Free from Harm promotes farmed animal rescue, education and advocacy… and the power of our forks!

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Before They Were Bacon: Stepping Into a Modern Day Stockyard

We give them water. Help them drink. Carefully stroke their bellies. The stockyard gives me the opportunity to look into their eyes for longer, and their desperation and pain is palpable. It feels like hours here, kneeling in the dirt. My hands and heart tremble as I try to impart love to these beautiful beings, while inside, it is all I can do to keep from screaming. Continue reading

Millions of Babies Are Being Stolen From Their Mothers. Does It Only Matter When They Look Like Us?

“It would be funny — if it weren’t so sad — to continually witness how desperately we try to paint a happy picture of what is inherently violent and utterly unnecessary. Exploit females’ reproductive systems and breed them at our will, but look! They’re happy! Take away their babies, but look! They’re happy! Take their milk and kill them when they’re no longer “profitable,” but look! They’re happy! Continue reading

Vegan Is Love: Author Ruby Roth on Telling Children the Truth About Animals

Vegan children’s book author Ruby Roth discusses the harm we do to children by involving them in violence toward animals they would never choose to support. “We can’t afford to wait for the next generation to grow up before teaching them to live consciously. Sugarcoating or avoiding truths only hinders what children are actually capable of— psychologically, spiritually, and physically. And hindering their capabilities delays the potential we have to green our society, improve our health, and do best for all living things.” Continue reading

Turkeys Snuggling Like Cats and Dogs Will Touch Your Heart

It seems that the more people spend time with turkeys, the more they are able to recognize them as individuals with unique personalities, emotions, and preferences, just like the cats and dogs we know and love. It’s an instructive moment, and a good reminder that our job as advocates isn’t just about helping people understand the suffering farmed animals go through, but also about helping them perceive these homogenized beings as individuals. Continue reading

Is An Excuse-itarian Diet Keeping You From Living Your Own Values?

Colleen Patrick Goudreau’s rousing talk, “From Excuse-itarian to Vegan,” has reached nearly 100,000 viewers on youtube, and is a great tool for empowering others to live their own values of compassion and wellness. This inspiring, entertaining and information-packed lecture provides responses to everything from “I don’t have time to chop vegetables” and “I tried being vegetarian, but I just craved meat” to “I could give up everything, except cheese” and “Vegans don’t get enough protein.” Continue reading

I Visited A Small, Organic Dairy Farm to See If Animals Were Treated Better

While passing a small dairy farm on Sir Francis Drake Boulevard in the Point Reyes National Seashore in early October, I made an impromptu visit to a small, family-owned, pasture-based, grass-fed dairy farm that supplies milk to Trader Joe’s. This is the true story about what I learned from the farmer and what I witnessed firsthand about the animals in his care. Continue reading

Do Different People Really Need Radically Different Diets?

The concepts of personalized medicine and personalized nutrition have really taken off. People are eating according to their blood type, their metabolic type, their Ayurvedic constitution, and their genotype. Micaela Karlsen discusses that our species does have specific nutritional requirements all of which we can meet from a diverse plant-based diet. Continue reading

Why Plant Crops Don’t Kill More Wildlife than Pasture Raised Animals

Picture this: You’re a harvest mouse who lives in a wheat field. Being a mouse, you have excellent hearing and can easily pick up sounds that a human cannot hear. Thanks to your sensitive whiskers and small size, you’re acutely attuned to vibrations caused by large machines. And to top that off, you have lightning reflexes and dash about at a top speed of 8 miles an hour. Continue reading

Volunteer Spotlight: Mihir Shah

Mihir Shah is a custom jewelry designer and gemstone wholesaler from Chicago. He was born into a vegetarian (Indian Jain) family. Although non-violence is one of the main precepts of Jainism, like other vegetarians, Jains are generally unaware, and unwilling to concede to the cruelty inherent in dairy farming. Milk and milk products, therefore, remain a significant part of the Jain diet. Continue reading

Is a Concern for Animals “First World”?

In the Q & A at one of my recent presentations, someone pointed out that they’ve heard a concern for animals criticized as “first world.” Aside from the obvious prejudice in the use of terms such as first world and third world, for our purposes, let’s just focus here on its implication that advocating for animals is a frivolous issue compared with much bigger global problems and one that only affluent people have the luxury to think about. Continue reading