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A pervasive mindset, conscious or unconscious, underlies most human-caused violence, exploitation, and oppression:
Me and those like me are better and more important than others. Our feelings, wants, needs, desires, and very lives are worth more than ‘theirs.’
This mindset persists in most cultures and reveals itself in manifestations that are both socially sanctioned (i.e. animal consumption, land use, inequitable pay) and non-socially sanctioned (i.e. abuse of companion animals, toxic waste dumping, rape). These two branches of injustice share the same root system; thus one cannot be watered without causing the other to thrive and grow. The outcomes of this mindset include, but are not limited to: patriarchy, racism, sexism, homophobia, heterosexism, classism, genderism, ageism, environmental destruction, speciesism, consumerism, family violence, sexual violence, the prison industrial complex, war… Though seemingly disconnected, these manifestations are connected by the paradigm of perceived superiority. This mindset endures because it has well-established safe havens within the human social norms of most cultural contexts.
Connect the Dots (CtD) is a forthcoming collection of essays exploring the above, often referred to as the commonality of oppression. CtD highlights the indisputable links between human, animal, and environmental well-being, fostering a connectionist movement – a movement of individuals who reject the false dichotomies dividing our movements and are dedicated to working comprehensively towards a peaceful and just world FOR ALL.