Dear friends & readers:
You may have noticed the absence of anything from ANIMALS 24-7 among the ever-increasing blizzard of direct mail appeals from charities of every kind that are timed each year to land in your box on the Friday after Thanksgiving.
Very likely, most of those appeals urged you to donate generously on the following Tuesday, called “Giving Tuesday” by the fundraising industry.
The last Friday of November and the following Tuesday are the days that marketing researchers believe are the very best days of the year to ask for money. Many charities take in half of their yearly income––half!––in just the five weeks from Thanksgiving to New Year’s Day.
Beth and I know value of sending out appeals at just the right time. And ANIMALS 24-7 most certainly needs your help, having struggled all year, even though we had already reached more readers by the end of November 2019 than in any previous year.
We know you are tired of hearing how long we have worked at half pay or none, while the ASPCA president took home $852,234 in 2017, the most recent year for which IRS Form 990 is available. We are just as tired of having to cope with the stress of our constant crunch, five months since seeing our last full pay check, which at that would only be for minimum wage.
So why didn’t ANIMALS 24-7 send you a printed appeal ahead of “Giving Tuesday”?
Because ANIMALS 24-7 has a mission to investigate and inform you about the most difficult topics in animal protection, digging into the events and incidents that the big national organizations shun because they are often embarrassing to the leadership and disturbing to donors.
Several of our most difficult investigations required intensive work––and a lot of late hours––to help inform you, during just the days and weeks when conventional belief says we should have been working to get an appeal printed and mailed.
Coming up almost all at once were:
• The sentencing of former Humane Society of the U.S. vice president David Wills, who may spend the rest of his life behind bars for sexually molesting a child, after dodging justice for many other alleged offenses for 30 years. ANIMALS 24-7 had exposed those alleged offenses time and again.
• The fatal mauling of a a 95-year-old houseguest by a pit bull belonging to Humane Society of the U.S. lobbyist Anne Hornish, architect of the Connecticut state law that undid special safety requirements for housing pit bulls and other dangerous dogs. Hornish misrepresented the history of her pit bull, who had attacked twice before. ANIMALS 24-7 flushed out the truth.
• A flurry of pro-fur industry flak claiming that an “animal rights activist” had stabbed a woman in Cleveland for wearing fur. ANIMALS 24-7 exposed the reality of that case overnight: the stabber was a severely mentally handicapped and disturbed individual, with almost no connection to animal advocacy, who repeatedly slipped through the legal system because she was deemed unable to distinguish right from wrong.
• The still unsolved mystery of The Third Dog, who was apparently present when a woman was said to have been killed by her two Great Danes. A third dirty dog bowl lined up with the Great Danes’ bowls showed there had been a third dog at the scene, but the third dog was not there when police arrived.
• The mauling death of Elisa Pilarski, 29 and pregnant, who was training her boyfriend’s “performance” pit bulls in the Retz Forest of France just before a hunting club including the local police commander released 21 Poitevin hounds to chase deer.
ANIMALS 24-7 of course covers much more of concern to animal advocates than just crime and dog attacks: marine mammal and wild horse issues, court cases and legislation of note, important developments in animal agriculture and plant-based diet; whatever requires looking into, from an experienced, independent, sympathetic yet critical perspective.
When you ask us to look into something, we jump on it. We get the job done for you and the animals first. Then we pass the hat, hoping and trusting that you will remember us, even if our appeal is not at the top of your stack.
We stretch every dollar, every $10, every $25, $50, $100, $500, $1,000, whatever you can share with us, just as far as it can be stretched.
P.S.–– Beth & I did in fact stay up late, after spending a couple of days producing our exposé of the PACT Act photo op, posted in time to reach you this morning, to prepare both this appeal and a print version of it, which will probably reach those of you on our mailing list in a week to ten days. Unfortunately, our proof-reading skills at 2 a.m. lapsed, so we sent it to the printer saying “Thursday” instead of “Friday” in the first and third sentences. We do know the difference, even when one day seems to run right into the next.
Beth & I also know that times are difficult for just about everyone but the 1%. Your donation of $10, $25, $50, $100, $500, $1,000, or whatever amount you can help us with, is not only deeply but personally appreciated.