Columnist Provides Interesting Look at Animal Rights Activist Ariel Swan Greenspun Gale

Las Vegas Review-Journal columnist Jane Ann Morrison recently wrote an interesting look at California animal rights activist Ariel Swan Greenspun Gale.

As Morrison notes, the 23-year-old Gale is a member of the wealthy Las Vegas Greenspun family, and recently purchased a $1 million home in California. When she was arrested on a trespassing and disturbing the piece charges at an animal rights protest, however, she demanded a public defender. The public defender negotiated a plea bargain for her which resulted in a sentence of community service, but when Gale never bothered to show up in court to enter that plea, a bench warrant for her arrest was issued.

Gale has been a part of Last Chance for Animal’s protests against the family of Mitchell Lardner in Monrovia, which this site has covered in detail. Lardner is a manager at Sumitomo Corporation, which has been targeted by animal rights activists due to its ties with Huntingdon Life Sciences.

Protests at Lardner’s home have involved threats and someone chucking a brick in the face of an off-duty police officer that the Lardner’s had hired as a security guard.

Like many activists, Gale is willing to threaten others, but carefully hides for fear of being targeted herself. Morrison writes,

Third, she has no qualms about standing outside a private home chanting the threat: “For the animals we will fight! We know where you sleep at night.” Yet she asked me not to reveal her address. (She said she has been threatened and didn’t want people to know where she lives).

. . .

Gale was one of the protesters who stood outside Lardner’s home May 23 and chanted, “Hey, Mitchell, what you say? How many animals died today?”

As police stood by, one protester yelled, “Your police aren’t always going to be here.” Lest this sound like an empty threat, on May 29 an off-duty police officer hired to protect the Lardner home was struck in the face with a brick, breaking his jaw, said Monrovia police Detective Rob Wilken.

Ah, those ever-compassionate activists.


Arrogant words and deeds of animal activist beastly. Jane Ann Morrison, Las Vegas Review-Journal, February 3, 2005.

California Town Places Restrictions on Protest in Response to SHAC Demonstrations

Following an April 23rd protest by Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty activists at the home of a manager at Sumitomo Corp. of America, Monrovia, California, this month an ordinance to restrict pickets and protests that target residences.

The Monrovia City Council unanimously approved the ordinance which would require protesters to be at least 300 feet from any residence that is the target of their protest. According to the Pasadena Star News, 12 residents spoke in favor of the ordinance at a special meeting of the city council, while no one spoke against the measure.

About 30 activists protested outside the home, some of them wearing masks, yelling things like “[The executive] is a sick pervert who enjoys animal abuse” through a bullhorn and chanting “We know where you sleep.”

The tactics against the executive and his family escalated after the protests. According to the Pasadena Star,

Early in the morning of May 29, someone threw a chunk of cinder block from a passing car that hit a security guard hired by Sumitomo in the face, breaking his jaw, police said.


Council may move to rein in protests. Marshall Allen, Pasadena Star-News, June 7, 2004.

Council OKs limits on protesters. Marshall Allen, Pasadena Star-News, June 8, 2004.

Animal Extremists Campaign of Harassment Against Sumitomo Executive

In late May, Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty posted a report of a protest by California animal rights extremists directed at an executive of a company that SHAC claims uses Huntingdon Life Sciences for animal testing. According to the SHAC post (emphasis added),

On Sunday, May 23rd, 20 activists visited the home of Mitchell Lardner, a Sumitomo executive who lives at . . .. Apparently, the neighbors had been planning for our visit and over 30 of them gathered at MitchellÂ’s place to greet us. They were so intimidated by activists asserting their constitutional right to free speech that they called out the entire Monrovia police department to join the protest! And the Monrovia police were so scared that they called out the Temple Station deputies to hold their hands and even asked the Los Angeles Police Department to come with a helicopter! That still was not enough to make the residents of MitchÂ’s neighborhood feel comfortable, so the incompetent Monrovia police called out their fire trucks and ambulances to wait down the road.

Mitchell Lardner truly became an embarrassing spectacle as about 75 people watched anxiously as grassroots activists exposed Mitch as an accomplice to the murder of 500 animals who die every day at HLS because of its customer, Sumitomo. The neighbors started chanting and tried to start a mosh pit, but failed miserably; they clearly had little experience dealing with activists who easily droned them out. We persisted in explaining what it means to have a puppy killer in the neighborhood, and the police just did not know how to deal with the excitement.

As the tension increased, the police arrested 3 activists in a pathetic attempt to stop the demonstration. As the neighbors cheered, activists chanted, “for every arrest, one window!” and this really shut them up. No matter how many police officers and grumpy neighbors cower before Mitch’s home, the grassroots animal rights movement will not be affected or deterred. The arrested activists were released after just a few hours, unfazed and excited to return to Mitch’s house.

We will continue to come back and make MitchÂ’s ritzy neighborhood into a circus until Sumitomo stops contracting with HLS.

Before delving further, it’s good to note that even with activist’s own self-serving commentary, it’s clear that the neighbors in the area weren’t buying into extremist’s campaign of harassment. That the neighbors may have actually confronted the animal rights extremists instead following the script that SHAC and others want — cowering in fear and directing their frustration at their neighbor — is very heartening compared to how often people and companies tend to cut and run when faced with pressure from such extremists.

A brief item in the Pasadena Star News backs up at least part of the activists’ claims noting that,

Three animal rights activists were arrested for disturbing the peace late Sunday [May 23, 2004].

. . .

[Monrovia police Sgt.] Alfaro said the activists picketed and assaulted people, he [sic] but could not say who or how many were assaulted.

The protesters were being held overnight and released on a citation today.

Not a terribly helpful description, but this is not the first time activists have shown up at Lardner’s door. They also showed up to protest on May 14, and the Pasadena Star at that time provided a bit more information about how these brave animal rights extremists chose to express themselves (emphasis added),

A family in Monrovia was harassed by animal rights activists when their home was vandalized with phrases like “puppy killer’ and “murderer,’ allegedly by members of the Animal Liberation Front. On Wednesday, animal rights protesters put on masks and hooded sweat-shirts and shouted anti-animal testing slogans through a bullhorn as neighbors and police looked on.

. . .

. . . Dressed in all black, some wearing skull masks, they obviously tried for the scary look . . .

Strike three in the intimidation attempt was the fact that one of the activists arrived at the scene in a shiny new Audi with the license plates removed, of course.

Ah those brave, relentless animal rights activists. They’ll put your home address, phone and the name of your kids on their web sites, but they won’t protest at your home without wearing masks and hoods (a lot like another group of cowards who hide behind masks and hoods while harassing and intimidating the objects of their hatred).


3 animal rights activists arrested. Diana L. Roemer, Pasadena Star News, May 23, 2004.

Rockers to the rescue. Pasadena Star News, May 14, 2004.

SHAC Activist Receives Suspended Sentence in Japan

Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty activist Dawn Hurst was sentenced to a three-year prison sentence that the judge in the case then suspended for five years.

Hurst, 31, is a British citizen who was convicted of stealing a dog and dozens of videotapes from research laboratories in Japan between 2001 and 2002.

Unfortunately, Judge Satoshi Shibayama apparently fell hook, line and sinker for Hurst’s repentance routine, explaining he suspended her sentence because she had sincerely repented of her crimes.

Hurst, of course, was only arrested because she travelled to Japan in April with other SHAC activists to protest at a pharmaceutical trade show being held there.

It’s amazing that they were able to convict Hurst at all since, according to statements at the time of her arrest by SHAC spokeswoman Heather James, Hurst never actually committed any crime,

Hundreds of animals are poisoned to death every day at Huntingdon Life Sciences on behalf of their Japanese customers. Dawn’s only alleged ‘crime’ is to expose this animal abuse while the real criminals such as Daiichi, CBC, Yamanouchi and Sumitomo continue to profit from the torture of animals at HLS. We demand her immediate release.


UK shock tactics repel animal-rights activists in Japan. DAVID CYRANOSKI, Nature, 424, 119, July 10, 2003.

UK animal rights activist sentenced in Japan. China Daily, August 25, 2003.

Cops doggedly pursue animal activist. June 30, 2003.

SHAC Campaigner Arrested In Japan! Press Release, Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty, April 17, 2003.

SHAC Plans to Target Japanese Customers of HLS

Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty claims that it has received an extensive list of Huntingdon Life Sciences customers and contracts from a sympathizers within the company.

Among other things, SHAC plans to use the list to target Japanese companies who are customers of HLS. The Financial Times reports that some of Japan’s large chemical companies including Sumitomo, Daiichi, Mitsui, Eisai, and Fujisawa are on SHAC’s list of customers and are likely to be targets of SHAC’s variety of animal rights extremism.

Convicted SHAC criminal Greg Avery told The Financial Times,

Our supporters in Japan are very keen but very inexperienced. We will send 10 or 15 people from the UK and five to 10 from Europe to supplement them.

According to the Financial Times, SHAC claims to have raised 20,000 pounds to support its Japanese campaign.

Meanwhile, SHAC is also extending its campaign to target Covance as well.


Animal activists expand campaign against HLS. David Firn and Patrick Jenkins, The Financial Times, March 14, 2003.