LA PAZ – As a gesture of love, a group of activists gathers outside slaughterhouses in Bolivia to comfort cattle during their last minutes of life just before they proceed to their fatal destination.
With a glance, a gesture of affection or a simple hug to the trucks transporting the animals, activists with The Save Movement aim to provide a little bit of calm and affection to the living beings that will face death in the coming minutes.
“It is the only gesture of love that they will feel and receive in their lives as they are animals that are considered products and not beings that feel,” Nevenka Potocnik, one of the activists who came from Argentina to participate in a series of vigils at Bolivian slaughterhouses, tells EFE.
The Save Movement is an international network that started in Toronto, Canada, and operates in at least 60 countries around the world where activists hold vigils outside slaughterhouses to give animals a little love and be witnesses to the animals’ suffering, the activist says.
The movement also promotes veganism, abstinence from consuming animal products and peaceful activism based on love and respect for all living creatures.
“The only difference between a dog and a cow is our perception, why do we love some and eat others?” Potocnik asks.
A handful of activists gathers outside the municipal slaughterhouse of La Paz waiting for the trucks transporting the animals to talk to the drivers and ask them for permission to approach the truck for a few minutes and say goodbye to the animals.
“The approach is totally peaceful, we talk to the truck driver and ask him for two minutes and tell him we want to see and say goodbye to the animals,” said Maureen Lomez, the organizer of the movement in Argentina.
The activists also visit slaughterhouses for pigs and chickens to provide them with a little water.
They take photographs and videos of their activities to upload them to the movement’s social media with an eye toward encouraging more people to join the cause and have a closer look at this reality.
The activists have saved at least 10 animals that were taken to a kind of natural “sanctuary” where they can live free and without the risk of being taken back to a slaughterhouse.
Lomez says that they managed to save calves, chickens and lambs at vigils held in Argentina, Spain and Costa Rica.