Letter: ‘Traditional’ and ‘humane’ are excuses

Graphic by Lori Deaton

In response to Frank Salzano’s note on [the letter], “What Defines Ethical Slaughtering?” [Jan. 10, Xpress]: Since we began our campaign against Wild Abundance, they have been using the same excuses to justify the violence they perpetuate. Mr. Salzano’s comments are a prime example of this. The words “traditional” and “humane” are used as excuses. First, tradition never justifies violence. Traditions of violence and discrimination have long existed in our society, but that does not mean that they are acceptable.

The use of the term “humane” is just as bad. The idea that you can “humanely” tie up a living being, cut their throat and let them bleed to death is outright absurd. … I’m surprised that Mr. Salzano still found the term [“humane”] appropriate to use.

I am disappointed that any activists deemed it necessary to send Wild Abundance instructors threats, and I would like to see the harassment against them stop. However, I would like to point out that other activists and I received several death threats as well, but didn’t go running to the media for attention. Both sides of this campaign should remain peaceful and nonviolent through their words and actions.

As Mr. Salzano requested, I would love nothing more than to leave Wild Abundance alone. Unfortunately, as long as Wild Abundance continues to abuse and kill other beings, we will continue to fight for their freedom. We are all animals, and all have the rights to our lives. No flashy word like “humane” or “ethical” can change that reality.

— Jeremy Sagaribay
DxE (Direct Action Everywhere), Asheville chapter

Editor’s note: Xpress contacted Frank Salzano of Wild Abundance with a summary of Sagaribay’s points. He offered the following response, which says in part: “Please know this: We do not experience harvesting animals as fun or light work. The same is true for harvesting vegetables, weeding gardens, felling trees, blacksmithing, using cars or computers, buying salt or garden amendments, flying to visit sick family members or participating in any subsistence or ‘basic needs’ that hurt any form of life. Jeremy, there is a deep grief and heaviness in surviving and thriving in this world of flesh, bone and stomach. Let’s all do our best to honor that grief and love life.

We are not interested in debating semantics with you any longer. That can too easily slip into an abstract and fundamentalist brand of political discourse. Please take a big step back and look at yourself. … I am genuinely confused by what you are doing. We know behind it all is a caring for life. We respect and appreciate that, but you can do better. This world needs you to flower, mature your political content and style, and create more strategic and helpful political ambitions. I am praying and cheering for you to step it up!”



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14 thoughts on “Letter: ‘Traditional’ and ‘humane’ are excuses

  1. SpareChange

    Even for those who might otherwise support the agenda of DxE, for them to continue to focus so much attention, and continue to harass an operation as tiny as Wild Abundance, is tantamount to protesting air pollution by trying to prevent a single Vespa rider from using his or her scooter to get to work. Strategically, tactically, and from a PR perspective, it really has just become boring, boorish, bullying.

    • Jeremy

      This is about more than just the two lives taken every year by Wild Abundance. They push the “humane” agenda, which misleads the public and causes more innocent beings to be killed.

  2. Jeremy

    I find it incredibly offensive that you would compare killing someone to weeding a garden or “buying salt”. Taking lives isn’t honorable or sacred, it’s ethically revolting and morally wrong.

  3. Johnny to the A

    Abstract and fundamentalist political discourse describes Asheville well.

    What happens to an individual such as Jeremy Sagaribay that allows them to self-justify such radicalism? No sense of moderation or empathy?

    Beliefs shaped not by what is right and just but instead by an extremist agenda.

    Odd, unsettling and unfortunate.

    • Jeremy

      It’s funny that you would suggest I lack empathy when the very business I’m talking about literally slits throats for profit. If in the world we live in, compassion is considered extreme, then sure, I’m an extremist.

  4. Tsalagi Sister

    Among our nation, and many other First Nations….. RESPECT..
    is the first tenet.
    Remember, when you point at others, you have three fingers pointed at yourself.
    My Grandmother used to say: “live and let live”
    That means it’s none of our business how others conduct their basic survival.
    Unless it hurts you or children,
    Mind your own biz.
    I too, in the past, have experience of retaliation for my speech.
    I empathize with those attacked.
    My heart breaks at human meanness for any reason.

    • Jeremy

      I agree with you, we should mind our own business unless the actions of someone else have a victim. There are two very obvious victims in this case; the two sheep. Wild Abundance’s actions are taking their lives, so it’s only right to speak out against them.

  5. Tsalagi sister

    It’s always amused me how so many people assume the right to speak for animals, but never for the right of Traditional cultures to do as they please to feed their families.
    It’s truly ironic since abuse of children is endemic you fools try to impose your will on a fellow human.
    Get a darn clue..
    We’re not some trophy hunting rich idiots.
    We have a right to live as we did long before arrogant white folks came round destroying our lives.
    Look at yourself….

    • Jeremy Sagaribay

      Wild Abundance is owned by the very “arrogant white folks” you are taking about. They are cashing in on the “humane meat” trend, not following tradition. Regardless, like I said in my letter, tradition never excuses violence. Our world wouldn’t be very well off if we held on to harmful customs from hundreds of years ago, would it?

  6. Tsalagi sister

    It’s always amused me how so many people assume the right to speak for animals, but never for the right of Traditional cultures to do as they please to feed their families.
    It’s truly ironic since abuse of children is endemic you fools try to impose your will on a fellow human. Sheep aren’t being trafficked, children are.
    Get a darn clue..
    We’re not some trophy hunting rich idiots.
    We have a right to live as we did long before arrogant folks came round destroying our lives.
    Look at yourself…. Do you expect all to be just like you?
    If so, what hubris!

    • Jeremy Sagaribay

      It’s our right and duty to speak up for the animals, since they cannot speak for themselves. They have the right to live a happy life free from harm, just like you and I.

      Traditions can never justify violence. If we stuck to all of our old customs, our planet would not be a good place, would it? I don’t expect everyone to be like me, but I do expect everyone to live with compassion and respect for others.

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