WHY FRANCE IS THE WORST EUROPEAN COUNTRY FOR ANIMAL RIGHTS

For non-human animals, all countries are bad. All „humans“ who are not vegan condone and pay for animal abuse in all the gruesome forms it exists. From meat and dairy, eggs, to leather, fur, torture for entertainment, and experimentation on animals – it is all built on a mountain of suffering, mutilation and murder.

The title, therefore, does not mean that other countries on the European continent are a safe haven for the innocent victims of human hate and desire for domination. Far from it. Yet, most other countries take strides towards the evolution of empathy, and towards a ban of the most egregious torture practices, however slow the evolution is. Germany is at the forefront of vegan food and raising awareness on the Animal Holocaust (and Berlin was just voted No. 2 on the Top 10 Vegan Cities list by HappyCow). The UK even more. Switzerland, France‘s neighbor, even had a referendum to ban factory farming! It wasn‘t banned (sadly), but more than 30% of residents voiced their opposition, and I have no doubt they will get there soon. Hell, even Bosnia and Herzegovina (my country of origin) recently witnessed its first ever vegan festival, organized in the capital city by VivaBiH, the national Vegan Association.

So, why exactly is France the worst? Surely there has been some progress here, as well?

The short answer is: no. No, there hasn‘t. Sure, it has some vegan options. Sure, there are associations raising awareness on the plight of non-human animals. But when taking into account the place of France in the grand scheme of Europe, its constant urge to become leaders on this continent in all aspects of life, including the evolution of the human thought („We are the birthplace of modern democracy!“), its representatives and the actual level of evolution are pathetic.

The core of the „French identity“ is founded on the suffering of our fellow Eathlings so much that people here take pride in the cruelty and torture they inflict upon them. Take for example foie gras: while it is illegal in several developed countries in the world, and even King Charles recently banned it from the British Royal Court, naming it “torture in a tin”, here it is celebrated and adored. People mock others who do not enjoy in an effort to portray them as simple peasants of poor palate. Let me remind my readers that this awful „delicacy“ is made by force feeding ducks and geese multiple times a day so that their liver gets sick (hepatic steatosis), after which it is eaten as a whole or ground up. The birds are confined in crates so small they cannot move. The workers shove long metal tubes down their throats, which also causes organ failure, injuries to the birds‘ beaks and throats, pneumonia. Moreover, Animal Equality notes that „the wire cages can cause foot and leg injuries, and the intense confinement is mental misery for these normally curious and sensitive animals.“ Of course, at the end of this unimaginable torture (think the „Gluttony“ murder from the movie Se7en, lasting for weeks), the poor birds are violently slaughtered. All that is foie gras.

The French have made their whole identity on cruelty and torture. The more cruel the practice, the better it is for the „food“ they consume, and the „entertainment“ they watch. Who cares if bullfighting originated in Spain! They gleefully stole the practice of killing innocent animals for barbaric thrills and made it their own. Empathy is considered weak and unaristocratic, and if there‘s one thing the French desperately want to be, it‘s the aristocracy of Europe and the world. Being cruel is being sophisticated. Inventing torturous devices is being more intelligent than others who are „beneath“ them. And after literally decades of waiting for the bill to ban bullfight to arrive at the French Parliament, yesterday it was pulled from the debate. The pro-torture representatives sent over 500 ridiculous amendments to stop the ban, even though the majority of regular French citizens (77%) oppose bullfights. A stolen torture masked as the foundation of tradition and identity is defended yet again. The Dark Ages are alive and well here, and the inquisition of animals is endless.

That, ladies and gentlemen, is France. The worst European country for animal rights bar none, because it forcefully wants to superimpose the notion of nobility and culture unto hateful dominion, unto pain and unto unimaginable suffering. A country of despicable acts, of atrocious parliamentarian games, of identity smeared with blood of the innocents. A shameful land, a disgraceful identity. No culture.

I am ashamed and enraged to be here. But in the word of Banksy, „From this moment, despair ends, and tactics begin.“ With my activism, and along other activists, I will do everything in my power to usher this country into true Renaissance, one founded on empathy and liberation of all victims, regardless of the species. As Aymeric Caron, the representative who proposed the bullfight ban bill, said yesterday: „What’s just happened today, isn’t an end… but it’s just a start.“

/Image courtesy of: Animal Equality; Lisa Markkula / Peta France/

An Expat in France… Chapter 3: Absence Makes The Heart…

We’re in the Holy Month of Ramadan, and what better time is there to express gratitude for what you have? Therefore, I am finally going to write the promised chapter about things that make me happy in France!
Five months in, and this is what makes my every day brighter:

1) No stray dogs and cats on the street, struggling, suffering, dying – For my entire life, my family and I have rescued poor animals from the street. Sometimes we managed to save them from hurt, cold, heat, cruel people, illnesses and hunger, but sometimes it was all just too much and a wonderful being had to die just because laws and common ethics were not enforced and followed.That’s why I feel relief when walking the streets of Lyon and every other city in France. The neighborhood where we live is peaceful and pets live their life in the comfort of their humans’ home. Almost every house has a cat door, and the nearby park is filled with dogs being walked on sunny afternoons of this spring. Just last year, France adopted tougher laws that target animal cruelty and ban wild animal entertainment. Bosnia and Herzegovina has yet to strive to finally fulfill the provisions of the existing Animal Protection and Welfare Law that was passed in 2009. Anything less than that and we’re still stuck in the 15th century, inflicting cruelty and suffering onto beings that have the same right to this planet as we do (even more, actually, because they don’t destroy nature). Take note, you in charge!


2) Vegan food in abundance – Connected with the topic of animal rights, another exhilarating thing is the total explosion in yummy vegan products across the French aisles. It’s still not on the level of, say, Germany, but literally every time we go to a certain supermarket, there’s another new food to try. So far my faves are soy chunks from Garden Gourmet and pretty much every type of cheese we found so far, but especially the ones from Les Nouveaux Affineurs. Go, France!

3) Concerts in the actual city I live in (!) – For the past 25 years, whenever I wanted to see some of my favourite bands and musicians, I would have to travel for hours minimum (not to mention going to Finland to see The 69 Eyes!). Now I just need to see if the band is playing in Lyon, and in most cases, it’s true – such as The Rolling Stones on their upcoming STONES SIXTY tour. This will be a very exciting experience and our first Stones concert together! Before that, we have Simple Minds – and all it takes is a metro ride to the venue.

4) Overall art & culture scene – A tattoo convention here, a cinema retrospective of Francis Ford Coppola there – not only are concerts a dime a dozen here, but you also get plenty of cultural variety, especially during summer. That’s when Lyon transforms into a veritable treasure trove of aesthetic cultural experiences to everyone’s taste, and you only have to choose what to attend. Since this is the City of Film, Cinémas Lumière are here, and they regularly offer special screenings and retrospectives. Unfortunately, we missed the Night of Horror (with It Follows!), because we were spending that weekend in Annecy, but that’s a good reason to miss it, I think!


5) Sharing my husband’s language, culture, people – Never have I thought that I would fall in love with a Frenchman and start learning his language, but you know that saying about mysterious ways! I will soon attend an intense language course to improve my French, and since this is not my first foray into Romance languages, I intend to continue with Spanish and Italian. French culture certainly has an inspiring and formidable history, and many items in its iconography are also parts of what my eyes are fond of. My husband’s friends have all welcomed me warmly, and I found that I really like to discover France’s beautiful cities, their architecture, decor… I am thoroughly enjoying it all!

6) Growing fonder of my homeland – Bosnia and Herzegovina will always be my land. The soil I grew up from, where the sun casts its most familiar and beautiful rays. There is no other feeling quite like walking through my town on a bright, sunny day, checking to see if there are new Dylan Dog episodes in the comics section of a newsstand. But when you’re only there, life gets dour. It’s not easy living in Bosnia because of all the opstructions to our thousand-year long existence, which have continued well after the most recent aggression and genocide. War is being led in peace. That takes up much of one’s energy and motivation to contribute to one’s country. For some time before my departure, I have felt like I gave all I could give to the cultural and professional life in B&H. However, now being part of the Bosnian-Herzegovinian diaspora, I feel an envigorated urge to help in any way that I can, carrying the Bosnian voice to France and making it loud and clear. I already made some contacts (more on that soon) and I love it!

7) Being relatively close to Bosnia and Herzegovina – France is not as close to us as, for example, Slovenia or Austria, but there are one thousand kilometers between my hometown and Lyon, and we can cross it in 13-14 hours. Taking an airplane is even faster, and in a space of less than half a day, I am back to my home No. 1. That knowledge alone is enough to make me fell spiritually close to my (two-legged and four-legged) loved ones, and whenever I get a chance, I can always hop on to a trusty Air France flight and see them again. Pretty good if you ask me!

8) Finally being with my husband – Those of you more familiar with our story know how long we were apart during the heyday of the pandemic. As if the regular distance wasn’t enough! So, my husband and our life together are the ultimate positive aspect of my life in France.

So, these are my top 8 things I love about France. I hope there will be much more soon, but I am very grateful for my happiness here. Now it’s time to think of a great vegan iftar for tonight! To all of you, have a blessed Ramadan or other holidays you might celebrate these days!