quote on the Los Angeles Times website: http://articles.latimes.com/2007/may/25/nation/na-arson25
Article about Tubb’s sentencing: http://articles.latimes.com/2007/may/25/nation/na-arson25
In addition to her involvement with AWHC, Zill is also on the board of the Center for Biological Diversity (CBD) and serves as their Treasurer. The CBD is a radical environmental group that has partnered with other organizations to spread misinformation about animal agriculture and promote a plant-based diet. According to the website leftexposed.org, “In 2002, CBD was caught inserting falsified evidence of range damage into the federal grazing permit file of an Arizona ranching company the group had targeted for destruction. The wronged rancher took CBD to court in 2005, and a guilty verdict at trial required CBD to pay $600,000 in damages.”
According to her own bio found online, Roy has spent 25 years as an animal extremist activist. Prior to joining AWHC, she worked for the radical group, In Defense of Animals. With that organization she worked in conjunction with PETA, the Animal Rights Foundation of Florida, United for Animals and other animal extremist groups to oppose zoos. She also has worked on the Born Free USA project, one of the organizations that Ringling Brothers and its parent company, Feld Entertainment filed a RICO lawsuit against. Suzanne Roy is well versed in animal extremist organizations cloaking themselves as advocacy groups. She served as the Communications Director for the animal extremist based group, Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM). A 2004, Newsweek article described PCRM in this way: “The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM) is a wolf in sheep’s clothing. PCRM is a fanatical animal rights group that seeks to remove eggs, milk, meat, and seafood from the American diet, and to eliminate the use of animals in scientific research. Despite its operational and financial ties to other animal activist groups and its close relationship with violent zealots, PCRM has successfully duped the media and much of the general public into believing that its pronouncements about the superiority of vegetarian-only diets represent the opinion of the medical community…. Less than 5 percent of PCRM’s members are physicians.”
For more information about the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine: https://www.activistfacts.com/organizations/23-physicians-committee-for-responsible-medicine/
A quick Google search will turn up an interview with Neda Demayo on the website of the radical animal extremist group Animal Liberation Front (ALF) under the title, “Activist Profiles, Bios, Interviews.” The Animal Liberation Front is listed on the FBI website as a dangerous domestic terrorism group. In addition to agreeing to associate with ALF, Demayo allowed the organization to set up fundraising features for her Return To Freedom organization on its website.
Demayo has also been featured on Care2, which is an alternate website of PETA’s. Demayo founded both Return to Freedom and the American Wild Horse Campaign and serves both organizations. Listed on the Return To Freedom website they have the following advocacy partners: ASPCA, HSUS, Society for Animal Protective Legislation, and the radical environmental group World Wildlife Foundation.
Link to information on the FBI website about ALF: https://archives.fbi.gov/archives/news/testimony/animal-rights-extremism-and-ecoterrorism
Prior to joining AWHC, Schwartz worked as a law clerk with Meyer Glitzenstein & Eubanks. She also worked for Defenders of Wildlife and worked as law clerk for the US Dept of the Interior in environmental investigations regarding the Clean Water Act. In college Schwarts was a member of the student group “Animal Legal Defense Fund Maryland Cary Chapter”. It also appears that Schwartz is a proponent of habeas corpus for animals and the environment. At the IUCN Academy of Environmental Law Colloquium in Oslo, Norway, she presented a paper on how animals and the environment could have standing to sue under U.S. law.
Kuhn has been involved in a number of animal extremism initiatives in her career. She worked as the Social Media Manager on two radical animal extremism propaganda films, “What The Health” and “Cowspiracy.” Kuhn has also worked booths at animal extremist conferences and promotes plant-based diets online. She has also been involved in the aggressive animal extremist campaigns against both Ringling Brothers Circus and the Grand National Rodeo.
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