Recently I was able to participate in my first Cube of Truth vegan street activism event with Natasha and Luca of That Vegan Couple. Adam and I joined Edmonton’s Anonymous for the Voiceless (AV) to participate in the Cube of Truth.
What is the Cube of Truth?
According to Anonymous for the Voiceless website, “A CUBE OF TRUTH IS A PEACEFUL STREET ACTIVISM DEMONSTRATION THAT EMPLOYS DIRECT ACTION WITH THE PUBLIC”.
Activists stand in a cube formation holding signs that say Truth. We also hold laptops or tablets with video footage from the animal agriculture industry.
In this demonstration we showed imagery from the new documentary Dominion. Dominion footage was taken in Australia, however the footage is common practice among meat, dairy, and egg industries world wide. You can watch this for free on YouTube.
While some activists display the truth for onlookers, others outreach and engage with the public about what they are seeing. Often, this is the first time people have seen any footage of what goes on behind closed doors.
It was an incredibly memorable experience for me to be standing in the cube of truth and watching the public walk by. Hearing the conversations taking place.
Why do Anonymous for the Voiceless wear a Guy Fawkes Mask in The Cube of Truth?
The Guy Fawkes mask is an iconic symbol of the fight for truth. According to the AV website, the mask is used “as a unifying symbol against the forces that still promote discrimination, corruption, injustice and oppression in any form in our society today”.
Wearing the Guy Fawkes mask brings attention to the group of activists in the cube of truth, and draws the public in to view the footage and learn the truth about animal agriculture. It also allows the activists in the cube to remain silent and undistracting while the public views the videos.
Wearing the Guy Fawkes mask is not meant to scare people or to cover up the activists identity. Activists frequently remove their masks throughout the cube demonstration to switch in and out of the cube, and to switch roles between standing in the cube and outreaching.
To learn more about the history of the mask, why it stands for truth and how it relates to the fight for freedom visit the Anonymous for the Voiceless website here.
I have always advocated for animals and the vegan lifestyle in some way over the last four years. I have to say that being in the vegan community and participating in the cube of truth was a very empowering experience.
It was incredible standing in the cube and watching the faces of the people seeing this footage for the first time.
Realizing that they have been lied too.
Understanding that they too can make a direct impact and a change TODAY by choosing to no longer participate in paying for cruelty.
That Vegan Couple: Natasha and Luca
I first found Natasha and Luca back in 2015 when Adam and I were just learning about the vegan lifestyle.
Their YouTube Channel helped answer all of our questions and provided us with the resources we needed to make the transition to a vegan diet and lifestyle.
When I heard they were coming to Canada on an activist tour I was so thrilled!
Adam and I attended their various events in Edmonton including their activism workshop at the Clever Rabbit, a vigil at the Lilydale chicken hatchery, and of course the Cube of Truth in Edmonton.
I wanted to ask them a few questions about animal rights activism and their story.
Interview with Natasha and Luca of That Vegan Couple
Would you rather watch? Check out the video here:
Megan: Were you always active vegans right from the get go?
Luca: We were always active, right from the get go. Of course, there are so many ways that we can be active, as vegans for the animals. There’s always the traditional sense of activism, so being out on the street like we are today with Anonymous for the Voices Cube of truth, having conversations with the public, showing them what’s happening to animals in the various industries that we exploit them in. But I guess we didn’t start with traditional animal rights street activism until a few years back. But we did start being active right away didn’t we?
Natasha: Ya, we were vocal and advocated for the animals in some way over the past eight years. So, the first thing, you know we went vegan after watching Gary Yourofsky’s video “The Best Speech You’ll Ever Hear” on YouTube. And then straight after that we were like, “wow we have to let everybody know about this!” So we wrote and email and sent it to everybody on our contacts list telling them about the lifestyle, giving them some resources, and sending that out. And then doing various things over the years, obviously the last 5 years we’ve spent a lot of time on Social Media, and that’s been our form of advocating and reaching people. That’s been incredibly effective because that’s where you can reach massive numbers from all around the world.
N: Before that we were yoga teachers. So we ran international vegan yoga retreats. And we’d give talks and serve vegan food and screen vegan documentary films, so we were always kind of educating and discussing it in some way. I think that’s the main thing-you don’t have to do street activism in particular, you just need to do something in your life that helps spread the message and advocate for animals.
M: That’s great! And can you tell me a little about your first actual vegan activism event? What did you guys do?
N: Okay, the first one was a cube actually.
L: Ya it was. It was actually on International Cube Day back in November of 2017. And we had just returned from living overseas for a while to Australia, and it was the first opportunity we had to attend a Cube of Truth. We’d seen a lot of demonstrations online of course, because we’d been following them, and taking part in our first one was very empowering, wasn’t it?
N: It was good! It was exciting! It was great you know, and as Luca said, you watch it for so long and it’s like ya let’s do this ourselves. We didn’t have the proper camera set up back then so it wasn’t a matter of recording videos but just having those conversations and being in the cube and experiencing it. It’s very empowering. Ya, it’s good.
M: So what would you say for vegans who have been vegan for a long time, or maybe they just went vegan and they haven’t really gotten active as far as being in the vegan community and outreaching, What kind of advice would you give to them?
L: What we always do is we say veganize your job, your interests, skills, hobbies, passions in any way that you can think of. So, as Natasha said, when we first went vegan we were yoga teachers, so we were like what can we do? Let’s run some international vegan yoga retreats for example. We have so many examples. You know some people will produce a documentary film or write a book or write a speech or they’ll translate those things. Or they might start a vegan meal delivery service or a vegan café or a food truck or a restaurant. Maybe if they are a psychologist they could become a vegan psychologist or if they are a doctor they could become a plant-based doctor or a plant based nutritionist. There are so many ways, endless possibilities.
N: I was going to say, definitely use social media, irrespective. You know social media is something we can all do. You can just start sharing content, you don’t have to necessarily make your own content. You can start sharing content from other animal rights activists. You can have a website and share information that way, write an ebook, you know a podcast-there are so many things to do.
N: But, if you want to get involved in street activism, then you can join the Save Movement, Anonymous for the Voiceless or Direct Action Everywhere. They are three main grass roots animal rights groups that we can easily get involved with because they are everywhere. They are all over the world. We actually have links for those on our website if you go to www.thatvegancouple.com, click on veganism, and then the drop down box for activism, and you’ll find some information there that will help you get involved.
L: Together with thousands of other vegans from around the world who are coming to realise that being vegan is great, but unfortunately simply just not participating in the exploitation and violence towards animals is not going to help bring about animal rights. To bring about animal rights, that is animals no longer being used as property under the law, we are actually going to have to take action. Because, right now we are not big enough as a movement, and it’s just going to take action, not just not participating.
N: That’s why our tag line is “Going vegan is not the most we can do, it’s the least we can do.” The next step is we have to become active in some way.
L: We are up against a trillion-dollar complex. The financial, legal, military, industrial, meat, medical pharmaceutical, media complex-they have a lot to lose. So, they are not just going to open all the cages and empty all the tanks on their own behalf or their own goodwill. They have a lot of money at stake here, so we have to take action, educate others. The same way that we, when we went vegan came across some form of education.
M: That’s great, planting seeds.
N: That’s right
M: Thank you guys so much and thank you for coming here and for being a voice for other vegans-to inspire us, because I know I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for you guys coming on your activism tour, so me and Adam really appreciate it, we all appreciate you guys.
N: Thank you so much, it’s the least we can do. Thank you for being here. It’s a great example for your followers to see that you’re doing street activism, you’re doing anything else in your life. It encourages other people. It normalises activism which is what we need to do.
L: Ya , I mean we were bearing witness outside a slaughterhouse here in Edmonton on Friday and you brought your 7 year old daughter Savannah and she was able to stand there, holding a sign, showing the motorists passing by that you know it’s cruel to hurt animals and we don’t have to do it. We can choose alternatives instead. And it was just wonderful to see you as a mother and she as your daughter just showing that anybody can be active for animals, you know, a family. As Natasha said, normalizing animal rights activism. It’s the normal thing to do to stand up against injustice to innocent, defenseless beings, if you think about it.
How to Get Involved
It’s incredibly important for vegans to be actively advocating for the animals. If we wont speak up for them, who will?
Learn the difference between eating a plant based diet and leading a vegan lifestyle here.
If you are a new vegan or a long time vegan looking to get involved in the cube of truth, you can visit the anonymous for the voiceless website to find your local chapter.