Today is World Day For Animals In Laboratories and I marched with meaning to end animal experiments! It was a fantastic turn out with around 600 people stomping through the streets of Nottingham being closely looked after by a team of police and of course the organisers, Animal Justice Project and Nottingham Animal Rights. This was my first march for ending animal testing, so I want to tell you how I found it, and what you can expect if you have never done one either!
Firstly expect friendly faces, I think 99.9% of the marchers were all vegan and lets face it - vegans are known for being friendly! We all quite literally want world peace, so it`s no surprise that this truly was a peaceful and positive protest to be a part of.
I met up with some of my friends from the Anonymous For The Voiceless group and my pal paved the way and showed me how its done - funny faces are apparently mandatory whilst marching. It was touch and go for me to march because I have been a little under the weather, so instead of having a sign at the ready, I decided last minute to paint my face and go as a symbolically sad 'cruelty free' bunny, although I got called a few other things throughout the day by friends; none of which are suitable to blog about! I got some prettyyyy strange looks too as I ran through the city to make it on time!
I should have saved my energy because I arrived with plenty of time to spare - so much so that I took myself off and spoke to some of the police. I asked if they had come because they expected us to cause a problem or to protect us from potential problems. The police officer wouldn't let me film his response (yup - I asked and got a firm NO. Ha-ha), but I have a pretty good memory so I can tell you near enough exactly what he said.
"No no - of course not, we know you guys are all peaceful and here to make a difference but with your passion can come people with opposing arguments, so we are here to make sure others do not cause a problem for you"
At this point I of course without thought, laughed and said "how can ending animal cruelty be argued against?" and with that, I had a lovely lengthy chat with the police officers before they wished me well and I took my place back in the crowd to listen to the speakers.
First up and introducing the rest of the speakers throughout the day was my friend Jordan Candeias, better known as DrumNBassVeganFace on YouTube who not only kept us spurred on but documented the entire march and will be posting videos in the next coming weeks! Claire Palmer from the Animal Justice Project spoke first and reminded us of the cruelty and wrong doings that happen everyday within the animal laboratories. John Curtin a well known activist spoke after and then the march began!
Green and yellow smoke flares were set off, the crowd cheered and the feeling amongst us all was a united sense of passion for justice and the urge to speak up about it. The chants were powerful...and will probably be in my head all week long! "Its not science - Its violence" was my favourite. I think that perfectly sums up animal testing. We cant excuse animal abuse; there is no reason to ever cause harm to a sentient being, especially when we can test in many other cruelty free ways!
Throughout the march we were constantly speaking out with spoken statements and signs, and stopped twice to listen to two more speakers. Jessamy Korotoga from Animal Aid and Mel Broughton who is that well known for his animal activism he even has a wiki page about him! Honestly - he seriously does, click here. Jessamy gave us stats and facts on just how many animals are killed and harmed in England alone and reinforced our reason for being a part of this protest. Mel Broughton admitted his rightful anger with what is happening and gave us all that final fighting attitude we needed to be louder and be seen to be taken seriously by the passing public. It worked!
People were constantly stopping to take pictures, take leaflets, and ask questions. So some people may think this to be a waste of time but it is absolutely not. I am sure that you yourself reading this, once didn't think about this, didn't know about what happens, didn't even care maybe, but yet here you are either supporting it now, or wanting to learn about it. Speaking out works. Peaceful protesting works, plus they're fun! So to summarise, I loved it and would recommend any animal lover to go out and join a compassionate crowd to make a difference in the world we live in. If you're a bit of a lonely vegan like I once was, its a great way to make friends too! Check out my last post 'Don't be a lonely vegan - Make Vegan Friends'.
For lots more articles like this Subscribe to my blog and for daily inspiration follow me on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook. You can subscribe to see my YouTube videos too - They're a little silly! Hope to see you soon, either virtually or as an activist! #GrowUpVegan