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2 Jan


It’s time to say hello to the new Connect the Dots site!  All of our operations, including our blog, will now run from this amazing new site from N84R3 Design.   Expect many exciting updates throughout each month, so check it often!  For the next two weeks, sign up for the listserv and enter to win a 6 pack of balm from our friends at!

This site is for the movement.  Please explore it, share it, and send us your feedback.

For a peaceful and just world,

The CtD Team



4 Dec

Spread the Word

A new mindset for a new year.  It’s time to connect the dots and break apart the foundation that supports cruelty as the norm.  Harming others for habit, pleasure, or financial gain is unconsciable.  Changing the world means changing social norms and the systems that support them.  Please join us as we learn how to align our daily choices with the more compassionate world that we would like to help create.

Big Changes in 3…2…1…

28 Nov

We keep telling you that changes are coming and THEY ARE ALMOST HERE!  Our web guru is working hard on our new website and it’s almost ready!  Plus, we have an exciting contest for the first official week that the website is up.  So hold on just a bit longer, and join the listserv so you can be the first to get the official announcement

Don’t Forget to Verify Your Email!

28 Nov

A lot of folks are joining our listserv!  Just a quick reminder to verify your address so you can  receive and send messages to your fellow connectionists.  Google Groups will send you a message after you submit your email address – make sure to click on the link within that email to finalize your subscription!

Here’s to building a connectionist community!

For Marti

21 Nov

I just found out that Marti Kheel died today.  I don’t know what to do except to write about her.

Marti was a supporter, a mentor, and a friend.  Like no other.  I met her at an animal rights conference.  I had known that she was the co-founder of Feminists for Animal Rights and I wanted to thank her, simply thank her.  Little did I know what would become of that thank you.

I owe so much to Marti.  She didn’t have to support me.  But she did.  I don’t know why she was so wonderful to me after we met.  I don’t know why she reached out to me with so much little-deserved support and respect.  All I know is that she’s the reason Connect the Dots is what it is.  She’s the reason the idea from 2005 has kept going, amidst major life changes, tragedies, and simply daily living and subsistence.  I feel like in a way she made sure that I didn’t give up on it.  I never saw that until now.

Marti is the reason that my dream is alive.

I don’t know how to cope with the loss of someone who I never thought I deserved the respect of.  I don’t know how to say goodbye to someone who believed in me in a way I never understood.  I just have no idea how to let Marti go.

So I won’t.  Marti lives on through Connect the Dots.  She lives on through my commitment to feminist veganism.  She lives on through my commitment to address sexual violence within the animal rights movement.  These are things she gave to me.

The wound of Marti’s passing is fresh and hurts incredibly deeply but I will make sure that her memory, her legacy, and her life is celebrated.

I will miss you Marti and my thank you extends forever.  You gave me courage, strength, and hope to no end.

(Post originates from Ashley’s Blog)

Changes Are Coming!

3 Nov

We have some very excited changes coming up!  Keep checking back…what could they be!?!?


Connectionist Reflections on the 2011 National Sexual Assault Conference

26 Sep

I spent September 12th- 16th at a grantee meeting and then the National Sexual Assault Conference (NSAC).  Like last year, the conference sparked a lot of thought, made a lot of connections, and was a fabulous learning experience.

Going to the conference, I was excited because I just knew that I wouldn’t be the only vegan there.  The lonely days of explaining why I’m such a freak were over!  And while those days were more over than ever before (I hang out with awesome people – Jenny, Bethany, Kat, Jonathan – that’s you!), I still felt quite alone.  Perhaps with a utopian bend, I looked forward to informal gatherings of all the feminist vegans at the conference, meeting, celebrating our community, and indulging in our feminist veganism to its fullest extent.  What I found was one other fellow vegan…as I left a restaurant that served far too much veal (and isn’t any too much?).

I also found so very many friends and colleagues who completely respected my veganism.  That’s how things are getting better, and fast.   This is the first time at a human-focused conference that anyone wanted to walk a mile to go to a vegan anarchist café with me.  Thanks Kat and Jonathan!

As like last year’s conference, several speakers and workshops made connections between various forms of human-focused violence and oppression.  Sessions addressed pretty much every form of oppression…except speciesism.  So what this tells me is that while we aren’t there yet, the anti-violence against women movement(s) is ready for a connectionist perspective and approach.  Interestingly, I can look at the stages of community readiness and see this movement on the spectrum – I can see how it has changed positions over the years.  Consistent with the lessons I’ve learned from human rights movements, we must tread lightly.  But people are ready – they are asking questions, they are taking our stickers and pens, and they are reading this blog (hi!).

A key tenant to any social justice work is to know our audiences and to start where they are.  I’ll leave you with this – if you’re not at an anti-violence against women table, why?  If you are, how? We shouldn’t storm in demanding soy creamer.  We can’t yell at everyone using a plastic bottle.  But we can be there.  We can build relationships and community.  Fundamental social change happens slowly and strategically.   Thank you, NSAC, for providing a venue in which to take steps towards a peaceful and just world for all.