Musicians, actors and conservationists in a heartfelt video ‘calling for a reset of humanity’s relationship with nature’
Whilst we may never know the the exact location or moment where the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 made the leap from animal to human, we do know the true cause of zoonotic diseases.
As humankind encroaches on nature – and as we look at the land, water and animals as commodities to be used indiscriminately – we increase the risk and likelihood of future zoonotic-based pandemics.
And it is the mistreatment of animals – like the cruel bear bile farms in Vietnam – that the global superstars are calling out in their powerful video message.
‘The terrible predicament we find ourselves in, the heartbreaking loss of human life, stems directly from the mistreatment of animals. And the only cure is kindness.
‘The virus is the latest chilling example of the consequences of a systemic disregard for myriad species and ecosystems that sustain the health of this planet. We’ve not been kind to the earth. To her animals. Or to her environment.
‘But just look what happens when we’re forced to stop. The pollution lifts: the air becomes cleaner, the water clearer. We hear birdsong in the cities. We see wildlife roaming through the undisturbed environment, marine life playing in silent shipping lanes.
‘Any response to this tragic and preventable loss of human life, we start to rediscover what is important, what is of real value: our health and our humanity.
‘Everybody is looking for a cure. But this one virus is just a symptom of a bigger disease. And we have an incredible, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to not go back to the way things were. To walk away from the cruelty that led us here. To create a better, healthier world, for ourselves and all the species we share it with.
‘If we want to find a solution to the problem that we’re facing, we have to look for more than a single vaccine for a single virus. We have to solve the root cause of this crisis.
‘And the only cure is kindness.’
NGO Animals Asia, which created the video to mark Moon Bear Day on August 8th, aims to rescue 500 bears currently in bear bile farms in Vietnam by 2022, so they can live out their lives in a sanctuary with world class care. To date, Animals Asia has rescued 634 bears, and has agreement with Vietnamese authorities to completely end bear bile farming in Vietnam by 2022.
‘It’s brilliant to be able to welcome all of these household names into the Animals Asia family,’ said Jill Robinson MBE, founder and CEO of Animals Asia, who also appears in the video. ‘By helping us mark Moon Bear Day and our historic agreement with the Vietnam Government, these global stars are raising awareness about the suffering caused by the bear bile industry.’
The video features:
Ricky Gervais, Jane Goodall, Mulan star Tzi Ma, Dame Judi Dench, Downton Abbey stars Peter Egan and Lesley Nicol, Guns’n’Roses rockers Slash and Matt Sorum, and actors Olivia Newton-John AC DBE, Virginia McKennaOBE, Joanna Lumley OBE, James Cromwell, Alicia Silverstone, Louis Hofmann, Daniel Gillies, Celina Jade, Maggie Q, Dustin Nguyen, Kristin Bauer, Michelle Forbes, Tara Buck, poet Benjamin Zephaniah, Vietnamese TV Presenter Minh Trang Nguyen, musician Rick Wakeman and singers Han Geng and Mýa.
For more information on Moon Bear Day and to support the incredible work Animals Asia is doing, visit their website, make a donate and buy one of their beautiful t-shirts made with 100% organic cotton and printed in the UK in a renewable energy powered factory.