A Response to Gary Yourofsky's Essays on Violence, Pacifism and Rape
14 May 2015
Gary Yourofsky is a militant animal rights activist who believes violence should play a role in any struggle for animal liberation. He dismisses pacifism, and hopes bad humans are raped, tortured and executed. He also gives the most persuasive lectures on veganism.
"THIS DISCUSSION is now permanently over. CHECKMATE. I win. Pacifists lose." With these words, Gary Yourofsky ends his diatribe on the ineffectiveness of pacifism. He believes strongly in his own reasoning and dismisses the opinions of others because he uses "vicious honesty and infallible logic," whereas other "humans have the mental equivalency and reasoning skills of a turd" and use "fallible illogic."
Arrogant he may be, but Yourofsky is also one of the main animal rights and vegan lifestyle activists, and deserves respect for undoubtedly saving countless animals lives from the vegan conversions he has inspired through his lectures on animal abuse and the importance of a vegan lifestyle to minimise suffering. He estimates that he has spoken to tens of thousands of people over the years, mostly in the United States, where he lives, and Israel, where he is actually the most popular. He attributes that enormous popularity in Israel to the fact that "people who have been oppressed… always respond better to talks about oppression."
Yourofsky's best known talk was one given at the Georgia Institute of Technology in 2010 and which was then posted on Youtube under the title Best Speech You Will Ever Hear. To date, it has nearly 2.5 million views! This video alone has probably created more vegans than another other video or documentary ever.
Yourofsky's activism started in 1996 when he founded Animals Deserve Absolute Protection Today and Tomorrow (ADAPTT), an organisation opposed to using animals for anything — neither food, clothing nor medical research. In 1999 he was sentenced to 6 months in a Canadian maximum-security prison for causing $500,000 worth of damage to a mink fur farm by releasing 1,542 mink, an experience he later remarked that reinforced his "empathy and understanding of what these animals go through." When PETA employed him in 2002 as their official national lecturer, Yourofsky discovered his most effective means for stopping animal cruelty as he was such a natural and persuasive lecturer. Although he parted company with PETA a few years later, primarily because of his opposition to their euthanasia program for unwanted pets, he continued on the lecture circuit as an independent lecturer.
"PETA and HSUS are a hindrance to the animal liberation movement. Their endless compromises, persistent shenanigans and myopic tactics do NOT bring animals closer to freedom. I am tired of being silent about it. As long as PETA and HSUS exist, animals will remain enslaved by the billion. Ingrid Newkirk [founder of PETA], a serial cat killer, goes out of her way to trap homeless, healthy cats in the Norfolk, Virginia, area and then kills them in a shed located on the grounds of PETA's Norfolk headquarters… Under Newkirk's guidance, she has single-handedly turned the animal liberation movement into a mockery with her naked women campaigns and cartoon-costumed protests."
Yourofsky is obviously uncompromising when it comes to animal cruelty, although some in the animal rights movement had accused him of compromising when he joined with PETA in the first place. But now he lectures independently, that uncompromising nature has a chance for full expression. And express it he does, in ways that are persuasive, angry and sometimes even irrational.
I had never heard of Yourofsky until a few years back when a friend sent me a link to his Best Speech You Will Ever Hear video on Youtube. Great lecture! I was already aware of the issues he raised and the arguments he presented (such as Harvey Diamond's baby, apple and rabbit argument), and had seen the horror films taken inside slaughter houses, but it was the brash confidence of the speaker that really separated Yourofsky from the rest of the vegan lecture crowd, a confidence that makes him extremely effective at converting meat-eaters to vegans.
Chalking Yourofsky up in my mind as a fantastic animal rights lecturer and a great vegan advocate, I forgot about him until that same friend sent me a link to the following Youtube video called Rape Accusations, Violence, Erika and George Carlin!, which he claims that:
"After 18 years on trial, the verdict is finally in! I've been found INNOCENT on all charges of supporting rape! This video contains my 14-minute testimony proving I was falsely charged and defamed." [For the readers who are unaware of this issue, when he refers to a "verdict" in the description box, he is not referring to an actual court case, just a metaphorical one in which he believes his testimony against rape clears himself, stopping the accusation that he supports rape.]
Heavy stuff! And you can see from the comments that they are probably being moderated — every single comment seems to be a complimentary one — which is actually even more disturbing! Was I really the only one shocked by the content and tone of this video?
Up until watching this "testimony" video, I was completely unaware of the Yourofsky controversies regarding rape and had not read any of his writings. But that video was so disturbing in its tone and so illogical, that I decided to examine Yourofsky more closely, including reading the essays he was referring to.
First of all, Yourofsky's "testimonial" just seemed to be an exercise in depraved imagination:
"This is what I think should happen to rapists, even someone who rapes a woman in a fur coat, if that ever happens: I think his penis and his balls should be seared off with a cuticle remover… slowly. Then I think two skewers should be shoved into their eye sockets, dragged into another room. Then I think that their penis and their balls should be dipped in diarrhoea and puke… they should be given the option of eating that and then they can save their lives, and if they do eat it, then I want to take a gun and put it between their eyes and shoot them and said "I was just kiddin'." This is what I think should happen to rapists." [Transcribed from above video.]
This is it? This is Yourofsky's "testimony"!? That because he can describe in graphic detail how he claims he would torture and execute a rapist, within a video where he reiterates that bad people should be raped, somehow he is against rape?? He seems to be "reasoning" that the level of depravity you claim you would stoop to in how you would punish a rapist is proportional to the level of your opposition to rape. "Top that!" he challenges us in his video. Are we really meant to watch that video and think, "Wow, even though Yourofsky reconfirms that he wishes rape upon evil people, he would actually himself torture and murder rapists in the most depraved manner, and so he must be against rape." This argument betrays an astonishing emotional immaturity, and is clearly irrational.
Confusingly, Yourofsky indignantly proclaims, "I need all of my supporters to start condemning the liars and deceivers who claim that I support rape because I wished it. Repeat, WISHED IT… " So here he seems to be saying that wishing rape upon certain groups of people is not the same as "supporting rape". This seemed like a play on words to me. It was time to read his essays to get some clarification of this man's position. The three I focused on where:
- Empathy, Education, and Violence: A Time for Everything
- What You Give Is What You Should Get
- More Problems With Pacifism
If you want to read them, you will find them by going to https://www.adaptt.org/animalrights.html# and clicking the links What's Wrong With Violence and More Problems With Pacifism.
Here is a paragraph in his first essay, which I understand was written back in 1997 and modified several times since, that started the whole rape-support accusations against him:
"Deep down, I truly hope that oppression, torture and murder return to each uncaring human tenfold! I hope that sons accidentally shoot their fathers on hunting excursions, while carnivores suffer heart attacks that kill them slowly. Every woman ensconced in fur should endure a rape so vicious that it scars them forever. While every man entrenched in fur should suffer an anal raping so horrific that they become disemboweled. Every rodeo cowboy and matador should be gored to death, while circus abusers are trampled by elephants and mauled by tigers. And, lastly, may irony shine its esoteric head in the form of animal researchers catching debilitating diseases and painfully withering away because research dollars that could have been used to treat them was wasted on the barbaric, unscientific practice of vivisection."
These sentiments have been repeated in other essays (such as What You Give Is What You Should Get) and also in interviews. What I think Yourofsky is trying to do is to shock audiences into understanding the gravity of animal abuse. But in doing so he shows a vindictiveness and depravity that sabotages his message.
He clarifies his position further in his essay More Problems with Pacifism:
"I think rape is purely evil. I don't support it. Don't be stupid. Rape is the most evil act of violence that can ever be committed, which is why I wish it happens to evil people. I hope Nazis, KKK members, and domestic abusers get raped, too… Go rent the movie Law Abiding Citizen and watch Gerard Butler's character carry out some poetic justice on the man who raped his wife and daughter. It warms my heart no end." [The most disturbing part of this quote is the last sentence.]
So, despite his "testimony", Yourofsky clearly does support rape… only for bad people. Somehow, in his mind, rape is not rape when it happens to people he believes deserve it. It is there in black and white on his website! No wonder he has received so much flack from the vegan community over the years: he comes across as psychopathically right-wing in his views on crime and capital punishment — an animal liberating Neocon in a movement where most into veganism and animal rights are liberal or left-wing. And as most vegans are women [80% of US vegans are women], there has naturally been huge uproar specifically about the sentence: "Every woman ensconced in fur should endure a rape so vicious that it scars them forever."
It is sad that vegans were not more vocal about his comment that "… every man entrenched in fur should suffer an anal raping so horrific that they become disembowelled." It is clear he is not a misogynist… more of a misanthropist.
Despite making it clear in his writings that he only supports rape for bad people (in the normal use of the word "support"), Yourofsky claims that the accusations against him are libellous. But this cannot be the case and would never hold up in court if:
- The accusations against him are based on his own published writings, which very clearly state he "wishes" and "hopes" that bad people (including women in fur coats) get raped. [Which any rational person would only interpret as the support of rape for certain people.]
- If the motivation of the accusations is more to do with maliciousness than outrage, which is highly unlikely on a topic as serious as the support of rape.
But what is most odd about all of this is that Yourofsky clearly contradicts himself in his defence of what he would do to a rapist. He is saying that he would personally torture and then murder any rapist, even a rapist of a bad person (such as a women in a fur coat), but then he is saying that he wishes rape upon evil people such as Nazis, KKK members and domestic abusers. (I wonder if "domestic abusers" include women domestic abusers as well?) Perhaps due to the outcry he received about wishing rape on women in fur coats, he has backtracked into a contradictory position where rape is both wished for and condemned.
The truth is that Yourofsky is not a rational thinker despite insisting that he personally uses "infallible logic" against everybody else's "fallible illogic".
After all, if Yourofsky believes that rapists should be tortured and executed, then those who commit crimes equally bad (some would say worse) — such as mass murder — should also be tortured and executed. And as he believes that anyone eating, wearing or otherwise vicarious killing animals is a mass murderer, then it follows that all people who do not have a 100% vegan lifestyle deserve to be tortured and killed, including Yourofsky himself as he was a mass murderer (eating animals) into his twenties. This position is clearly absurd because it basically sentences almost everyone on the planet to death because there are actually relatively few life-long 100% vegans. If Yourofsky really did believe what he is saying, he would be much more contrite knowing that he himself was once a mass murderer of animals. And yet he seems to have absolved himself of his past when he states in More Problems With Pacifism:
"I have harmed no one while meat, dairy, and egg-eaters pay people to RAPE animals to impregnate them, pay people to steal newborn babies from their mothers, and pay people to kill the babies, and the mothers. I have harmed no one while people who wear fur pay people to rape foxes via anal electrocution, rape chinchillas via vaginal electrocution, and break the necks of minks, so that they can drape themselves in skin-coats." [He needs to change this to "I no longer harm others… etc.]
What is also astonishing is that Yourofsky actually believes that "EVERYONE" agrees that bad people should be abused and/or killed. (What sort of world does he come from?!) Here are more paragraphs from the same essay:
"Nobody disagrees with my position on violence, they only disagree with who I propose to be violent for. You see everybody thinks it is okay to kill Nazis on behalf of Jews, okay to kill a white slave owner on behalf of a black slave. But nobody thinks it is okay to kill a chicken murder on behalf of a chicken."
"What's more, anyone who condemns me for my rape comments is a pure hypocrite anyway, because when child molesters are convicted and imprisoned, EVERYONE says something like this: "I can't wait until Bubba gets a hold of him in prison." And don't you dare deny it! What do you think Bubba's gonna do when their paths cross? Counsel him about his troubled childhood, or forcibly penetrate (rape) his asshole? The problem with pacifists is that they don't fully understand evil because they refuse to look at oppressive situations from the victim's point of view—unless, of course, the victim is a fur-wearing ogress who gets raped in some fantasy retaliatory payback prose of mine."
Yourofsky seems unable to even imagine that some of us do not want these sorts of things to happen even to evil people. I have personally never hoped that anyone, including child molesters and rapists, get raped in prison. That does not mean I support child molestation or rape, any more than my rejection of capital punishment indicates support for murder. It just means that a human being who has committed a heinous act is still a human being, and if we forget that and allow ourselves to dehumanise those we label as bad, then we end up losing our own humanity. And without humanity, society falls apart.
It happened in Nazi Germany where Jews were labelled as trouble making untermensch who therefore rightly deserved abuse, oppression and extermination. The cold righteousness of the Nazis was the very same righteousness of anyone else in history who tried to justify murder and extermination of others. Yourofsky's wish to execute evil-doers is fuelled by exactly the same cold righteousness, a righteousness that all too easily crops up when we allow ourselves to lose sight of the humanity in others.
When we dehumanise others we close our hearts. We can't love animals and hate humans (which are also animals) — if we are fuelled by hatred then heart-felt compassion drains from all our relationships, and our love becomes conceptual rather than heart-based. And when that happens animal rights becomes just an angry fight for justice rather than an expression of our love for animals.
"It's not about loving animals. It's about fighting injustice. My whole goal is for humans to have as little contact as possible with animals." [Yourofsky quoted in The Detroit Free Press in 1998]
It is a dangerous game to righteously dehumanise others because it creates a toxic psychology and a toxic society which actually causes much more suffering. Only true heart-based forgiveness can break these cycles of abuse, and central to forgiveness is being able to again see the humanity in another that we have dehumanised.
Yourofsky tries to justify violence by polarising the issue, making it violence OR complete apathy. And as apathy achieves absolutely nothing, by definition, then… hey presto… violence is sanctioned. He then erroneously equates apathy with pacifism which allows him to dismiss pacifism.
"This discussion is now permanently over. CHECKMATE. I win. Pacifists lose."
Yourofsky clearly does not understand what pacifism is: it does NOT necessarily imply doing nothing. A pacifist is NOT the opposite of an activist. A pacifist may indeed be an activist, but one who, on principle, refuses to be violent to others. You can still be a pacifist and break into a mink farm and release all the mink without compromising your non-violence ideals. But in order to condemn pacifism, Yourofsky focuses on what he labels as "non-activist pacifists", as if that is somehow representative of the whole pacifist movement. This is an insult to those who have literally put their lives on the line for the sake of peace.
Sure, condemn those who do nothing. But don't use words like "pacifism" that you clearly don't understand the meaning of. The word "pacifism" may sound like "passive", but they are not related. The word pacifism is derived from the French pacific — "tending to make peace" or "peace-making". The word passive, on the other hand, is derived from the French passif meaning "suffering or undergoing hardship" — and has come to be associated with non-activity because it implies we endure suffering, of ourselves and others, without resistance.
The way Yourofsky writes and talks about pacifism shows he is confusing it with passivity. Of course we should be critical of passivity, but to try to condemn "peace-making" as an obstacle to stopping animal abuse is more a reflection of an angry psychology than a rational mind.
And it shows little understanding of modern society for Yourofsky to condemn those who sit at home on Facebook or who call companies to task from behind a desk. We live in an extremely interconnected world now and the person who sits at home promoting veganism on social media also has just as important a role in spreading the vegan message as someone who infiltrates a slaughterhouse or vivisection laboratory to video atrocities. Both need each other. BOTH are activists. In today's PR driven world, bad press is a business killer, and the meat industry knows it which is why it is fighting so hard to maintain the "animals are killed humanely" and "meat is a natural part of a healthy diet" fictions.
Unfortunately, those who promote veganism online are not violent enough for Yourofsky, so he labels them "non-activist pacifists", a term he uses quite liberally. He even states that "pacifism is more evil than violence, and non-activist pacifists are incapable of using reason and rational thought when it comes to liberation movements."
Using terminology like "non-activist pacifists" however only obscures the issue. After all, would a non-activist war-monger be any better at stopping animal cruelty? Of course not… a non-activist is a non-activist, whatever their principles or beliefs. Both are equally useless! So Yourofsky is just playing with words here, trying to say something that sounds intelligent but which is actually meaningless. "Non-activist pacifists" or "100% pacifists" are just meaningless terms used to denigrate pacifism.
The fact that Yourofsky liberally uses this terminology shows he is probably has some inkling that he is on shaky ground in his promotion of violence and his criticism of pacifism. He tries to bolster his position by references to well known civil rights activists who may have supported, in reality and/or in principle, the need for violence in the struggle for racial equality — individuals such as Rosa Parks, Martin Luther King, Nelson Mandela and Malcolm X. But never once does he consider that maybe they succeeded despite any violence to others they may have committed or thought about committing; their peace campaigns succeeded because they represented and gave voice to a whole movement that was a product of a mass awakening of humanity to social injustice. But just because they were leading freedom fighters does not automatically make them sages.
This is not to say that these individuals are not heroes, remarkable human beings who should be greatly admired, but that everything they said or wrote should not necessarily be taken as gospel. They lived in a different era and had different values and ideals. That said, Nelson Mandela did change his views on the necessity of violence later in his life, and come to regard it as self-defeating:
"People respond in accordance to how you relate to them. If you approach them on the basis of violence, that's how they'll react. But if you say, 'We want peace, we want stability,' we can then do a lot of things that will contribute towards the progress of our society."
What is more, none of these extraordinary activists were vegetarian, except Parks in her last few years. [So, according to Yourofsky's worldview, they were all mass murderers.]
Thanks to these individuals for championing ideas that most of us now take for granted — such as racial equality — we live in a far better society, one that is also becoming conscious enough to know that violence is never the answer. We watch our governments take us into war after war for the enrichment of the 1%, and we have endured the increasing militarisation of and abuse by our police. And most of us are sick of it. So to hear someone like Yourofsky, who is trying to take peace even further to include our treatment of animals, harp on about his rape, torture and execution fantasies is just violence overload. There is enough violence in society as it is and this fixation on perpetuating it is toxic.
We know that violence just begets more violence — from the personal to society at large. That is why violence runs in families, and is why history bears testimony to the liberators who all too easily become the new oppressors because they carried violence in their hearts. Violence triggers more violence; abuse causes more abuse. The cycle never ends. This is why there are so many problems in the Middle East. You can't bomb the hell out of a country (for its own "good" of course) and then expect its citizens to live happily ever after.
One of the greatest advocates for peace is Thich Nhat Hanh, a Vietnamese Zen Buddhist monk and peace activist. He may be Buddhist but he is a man who puts humanity before any religious beliefs. Nhat Hanh is a pacifist, but he chose to face far greater dangers than Yourofsky ever has in his efforts to stop the US destroying his country and his people. Nhat Hanh is the very embodiment of peace — he is a living Buddha — and that peace touches everyone who sees him speak or sit quietly. But to say that he would have been more successful at stopping the abuse if he embraced a little violence is clearly fanciful. Nhat Hanh has made such a difference precisely because he held so strongly to his principles of non-violence.
But surely there are cases when violence is useful, such as Yourofsky's example of a policeman shooting a hostage taker? The problem with looking at violence close up is that we usually fail to see its larger psychological ramifications. The psychological consequences of violence are more apparent in collective situations such as war, where the traumatic consequences are all too obvious. But zoom into the interaction between two people and the psychological consequences can remain hidden.
Person A (a good person) murders Person B (a bad person) and lives out the rest of his life seemingly without suffering consequences for the murder. It would therefore appear that violence worked to eliminate a bad person. But, Person A does not live in a vacuum, and neither does Person B. Both are part of a complex ecosystem of consciousness that includes the subconscious, partners, children, friends, work colleagues and members of the same "tribe". And of course witnesses to the murderous act. You cannot just blow a hole in an ecosystem and expect there to be no traumatic consequences to the rest of that system. Some believe that this psychological ecosystem goes much further… into other "spiritual" or "dimensional" realms… which makes the consequences of violence traumatising even more pernicious, but even an ardent materialist would have to admit that a material complex system cannot be fixed with a blunt instrument without damaging the rest of the system.
So even if trauma is not consciously felt, or not immediately seen, you can be sure it still radiates from violent acts and thoughts. In the bigger picture, the consequences (or karma) will show — in the errant behaviour of the murderer's AND the victim's children, friends, partners, community etc., and in the behaviour of any witnesses to the brutality. But in the small picture, of just Person A and Person B, the consequences might not be obvious.
This of course applies to animals as well as people. Abusing animals in the way that we do also produce traumatic consequences for both the animals and ourselves, and as a species we have yet to face up to the consequences of our animal abuse. Again, we may think there are no consequences because the consequences are not immediately obvious.
Regarding defence: if someone attacks us or another person, of course we need to actively stop the attack. But our focus, as much as possible, should be on minimising harm to all involved. And we can only do that when we keep the humanity of even the attacker in focus. Then we see that he or she is a human being, just like ourselves, but one suffering from the trauma of past violence and abuse, and/or a person who made poor life choices, or allowed emotions to become overwhelming. If we can just witness their humanity, then our actions automatically become defensive and not offensive. Then and only then do we minimise the psychological consequences of inadvertent violence because we are not psychologically meeting violence with violence. Instead, compassion is our focus, and violence therefore is avoided or minimised. But making violence and retributional fantasies our focus, along with dehumanisation of the attacker, is a sure recipe for perpetuating and magnifying the cycles of violence and abuse.
Yourofsky is fond of quoting author Sam Harris who wrote: "When your enemy has no scruples, your own scruples become another weapon in his hand." This might seem the case at the microlevel of individual interaction, but again, at the macrolevel of society, the importance of scruples becomes self-evident. Morals and scruples are absolutely essential for the health and sanity of society, and the psychological wellness of our children. Giving them up in order to fight oppression just insidiously spreads that oppression. Yes, it might seem to be the answer in the moment — but in the bigger picture it is no answer at all. Again, Yourofsky is blind to the subtle but powerful psychological consequences of violence that are often only obvious from the bigger picture.
"I object to violence because when it appears to do good, the good is only temporary; the evil it does is permanent." Mahatma Gandhi
This is not just philosophy or creative writing… this is backed by years of psychological research into abuse, trauma and killing etc. Violence does not work from the big picture, although it may superficially appear to solve things on a small scale. That is why Gandhi said: "An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind," a powerful quote that Yourofsky dismisses as "lame" because he does not understand the sensitivity of the psychological ecosystem that is community. And that insensitivity ironically itself comes from trauma. With Yourofsky, that trauma is obvious in the violence acts he so freely wishes for in his writings and talks, a violence he actually seems to enjoy ("It warms my heart no end.")
"Rapists, murderers and child molesters should be vivisected, executed and dissected, allowing researchers the opportunity to gather useful information that would actually benefit human health for a change." [More Problems with Pacifism]
In the following statement you can see the trauma in Yourofsky's belief that empathy is something conditional… something you can switch on and off depending on the history of the human you are interacting with. If this is true, if Yourofsky genuinely believes this, then his natural empathic human nature has been blocked.
"Empathy is not for those who enslave and kill animals, the guilty victimisers. Empathy is for innocent victims, the animals." [Empathy, Education, and Violence]
But clearly Yourofsky does feel some empathy… you can see it in his eyes when he looks at his wife and when he hugs an animal. So it is actually unlikely that, deep down, Yourofsky believes in all the tough talk he spouts. It is probably a charade of a deeply insecure person who is just furious at the injustice of all the animal abuse taking place around the world, and foolishly thinks the solution is to generate more violence. And he is no doubt traumatised by all this. (Who wouldn't be visiting slaughterhouses and vivisection labs!)
When Yourofsky admits that he himself has never actually engaged in violence, despite being a hardened animal rights activist for a couple of decades and despite believing, during that time, that violence is integral to the successful liberation of abused animals, it becomes apparent that maybe all this talk of the importance of violence is just a man finding expression to vent his anger and frustration.
"I have yet to engage in violence but believe violence has its place alongside peaceful education and nonviolent protest. It is the amalgam of these methods that will result in the eventual freedom of animals." [Empathy, Education, and Violence]
That anger is apparent in the above video when he shouts:
"And finally, to all the organisations and people who have attacked me, claiming that I support rape, I hear-by challenge you to top my anti-rape position. Go ahead, I dare you. What?… yeah thought so. As usual, I win, CHECKMATE, you lose! FUCK YOU!" [Transcribed from video above]
But does that kind of "I win, you lose, fuck you" and "top that" mentality remind you of anything? Yes, you probably used it yourself at some point… in the playground. Even Yourofsky's description of what he would do to a rapist reminds me of school boy talk. Quite frankly, all this is rather bizarre coming from a grown man.
Which is a shame as it damages his incredible legacy in highlighting issues of animal abuse. The violence in the slaughter house videos shown during his lectures, along with arguments about how we are more naturally plant eaters and how easy and healthful a vegan dietary solution actually is, is actually enough to really challenge people into becoming vegans. But the raging and irrational rants that he writes on his websites or shouts on videos — his fixation on rape, torture and execution fantasies, and his hunger for retributional violence — sabotage his remarkable effectiveness at stopping animal abuse. He may get his supporters cheering along with his explicit rape/torture fantasies and "fuck you's", but for other people, including other vegans, it brings too much violence into an arena that is already saturated with the violence of animal abuse.
Let the animals do the talking with videos of their pain and suffering. That message goes straight to the heart and really does change people. But the constant expression of rape, murder, torture and execution fantasies only makes Yourofsky sound unhinged, giving an easy excuse to brand him a terrorist, when in fact, deep down, we all know he is desperately trying to end the terror of animal abuse. Rather than trying to come across as a gangster, Yourofsky's campaign for animal liberation would be even more effective if he psychologically embraced true pacifism, in the spirit of authentic teachers such as Thich Nhat Hanh, a man who, for the sake of bringing about peace, actively faced far greater dangers than Yourofsky has ever had to. True pacifism is activism without the ego, and changes the world like nothing else.
14/11/15: Thank you very much TC for bringing my attention to spelling and grammatical mistakes :-)
28/5/15: I came across an interesting video by Unnatural Vegan on Youtube which was a response to Yourofsky's latest video in which he proudly admits he is a misanthropist (using arguments as full of holes as those in his previous video). Unnatural Vegan makes some great points and it is most welcome to see an intelligent response from a vegan. Apparently Unnatural Vegan was threatened for posting this video by a Yourofsky supporter, so well done to her for speaking her truth.
(Please note that I do not, by any means, agree with everything that Unnatural Vegan puts out in her videos — such as her support for GM foods which I believe is misguided.)