In enslaving animals for war and farming, agrarian society broke the ancient bonds and sense of kinship with them.


Strong feelings for animals have driven the course of my life. From the age of 5, when I rescued baby mice from the barn and kept them warm in a shoe box behind the kitchen stove, to today’s work of getting funding to grassroots groups working for animals in rural areas, helping animals has been my joy and my passion.

It all began as a child on a Missouri farm and it feeds me today as a writer and attorney in big cities back East. I am a human being who feels deep kinship with my fellow beings. I want to spare them my species’ worst behavior.

I feel love, sometimes anger; I feel kinship, sometimes alienation. These drive me to places where I can see and report the sorry ways we treat animals. They push me to places within as well, where I find the courage to write and act against millennia-old traditions that exalt one species over all others.

I take heart and have hope now. I have acted on my empathy for animals instead of stifling it. I take heart now that there are so many others who are doing the same. Although the traditions we fight are old and deep-seated, they are cracking. So many people now are waking to the joys of a sense of kinship with animals and the living world.

Jim Mason with Calf