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Animal Rights Campaign Makes A Stop At UK

Josh James

Just days before Thanksgiving, one group on the University of Kentucky campus is asking students to rethink that traditional turkey dinner.

"Hi there. Got four minutes to watch a video?"

Autumn Murphy with the Lexington Initiative for Vegan Education is asking passersby in UK’s Kirwan-Blanding Complex to approach a truck outfitted with video screens and headphones.

"The purpose is to meet people where they're at, people just walking around campus going about their day, and to give them an opportunity to experience what it might be like on a factory farm," she explains.

It’s part of a cross-country campaign launched by the Farm Animal Rights Movement, or FARM, that offers visitors a dollar to watch a short video on the treatment of animals and then consider pledging to reduce the animal products in their diet.

Reactions this particular morning vary, with some moved by the sometimes graphic film and others expressing skepticism that they could ever go vegan.

Video taken inside factory farms by activists became a topic of debate in Frankfort during the 2014 legislative session after a measure barring people from gaining access to an agricultural operation through misrepresentation was added to House Bill 222, which originally focused on humane euthanasia.

The legislature later adjourned without passing the bill.

Josh James fell in love with college radio at Western Kentucky University's student station, New Rock 92 (now Revolution 91.7). After working as a DJ and program director, he knew he wanted to come home to Lexington and try his hand in public radio.