Kim McCoy, one of the animal rights activists who is part of Paul Watson’s plan to seize control of the Sierra Club board of directors, has posted the following statement about her candidacy on her web site (emphasis added),
Animal Rights and Human Population
An additional misconception that I would like to clear up is that there is no alliance between animal rights people and “anti-immigration” people. Honestly, the two movements could not be more separate, and these allegations are nothing more than an attempt to distract from the real issues and power struggles at hand in this election.
In recent weeks, I have heard animal rights activists being falsely labeled as “anti-human.” This is simply not true. The animal rights movement is a movement of compassion for all species. Certainly this would include humans as well as non-humans, and for this reason, I (and many animal rights activists) fully support and champion the promotion of human rights. However, the fact remains that human population is the single largest threat to life on earth, and if nothing is done to slow or reverse the growth of human population, it is inevitable that all species will suffer, including both humans and non-human species. A wise friend recently said to me, “One of the most wonderful things about promoting vegetarianism is that we can claim with all honesty that what is best for us is also best for the animals and the environment.” I could not agree with this statement more, and I will add that, from my perspective (looking at the big picture), this is fundamentally true of the human population issue as well.
There is a lot at stake here, and our planet and its inhabitants need forward-thinking advocates who will speak on their behalf, even in the face of controversy and unpleasant accusations. My hope is that the goodhearted, gentle souls who fight against injustices in this broken world will turn inwards and really think about this issue; think about the repercussions of failing to address human population growth; think about the kind of planet they would like to see for their children and grandchildren, and for the offspring of countless other species of plants and animals. Addressing human population growth from a purely ecological perspective is entirely consistent with the protection of human and non-human rights and does not damage either movement, but failing to do so will.
Watson’s alliance with immigration foes has caused some consternation and criticism among liberal-leaning activists, so McCoy’s effort to say that there simply is no such alliance is understandable. But she might have clued in Paul Watson, since the Sea Shepherd site endorsed all three of the leading anti-immigration candidates for the Sierra Club board in a February press release,
The Sea Shepherd Endorsement for Sierra Club Directors
The Sea Shepherd Conservation Society is endorsing the following distinguished candidates for the 2004 election to the Board of Directors of the Sierra Club.
We urge our supporters who are members of the Sierra Club to look for your ballots in March 2004 and to consider voting for the candidates listed below.
. . .
Governor Richard Lamm
Why: Because as a three time elected Democratic Governor of Colorado with an excellent environmental record, Dick Lamm will be a strong and distinguished voice on the Board. Governor Lamm has been a long time supporter of the Sierra Club.
Frank L. Morris
Why: Because as a retired State Department foreign service officer and former executive director of the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation he brings both a knowledge of international affairs and minority concerns to the Sierra Club Board. His ballot statement talks about helping the Club with one of its longstanding internal challenges, diversifying its membership base. “I seek a leadership position in our Club because I deeply share our core values of protecting the planet,” he wrote. “I will effectively represent us in settings not always open to our message-in minority and disadvantaged communities, in Congress, and in leading the defeat of President Bush.”
Dr. David Pimentel
Why: Because Cornell University entomologist Prof. David Pimental is a respected ecologist and expert on the impact of human population growth on eco-systems. The Sierra Club needs the expertise of Dr. Pimentel.
Lamm, by the way, shares some of the animal rights animosity toward medical technology and research. As he put it in an infamous 1984 speech, “We’ve got a duty to die and get out of the way with all of our machines and artificial hearts and everything else like that and let the other society — our kids — build a reasonable life.”
Personal statement from Kim McCoy. Kim McCoy, Undated.
The Sea Shepherd Endorsement for Sierra Club Directors. Press Release, Sea Shepherd, February 12, 2004.