Kids Can Save The Animals!
by Ingrid Newkirk, River Phoenix and Cleveland Amory
First published in 1991
ISBN 1-84403-044-X (Paperback, 256 Pages)
Written by national PETA director Ingrid Newkik, this was a difficult book to review for Phoenix Bookshelf. Such a situation arose, not because this was a book co-written by River, but rather because of the unpleasant and eye-opening information contained within it. It eventually became apparent that, while the cover of this book might be interpreted such that the intended audience for this book are juniors, no age group should be exempt, either child or adult, and be deprived of the information it contains.
LJN Toys tested the "Gotcha" gun by firing paint pellets into rabbits' eyes. Other cruel toy companies rub paints into the animals' skin or force them to swallow play clay and harmful chemicals. When the tests are over, the animals are killed.
A student in Pennsylvania deprived mice of vitamins as a science fair project. May became frantic and killed each other - some even ate their babies.
A high school student in California won a prize for cutting out a frog's brain and timing how long the frog could swim around before dying.
Be a positive nuisance. James Sexton, a teenager from New York, spent a day handing out leaflets in front of a store that sold perfume that had been tested on animals. By six that evening, the manager had pulled the perfume from the shelves.
Studies have shown that killing animals to eat kills us, too! The top diseases in the United States are heart disease, cancer, and stroke - all of them strongly linked to eating meat. Your chances of getting these diseases when you get older are very small if you stop eating animals early in life. Well known vegetarians include: Louisa May Alcott, Lisa Bonet, Christie Brinkley, Cesar Chavez, Albert Einstein, St. Francis of Assissi, Daryl Hannah, Chrissie Hynde, Michael Jackson, Howard Jones, Tony La Russa, Cloris Leachman, Sabrina Le Beauf, Annie Lennox, Casey Kasem, Madonna, Steve Martin, River Phoenix, Plato, Martha Plimpton, Fred Rogers, Albert Schweitzer, George Bernard Shaw, Isaac B. Singer, Henry David Thoreau, Tolstoy, and Leonardo Da Vinci.
In the time it takes you to read this page, approximately five thousand chickens will have been killed for U.S. tables.
This book would have become a valuable reference for any child lucky enough to receive it. Giving advice not only on protecting wild animals and the environment, the book also teaches children how to care for their own domesticated pets much better too. Printed entirely on recycled paper, it includes animal-friendly receipes for food items that children can make such as cookies, dairy-free pancakes and burritos. In addition, a donation to the animal welfare charity PETA was made with each copy of this book sold.
DID YOU KNOW?
- Every year, hunters in the United States kill more than 200 million animals, not to mention quite a few people killed when shot by mistake. This is more than twice as many animals as there are people in California, New York, Illinois, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Texas put together!
- Many hunters use "calls" that mimic animals in distress, then blast away when other animals come to the rescue.
- Some hunters say that if they don't kill animals in autumn, the animals will starve during the winter, yet animals were here long before people were, and they did fine without being hunted. Also, there is no way for hunters to know whether or not the animals they killed would have been the ones who starved. In fact, hunters try to shoot big, healthy animals - the ones who have the best chance of making it through the winter.
This book, just as relevant today as it was when it was published in 1991, may very well represent the best example of River ever writing a book of his own. For the soulless sceptics, with no time for Heart Phoenix talking of "River's message," it is in this book that a tangible example of that message can be sought out and found.
Our awareness of animal abuse has become "right up there" with our awareness of human injustice and environmental devastation. That's why I'm really glad to be a part of KIDS CAN SAVE THE ANIMALS! 101 EASY THINGS TO DO. It is the latest contribution to a sane and loving world and there isn't anything left out of it.
When I was seven years old, I became a vegan, meaning I stopped eating animals and using products that were created by hurting animals. Not only I, but my entire family. My sister Rain was five years old then, Leaf was three, Liberty was one, and Summer, my youngest sister, had just been born.
That was over thirteen years ago and, although we didn't know then all we know today - that animals are losing their habitat because forests are being cut down, theat dolphins and whales are being destroyed and swim in polluted seas, and that conditions for animals on factory farms and in pounds can be terrible - we wanted to use our voices on behalf of voiceless animals.
Back then, it was a lonely decision. We knew of no other children who felt the way we did or books to help us feel part of a caring movement. Today, our lifestyle is much, much easier! The good news is that lots of children care and want to get involved to save the planet and all the different life forms who call Earth their home.
We are all a part of the earth
And it is part of us
The perfumed flowers are our sisters;
The deer, the horse, the great eagle,
These are our brothers.
All things are connected,
Like the blood which unites one family.
All things are connected.
I hope that this book will be a friend to you and give you strength.