Incoming attempt at a coherant argument in favor of the ALF
As Invited in an earlier node, excuse the response.
The main difference between the system of beliefs held by the Animal Liberation Front and the average British or USAmerican is that they don't see ANY difference in value between a human life or a non-human animal's life. This means that when they attacked the managing director of Huntingdon they were assailing the captor of their fallen comrades. Considering YOUR view of the world you will have to imagine cages full of tens of thousands of homo sapiens being tortured to understand what they saw.
Personally I find it despicable when people reverse themselves on the inherent immorality of the use of force. I've seen a lot of people act as though using force is completely justified in war and then say that the use of force in defense of animals is wrong. This is fine, but unless you think there is something inherently wrong with using force then why are you bringing it up? All you are saying is that these people will use force to defend their allies and increase what they see as freedom. That sounds pretty good to most soldiers and many civilians. What I think you're trying to categorize as despicable is their "twisted" belief that this violence can be used to increase the freedom of non-human animals, in which case, why are you bringing that up? That's hardly an indictment, that is what they says about themselves! Ultimately, all you can really say (unless you find the use of force inherently wrong) is that you disagree with their view of non-human animals in the world.
Just this past week I watched a video at a hardcore benefit for animal rights. This video displayed something you might be referring to as "animal testing". I don't know if you have seen these videos but you might not refer to these practices as "animal testing" once you see some of what they do. Apparently it's imperative that rabbits be shaken about hundreds of times until they die. The video didn't explain what test that was for. That was about the tamest thing on there. The facility in question was a Huntingdon Life Sciences facility. For anyone interested in the group that the show benefited it was Animal Rights Direct Action Coalition (www.ardac.org).
The ALF ignores people's basic human rights when defending animal rights. EXACTLY. Soldiers ignore a person's basic human right when they KILL THEM in defense of their brethren. Again, the only difference is that the ALF applies this brotherhood to non-human animals as well as human animals. It's that simple and again, unless you find violence inherently wrong (in which case, reconsider your support of animal testing because that shit is seriously violent) all you can say is that you disagree with the ALF's decision to include non-human animals on their list of beings whose freedom must be defended.
Soldier, terrorist, tomay-to, tomah-to. It all depends on whether you agree with their basic principles. I'm sure they don't mind being called terrorists. To them the term "animal tester" is 1000 times more vile than "terrorist" so I doubt you're bothering them too much personally.
I have to say, speaking for myself, I think you've got to be pretty stupid to not at least understand their argument. If your brain shuts off after disagreeing with a person's methods you should learn how to turn it back on to possibly learn about that person's reasons behind using those methods, even if it is just to understand what you will fight to the death against. Their reasoning is simple: human and non-human animals have an equal right to live. That is the whole of their argument. I assume that will be clear enough. I also assume you have read enough history to understand that some people have been revered for fighting for their principles in very violent wars.
In case anyone (including the original writer of the writeup in this node) cares to respond, please don't just use the tactic of listing the ALF's crimes to get a rise out of people. I listed but one atrocity on the tape I watched at the ARDAC benefit. I am not trying to win sympathy and agreement with shocking descriptions of torture or violence, so please don't do that. If you want to debate the ALF you're just going to have to do it on a fundamental philisophical level, not just throwing around descriptions of their violence.
Before anyone considers this issue you must understand this: to consider it fairly you must at least be able to imagine that all animals (including humans) have the same right to exist. You don't have to agree, but if you just can't fathom that someone else could believe that then your brain is not working very well.