“The Link” - Sometimes something happens which can change our world!
An historic change may now be taking place in the world of animal protection.
Let us explain the facts & then together we can perhaps imagine how enormous this change may become. For many years there have been concerns about violent traditions & practices where animals have been violently abused & even killed. Examples given in later paragraph.
In May 2021 the most powerful child protection authority on earth, when making recommendations to the Tunisian authorities about how the practice of shooting homeless animals affected the children who had to see this, the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child called for an ‘elimination of societal violence against animals’. (1) Their involvement followed a University study which showed how children exposed to violent societal animal abuse can suffer a progressive erosion of empathy & then come to accept violence as being ‘normal’.
This process is called ‘the Link’ and had been researched for over 40 years but almost exclusively in America…now it was being taken to countries where animal abuse was far more extensive. The Committee had made ‘recommendations’ to each country where children had either participated or were spectators of bullfighting, to protect the children from suffering ‘Harmful Effects’ caused by experiencing the violence of the bullfights.
This is what we have! The most powerful authority on earth has called for children to be protected from seeing violent animal abuse. The solution then is to protect the animal to protect the child.
Where then can this take us into the future? Let’s explore!
Because the Committee has expressed concerns about children witnessing violence against different types of animal species, then if it’s not the type of ‘species’ which affects the child, what is it? Rigorous research has shown that a child’s empathy connects with the sentience of the animal. The child sees similarities with himself: The animal thinks, it feels, it cares for its children, it feels joy & pain - the same as the child does. This means then that a child can be ‘harmfully affected’ by seeing violence against ANY sentient animal.
Now can we together imagine where this takes place? In countries where governments seek to control homeless animal populations by killing the animals? Where else? What about the children who are taken to hunt ‘trophies’? Or the animal sacrifice festivals such as ‘Gadhimai’ where the slaughter takes place in front of the children? Or the Faroe Islands where sentient marine life is brutally slaughtered in the name of ‘tradition’. Perhaps your imagination is working too?
This is what we have!
ANY violent animal abuse can cause harmful effects to children who witness this violence. The child can learn that such violence is normal & take it into their adult life & become violent towards people. Check the history of serial murders & animal abuse is likely to be found in their history. A town in Texas learned this lesson too late to save 19 children!
But major organisations react slowly. Like a giant freighter on the open sea, they move without speed. And so it is with the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child, they have protocols which determine that they make recommendations to countries individually, even if, such as we have now, the issue is globally impacting. Every country in the world, except America, has ratified the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. To challenge one country about the effects on the children but not to challenge every country where the same violent abuse is seen by the children is the same as saying that a bullet flying through the air is dangerous in one country but not in another. Violent animal abuse takes place in diverse forms, in many societies & cultures but it has one commonality - its effects on the child!
So, this is what we have & it’s already a lot, but so much more importantly this is what we CAN have!
It is groundbreaking !
The realization that we protect animals when we protect children - and protect children when we protect animals is groundbreaking and children's rights have been accepted by almost all countries worldwide. ‘Protect the animal to save the child…Protect the child to save the animal has proven to be an effective line.
If we now use this knowledge to present it to politicians, to explain it to media, to communicate on social media and to document it in writing, then something will change. Because then we have the chance to draw attention again and again to the fact that a UN charter is constantly being violated - and that must not be without consequences.
Against this background, the "European Link Coalition" and PETA Deutschland are working closely together to seize this opportunity together with other partners.
Along with PETA Deutschland, Animal Welfare representatives from every continent are now participating in this quest. They include:-
Africa Network for Animal Welfare (ANAW)
Soi Dog Foundation (Thailand)
Animal People Inc (USA)
Blue Cross of India... and many others...!
Explaining how violent animal abuse can normalise violence in a child - https://animoto.com/play/mfPV2Wb2NLe9d1BYuL3aZw
Interest, Inform & Invite video (in various languages) https://animoto.com/play/YbuPRH2AORXZMpcw3J97Fw
Presentation - https://www.europeanlinkcoalition.com/a-different-world
Comprehensive detail including connections between the UN Convention & the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development agreed by every UN Member country.