If we want to create a kinder, fairer and more compassionate world which is just for all, we need to think beyond our consumption choices. We need to develop a broader understanding of how we perpetuate oppression in our daily lives. Through our language, our behaviours, our unconscious beliefs and biases and the hierarchies that are conditioned in our psyches. We have all been socialised in a society that is unequal and unjust. As a result, we have all internalised speciesist, sexist, racist, classist, ableist and other oppressive attitudes and beliefs which we all have to work to unlearn.
However, we need to do more than just stop contributing to violence and oppression towards humans and other animals, though this is a vital first step. We need to stop being bystanders. We need to actively challenge and reject all forms of oppression in our daily lives if we want it to end. This means for example that it is not enough to just opt out of the violence towards other animals by going vegan. We need to live vegan AND actively challenge speciesism in our daily lives. We need to be anti-speciesist. This principle applies to all oppressions. It is insufficient to not be racist; we also have to be anti-racist. It is insufficient to not be sexist; we also have to be anti-sexist. It is insufficient to not be classist; we have to be anti-classist etc.
The oppression of humans and other animals is deeply connected and mutually reinforcing. This means animal liberation and human liberation is also deeply connected. We need to be consistent in our anti-oppression stances and challenge the whole hierarchy of oppression.
Recognising the connections between human and animal oppression does not mean we de-centre other animals from the animal rights/animal liberation movement. Quite the opposite. Other social justice movements centre the marginalised groups they fight for. Likewise, we need to actively centre other animals in their own movement and recognise our role as allies. We can do this while also standing in solidarity with other movements, recognising that we are all allies in the fight for justice for all.