When it comes to animal advocacy, sadly, not all organizations are in it for the best interest of the animals they claim to protect, and it’s important that compassionate Americans know who’s who. Too many groups have become wealthy & powerful by preying on the empathy and altruism of Americans, while sweeping the truth about their policies and practices under the rug.
It turns out that many fans of No Kill Nation on Facebook are also fans of the Humane Society of the US, the ASPCA and/or PETA. On the surface that might seem logical, since all organizations revolve around animal welfare, but the reality is, the philosophy that guides No Kill Nation couldn’t differ more from the philosophy these other groups subscribe to.
Many Americans believe (as I once did), that the HSUS, the ASPCA and PETA are working to save the lives of animals. Many believe that the hard-earned money they donate in response to the heartbreaking TV commercials and fundraising campaigns goes directly to the causes these organizations promote. Many believe that these groups are the biggest proponents for No Kill policies. Unfortunately, all of these statements are patently false.
What’s the difference between No Kill Nation and these other organizations? The main difference is a fundamental belief that a No Kill Nation is possible. These other organizations, despite the message they publicly promote, do NOT believe in the concept of No Kill, and in fact they work against it. They advocate killing, and they often espouse the idea that companion animals are “better off dead” than to be in the hands of humans. This comes from a deep-seated belief that human beings are bad – not to be trusted, and will abuse and neglect animals given the opportunity. In the end, this mentality serves to punish the animals, and leads to millions of unnecessary deaths. In truth, most people love animals, and will treat them with kindness and love, given the opportunity and the education.
We are a nation that spends more than $40 billion on our pets annually. It’s a very small percentage that are abusive or neglectful. Unfortunately, many on the front lines of animal rescue see so many horror stories involving animals (due to the time they spend at the local shelters), that they become angry & resentful towards other human beings. Falling prey to these beliefs is the worst possible scenario for the animals.
Instead of killing animals because we believe that human beings can’t be trusted, we should be praising the responsible pet owners, encouraging people to adopt, and educating them on how to properly care for their pets. This way, both animals and people benefit.
The HSUS, the ASPCA and PETA are fundamentally opposed to what No Kill Nation is working to do, which is to implement the proven No Kill Equation (an 11-step set of programs and policies for shelters) and create No Kill communities across the country. This is happening in communities across the country, and it’s possible everywhere. Anyone who tells you differently is either misinformed, a proponent of the status quo of killing, or brainwashed to believe otherwise. Personally, I used to be brainwashed, and believed that killing was necessary due to “a lack of resources” and “too many animals, not enough homes”. Both are nothing more than myths - the myth of overpopulation, and the myth that money = lives saved. Statistically, there are 17 million people in the US looking for new pets annually, who could be convinced to adopt, and 3-4 million that die in shelters – that’s far more than enough homes. Additionally, the No Kill Equation can be implemented within, and often under budget – so don’t let a shelter administrator tell you that MONEY is the key to life-saving.
These myths have persisted for decades, and their continued power is why the HSUS, ASPCA and PETA take in hundreds of millions of dollars per year from compassionate Americans. When the public gains widespread awareness about where their dollars are going, and realizes that the status quo isn’t working, that animals are dying needlessly and that there IS another way, these groups will have to evolve or die. There’s no room for the acceptance and advocacy of killing. A No Kill Nation is where we’re headed, and we will arrive.
If you want to learn more about No Kill Nation, please visit the Facebook page (which just hit 100,000+ fans!) and don’t hesitate to post questions. I definitely encourage you to read further about the policies & actions of the HSUS, ASPCA and PETA. Nathan Winograd has some terrific blog posts on the topic.
If you love companion animals, if you believe that every life is precious and that every saveable animal deserves to live, than the HSUS, the ASPCA and PETA are NOT on your side … but No Kill Nation is.