Odds are if you're an animal welfare advocate using social media, you have been labelled a, "hater" on more than one occasion. I know I have, I long ago lost count of the number of times. Before understanding why this term is bandied about so liberally in animal welfare social media circles, let's first look at the definition, shall we?
Well that settles that! According to the definition I am indeed a hater... and so are you! You see, I have a great dislike for animal abusers. I am very critical of fraudulent "animal rescues" that take well meaning peoples' donations to line their own pockets. I'm sure you do too.
There's no problem with the definition of a hater itself, rather with those who throw it around so freely in a cheap attempt to distract from the initial concern. Here, I'll give you two simple examples of conversations I've had online lately.
"You're just a PETA HATER! I'm banning you from this page....HATER!"
"That's cool, but did you know that PETA kills over 85% of the animals in its care?"
"I couldn't help but notice that on your "rescue" page, you don't actually have a physical address, and all your donations simply go to a random Paypal account. Could you possibly post receipts so people who are giving you their hard earned money can know for sure it is going to help the animals?"
"Move along HATER!"
"OK, will do, any chance before I move on that you'll address these concerns?"
*Banned from page*
See a common thread? Basically when someone can't answer a legitimate concern, you will be branded a hater. It's the go to term they use to distract from the fact they can't answer a simple question. Any individual or rescue organization worth its salt would simply politely reply to your concern or better yet, offer PROOF to dissuade your concerns. Yet what do the rescues or organizations do when they have something to hide? You guessed it, HATER!
So in the meantime here's my advice to all my fellow haters. When someone uses the term to try and discredit you on social media?
Wear it. Wear it as a badge of honour, and don't stop, "hating". Don't stop until you have "hated" as much as you can in speaking for those who can not speak for themselves.
Congratulations, you've earned your moniker!
A fellow hater.