Archive for April, 2005

BAV Newsletter – May 2005

Friday, April 29th, 2005

http://www.bayareaveg.org/newsletters/BAV-News-May2005.htm

Nora Kramer

Thursday, April 28th, 2005

Nora Kramer

Give her a leaflet, a body screen TV, a pen or simply 5 minutes of your attention, and Nora Kramer is a persuasive voice for the animals.


City: San Francisco
Originally from: New York (City and suburbs). Moved here 6 years ago.

Profession: Um, don’t really have one at the moment! Check back with me at a later date.
Websites:
www.EmpathyProject.org
www.VegSF.com
www.PledgeVeg.com

Companion Animals:

Spanky, the most healthy, beautiful, intelligent (well, definitely healthy and beautiful), and all-around perfect 15-year old vegan Black Lab mix you’re likely to meet. She’s been to her share of protests and was even featured in VegNews! I’m lucky she keeps me around.

How many years have you been vegetarian? 8 years vegetarian, 7 years vegan

What motivated you to make this change?
When taking an environmental science class in college, we watched “Diet for a New America,” a video based on John Robbins’ book. Learning how terribly animals raised for food are treated did it for me, though I was also very compelled by the environmental and social justice arguments, and pleased to learn that I wouldn’t die from not eating meat and dairy. I had never tasted a veggie burger or even heard of soy milk, so I had no clue what to eat at first, but I knew I couldn’t in good conscience ignore what I’d learned.

Activism work (and opportunities for volunteers to help out):
I always seem to have my hands in a bunch of different things and often have a hard time prioritizing and saying no to new projects. This is my New Year’s resolution that I’m hoping to put into effect in May.

Some of them:

  • I run a humane education program called The Empathy Project www.EmpathyProject.org, for which I do presentations at schools about animal and environmental issues. If anybody is a teacher, student, or parent and is interested in my presenting at their school (in the fall) or wants more info on The Empathy Project, let me know.
  • I coordinate www.VegSF.com, a website listing local veg-friendly restaurants, grocery stores, caterers, organizations, event listings, and more. Email info@VegSF.com if you have any suggestions for the site. I’m interested in doing a concerted campaign to expand vegan options at restaurants and would love help in this area from people willing to work with restaurant owners and managers. I would also love help from someone who could do some website updating and someone with good graphics skills.
  • I’m one of the founders and list administrators of BAARN: www.sfbaarn.org.
  • I table at lots of veg events and show “Meet Your Meat” on the streets of San Francisco. Let me know if you ever want to join me—especially if you’ve got a car!
  • I’ve been working on a project to get vegetarian commercials airing on MTV in various cities across the country. If you’re interested in getting these aired locally and could help with fundraising for this project, let me know.
  • I write lots of letters to the editor.
  • I copy-edit and occasionally write articles for VegNews.
  • I distribute veg leaflets around town.
  • I try to support other activists and events.
  • Other things I can’t think of at the moment.

Who/what inspires you to keep going?
The fact that billions of animals are being tortured, as we sit here at our computers, to be turned into products that pollute our environment and cause loads of human health problems—and that most people have never even questioned eating meat, are totally unaware of how these animals are treated, and have no idea how great vegan food is! It’s up to those of us who know and who care to reach out to those who don’t (yet). Plus, vegetarian activists are an amazing group, and I feel privileged to know and work with and be friends with so many people in the veg community. They inspire me with their incredible dedication, selflessness and creativity.

Other social justice interests:

  • Worked in various capacities on the Matt Gonzalez, Dennis Kucinich, and John Kerry campaigns. 0 for 3. Oy.
  • Currently taking an intensive workshop on anti-racist organizing and challenging white supremacy.
  • Volunteer with People’s Grocery www.peoplesgrocery.org in Oakland, a food justice group that helps to make healthy organic vegetarian food available in low-income communities without access to this food.
  • Anti-war, pro-choice, anti-imperialist; you get the idea.

Long-term goal:

To develop (or be involved in) a camp for kids interested in activism and social change.

Pet peeves:

  • People who show up at demonstrations purely to socialize. They talk to other activists the whole time, actually preventing or distracting these activists from doing outreach. I love to socialize, but there’s plenty of time to socialize after the demo!
  • Environmentalists who don’t “get” animal rights and animal activists who don’t “get” environmentalism.

Favorite restaurant: Golden Era.

Favorite recipe: It’s a tie. I like to call them nutritional yeast pasta and nutritional yeast toast: Make toast or pasta. Add Earth Balance margarine, flax seed oil, and a ridiculous amount of nutritional yeast. Serve and enjoy! (You can tell I love to cook.)

Favorite band: Morrissey/The Smiths

Trivia:
I have an inexplicable love of sports (all the NY teams). Especially football. And baseball. And basketball during the playoffs. A definite guilty pleasure.

Advice to aspiring vegans and activists:
Getting further involved in this cause will be so gratifying. You will be so proud that your actions help animals and actively oppose the outrageous cruelty of animal agribusiness. Meet new and supportive people through BAV, learn as much as you can, experiment with different things, ask lots of questions, do lots of Internet research and learn about different organizations doing great work, remember that even little things you do (like leaving veg leaflets at a vegetarian restaurant or putting a bumper sticker on your car) are important, and be proud of every step you take to help.

Some articles I strongly recommend:

On making the transition:
VegCooking – Making the Transition

On activism:

Vegan Outreach – A Meaningful Life
Vegan Outreach – Vegan Advocacy
GoVeg – Get Active for Farmed Animals
GoVeg – Effective Advocacy: Stealing From the Corporate Playbook

Finally, be sure to thank unsung heroes Tammy and Chris of BAV for all of their amazing work building and supporting our local veg community.

Breakfast at Fellini’s, Lunch at KFC, and Dinner at Bay Leaf!

Thursday, April 28th, 2005

Originally Posted to SFBAVEG by Sean

Breakfast at Fellini’s, Lunch at KFC, and Dinner at Bay Leaf!

For the first time I attended 3 (t-h-r-e-e) veggie / AR events in one day!

First I attended, what I hope will become a monthly brunch at Fellini’s in Berkeley. It was hosted by Thea and was well attended. The food was very good but the vegan portion of the menu was disappointingly limited.

Then it was off to San Jose where I had the honor of pestering the local KFC with a lunch time protest organized by Carol (no, no one ate there, not even very many customers!) Special thank you to Michael Borg who has recently had to don his humid chicken outfit and crutches yet again due to a breakdown in negotiations with KFC and PETA. Lets all pray he can wear some decent clothes and walk without a limp soon!

Then it was off to Bay Leaf for a letter writing party hosted by Robin. Low and behold Elise and William from the Fallini brunch also showed up. Thanks for coming guys. (We may not have “shouted at the devil,” but we did write him a few letters.) I can’t believe that after two years of eating at bay leaf there are still great menu items I have not tried. Now there is a veggie menu that is worth it’s weight in tofu!

Anyway, I just wanted to say that it is an honor to be a part of such a thriving veggie / AR scene where you could literally run from event to event all day long.

Thank you to all the veggie event organizers and everyone who came. I always enjoy time spent with such good people.

Sean

Help needed in San Francisco

Wednesday, April 27th, 2005

We need some help to keep some SF outreach events running on a monthly basis.

1) KFC demo — As PETA and KFC’s negotations failed, it’s critical that we have these demos happening on a regular basis.
http://www.bayareaveg.org/blog/index.php?title=kfc_demos_restarts

Jennifer was coordinating this for the 2nd Saturday of every month, at a different SF KFC. But she is moving to Texas; can anyone step up to do this? Responsibilities would be bringing signs & leaflets to the protest, as well as handling emails about the event. With so many activists who live in SF, I hope there is someone who is willing to be the organizer every month.

http://www.bayareaveg.org/events.php

2) Street TV — taking footage of how animals are treated on factory farms and in slaughterhouses to the streets via body TV and distributing information about vegetarianism. Nora has a body screen TV and we just need someone with a car to transport the body TV unit (it’s very heavy). If you can help every month or on a regular basis (i.e. one or two volunteers could alternate being the driver), please email us.

Note for new or aspiring activists — If you are a new to advocacy, we will definitely provide support and assistance to get you started.

If you can help, please email!

Blast from the Past

Sunday, April 24th, 2005

In the early days of SFBAVEG, we were a very small community of just a few people then a few hundred and now over a thousand on our main list, SFBAVEG, with hundreds on other lists.

In the good ol’ days, one of my favorite types of emails was the introductions people would post. We’d then copy them to our original “Community Profile” page.

Check out the original Community Profile page.

Vegan Beach Retreat 5/20-22

Saturday, April 23rd, 2005

Join us on our vegan beach retreat/camping trip to Half Moon Bay State Beach. Cost is $75 for the weekend (starting Friday nite) and includes food and campsite. We’re getting close to full, so please sign-up now.

Please visit the trip page for details.

Mid-season ARP Winners Announced

Saturday, April 23rd, 2005

We’d like to thank everyone who has been supporting BAVeg by hosting and participating in events. Some events qualify participants to earn Advocacy Rewards Points. ARP translate into chances to win some wonderful vegan prizes.

We did a mid-season drawing and offer our congratulations to the following prize winners who earned & won the following points and prizes:

Massage session
Thea – 29000 points

Weekend Warrior Activity Cards
Sean – 5000 points

Jennifer M – 13000 points
Gabe – 7000 points
Matthew L – 11000 points
Ron G – 3000 points

Although more points means more chances to win, everyone (even folks who attended one event!) still has a chance to win. Winners selected by random drawing.

Thank you to our prize donors for the mid-season drawing!

1) Laurie Terzo, L.Ac., M.S., C.M.T. for the massage

2) PETA for the Weekend Warrior Activity Cards

You can find out which events earn Advocacy Rewards Program by visiting the BAVeg Events calendar

KFC Demos Restarts!

Sunday, April 10th, 2005

Update from Joe Hinkle at PETA regarding PETA’s KFC campaign. We *will* be holding our scheduled demos this month in Pacifica and Mill Valley. Stay tuned for more news about other demo’s!

Greetings activists:

Six weeks ago I emailed you all to say we were in negotiations with KFC to try to improve the way they treat chickens. We agreed with KFC at the time not to reveal anything about those negotiations, hoping that KFC would do the right thing and agree to do what its own advisors are suggesting. I’m disappointed to announce that after yet another meeting with KFC yesterday, they still aren’t planning to take the recommendations of their own advisors to eliminate the worst abuses of the chickens raised and killed for their restaurants. Outrageously, in the end they wouldn’t offer a firm commitment to do even a single thing that would guarantee improved conditions for even a single chicken. You can see details of our negotiations here:
http://www.kentuckyfriedcruelty.com/moratoriam.asp.

We feel disappointed, deceived, and angry: KFC told us they were serious this time; they told us they would follow the advice of the world’s top scientists on chicken welfare. In the end, they violated our trust, to the detriment of the 850 million birds killed for their restaurants every year.

We NEED to show them that we are not going to let their apathy go on without a fight!

Starting today, we are declaring a Month of Action against KFC. We need to all get out there and do demos, leaflet, talk to managers, call KFC, fill out a customer service form, write letters, and let everyone know that KFC does not deserve our money until they make these much-needed changes, which the world’s top animal welfare experts have told KFC they support. These experts include people who have been and are on KFC’s “advisory” board. You can find addresses, phone numbers, and a link to the customer service form at www.kentuckyfriedcruelty.com. Be sure to let me know if you receive a response.

Everyone who organizes a demo in the next month will receive one of our bloody buckets, a satirical representation of KFC’s buckets. You can view one here: http://www.kentuckyfriedcruelty.com/bloodbucket.asp. One bucket that we send out will contain a certificate to receive an assortment of PETA t-shirts! Also, I will send one of our brand new bobblehead dolls, seen here:
http://www.kentuckyfriedcruelty.com/bobbleanniv.asp, to the people who do the most demos during this Month of Action, the person who has the biggest (need pictures), and the person who has the most creative demo (also need pictures).

Finally, everyone that does a demo will be entered into a drawing to win an all expense paid trip for two to the HA 101 of your choice. You can go to www.helpinganimals101.com to read all about this conference, but I can tell you that they are amazing! The four you will get to choose from take place in Miami, Chicago and Houston, or, if you live in Canada, Toronto. Every time you do a demo or pass out leaflets in front of a KFC for an hour, your name will be entered, so do as many as you can!

I can send you all the supplies that you need. When you e-mail me, please include your address so I can ship them out immediately. I can also send out an alert to all the other activists in your area-all you need to do is send me the time, date, and address of your demo. Let’s get out there and show KFC that they have made a huge mistake in screwing over these poor birds and really underestimated our drive and commitment!

Until KFC Changes,
Joe

BAV Newsletter – April 2005

Friday, April 1st, 2005

http://www.bayareaveg.org/newsletters/BAV-News-Apr2005.htm

Chris James

Friday, April 1st, 2005

Chris James

From writing code to designing flyers to being a costumed chicken or Stormtrooper, meet Chris James, BAVeg’s co-founder & general dogsbody, and a vegan force to be reckoned with.

Profession: Computer Engineer
City: Montara
Age: 36
Websites: bayareaveg.org, and my blog

Are you vegetarian or vegan, and for how long? Veg since ’89, went Vegan in ’94

What motivated you to make this change? Hard to say, it was a long process. My one line answer has always been “To be difficult”, but here’s a recent blog entry on my reasons for going veg. (link)

What are you working on? BAVeg keeps me very busy. I am the keeper of the Ultimate Guide and maintain all the technology on the BAVeg website. I write all the custom code for the site (usually PHP and MySQL), and am the graphic designer for the website, various flyers & posters, as well as list admin for SFBAVEG, the Secretary & Treasurer for BAVeg and official chauffeur for the President.

How can others get involved? Just email me, or see the BAVeg jobs page. Our current focus is building a strong outreach and advocacy team, and establishing BAVeg as a community resource for vegetarianism.

Who/what inspires you to keep going? I see the suffering and cruelty that the animals endure, and then I see that our efforts at BAVeg do make a difference in supporting and promoting a plant-based diet. I work closely with Tammy and we keep each other motivated. Ingrid Newkirk is also one of my heroes.

What advice would you give to an aspiring vegan? Get a good vegan cookbook, like Peaceful Palate, and seek out vegan friends.

What advice would you give to an aspiring activist? Don’t go it alone. Find like-minded people and build relationships and a support system. Working with others can help you avoid burnout.

What else are you involved in? I am a big Star Wars fan and a member of the 501st Stormtrooper Legion. We do charity events where I show up as a Stormtrooper, Biker Scout, X-Wing Pilot or a Jedi knight. I also have a huge collection of replica props from various movies.

Favorite band: Del Amitri

Favorite food: Baked beans on toast – it’s a British thing ;)

Favorite dessert: Black China Carrot Cake

Favorite restaurant: Shangri-La Vegetarian Restaurant, closely followed by Herbivore.

Favorite recipe: It varies every month, but currently it’s Thai Pasta (see the April 05 Newsletter for the recipe)

Favorite movies:
The original Star Wars trilogy, the first and last Indiana Jones movies, Star Trek: First Contact, All of the Lord of the Rings movies.

Favorite Quotes:
A wise woman once told me “Vegetarians are like magnets… either we stick together or repel with equal force!”,

and an even wiser man – “You don’t have to be the best to win. Sometimes luck is just on your side and others around you are simply worse.”

Companion Animals:
We share our home with 4 loving cats. Harry, Moo, Jack and Mite (pronounced Mighty). You can read all about their adventures in their very own blog.