Potter, “is an award-winning independent journalist based in Washington, D.C., who focuses on ‘eco-terrorism,’ the animal rights and environmental movements, and civil liberties post-9/11. His work has appeared in the Chicago Tribune, the Huffington Post, and the Vermont Law Review.” After getting arrested for leafletting, threatened by the FBI, and then testifying before Congress, he became “obsessed” with finding out how this terrifying reality came to be.
Drawing comparisons to the “Red Scare” era, Potter’s book, Green Is The New Red: An Insider’s Account of a Social Movement Under Siege is, “a thrilling memoir that contextualizes the federal Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act (AETA).” AETA, he explains, was created to expand on the Animal Enterprise Protection Act (AEPA), which was deemed “inadequate in going after radical groups.”
The article also goes on to discuss the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), which might be even more scary; “a secretive organization that allows corporations to literally write bills that have been introduced around the country—with lawmakers having no idea that they were actually drafted by corporations themselves”, and provides a link to Potter’s Congressional testimony. I need a hug!
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Now, he made the first mistake of Kickstarter, which is meeting the goal too soon. But he still really could use more money. And you could really use a copy of this book, so go pledge and preorder. Or throw in 10 extra bucks to get a couple of minicomics on the side, like I did.
There’s over 50 contributors in all. This is a pretty great anthology for just learning who’s who in indie comics. Here’s a bunch of non-vegan famous names in there: Jeffrey Brown, Renée French, Alex Robinson, James Kochalka, Marc Bell, Box Brown, Noah Van Sciver, and Sam Henderson. Top drawer stuff.
I asked J.T. some questions and he answered so well I’m just gonna quote liberally here:
Originally this was going to be a comic anthology split between vegans and carnivores (omnivores, technically, but ‘carnivore’ sounds more extreme!). Once I’d made sure I had enough vegans contributing I made up a list of non-vegan artists I hoped might contribute. Once I started asking around I realized that my original idea would end up excluding a lot of talented people that either didn’t identify as carnivorous or fell somewhere further down the dietary preference chain. I thought it would probably turn out more interesting to dial back the theme to anything having to do with food and eating and allow the artists to decide how to approach the theme. Judging from the comics I’ve received thus far, I think my instincts were correct! There’s a huge variety in subject matter and tone. Some gave me autobiographical pieces, some were purely fictional, some are akin to essays and just about everything in-between. I like to think a dialogue has been created that can help all of us understand each other’s point of view when it comes to our choices about food & eating.
Where I come from, MFA stands for Master of Fine Arts, but those are just really expensive pieces of paper that don’t do a whole lot. A better use of the acronym is Mercy For Animals because they do awesome things like fight for farmed animals and against the cruelty they are subjected to. Not the other way around. Do you know about this organization? I bet you didn’t know they were this cute.
On Saturday, June 2nd, I was lucky enough to attend a MFA event called Justice For All: A Night For Creatures Big And Small. This was a $500 per VIP ticket cocktail party in the West Hollywood Hills. Pretty swank. Hillary Swank was not there, but other celebrities were, like honoree Emily Deschanel and her Bones co-star Michaela Conlin, Jackass Steve-O and that Skinny Bitch Rory Freedman. The host, Freeway The Dog, and his house were incredible and the bar was not only open, but staffed with swoon-worthy ‘tenders.
The party was catered by super Vegan chef extraordinaire Dave Anderson from Madeleine Bistro, a restaurant that is open on an intermittent basis, and Maddy’s formerly known as The Shoppe, which hasn’t even opened once yet. Culinary highlights included BBQ seitan skewers, cashew cheese stuffed dates wrapped in a smokey mushroom, filet un-fish sandos, and some sort of donut/beignet thing that I am considering starting a competitive Vegan eating team for.
The party was fun, fancy and kind of like going to the airport. You had to take a shuttle van to get there (Heeeeey, to the people on my party bus!), you had to take your shoes off, and you left with a giant bag (of awesome goodies). LAXPH (Los Angeles International Party House).
There was a silent auction of all kinds of great things n’ stuff:
And after a few hours of free swim there was a short program, the three important parts of which were:
Won.) Nathan Runkle, the founder of MFA is appx. 18 years old. Or maybe that’s how old he was when he started it, either way, I have not done enough with my life.
Too.) This video. Don’t you not even try to don’t not be affected.
Three …) people in the room donated $25,000 each. 3! Nathan raised 200K in less than 10 minutes. This was impressive, but it’s not nearly enough, I’m sure. They are fighting billion dollar industries and winning, but with ag-gag bills passing, life is about to get harder for them and Bessy The Cow. Do you have extra dollars? Doesn’t have to be five figures, if you’re so inclined, they would gladly accept whatever you can give. And/Or, you could invest in the highly anticipated Shift all Vegan restaurant & bar in Venice, as they are still in need of a few chunks of money in order to open before I die from a suspense O.D.
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Not that you need an excuse to shop, but Mooshoes is celebrating its 10th anniversary this Saturday, Dec. 3, with a 15% discount on all in-store purchases, plus beverages and snacks from Blossom du Jour and Dun-Well Doughnuts.
On Wednesday, Dec. 7, head over to Pianos on the Lower East Side for some Freerange Nonfiction and listen while Hannah Tinti, Alison Espach and Alison Smith read from their animal-related books. The event’s $8 cover will directly benefit Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary. For more information on this and other happenings in New York City, check out our Events Calendar.
In other atrocities, the USDA released its 2010 Dairy Checkoff Report, and the results are, well, atrocious: In 2009, $108 million was spent promoting milk, while $283 million was used to push dairy products like cheese. Is this really how we want our tax money spent?
On a lighter note: Sending out holiday cards? Be sure to order a book of PETA’s stamps featuring veggie celebs, now through January. The stamps, which can be purchased online, are available as of today and feature famous faces such as Woody Harrelson, Chrissie Hynde, Bob Barker and Morrissey, plus historical notables including da Vinci, Tolstoy and Pythagoras. Celebs aren’t always the most consistent carrot eaters, but they do help expose the mainstream to the cause.
For the young compassionate people in your life: The Vegetarian Resource Group is giving away two $5,000 college scholarships to vegetarian high schoolers graduating in the spring of 2012. If you know a senior who lives and promotes the veg lifestyle, make sure he or she applies by Feb. 20.
If you’re in the Philly area, gourmet vegan destination Horizons is no longer an option, but maybe Vedge will fit the bill. If burgers and fries are more your speed, a new fast food joint is headed for the City of Brotherly Love.
Who says you have to eat your fruits and veggies, anyway? Japanese artist Takaya takes a cue from Carmen Miranda and creates herbivorous headgear.