"I've noticed that quite a lot of people who are prominent in the animal liberation movement are Jews. Maybe we are simply not prepared to see the powerful hurting the weak." --Peter Singer (Author, Animal Liberation)


Gloria Steinem

I went to see feminist icon Gloria Steinem speak tonight. She spoke about some very interesting things, and I don't mean to detract from the important messages that she focused on. Nevertheless, I'd like to dedicate this post to the topics I usually talk about: Judaism and animal rights.

Steinem is Jewish on her father's side, and she has said that "the Jewish tradition encourages your mind to work, includes social justice, is more circular and less hierarchical." My sources tell me that she's a vegetarian, and she has noted that animal rights and feminism go "much more hand in hand than people think." Steinem devoted a chapter to animal issues in her bestselling book Revolution From Within, and she was married to animal advocate David Bale. Here are some pearls of wisdom from Gloria Steinem:

* "There is still slavery in the world. There is still a valuing of human beings according to their race or class or gender or culture or sexuality. Part of the reason for this cutting off of empathy is the anaesthetizing of our senses to the suffering of animals. Once we grow callous, we cannot feel fully for anyone—not even for ourselves." (source)
* “I am adding my voice to others calling for an end to these and other cruel and useless experiments—on behalf of the animals who are being pointlessly made to suffer and die, on behalf of women whose health concerns are starved for funds, and on behalf of taxpayers who are being defrauded.” (source)
* “The reason why the animal rights movement is so disproportionately women is … first of all … we don’t have our masculinity to prove, so nobody is as likely to tell us that we’re supposed to master—or dominate—animals. And also I think we identify with them—there’s that kind of voicelessness and powerlessness and vulnerability that perhaps, though many men identify with it, too, perhaps especially women do.” (source)


  • At 3/22/2007 2:20 AM, Blogger KleoPatra said…

    AWEsome! i never knew!

    Go Glo!!!

    Thanks for an enlightening post, Michael.


  • At 3/23/2007 10:20 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    as a woman, i don't agree with that last quote. powerlessness and vulnerability seem more like personality traits than aspects of a specific gender..no matter which one someone refers to.

  • At 3/28/2007 10:57 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I dont really like how binary she makes gender to be. Gender is a social construct, not a biological one. Nothing is masculine/feminine, male/female. There are so many more genders in the world that she ignores.

    To me, that discredits her and her opinions on just about everything.


  • At 4/01/2007 12:36 AM, Blogger Amey said…

    Just yesterday I was commenting on someone else's blog that I'm amazed by how rarely the movements of feminism and animal rights overlap. It's such an obvious relationship to me.

    Thanks for sharing this stuff.!

  • At 10/09/2007 8:59 PM, Blogger heebnvegan said…

    Here's a nice post from the PETA Files about Gloria Steinem's speaking out against Covance:



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