Researchers to animal-rights activists: We're not afraid
By Thomas G. Watkins CNN
(CNN) -- Three research scientists have taken a rare public stand against animal-rights activists, describing them as terrorists for their threats and acts of violence in commentaries published in the latest issue of The Journal of Neuroscience.
Since 2003, "we have seen our cars and homes firebombed or flooded, and we have received letters packed with poisoned razors and death threats via e-mail and voice mail," wrote Dario L. Ringach, a professor of neurobiology and psychology, and J. David Jentsch, a professor of psychology. They work at the University of California, Los Angeles.
"Adding insult to injury, misguided animal-rights militants openly incite others to violence on the Internet, brag about the resulting crimes, and go as far as to call plots for our assassination 'morally justifiable,' " they wrote.
In telephone interviews with CNN, both men said they had been subject to harassment, threats and violence.
Last March, "they blew up my car while it was parked in front of my home at 4 a.m.," said Jentsch, who uses rodents and nonhuman primates in his research into how brain chemistry influences mental disorders. His 2006 Volvo was destroyed.
The Animal Liberation Brigade, which took responsibility for the attack in a Web site posting, announced "when we come back, it's not going to be the car, hint, hint," Jentsch said.
He said an FBI investigator described the incendiary device as "sophisticated."
"We have to take them on directly"
The practice long followed by many researchers of keeping quiet and hoping the activists will go away does not work, said the 37-year-old scientist. "We have to take them on directly; that's what we plan to do ... I'm not going to be afraid of these people; they're thugs." Read More
This is the second story this week where previous victims of these vegan animal rights terrorists have stood up and publicly announced that they aren’t going to be intimidated by them. The reason they are doing this is because they know the work they are doing with life-saving medical research is that important. This is the type of work that in the past has led to history changing breakthroughs and improved the lives of billions of people. Obviously it’s not easy, but these people are doing the right thing and my hat is off to them.