It was a glorious day in all respects. We could not have asked for better weather after nearly three days of rain. The sun was shining, there was a  little breeze in the air to go along with the murmurings of anticipation.

The Arrival

The Arrival

The Unfurling

The Unfurling

My husband and I arrived a few minutes early at Carre St-Louis  and sat on a park bench sipping our coffee (black for him and soy cappuccino for me). We could see a line of people, mostly garbed in black, some carrying signs and some not, sauntering up the path to the centre of the park where the organizers were setting up.Two of the organizers from  KARA were preparing the banner for the front of the march.

The Montreal Vegan Rejects

The Montreal Vegan Rejects

 

CBC Filming Event

CBC Filming Event

The Montreal Vegan Rejects, of which I am a new member, had a little table set up with  recommended for reading about Veganism.The organizers outlined the goals of the march as well as the rules for peaceful and respectful marching, while cameramen from CBC and CTV filmed the happenings.

Sign Provided by KARA

Sign Provided by KARA

The participants of about 250 strong chose a provided sign to carry or proudly held one of their own.

The Ottawa Defense League

The Ottawa Defense League

.

 

 

The Beginning of the March

The Beginning of the March

The Beginning

The Beginning

And then the march began.

We followed along as witnesses and actually I am very glad to have done so, because there are many things I would have missed had I not. The beginning of the march brought words of sarcasm and cruelty from a young man sitting on a terrasse (Montreal lingo for Patio). He chanted, with a look of derision on his face. “We love pork, we love eating lamb, we get all excited about it.” I took a small amount of comfort in seeing that his companions seemed to be very embarrassed, either by his words or his lack of respect. But we moved on, without responding.

  There was lots more to see as we followed along.

Like this:

How Disconnected we are from the Cruelty

How Disconnected we are from the Cruelty

And this:

Non Vegan Botannical Personal Care Products

Non Vegan Botannical Personal Care Products

But then I saw this:

Vegan,Vegan,Vegan-Yay!

Vegan,Vegan,Vegan-Yay!

I spent some time spectating the spectators in order to see their reactions. Some walked by without even noticing . Others stopped and chatted while they watched and some gave shouts of solidarity and flashed the peace sign at the marchers.  One lady stood beside her bike watching as the tears flowed down her face. Shopkeepers stepped away from their busy days to stand in silence and to bear witness.

A Girl and a Mouse

A Girl and a Mouse

The Peace Sign-Still Relevant Today!

The Peace Sign-Still Relevant Today!

In the entry way of a shop I saw a young girl respectfully showing the peace sign as she stood watching. She looked so supportive of the marchers that I stopped to ask her if I could take her picture. She said yes and started searching around in her the back of her top until she found a little mouse who had been hiding there. She lovingly put him on the palm of her hand, made the peace sign and posed for me. After I took her picture, I said to her, “So, I gather you are for all the animals, ” “Oh yes”, she said. “Oh yes” and she waved goodbye.

 

My friend L. is on the left.

My friend L. is on the left.

My attention returned to the marchers. My friend and fellow vegan L., who I had just met through The Montreal Vegan Rejects ,stopped and posed for me as I took her pic. She said that together we could do something and make a difference. She had already made a difference-a positive difference in the life of this vegan who believes that tilting at windmills can bring about positive change. Thanks  L.

Kudos to you, Sir!

Kudos to you, Sir!

Bringing up the last, but not least part of the march was a gentleman with a cane. He was limping a bit and I guess it must have been tough for him to keep up. But there he was, walking with determination. My hat is off to him!  He represents the passion of selfless caring that is germane  to our goal  of  liberation for all nonhuman animals.

Solidarity!

Solidarity!

Mindful reflection1

Mindful Reflection!

The march ended in Parc Lafontaine where we gathered for a ceremony of sorts, some final words from the organizers and some silent reflection. It was a beautiful ending to a peaceful event.

 

My husband and I headed home, pooped out from our day of witnessing and walking. We managed to put together a delicious vegan meal to end a delightful and inspiring vegan day.

Our Plant Based Supper

Our Plant Based Supper

No added fat baked fries,  black bean dip and broccoli and cherry tomatoes from Lufa,  with a splash or two of vegan red wine!!!!!—-oh dear! I almost forgot about the ketchup. One does need ketchup with fries!!

Annie’s Vegan View

Take a chance and try something new. Join a march, introduce yourself to people who share a similar vision. Be open to listening to and learning from their perspectives.

There will always be detractors. Don’t let them draw you into their negativity. At the very least, it will upset you and may distract your from your journey.

Spend some time being a witness to a cause in which you believe deeply. It can be exhilarating and life confirming.

Never doubt that seemingly small steps can have a huge impact when someone is walking beside you. Thank you to all the people who cared enough to organize and participate in this march. It was truly uplifting! Until next time,

May all beings be happy and free.

Anne

Links you may find interesting and helpful: The Montreal Vegan Rejects and  KARA

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13 thoughts on “FIRST ANNUAL MONTREAL MARCH TO CLOSE DOWN ALL SAUGHTERHOUSES

  • June 17, 2014 at 3:01 pm
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    Dear Anne, what an exciting and inspiring day! Seems like you enjoyed and soaked up every minute of it. I wish I had been there!

    Reply
    • June 18, 2014 at 10:58 am
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      Hey Dany,
      Thanks so much for commenting on my blog. I love sharing tweets with you on Twitter and am in admiration of your commitment to your life as a recent vegan. It is inspiring. I wish you had been there too-at the march, I mean! it was a great event!
      Anne

      Reply
    • June 18, 2014 at 10:56 am
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      Hey Shannon,
      Always delighted to meet a fellow vegan. You are welcome and thank you for your kind comments. I look forward to touching base again soon.
      Anne

      Reply
  • June 17, 2014 at 9:17 pm
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    I always enjoy reading your posts because they are so personal and engaging. The photos are a great addition. I didn’t take any of the march in Toronto; however I was “caught” in a few of the photos that I saw posted.

    I heard and saw only 2 negative reactions although there were probably more. I had to react to both of them but I stayed very calm. The first negative was by a homeless man who sat begging on the sidewalk. He yelled loudly, “I’m a carnivore! I love eating meat.” I was going to ignore him but something made me say, “Does that mean you like eating dogs and cats, too?” I couldn’t help myself!

    The second negative came as we were passing a café. Two guys were sitting just inside an open window. The guy facing us was smiling while his companion turned his back and gave us the finger. I didn’t notice until the person next to me said to his friend, “Check out the guy over there”. Again, I found myself reacting and said, “ It’s because of this kind of attitude that the world is in trouble.” I’m sure my words didn’t hit a nerve but I felt better after having said them.

    Other than this, the march received similar mixed reactions to the ones you got. I like it best when they actually stop to take a look and really think about the message. I think the part that caught the most attention was the three times that the participants stopped and laid down in the street (emulating the dying animals on the slaughterhouse floor) while the bells tolled and the screams of animals were heard through the loudspeakers. One time, I was so emotional that I cried!

    I was so happy to have participated in this event because it DOES feel good to express oneself along with like-minded people.

    By the way, why do they call themselves “Rejects”? It has such a negative connotation. Why not “Montreal Vegan Power” or Montreal Vegans for Life”?

    Reply
    • June 18, 2014 at 11:03 am
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      Hey Cindy,
      Next time we decide to do something like this, let’s do it in the same city LOL! The event in Toronto sounds as moving as the one here in Montreal and I am glad to have been a part of it.
      I hear you. It is tough not to respond when people say and do stupid and cruel stuff.
      Being with like-minded people is definitely a plus.
      I don’t know why the choice of name for the Montreal Vegan Rejects-maybe to draw attention. I will have to find out.
      See you tomorrow and thanks again!

      Reply
    • June 18, 2014 at 11:47 am
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      Rejects comes from an experience that the Vegan Rejects Organizer Michaela had with another Vegan group she was part of ~ Apparently there were one too many strict rules that had to be followed… So she up and started her own Vegan group and Vegan Rejects was formed ~ Well suited I believe, when too many things are imposed.

      When I came across the name I had found it quite funny and had a feeling it had a funny/interesting story behind it… I was drawn to the name (a bit of a twisted humor). Yes, by itself, the word reject is negative but pair it with Vegan and I could only see humor in it… the word Vegan knocks the negativity right out of Reject =) and makes it light and fun.

      ‘Vegan’ Vibrates Beautiful Positive Uplifting Freedom =D
      Peace
      Elle

      Reply
    • June 18, 2014 at 12:05 pm
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      Elle, So nice to meet you and thanks so much for the story behind The Montreal Vegan Rejects. I love it! Sometimes we can all get a bit serious! Looking forward to hearing from you again! Blessings, Anne

      Reply
  • June 18, 2014 at 12:09 pm
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    What I Great job of documenting the First March to Close Down All Staughterhouses!!
    I aspire to right as eloquently =) I’m very much looking forward to doing things together to help lift the veil of insanity and help our defenseless nonhumans who are counting on us.
    Something comes to my mind I’d like to share ~ Imagine 50-100 years from now people looking back at us scratching their heads as they say ‘what was wrong with those crazy people doing or allowing such violence on the defenseless to run rampant?!’ Well.., I won’t be one of those people whom they were wondering about.

    To Freedom!
    Elle

    Reply
  • June 18, 2014 at 12:34 pm
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    Hi Elle (love your name, BTW) Thanks so much for the positive feedback. I just try to write simply and from the heart. I think we all have that ability in us. As I tell my vegan friend (s)- two voices are one hundred percent better than one!! Let’s keep it up and see how we get on! Anne

    Reply
    • June 18, 2014 at 12:41 pm
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      Hey Elle, I am connecting the dots now! Let’s keep in touch and meet sometime. I wanted to get in touch with you because I wondered if you might be interested in writing a guest post on your research for your thesis and how it ties in with veganism. I would be so pleased to publish it. I think it would make for a lot of fantastic and enlightening discussion. Think about it.
      Anne

      Reply
  • June 18, 2014 at 12:35 pm
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    Hi Anne,
    I had forgotten to mention it was a Real Joy meeting you in person at the March! =)
    As well as, briefly explain the huge smile I had while holding the elephant poster (second picture of me in the March) – was’ Is’ for the confidence and strong belief of the liberation of these Wonderful Earthlings/NonHumans and the Excitement I was feeling on the things to come =)
    Elle

    Reply
  • September 30, 2016 at 7:01 am
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    Hi Anne,
    Reading this has really made me want to attend a march near me in the United Kingdom. I have never attended one before but missed one recently in Hull, called “March for the Beagles”. It was a march protesting about a new beagle breeding farm in Grimston, Hull. I wish I had gone now, but felt in a bad place emotionally and didn’t want to make my health worse. I also wanted someone to go with for support that I knew but my friend couldn’t make it either.

    When I feel stronger emotionally, which I hope will be soon I am definitely going to attend one of these. Like you say, our voices are stronger and louder in unison than in isolation and I felt your excitement through your writing about being an agent of change.

    Thanks so much Anne for inspiring me to the very best advocate I can be for the animals. I am learning so much from you!

    Take Care

    Rachel Weightman

    Reply

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