Woman Sentenced to 2 Years for Rescuing Dog, “Terrorists” Rescue More Animals in Retaliation

by Will Potter on July 23, 2008

in Activism & Activists' Response,Terrorism Court Cases

Sara Whitehead, sentenced to 2  years for rescuing a dog.

As both the US and UK governments (and many others) are cracking down on animal rights and environmental activists, labeling them as terrorists and hitting them with outrageous prison sentences, supporters say it is for a few reasons. First, they say that these activists are national security threats. Second, they say that this boot-on-the-throat approach will deter future illegal activity by underground, “eco-terrorist” groups like the Animal Liberation Front.

But here’s a recent example of how this “Green Scare” plays out in real life.

A UK activist named Sara Whitehead was just sentenced to 2 years in prison for rescuing a beagle from an abusive home. That’s right, two years. Neighbors had filed complaints with the police and the RSPCA, to no avail. When Whitehead rescued the dog, cops pounced surprisingly quickly: it turns out Whitehead, like many activists, was already under police surveillance.

So has this use of police resources, to crack down on a woman rescuing an abused dog, deterred illegal activity by “eco-terrorist” groups like the Animal Liberation Front?

Far from it.

Bite Back Magazine has published an anonymous communiqué that says:

“Animal liberation volunteers are claiming responsibility for the direct intervention in the animal farming industry, as an act of solidarity with Sarah Whitehead who is currently behind bars for doing the right thing. While Sarah remains locked in her cell for freeing animals from pain and misery, volunteers successfully liberated 50 Turkeys from an Eastern factory farm.

This action means these sentient beings were spared from constant suffering, their lives destined to be cut short with the blade of slaughterhouse machinery. No longer will their existence be to fill the mouths of a salivating and greedy nation. They now exist as valued individuals, remaining happy and free.

Love and liberation for Sarah and all other captive individuals!
Animal Liberation Front”

This isn’t a new phenomenon. After a US court convicted the SHAC 7 on “animal enterprise terrorism” charges for running a controversial website, underground activists retaliated. And after lawmakers passed the Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act, underground activists retaliated.

The outrageous prison sentences, the scare-mongering legislation, the spying: it’s not deterring underground activists. It’s only giving them one more reason to fight.

But lets stop for a moment so we can truly appreciate the absurdity of this situation. This is what the global “War on Terrorism” has become: an “animal rights terrorist” sentenced to two years in prison for rescuing a dog, and the method of retaliation chosen by the “terrorists” is… saving more lives.

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