This is an open letter to all the candidates of the Animal Justice Party for the House of Representatives, and the Senate.
Please allow me to introduce myself.
I am an eligible voter at the coming election.
I care about the plight of other animals.
I understand the complexities of animal rights.
I am also vegan.
This means, according to Facebook, my only option is to vote for you on July 2.
This is why I am writing this letter to you.
I feel there are a few questions need answering.
One of the claims of the Animal Justice Party that I often see repeated, is that they are giving a voice to the voiceless.
Yet this is not true.
Other animals DO have a voice.
Sadly, many of us choose not to listen to them.
The founder of the Animal Justice Party, Prof. Steve Garlick says other animals speak a different language.
Please tell us, which one it is?
A Queensland candidate made the recent comment, when talking about suggested preferences are “based on our analysis of the other parties animal rights policies and how closely they align to ours”
How could this be when the Animal Justice Party doesn’t have any animal rights policies to begin with?
Adding to this confusion is a comment by the founder Steve Garlick who says, “to improve the well-being of animals through the political process“.
In this image from Facebook a candidate said “The Animal Justice Party aims to represent animals in parliament to ensure laws and policies are implemented and enforced to achieve genuine justice for animals.”
As the animals are not the ones voting for you to be their representative in Canberra, doesn’t that statement make candidates of the Animal Justice Party in breach of s44(i) of the Australian Constitution?
And, how will the Animal Justice Party be hoping to “achieve genuine justice for animals”?
One of the major platforms of the AJP and other parties is the creation of an “Independent Office of Animal Welfare”.
How will this be funded, and what services are you proposing to cut to pay for it?
Understanding that “animal issues” fall under the control of the respective states and territories, as per s51 of the Australian Constitution, and considering that it is highly unlikely that the states and territories will hand responsibility to the Commonwealth, how do you propose to give the IOAW ‘teeth’?
Various comments have been made by the AJP in other states about seeking “personhood” status for other animals. As this is different to the current policy of a yet to be decided “3rd status”, is “personhood” a change in direction?
Question 6: For the Queensland candidates
If you are successful in the election, will the way that you vote on matters be governed by the AJP in NSW or people in QLD?
If it is Qld, who are the committee members?
We all understand that the Animal Justice Party is a one platform party, as in they only have policies relating to animals.
With this being the case, why was so much attention paid to the comments of the former candidate for Menzies (Vic)?
Nothing he said was in conflict with ANY stated Animal Justice Party policy.
His published comment “If the electorate was up in arms, I’d be forced to look at how the electorate wanted me to vote and if push came to shove I would say yes, but I’d rather abstain.” is in line with being a representative of the people, and his own personal thoughts.
Based on that, I am hoping that ALL candidates and committee members are vegan, because it would be very hypocritical to allow them to consume other animals, while condemning the personal opinion of another on a “non animal” matter.
Are you ready for that fall out?
Earlier this month, a number of candidates participated in the March To Close All Slaughterhouses, and the Animal Justice Party have recently made comments about ending live export.
In 2013, Mark Pearson said the following when standing as a Senate candidate.
Mr Pearson said he believed the campaign would quickly cause the wool industry to put pressure on the government and live export industries would switch to exporting carcasses instead of live meat.
“It will be all over by morning tea,” he said. “The whole industry will switch to a major chilled carcass trade and abattoirs will open up in Australia to service that.”
“Local workers will be needed to staff those abattoirs which makes this a win-win situation for jobs.”
As this statement has not been retracted, which one is it?
Are you willing to continue Mark Pearson and company’s vendetta against the RSPCA?
This is the final, and what I feel most important question.
We all know that politics is a game of negotiations, and compromise.
How far are you willing to go to get an AJP bill through the senate?
Would you vote in favour of the ALP’s plan to require a “fit and proper person” test to labour hire companies, to get a spot on a committee into animal agriculture?
Would you be in favour of voting AGAINST “marriage equality”, if it meant live export was phased out over a 10 year period?
Would you vote in favour of selling medicare if it meant the introduction of the “Independent Office of Animal Welfare”?
Thank you for taking the time to read this, and answer these questions.
One final word of advice though, as this is a double dissolution election, half of the senators elected will serve a 3 year term.
What this means is that for those short-term senators, politics won’t be a long distance race. Their term could effectively be up in 3 years.
We have seen how Tony Hulbert was thrown under the bus for no good reason. What makes you think the Animal Justice Party won’t do the same to you?
This article was written by the founder of VeganPolice.com.au, Cameron Blewett.
Cameron is a long term vegan (30+yrs), and is passionate about veganism, and helping people to understand more about it and giving other animals equal consideration.
You can find Cameron’s other rants on his website, CameronBlewett.blog