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Shock Tactic Activism

I am going to get straight to the point.

Don’t post pictures of dead and/or cut up animals on facebook in attempt to shock people into going vegan.

  1. This rarely works.  I’m not saying shocking images don’t work, but people can come to those on their own.  Or you can provide a link and if they click it and then want to throw up and die, that’s on them because you gave fair warning.  But posting a gory photo in your facebook feed is a) trolling and b) electronically shoving a photo right in someone’s face.  The most likely outcome of this tactic is that people are just going to unfriend you or hide you from their feed.
  2. Since the best part of the internet for vegans is that even if we don’t personally know a single vegan, we can connect online, I assume that quite a few of your friends are vegan.  Or if you run a page for oh say, your vegan book or website.  Most of your ‘fans’ are probably vegan.  So, you’re not going to make us more vegan and some of us are soft, delicate flowers.  I became a vegetarian at the age of thirteen because a stray cat killed a squirrel right in front of me*, and I could go into gory details of what I saw, but that would make me kind of a hypocrite.  Point being, creatures being abused and killed upset me.  It’s kind of why i’m vegan.  I made myself sit through Earthlings even though I was already vegan, I have done my self-flogging already.
  3. If it doesn’t bother you to see these things and you’re already vegan, good for you.  But don’t tell me that it’s okay to post these things because it ‘needs to be seen’ after i’ve paused in my gagging to tell you that it upset me AND i’m vegan so you don’t tell me to go vegan or imply that i’m not a good vegan because I don’t shove pictures of mutilated animals in the faces of everyone I know.

As shown by my last post, i’m very passionate about animal adoption.  I wouldn’t post a pile of euthanized dogs to illustrate to people that they shouldn’t buy from breeders, though.  A big problem with the shock tactic is that people are so shocked, the message you are trying to convey doesn’t even register.  A shocking photo means nothing if people can’t see past it to get to the message.  If people try to sell you some happy meat, free-range bullshit feel free to lay some facts on them.  Or if they ASK, provide them with some links to videos or photos about factory farms.  Or just post the photo as a link, preview removed, and warn people!  Some of them will click out of morbid curiosity even if they don’t want to see it, they may or may not go vegan.  You will definitely lose friends and followers, and the ‘crazy ass vegan’ stereotype will be reinforced.

If you disagree with me, you’ll probably be thrilled to know that I had nightmares about vivisected animals last night.

In happier, more positive news, did you see that Peter Dinklage is this year’s spokesperson for Farm Sanctuary’s Walk For Animals? Post this video on your facebook, it contains a few sad images of animals in cages, but nothing gory or graphic. And don’t forget to sign up or sponsor a friend!

*Actually, I became vegetarian because I told my mom what happened and how I wasn’t eating meat ever again like a dramatic teenager, and she said i’d never be able to do it. EIGHTEEN YEARS LATER…

Also I know that animals have to eat other animals to survive, it was still gross to see.

posted: 12 June 13
under: animals, elsewhere on the internet

  • http://www.veganappetite.com Tami (Vegan Appetite)

    So well said. Thank you.

  • http://chewonthisvegan.tumblr.com Monika {windycityvegan}

    THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU! I’m so fucking sick and tired of having that shit shoved in my face.

  • http://suburbansnowwhite.blogspot.com Suburban Snow White

    What a terrific post. Very thought-provoking. Thank you!

  • http://fauxcheese.blogspot.com FauxCheese

    I couldn’t agree more with you. Before I ever even heard of vegans, I’d see a disturbing photo of animal abuse and only quickly scroll away without reading its messages so I didn’t have to see it anymore. Graphic media is only offensive and disturbing to those who did not ask to see it.

  • Megan

    Srsly. Thank you.

  • Elizabeth

    Agreed. I love the political website Wonkette but can hardly look at it anymore because they have all these graphic anti-factory farming ads posted there. Of course, I TOTALLY agree with the sentiment, but I exempt myself from looking at that stuff because I am doing my part already!