10 Reasons Why Ethical Vegans Shouldn’t Vote For The Animal Justice Party

It’s Federal Election time again, and once again the Animal Justice Party faithful are telling us they are the only party ethical vegans should be voting for.

Though are they really?

While there are worse parties to vote for, I am not sure that they are the best.

Here are ten reasons why I don’t think ethical vegans should give them their primary vote on May 18.

1: They Actually Reject Veganism

For all their claims of being a party that ethical vegans should vote for, they actually reject veganism.

I haven’t been able to find one policy where they mention veganism.

It is all plant based, and other non-vegan terms.

They support *cultured meat*, the keeping of *companion animals*, and the rights violating desexing of “companion” animals.

Is having vegan candidates really enough?

Other parties have vegan politicians, and not much has changed with regards to veganism or the animals.

2: Mark Pearson

Even though Mark Pearson is a New South Wales upper house MP, he is an example of everything that is wrong with the party.

Despite his claimed decades of working on “animal rights issues”, he still isn’t vegan.

I am sure we all remember his sushi-gate episode and the rush to defend him, and excuse his deliberate actions.

We are told that all new candidates “must” be vegan, though this won’t apply to Mark.

For a founding member and first MP of the parliament not to be vegan, he really isn’t setting a good example for others.

3: They Aren’t Telling Us Everything

Part of their charter says that they want “Constitutional protection of animals and the environment”.

To date, they still haven’t disclosed what this “constitutional protection” will be, how they plan to win a referendum, and what they are prepared to do to get a successful vote.

s128 of the Australian Constitution says

The proposed law for the alteration thereof must be passed by an absolute majority of each House of the Parliament, and not less than two nor more than six months after its passage through both Houses the proposed law shall be submitted in each State and Territory to the electors qualified to vote for the election of members of the House of Representatives.

While Constitutional protection of animals and the environment may sound good, and get high-fives from the politically inexperienced, the reality is totally different.

If they aren’t telling us this, what else is there that they aren’t telling us?

4: Censorship Of Anything That Isn’t Praise

For a party that supposedly has “kindness” as one of its four values, they don’t show it when it comes to comments on social media.

Anything that isn’t telling them how wonderful they are, or how much they love the Animal Justice Party are promptly deleted, and the person making the comment blocked.

I have lost count of the number of questions that I have asked them that have been deleted.

I’m not the only one either.

Which makes it look like they are trying to silence anything that even hints at how little they know about anything political.

5: Lack Of Democracy

For a party with the values of “fairness” “rationality” and “equality”, the party isn’t very democratic or fair.

The party is in essence controlled by the NatCom.

The constitution does mention voting members, though in the Definitions and interpretation s5, it says voting members is a category of member, though as they aren’t specifically mentioned, they are special members. {s5(v)}

We have no idea who the special members are that the NatCom created under section 15.1(c) of the constitution. s15.2 states that the constitution doesn’t apply to them. (There was a clause in the old constitution that said the NatCom had to let any potential member know what the special members were, though this has been deleted due to me asking for that information under that clause).

Delegates are elected by voting members, though the NatCom may set additional criteria from time to time {s17.3}. The number of delegates is decided by NatCom.

The delegates are the only ones who can appoint or remove a NatCom member, so it is in the NatCom’s best interest to stack them with supporters.

The NatCom is made up of between five and nine members. (Of those, four are office bearers).

The NatCom “shall determine procedures for the selection and approval of candidates for public office”. (I guess this is how we ended up with Jimmy being a candidate at the NSW general election).

(The constitution does mention something about a ballot for preselection, though if only one person nominates, (or is approached), there isn’t a need for a ballot. (And NatCom can say yay or nay).

6: They Are One Big Organisation

Unlike other political parties that have a national branch and state/territory based branches, the Animal Justice Party is all one big group.

There is no Animal Justice Party Queensland, or Animal Justice Party New South Wales, and so on.

Don’t believe me.

Have a look at their funding disclosure where they received $226,000+ from the New South Wales Electoral Commission, and almost $20K from the SA Electoral Commission.

There is also a clause, (s58) in there that says The Party may pay fees to a NatCom Member for acting as a director or NatCom Member.

7: They Don’t Know What They Want

One minute the NatCom Vice President, Katrina Love, says the party is an “animal protection party”, then the next moment she says they are an “animal rights party”.

And all of this is contrary to what the party’s constitution.

8.1 The purpose of the Party is to:

(a) seek the election or appointment to parliaments of the states, territories and Commonwealth of Australia, and to local government councils, of people committed to the principles of the Animal Justice Party Charter;

(b) promote the election to the Legislative Assembly of a candidate or candidates endorsed by the party or by a body or organisation of which the party forms a part of;

(c) undertake coordinated campaigns of actions with a view to improving the condition of animals in society through legal reform;

(d) develop and implement policies consistent with the principles expressed in the Animal Justice Party Charter;

(e) encourage Members to take part in policy development for the Party; Constitution – Animal Justice Party Limited

(f) support and assist in the individual and public educational processes necessary to develop an understanding of animal issues;

(g) promote cruelty-free behaviour in the community;

(h) expand the membership of the Party;

(i) organise activities which publicise and further the aims of the Party;

(j) engage with other organisations with aims consistent with those of the Party

The important part in all of that is (c) undertake coordinated campaigns of actions with a view to improving the condition of animals in society through legal reform;

This means they are NOT an animal rights party.

They ARE an animal protection party.

8: Candidates Have No Respect For The Law

How many of the candidates have participated in some sort of unlawful activity?

Regardless of whether the view is that a particular law is unjust it isn’t up to the candidate to decide that.

Especially when they will be expecting others to obey the laws that they pass in parliament.

9: Use Far Too Many Empty Words

How many times have you heard a candidate use their K.E.R.N. mantra, or say something about them being an animal rights party?

Or that they will do this, that or the other thing, for the animals?

Or waffled something about animal justice?

To them, they are all empty words, that I doubt they really understand the meaning of.

Because if they genuinely understood and supported those terms, there is no way that they would stand as a candidate for the party.

Especially when everything that the party stands for is in direct conflict with animal justice, veganism and animal rights.

10: You Don’t Actually Need To Vote For The AJP

Something that the candidates aren’t telling you is that if their focus is on the animals and the environment, there isn’t that much that they can do at a federal level for them.

The States/Territories have the constitutional authority to pass legislation on animals, farming and the environment.

So, what do we really need the Animal Justice Party in federal parliament for?

They have no policy or “position” on industrial relations.

They have no policy or “position” on defence.

They have no policy or “position” on social security.

They have no policy or “position” on data retention.

They have no policy or “position” on anything apart from Asylum Seekers, Marriage Equality, Vaccinations(state based), and Voluntary Euthanasia (state based).

What’s The Alternative?

As with every election, if you have an independent candidate running, give them your primary vote.

Regardless of what their current policies may be.

This is for two reasons.

First of all, it sends a message to ALL political parties, that the party system has clogged the gears of democracy in this country.

And secondly, an engaged electorate has a far greater chance of getting an independent to vote according to their wishes than they ever would have with a party politician.

Outside of that, vote for who you want to.

Just don’t be pressured into voting for the Animal Justice Party because you think that is what vegans have to do.

Photo by rawpixel.com from Pexels

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