Sticker on your way to the Embajadores roundabout: the silhouette of a cow and a message on its body: sticker from the collective Acabemos con el Especismo or Let’s End Speciecism:
A direct message. Its signature is an exhortation. Far from appealing to sentimentalism, the statement on the sticker–“meat is the dead body of someone who wanted to live”–is an invitation to consider, and to relate to, animals in a different way: in dialogue with Jane Goodall, acknowledging that animals have emotions and personality. From the field of moral philosophy, philosopher and activist Catia Faria observes the following in a recent interview: “being speciesist is to discriminate against certain individuals for not belonging to a certain species (usually, the human species). That is, to consider non human animals as lesser than human animals despite the fact that both have similar interests. Succinctly, the interests in living, not suffering, and in enjoying their lives.” As sentient beings, no animal (human or non human) wants to suffer or die. Faria: “What we [ anti-speciesists] defend is that the value of the life of an individual cannot depend on the species it belongs to. All sentient beings, given their ability to suffer and enjoy their lives, have an interest in living. Death thwarts that interest to the extent that it deprives them of the positive experiences that their life would have had it not ended.” If we accept that premise, there is an ethical question, one of political choice, to do something to avoid the suffering and premature death of non human animals. Anti-speciesist practices on the street: interpellating passersby with the notion of the sentient being. Stickers thar pose questions that perturb dominant ways of life and force to consider uncomfortable truths. A call to imagination. Imagine for a moment how it would be to live in a society that respects non human animals. Have empathy and curiosity open spaces for other possibilities. Ponder the necessary transformations at micro and macro levels. Take a position. Art historian Georges Didi-Huberman reminds us of the relation between desire and taking a position: “taking a position is to situate yourself twice…it is desiring, demanding something, it is situating yourself in the present and aspiring to a future” (Cuando las imágenes…). The street materials of the members of the collective Acabemos con el Especismo introduce an unease and demand passersby to think for themselves. They function as beacons to other realities.
In this post in this blog there are other wheatpastes about #endspeciesism.