This Cube of Truth Cuenca Ecuador is the first time Amelia and I have ever participated in any sort of protest…EVER! It doesn’t really fit our personalities. We prefer to lead by example and live a quiet life, free of conflict.
However, our buena amiga (good friend) Rosy from Fratello Vegan started a Facebook group called AV Cuenca, Ecuador, which is a chapter of the Anonymous for the Voiceless group founded in Australia. She also created the group Veganismo 101 to help people switch to veganism.
Rosy told us all about the Cube of Truth concept, which really resonated with us, so we decided to give activism a shot. Well, actually, Amelia decided to give it a shot and told me I had to go. ?
And I’m glad she did. While it was a very emotional experience bringing me to the point of tears several times, it gave me some optimism to see so many people interested in veganism.
Anonymous for the Voiceless and the Cube of Truth are relatively new so let me tell you about them. But first, this video was filmed on March 16, 2018 and I’ve lost 30 pounds since then eating WFPB No-Oil. So if I look heavier in this video than some of the more recently recorded videos, that’s because I was.
What Is Anonymous for the Voiceless?
Anonymous for the Voiceless was started in Melbourne, Australia a little over 2 years ago in April of 2016.
From the AV website:
“Anonymous for the Voiceless is an animal rights organization that specializes in street activism.
Over 3,059 demonstrations in 496 cities/56 countries, we’ve convinced at least 107,288 bystanders to take the needless violence in their diets and lifestyles seriously.
We employ direct action with highly effective public outreach using local standard-practice footage of what ‘food’ animals experience every second of every day, virtual reality technology, succinctly informative resources and a value-based sales approach. We fully equip the public with everything they need in switching to a vegan lifestyle. We hold an abolitionist stance on animal exploitation.”
What Is a Cube of Truth?
A Cube of Truth is a peaceful form of street activism. Group members wear all black along with a Guy Fawkes mask made popular by the movie V for Vendetta. This mask is also used by other Anonymous groups for a variety of different social and political causes.
Each member also holds either a sign that reads “Truth” (“Verdad” in Spanish), or a laptop or tablet playing typical slaughterhouse footage. The videos are not the extreme, they are standard practice. And much of the footage comes from so-called humane and/or organic operations. It’s not the worst of the worst. It’s the best of the worst.
The masks and black clothing are very effective at grabbing people’s attention from a distance. When they get close enough to see the screens, they can’t help but watch. It’s like a car accident…people can’t stop themselves from looking.
For a lot of people, this is the first time they’ve seen footage like this. The animal ag industry has done a remarkable job at keeping their dirty little secret behind opaque walls. But thanks to the courage of some undercover activists, we now have video showing what life is like inside these torture chambers.
Not only is it incomprehensibly cruel to the animals, it’s utterly gross and disgusting. To think that I used to put that into my mouth on a daily basis makes me want to throw up! It makes me physically sick to my stomach!
The Cube of Truth Cuenca Ecuador videos expose people to the reality of where their food originates, while the outreach members provide context and answer questions from onlookers. They also hand out business cards with useful links to help them go vegan.
The philosophy of Anonymous for the Voiceless is to plant seeds, not to convert people to veganism on the spot. They recognize that in-your-face protests for such an ingrained tradition only drives people further away.
Instead, the goal is to provide a calm, logical and informative approach that employs the Socratic Method to lead people to the truth about the choices they take for granted, and the unseen consequences of those choices.
We handed out over 30 business cards at this event to people who were curious about taking the first step toward a more compassionate, environmentally friendly and healthful lifestyle.
Cube of Truth Cuenca Ecuador #1 – La Merced
We didn’t know what to expect on our way to the first Cube of Truth in Cuenca Ecuador. I assumed it would be fun and informative, and hoped we would spark some curiosity in at least a few people. It was all of those things.
What I didn’t expect was that I would get so emotional about it. I was doing ok until I saw a little girl, roughly 8 years old, watching a video with her mother and siblings. The little girl was sobbing with her hands over her face, crying “no, no, no” over and over.
She couldn’t handle the utter cruelty of the images she was seeing. Cruelty to animals that she is learning about in school, painted as happy creatures frolicing in open pastures and willingly giving their lives to become our food.
She hasn’t been corrupted by decades of taste and tradition. She wasn’t yet equipped with the blinders society installs on our psyches to shield us from the realization that our “food” suffers immensely on the way to our dinner plates.
It’s the policy of Anonymous for the Voiceless not allow children under 14 to watch the videos without a parent or guardian present. If we see an unattended child, we ask where his or her parents are.
On one hand, I was surprised to see how many parents allowed their children to watch these videos. But on the other hand, shouldn’t they know where their food comes from? If children are allowed to eat it, and people think it’s ethical to eat it, then why not show them the reality of how it gets onto their plates?
If the footage isn’t appropriate for children, then how can eating the product of that footage be appropriate for children? You can’t have it both ways. Either it’s ethical, or it’s not. Either it’s moral, or it’s not. Either it’s humane, or it’s not.
In addition to the little girl, I witnessed at least a dozen adults on the verge of tears or covering their faces or turning away as they watched the videos. If we can’t bear to see where our food comes from, how can we even slightly believe it’s ethical, moral or humane?
Overall, this was an extremely positive experience, despite my emotional breakdown near the end. It’s also a very effective form of activism that may not create instant vegans, but it certainly plants the seeds of veganism. Amelia and I have already decided that we’re going to do more cubes.
Going vegan was the least we could do. Now we’re doing a little bit more.
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