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Sam Simon: ‘Simpsons’ Co-Creator, Humanitarian & Rebel With A Cause


Sam Simon, who was most famous for co-creating The Simpsons, died on Sunday March 8, 2015 in Pacific Palisades, California at the age of 59.

He was diagnosed with colon cancer in 2012 and was told he only had three to six months left to live. That’s when he vowed to give away his fortune believed to be $100 million to charity. Simon made millions every year in royalties from The Simpsons and other producing credits on TV shows like Cheers, Taxi, and The Drew Carey Show.

“I’m not driven by long-term decisions that someone would make if they’re trying to have as much money as they can when they’re 90 years old,” Simon said during an interview for the documentary “Rebel with a Cause:

“I have a limited time on Earth to do what I can do until I’m gone,” he said. “You are a little more aware of it when you’re sick.”

Some who follow the philanthropy world closely said they’d never seen anyone try to unload a fortune quite so fast. Perhaps it was his commitment and love for animal rights that helped extend his fight.

Even a few days before he passed away, Simon was raising awareness about sea animals in captivity. When singer Britney Spears tweeted a photo of herself swimming with dolphins in Las Vegas, Simon responded.

“The dolphins you swim with are captured and killed at Taiji,” he tweeted to his 58,000 followers, referring to the dolphin hunting operations in Taiji, Japan, made famous in the documentary The Cove.
www.noahfairbanks.com

Simon cared deeply about sea animals and illegal fishing. He donated an undisclosed amount of money to the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, an activist marine conservation organization that fights against whaling and illegal fishing. The group named a ship after Simon: the MY Sam Simon.

Late last year he also spent some $8,000 to save a bull that was going to be killed because he was suspected of being gay; the 5,000-pound farm animal had failed to breed with any cows. Simon purchased the bull and then made a sizeable donation to a farm to take in “Benjy the gay bull.”

Last August, he paid $50,000 to buy a farm just to be able to rescue some 400 chinchillas and close down the business. Before that, he made a sizeable donation to the animal rights group PETA so they could purchase 17 bears and free them from small concrete pens at roadside zoos in Georgia.

Simon also founded the Sam Simon Foundation, which helps needy families in Los Angeles and veterans. The foundation provides vegan meals to 400 needy families every day in Los Angeles. The group also rescues and trains dogs to help Iraq and Afghanistan veterans diagnosed with PTSD.

Throughout his illness Simon kept his sense of humor, the same quick and sarcastic humor that made him famous.

“Dr. Goldman needed a urine sample, a blood sample, a fecal sample, and a semen sample,” he says in the forthcoming documentary, joking from his hospital bed. “So I just gave him my shorts.”

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Innocent Victims Of War: Dozens Of Animals Die Of Neglect At Gaza Zoo

www.noahfairbanks

Dozens of animals have wasted away from thirst or hunger at Khan Younis zoo since its inception in 2008 in the impoverished Gaza Strip home to 4 other zoos in a densely populated coastal area of 1.7 million people ruled by Islamic Hamas militants.

There is no governmental body in Gaza that oversees zoos, and no animal rights movement in the region, this leaves the animals and facilities virtually unsupervised. A zookeeper is not on the premises at Khan Younis zoo and medical treatment is done by consulting over the phone with zoo veterinarians in Egypt. With this level of care, animals are receiving basic or nonexistent treatment.

Dozens of the 65 animals have died at the zoo which included ostriches, monkeys, turtles, deer, a llama, a lion and a tiger. They were among the many animals that were left without food and water zoo owner Mohammed Awaida says during the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.  During Israel’s 2008 military offensive against Hamas which began in December and continued for 3 weeks, Mr Awaida says his staff was unable to reach the zoo and many of the animals died from neglect and starvation.

The zoo has a tradition of stuffing and embalming the animals that die and return them to their enclosures. The zoo has ten embalmed animals on dismay in makeshift exhibits fashioned from fencing salvaged from Jewish settlements that Israel dismantled in 2005. Gaza’s zoos have also resorted to painting white donkeys with black stripes to look like zebras because it was too expensive to replace them during the Israeli offensive.

Hassan Azzam, director of the veterinary services department in Gaza’s ministry of agriculture, said: ‘We have humble capabilities,’ but the ministry encourages zoos.

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This zoo is an extreme example of the mistreatment and neglect of animals due to extenuating circumstances but there are other zoos worldwide where the treatment of captivate animals is deplorable.

From an animal rights standpoint, we do not have a right to breed, capture and confine other animals, even if they are endangered. Animals in captivity suffer from stress, boredom and confinement.

The vast majority of captive breeding programs do not release animals back into the wild. The offspring are forever part of the chain of zoos, circuses, petting zoos, and exotic pet trade that buy, sell and barter animals exploiting them.

If people want to see wild animals, they can observe wildlife in the wild, visit a sanctuary or watch them on TV.  A true sanctuary does not buy, sell, or breed animals, but takes in unwanted exotic pets, surplus animals from zoos or injured wildlife that can no longer survive in the wild.

If zoos are teaching children anything, it’s that imprisoning animals for our own entertainment is acceptable.

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Vietnam’s Dirty Little Secret: Hell On Earth For Dogs And The Barbaric Dog Meat Industry

SOI DOG

There are no laws against animal cruelty in Vietnam.

Eating dogs is not only a cruel and barbaric activity practiced in Vietnam it has also become big business where activists say up to 5 million dogs are brutally slaughtered annually. Dog meat is more expensive than pork and can sell for up to $40.00 a dish in high-end restaurants in Hanoi.

The horror starts for many dogs as they are snatched from the streets and backyards in Thailand and tossed into cramped, filthy cages. With no food or water and barely enough room to move, many will suffocate, be crushed to death or die from exposure. Shockingly, their torture has only just begun.

In Hanoi Vietnam’ capital seven tons of live dogs are shipped (smuggled) to Vietnam each day from neighboring Thailand and Laos over the Mekong River. Once they arrive in Hanoi, the dogs are stored in deep pits before being slaughtered and sold on to restaurants to be cooked and eaten. One busy holding house processes around 2,000 live dogs every day, with up to 200 squashed into each cage.

Nguyen Tien Tung is one of the men that run a Hanoi slaughter-house, frenetic and filthy the 42-year-old has an open air concrete patio which leads on to a busy road lined with industrial supply shops. Mr. Tung reaches into a cage and caresses the dog closest to the door. As it starts wagging its tail, he grabs a heavy metal pipe, hits the dog across the head, then, laughing loudly, slams the cage door closed. Some of the dogs are still sporting collars, thousands of dogs are stolen from gardens and porches in Thailand with many being stolen at night in Vietnam.

On the leafy streets of north Hanoi’s Cau Giay district there are a number of dog meat restaurants no one knows when the Vietnamese started eating dogs but its consumption primarily in the north is increasingly popular for drinking parties, family reunions and special occasion. Vietnamese erroneously believe it is said to increase a man’s virility, warm the blood and provide medicinal cures.

That Rae is a sleepy little town in Thailand’s paddy-filled north-eastern state of Sakon Nakhon. That Rae has been trading dogs for 150 years when a group of Vietnamese Catholics fled persecution in Vietnam. Today, locals say at least 5,000 people one-third of the population supplement their meager farming incomes by snatching, selling or killing dogs for local and foreign consumption.

Many Vietnamese believe the more the dogs suffer before it dies, the tastier its meat, which explains the brutal way the dogs are killed in Vietnam, usually being bludgeoned with a heavy metal pipe 10 to 12 times, having their throats slit, being stabbed in the chest or being burned alive. The dogs are also force-fed like foie gras in the West. They shove a tube into their stomach and pump solid rice and water in them to increase their weight for sale. Nguyen Tien Tung has a simple method for increasing the bottom line, “we just put a stone in the dog’s mouth.” He shrugs, before opening up his cage for another kill.

Demand for dogs in Vietnam has increased so dramatically where they have traditional been “farmed” in the countryside, this has led to 300,000 dogs yearly being tightly packed in metal cages in Thailand floated across the Mekong to Laos, then trucked hundreds of miles through jungles without food or water before being mercilessly killed. This creates unimaginable cruelty and suffering for the dogs in barbaric conditions that leads to many of them dying before they even make it Vietnam.

The route the smugglers take to reach Vietnam is Highway 8, a two-lane ribbon of road that cuts through Laos’s limestone mountain passes, past wooden shacks and the large, modern mansions of the wealthy. While still in Thailand, the dogs will have been crammed into poultry carriers or heavy metal cages, 12 to 15 dogs in each, six to eight cages per truck, every convoy worth around $5,000. They are driven, at night, to the border, before being floated across the Mekong and loaded on to other trucks.

This is a black-market industry, managed by an international mafia and facilitated by corrupt officials.

“At first it was just a handful of small traders wanting to make a small profit,” says Roger Lohanan of the Bangkok-based Thai Animal Guardians Association, which has been investigating the dog meat trade since 1995. “But now this business has become a fundamental export. The trade is tax-free and the profit 300-500%, so everybody wants a piece of the cake.”

Transporting dogs without proper vaccination papers is illegal in Thailand, as is smuggling them into Laos without customs and tax documents. Eating them is not illegal.

Despite the large numbers of dogs that are smuggled out of the country every year, only a handful of people run the Thai operation, claims Edwin Wiek, cofounder of the Animal Activist Alliance, a Thai-based charity pushing to stop the trade. “We know these people: we know where they live, we know their names, we even have photographs,” says Wiek, whose alliance relies on full-time informants in Thailand and Laos. “Some of the photographs show their cars – their numberplates could be easily traced – but they get away with it because they pay a lot of money in bribes. And as long as they keep paying, there will be people in the system who accept it and turn a blind eye.”

Crackdowns have increased, however, thanks to a large network of informants working primarily with the Royal Thai Navy, which intercepted a shipment of nearly 5,000 dogs as they were being stacked on to boats and shipped to Laos. Leading the busts was Captain Surasak Suwanakesa, 45, naval commander of the regional Mekong River Patrol Unit, who oversees the Thai-Laos river border crossing. His desire is to end the dog meat trade once and for all. “It really is a point of shame for this country,” he says, shaking his head.

The naval team depends on tipoffs from locals to crack down on the trade, but arrests are few and far between, activists say, with most smugglers paying only small fines and going back into business within days.

Pet ownership is still relatively new in Vietnam dogs here have traditionally been reared for either food or security purposes so activist have chosen to scrap the “cruelty” argument in favor of emphasising dog meat’s effect on people’s health. It has been linked to regional outbreaks of trichinosis, cholera and, a point activists underscore as the region looks to eradicate rabies by 2020.

Activists in Thailand are pushing for a new animal welfare law that would protect pets such as dogs and cats from being consumed or traded for consumption. But the law has little chance of making a real difference, Lohanan says. Few in the Thai government openly oppose the trade. Of the nations involved in the dog meat trade, it is Thailand that is taking most action to curtail it. Activists in Thailand are pushing for a new animal welfare law that would protect pets such as dogs and cats from being consumed or traded for consumption. But the law has little chance of making a real difference.

‘Regulation is not a step towards banning they are completely separate legislative tools and regulating a fundamentally cruel business and should not be our aim. We should not spend time and resources arguing to win a battle that we don’t want to fight. Our time and money is better spent bringing a complete end to the suffering of dogs. There is only one goal and we need to focus on that for the sake of the millions of dogs who currently suffer from absolute indifference to their needs and misery.

VIETNAM’S DOG SNATCHERS

WARNING CRUELTY  TO DOGS  IS SHOWN IN THIS FILM

The dog meat trade is a highly contentious and emotive issue in most countries where it is popular. As a result of mounting national and international concerns for animal welfare, a rapidly increasing pet ownership in Asia, and a greater awareness of the human health risks associated with this industry, the opposition towards the production and consumption of dog meat has become increasingly vocal.

While no country has specifically legalized the dog meat industry, a number of Asian countries, including, Taiwan, and the Philippines, and the city of Hong Kong (where dog meat was once a popular dish), have banned the slaughtering and the sale of dogs for human consumption.

Our voice is becoming louder and our determination and commitment are resolute the tide of opinion is turning against an industry that has led to the endless suffering and cruelty of millions of innocent dogs annually.

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Fossil Joan Rivers To Protesters: ‘Those furs that would have been lying in a cellar have gotten to go to the opera’

joan_rivers_fur_any_jul1

Animal rights group PETA arrived unannounced at a promotional event for Joan Rivers new book, Diary of a Mad Diva, held at Barnes and Noble in Times Square yesterday holding graphic posters.

One protester shouted out: “Why do you choose to wear fur when there are so many cruelty-free alternatives?”

At first she tries to appease the impassioned demonstrators, telling them, ‘You’re absolutely right; I’m on your side.’ Then becoming angry as the protesters continue Rivers shouts: “Oh shut up, you don’t know what the f**k you’re talking about,” she yelled.

Rivers has had a long standing feud with PETA and other animal rights groups since 1997 when she was attacked by someone who threw red pain over her 18 year old sable and ran off.

“Why don’t they go do something important? Don’t go after middle-aged, affluent, white women, who are just minding their own business. If an animal had to die to keep me warm for l8 years, it’s ok.”


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Swimming Pigs of Bahamas Become YouTube Sensations

Swimming Pigs
Pigs can’t fly but prove they can swim in the sunny Bahamas!

The domesticated pigs and their piglets which have turned feral live on a small Caribbean island and have become YouTube stars thanks to vacationers filming the pigs swimming in the tropical surf.

Filmmaker Charles Allan Smith is now making a documentary ‘When Pigs Swim’ about the swimming pigs of Big Major Cay and the surrounding islands.

The project will feature breathtaking shots of the crystal clear waters of the region, interviews with experts on the pig’s history and, of course, the adorable pigs themselves.

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Stars Shine In Beverly Hills For Joanna Krupa’s Animal Rescue Charity Event

JOANNA KRUPA

It’s no secret that Joanna Krupa is an animal lover and advocate which she became after watching a film in 2005 on the brutal fur industry that kills millions of innocent animals yearly.

On this night the 34-year-old Real Housewives Of Miami star was all about the furry creatures who still need homes as she attended the Angels For Animal Rescue bash in Beverly Hills on Tuesday.

Joanna looked simply stunning in a flowing, off-white gown with a border of crystal clusters around the cleavage.

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Joanna co-hosted the event at Jason Of Beverly Hills in the Beverly Wilshire Hotel with her friend and co-founder of Angels for Animal Rescue founder Gabi Gutierrez.

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Joanna and Gabi not only help find forever homes for dogs and cats they have also have found loving homes for a boa and a family of baby rabbits.  

Meanwhile, Joanna managed to draw in a few of her reality star friends including RHOBH star Joyce Giraud, Shahs Of Sunset star Golnesa ‘GG’ Gharachedaghi among others.

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The Cruel Truth Of Chinese Factory Workers Abuse Of 50 Million Angora Rabbits Annually

rabbit

The abuse of animals worldwide is epidemic and the shocking footing of Chinese factory workers violently ripping the fur from angora rabbits screaming in agony is one of the most egregious I have seen.

British retailers Asos, Marks and Spencer, Next and H&H have banned any products made with angora although I as of the writing of this article I was informed by a reader that Marks and Spencer is still selling an angora jumper on their online site.

RABBIT 1

The announcement follows the release of video footage that shows workers in Chinese factories violently ripping the fur from the bodies of screaming rabbits. 

PETA released a gut-wrenching video into the angora industry in China, which is responsible for 90 per cent of the world’s supply of angora wool.

Investigators went to ten different angora farms and witnessed,  appalling abuse of animals at all ten locations. At half of the farms a particularly barbaric form of live plucking is used to remove the fur.

Terrified rabbits, screaming with fear, are stretched  on wooden boards and held by the neck while the soft fur is plucked by hand — though scalped might be a more appropriate term. The animals fur is pulled from the follicles until only raw, pink skin remains.

In other scenes from PETA’s undercover video, the defenseless rabbits are tethered with rope by the front and back legs while they are sheared by men with metal scissors, who pay little attention to the cuts they are inflicting on the animals. 

RABBIT 3

This process is repeated every three months for the two to three years of the animal’s life.

‘After their fur is yanked out, the gentle, sensitive rabbits are left in shock, able only to lie motionless inside their tiny, filthy cages,’ says PETA spokesman Ben Williamson. 

 The angora rabbits are alive throughout the plucking and are kept for several years, plucked every few months, before their throats are slit.

Angora breeders in Britain say the only way to not cause harm to a rabbit is to gently remove loosened hair which takes up to two weeks not minutes the Chinese factory workers take to rip hunks of fur from the terrified animals.

The rabbits are kept in horrible conditions, filthy cages, surrounded by their own waste and little protection from the elements.

After several years of this miserable existence and if they survive the brutal conditions the rabbits are killed by having their necks broken or have their throats slit and sold to local markets. 

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There are thought to be more than 50 million rabbits on angora farms in China. 

Argentina, Chile, the Czech Republic and Hungary also produce the bulk of the remaining 10 per cent of the worlds angora wool supply.

 China has consistently had one of the worst records when it comes to factory farming and animal cruelty especially when it comes to the fashion industry.

“As long as greed is stronger than compassion, there will always be suffering.” -Rusty Eric

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South Korea’s Dog Meat Trade: An Asian Landscape Of Suffering For Millions Of Dogs & Cats

SOUTH KOREAN CRUELTY -NO TO DOG MEAT

A staggering atrocity is happening every day in South Korea: dogs and cats living tormented lives in an unfathomable existence—victims of the dog and cat meat industry, with its deliberate and indefensible cruelty. South Korea’s cruelty and indifference to dogs and cats is one of the worlds worst.

In South Korea alone over 2.5 million dogs are eaten annually and in neighboring China it is close to 5 million.

There are two South Korea’s: the dazzling country whose lofty financial status as one of the fastest growing economies in the world, just beneath the breathtaking progress the sordid and shameful dog and cat meat trade.  Shocking when you consider this is home of Samsung, LG and Hyundai.

Even the South Korean Catholic Church has an intimate relationship with the unsavory and dirty business, where some clergy breed dogs for slaughter, and dog meat is being served at charity functions and food markets, much to the horror of many congregants.

Because of conflicting laws and the very definition of what a dog is—livestock vs. non-livestock—dog and cat meat is neither legal nor illegal but inhabits “a legal blind spot.”

Unlike China and Vietnam, South Korea is a Democratic nation that has the responsibility and legislative ability to make changes and treat all animals with respect and with humane treatment.

dog meat nf

This $2 billion dollar-a-year industry extinguishes the lives of approximately two and a half million dogs a year for meat or gaesoju, a dog broth or stamina food, and about 100,000 cats, for soup and goyangyeesoju or “health tonics.” At the end of their brief and miserable lives, farmers and butchers kill in the most horrific fashion with impunity: they are murdered with high-voltage electrocution prior to being skinned still alive not dying immediately, are hanged, beaten to death, and frequently have their throats slashed. They are killed within sight of their doomed cage mates, thrown into a tub of boiling water, then into a rotating drums for the removal of their fur, and finally blowtorched, often while still alive. Cats are bludgeoned and thrown into boiling water while conscious. Many have their legs broken so they can’t escape, and are skinned alive. Unlike dogs, cats are not farmed for their meat, but are stolen, surrendered, or picked up as strays.

 dog meat trade

Any breed can end up in the meat trade: former animal companions, purebreds (Cocker Spaniels, Shih Tzus, Schnauzers, Malteses, Beagles, among them), dogs from puppy mills, shelters, dogs sold at closed dog auctions, Jindos who failed to pass the Jindo Preservation Ordinance (Jindo is a designated breed as the 53rd Natural Treasure in SK). All of these dogs are eaten as meat or gaesoju or “health” food or boshintang as dog meat soup. They are frequently sold  at Moran Market the largest open air market in South Korea and during their “dog festival” held every year in July.

Moran Market South Korea

 

Thailand, one of the kindest nations in the world, houses a deadly secret. A cruel trade reaches across the country, part known, part hidden from its people.

In Thailand pets are stolen or bought for a plastic bucket and then trafficked into Vietnam where they can fetch $250 each and in Indonesia, next to honeymoon,spots slaughter takes place without mercy in the most unsanitary conditions.

Thousands of pet dogs and street dogs have vanished and, every day, more disappear. The conditions under which the dogs are transported and slaughtered are inhumane and many die from suffocation, disease and injuries long before they reach their destinations in Thailand and Vietnam.

Chinese Dog Meat Trade  http://notodogmeat.com

Dogs Being Transported For Slaughter In China. More Than 5 Million Are Butchered Each Year To Feed The Chinese Dog-Meat Industry

Unfortunately Vietnam’s taste for canine is on the rise. According to Tuan Bendixsen, director of the Vietnam office of Animals Asia, as more people move to the cities, fewer remain in the countryside to raise the dogs, which creates enough scarcity to drive prices up. But increased wages mean more people can afford to eat dog, he says, which creates a parallel increase in demand.

“The problem is that there isn’t enough to feed the trade, especially around the Vietnamese New Year, which means dogs are going to be imported from Thailand,” says Tuan. “There was an estimated 25,000 or more dogs coming in per month from Thailand.”

Vietnams Dog Meat Trade http://notodogmeat.com

These dogs in metal cages were being transported to Vietnam from Thailand for slaughter and many die from suffocation due to this inhumane and cruel practice before they reach the border.

“If you go to central Vietnam near the Laos border, you often see huge trucks coming across with at least 200 to 300 dogs stacked in cages like chickens,” he says. “Each cage – and they are very small cages – with about 10 dogs. That’s to feed Vietnam’s dog-meat industry.”

Last month Thai police caught three men trying to smuggle more than 1,000 dogs into Vietnam from Laos.

Dog Smugglers Thailand http://notodogmeat.com

Smugglers apprehended by the Royal Thai Police in March 2013 transporting dogs to Vietnam 

This is and unregulated, illegal industry. Never legalized not even locally yet accepted and on the increase. It is highly likely that diseased dog meat will end up in the food chain as has horse meat in Europe.

Please think of the barbaric and horrific conditions these dogs and cats have to endure when South Korean’s say its their culture. Culture is never and excuse for cruelty in Asia or the USA. 


THE CRUELTY OF VIETNAM’S DOG MEAT TRADE

“Think Occasionally Of The Suffering Of Which You Spare Yourself The Sight” ~ Albert Schweitzer

‘Earthlings’ – A Documentary Narrated By Joaquin Phoenix On The World’s Abuse Of Animals

EARTHLINGS is the single most powerful and informative documentary about society’s tragic and unforgivable use of nonhuman animals, narrated by Joaquin Phoenix with soundtrack by Moby. Directed by Shaun Monson, this multi-award winning film by Nation Earth is a must-see for anyone who cares about nonhuman animals or wishes to make the world a better place.

http://MercyForAnimals.org

We are all Earthlings – Make the Connection!

 

“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”

MAHATMA GANDHI

 

 

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Ellen Show: Wayne Pacelle From The Humane Society Discusses Ag Gag Laws And How They Silence Animal Advocates And Protect Animal Abusers

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