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CVA Weekly Newsletter
June 6, 2012

  1. Activist Feedback
  2. Essay: Nonhuman Beings as Scapegoats
  3. This Week’s Sermon from Rev. Frank and Mary Hoffman

1. Activist Feedback
Regarding leafleting at a recent youth event in St. Louis, Rick Hershey writes:
Chip, Michael, and I handed out 1450 booklets today and enjoyed beautiful warm weather.  This was mostly kids as usual and they were receptive toward accepting the booklet.
Upcoming Outreach Opportunities
6/12                       IA Bettendorf                    Esterlyn Christian Rock Concert
6/14                       AL Birmingham                  McDonald's Inspiration Celebration Gospel Tour 2012
6/14-16                 MI Allegan                          Big Ticket Festival Christian Music Fest
6/14-16                 GA Atlanta                          Christian Music Festival
6/16                       GA Valdosta                       Sanctus Real Christian Rock Concert
6/16                       IA Sheldon                          RiseFest
6/16                       AR Little Rock                     Women of Faith
6/16-17                 NY Rochester                     Rock The Lakes News boys and more!
7/14                       MN Minneapolis                              TABLE Twin Cities Veg Fest
6/20-23                 KY Wilmore                         Ichthus Music Festival
6/23                       IL Hoffman Estates          Women of Faith
6/23                       NC Greensboro                                Women of Faith
6/23                       VA Richmond                     TABLE Richmond Vegetarian Festival
6/21-24                 NC Pittsboro                      TABLE Wild Goose Festival     
6/27-30                 PA Mt Union                      Creation Fest Northeast 2012
6/28-30                 OH Kings Island                                 Spirit Song 2012 Festival
6/29-30                 IN Nappanee                     Friend Fest 2012 Christian Music Festival
6/30                       NC Mount Airy                                  DecembeRadio in Concert
6/30                       IL Carbondale                    Remedy Drive Christian Rock Concert
7/3-5                     IN Independence                            Heartbeat Festival 2012
7/7                         IL St. Charles                      DecembeRadio in Concert
7/11-14                 MN Willmar                        Sonshine Festival
7/11-15                 WI Oshkosh                        LifeFest 2012
7/13                       OH Cleveland                     Joel Olsteen Ministries
7/14-15                 CO Olathe                           Night Vision Festival
7/21-22                 IL Schaumburg                                  Ignite Music Festival
7/21-22                 SD Rapid City                      Hills Alive 2012 FREE Christian Music Fest
11/17                     NY Albany                           TABLE NY's Capital Region Vegetarian Expo

2. Essay: Nonhuman Beings as Scapegoats
Last week I discussed how animal advocates are often scapegoat victims. I suggest that an important foundation of animal exploitation and abuse is that nonhuman beings themselves are victims of scapegoating. Guilt reflects a conflict between what we do and what we believe is right. Most people agree that we should not abuse animals, yet most people want to enjoy the (supposed) fruits of animal abuse, such as experimenting on animals, eating animal flesh, and consuming other animal products. One effective way to resolve this internal conflict is to blame animals for the abuse they receive.
Often, people regard animals with contempt, attributing to them ugliness, stupidity, cowardice, and a host of other features. Calling a person by the name of an animal who is routinely abused by humans, such as “pig,” “chicken,” turkey,” and “cow” is meant to convey disregard. Nonhuman beings have no way to counter these simplistic and generally inaccurate stereotypes.
It is unclear whether or not such stereotyping derives from scapegoating – the process of transferring blame. A more clear manifestation of scapegoating is how those bent on abusing animals tend to project human attributes of which we are often ashamed onto animals. Therefore, nonhumans are often seen as sexually promiscuous (and therefore immoral) or ruthlessly violent. Humans often regard behaviors that are natural and adaptive for animals as evidence of immorality, and therefore animals deserve whatever treatment they get. Ironically, humans have choices as to whether they will be sexually promiscuous or violent, whereas nonhumans act according to their natures. Whether or not we should be ashamed of our sexuality or when we use force, projecting this shame onto nonhumans is unwarranted and constitutes scapegoating.
Next week, I will explore how people derive a sense of self-esteem by harmfully exploiting nonhumans.
Stephen R. Kaufman, M.D.

3. This Week’s Sermon from Rev. Frank and Mary Hoffman
Living as Compassionate Peacemaking Children of God

Your question and comments are welcome

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