We are Students Opposing Speciesism (SOS), young activists around the U.S. and Canada raising our voices against human supremacy and smashing the status quo.
We’re demanding an end to using animals in experiments …
SOS protests the National Institutes of Health’s cruel “monkey fright” experiments.
… an end to exploiting animals for food …
SOS raises awareness in communities to help people realize that animals are individuals who deserve our respect.
… an end to stealing animals’ skin to make clothing …
SOS gathers outside an Urban Outfitters store to pressure the company’s brands to stop supporting the wool, leather, mohair, cashmere, down, alpaca, and silk industries—which all cause tremendous suffering to animals—by selling these materials.
… and an end to forcing animals to entertain humans.
SOS rises up to take down SeaWorld’s exploitation of sensitive orcas, bottlenose dolphins, and other animals, who deserve to be retired to seaside sanctuaries.
An End to Speciesism
Speciesism is the misguided belief that one species is more important than another. Much as other ugly “-isms” result in discrimination against and bullying of other humans based on arbitrary factors like skin color, gender, class, sexual orientation, or physical ability, speciesism assigns an inferior status to those who don’t happen to be human. If we want a more just world, we must work to end all systems of oppression, not just the types that affect us personally. We must rise up and challenge the notion of human supremacy.
We’ll change the world for humans and all other animals—but we can only do this by working together. We must revolt against injustice and inspire others to hold everyone in their sphere of compassion. Action is vital if we are to reach the masses to initiate a dialogue and change the status quo. The animals being strapped down in laboratories and prodded into slaughterhouses can’t wait another second—they need us now.
Animals are us, and we are animals. Like humans, all other animals feel joy, sadness, fear, and pain. We must see their suffering as an extension of our own. Our differences don’t justify cruelty—and exploiting others simply because we can or because they’re different is wrong. We have a responsibility to make the kindest choices possible and to do our best to reduce suffering of any kind, for every kind.
SOS strives to empower young people to stand up against injustice and create real change for a better world for all. No matter who you are, you’re welcome here—as we all strive toward the same goal of ending speciesism. Hear from some of our wonderful students working toward that goal:
SOS has been instrumental in my advocacy for animal rights by giving me the tools and confidence to educate my community and raise awareness about the cruel treatment animals endure for profit. As children and youth of today, we will be the leaders of tomorrow, but also the ones impacted by actions taken in the present. We have the power and responsibility to determine what kind of future we will live in, whether that is one driven by compassion or oppressive industry bottom-line profits. By joining the SOS movement, students will feel the empowerment of taking action to save the lives of animals, heal our planet, and start creating a culture of equality amongst a nationwide community of other passionate students.
SOS has provided me with experienced professionals who have helped me talk to media, peers, and the general public about the urgency of going vegan. Others should join the SOS movement to meet people who hold animals to the same value that they do. The SOS community can help make animal rights activism easier to do.
SOS has provided me invaluable resources and backing to be empowered. It has even provided me career opportunities to use my skills for something that truly matters to me. The more who join the movement, the more activists we can bring together, connect, and create. By doing this, we can strengthen our fight against speciesism and work together to make the world a genuinely brighter and better place. Fighting speciesism and building compassion helps both human and nonhuman animals alike. If we can have a large youth [movement] made of truly compassionate individuals, imagine just how much good that could do for the world.