What does the next generation think of today’s issues? The Next Gen program publishes our students mentored by TBS writers. Today, Bailey Mason (15), challenges us to build on the animal rights victories we won in 2017.
Student: Bailey Mason
Mentor: Jordan Rivkin
The world is undoubtedly becoming more accepting of the animal rights movement. Animal rights is the idea that animals aren’t ours to use for any purpose, be it for food, entertainment, clothing or experimentation.
Apart from our pets, animals have long been viewed by society as nothing but objects, undeserving of anything but torture. We enjoy eating dead animals, visiting animals behind bars at the zoo and forcing animals to endure horrific experiments. However, times are changing.
In 2017, more people were keeping animals off their plates and in their arms. It was reported that the demand for vegan and vegetarian food increased by 987%. Tyson Foods, the biggest supplier of meat in the United States of America, is now investing in plant-based protein. There is now an increasing demand for plant-based food at supermarkets, cafés and restaurants. This is not only good for animals but also for our own health.
Animals are also being saved from the horrific fur industry because people don’t want to cover themselves in animals that have been skinned alive. Big fashion houses, such as Gucci, Michael Kors and Jimmy Choo have all announced that they will no longer be supporting the fur industry from 2018.
Also on The Big Smoke
- TBS Next Gen: Testing on animals a test of our fortitude
- TBS Next Gen: We need more girls to study science and maths at school
- TBS Next Gen: The pacific garbage soup we all have to taste
- TBS Next Gen: Juvenile detention centres – there’s a better way
The uproar continues against SeaWorld and other marine theme parks that keep highly intelligent animals in captivity. SeaWorld’s share price continues to plummet in the wake of the 2013 documentary Blackfish, which exposed the cruelty of orca captivity. Empty The Tanks World Wide is planning upcoming protests across the world in 2018 outside captive dolphin parks to bring the plight of these dolphins to a wider audience.
Animal rights aren’t becoming hugely popular all of a sudden for no reason. Animal rights activists are upping the pressure to save the defenceless, and social media is becoming a highly effective tool in raising awareness about animal cruelty issues. This is good because many people aren’t aware of the extent of animal testing and other animal rights issues.
We are starting to become increasingly conscious about our treatment of animals.
Our kind choices for animals will help animal rights dominate as a social justice issue in 2018.
This article is part of a series for The Big Smoke Next Gen.
The Big Smoke Next Gen is a program which matches professional and experienced writers, academics and journalists with students who wish to write non-fiction articles and voice their opinions on what is shaping the nation.
For more information about our program at The Big Smoke, or to become a mentor, please contact us.