By Robert Cohen Executive Director Text Only

The great American protest

Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl
is dead, and his gruesome murder was recorded
on videotape.

Pearl's grisly death was carefully planned.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation is
analyzing the actual tape of his murder.

Pearl's last words were:

  "I am a Jew, my mother is a Jew."

Pearl was then killed by a man holding a large
knife. The man slashed Pearl's throat, and
the expression on Pearl's face and the pleading
look in his eyes will be forever replayed
in the nightmares of the horrified investigators
who have reviewed the taped evidence.

Pearls last thoughts must have included a very
confused "Why are you doing this to me?"

As Pearl was bleeding to death, his executioner
completely decapitated him. The final slash of
the knife severed a spinal cord that delivered
no further signals of pain. Fifteen to thirty
seconds later, all of the oxygen-sustaining
blood had dripped from Pearl's brain, and the
final thought processes delivered Pearl into
his gentle oblivion.

I have seen that same look many times before.
I turned away from the animals I killed. Some
lives were ended in the name of science. As a
researcher, I once recognized that brain chemistry
changes with anesthesia, so I decapitated animals
while holding them in my hands without administering
pain killers.

As a fisherman, I cut off the heads of living
breathing creatures. As a hunter, I saw that
"look" as animals took their last breath, then
exhaled what I believed was their soul. As one
who once raised ducks and geese for food, I felt
the struggle for life, as I brought about death.

Twenty-seven million, four hundred thousand
animals die every single day in America so that
people can be fed. Each one of these gentle
creatures experiences final thoughts. Each
cow or sheep or pig or bird feels the pain of
a knife. In other nations, the cat or dog that
would be a family companion in the United
States experiences that same pain. Each head is
severed from a protesting body.

Every human pet owner who has ever lived with
companion animals knows that these creatures
have emotions, give and receive love, and have
the ability to feel pain. There can be no denying
these truths.

Each creature lived a gentler life before man's
final solution, a plan that brought a moment or
two of extreme terror to a living life force.
Every animal killed for food in America shares
one undeniable common element: Every living
creature possesses the innate abilities to feel
pain and confusion.


There is one man more than any other who attempts
to negate the insanity by becomming the savior.
One man, who for eighteen years has tried to
communicate their pain to his often clueless fellow
humans. His name is Alex Hershaft, and each year,
Alex asks all citizens of the world to join in the
Great American Meatout.

For one day, Hershaft asks meat eaters to take
pity on the animals who suffer the violent acts
of life-ending cruelty of the slaughterhouse.


On the first day of spring, celebrate the
abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables,
grains, beans, and nuts. Do not eat animals
on that day, for in doing so, you must take
responsibility for the knife, and the fear,
and the pain, and the death. Alex lives this
life of his 365 days per year, and hopes that
you will join him.


In past years, governors of 37 states and 30 major
cities have issued statements supporting the Great
American Meatout. Celebrities who participated in
publicizing this event have included:

Ed Asner, Bob Barker, Dirk Benedict, James Cromwell,
Doris Day, Peter Falk, Frances Fisher, Jennie Garth,
Sara Gilbert, Chrissie Hynde, Casey Kasem, Rue McClanahan,
Bill Maher, Hayley Mills, Mary Tyler Moore, Kevin Nealon,
Cassandra 'Elvira' Peterson, Joaquin Phoenix, and Ally

Also sports figures Tony LaRussa, Mark Levy, and Al Oerter,
and authors and educators Berke Breathed, Michael Jacobson,
Frances Moore Lappe, John McDougall and Jeremy Rifkin.

You can learn more and join the world's largest grassroots
diet education campaign by visiting 

Visit Alex Hershaft's website:


This summer, there will be 1,000 people
attending Alex Hershaft's annual animal
rights conference. I will be there, and
so will my three children, for our future
health and happiness includes a world in
which there is no more abuse for any living
creature. Should you wish to attend the
June 28-July 3 conference, visit:

Robert Cohen author of:   MILK A-Z
Executive Director (
Dairy Education Board

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