Leafleting and Informational Event on South Korean Dog Meat Trade – August 3, 2013 – San Francisco, Fisherman’s Wharf
We had by far the most traffic and exposure among all of our past events on this lovely, warm & breezy summer day at the San Francisco Fisherman’s Wharf. We had three wonderful and dedicated volunteers and a couple of dogs assisting us as we greeted the thousands of people walking by. Summer vacation season was in full swing and helped us by bringing in at least 30% extra visitors to this famous tourist attraction from all over the world. We handed out at least 200 leaflets and talked to many people who wanted to know how they can help.
Morning started out rough when a Korean women approached our volunteer and said to her, “You know that what you are doing here will make Koreans eat more dog meat, right? You shouldn’t do this. Go to Korea and do it. Don’t do it here! (이런거 하면 한국사람들이 개고기 더 먹는거 알죠? 이런거 하지 마세요. 여기서 하지말고 한국가서 하세요!)” Our policy in dealing with hostile people is to politely say “OK. Good-bye. Have a great day!” and then not respond to any further comments and that’s exactly how we responded to her. Many Koreans walked pass us and most of them would just walk by with surprised or embarrassed look on their face. One group of young Korean guys walked pass and one of them commented “Oh! But I must eat dog meat. (어..개고기 먹어야되는데.)” We were standing there and hoping that he was just joking. When we told them that one of our volunteers was a Korean as well, they politely said “God bless you”, shook our hands very casually and walked away.
The low point of the day was when a group of two elderly Korean women and one elderly Korean man hovered around our display with angry look on their face and finally approached our Korean volunteer and said to her, “You are a liar. I just got back from Korea and this doesn’t happen in Korea. You are a crazy bitch. (미친년이네.)” And then she came back, took out her iphone and put it right in front of our volunteer’s face and started recording her as to intimidate her while saying that she is going to put it on the internet. Our volunteer had to tell her, “I am going to call the police if you don’t leave.” and she shouted, “Go ahead! Call the police.” They finally left after a few minutes. Our volunteers are having to deal with hostility every time we are out there and it comes with the territory as not everyone agrees with our cause. However, this was one of the worst bullying our volunteers had to deal with so far. What makes it all worthwhile for us is that we meet far more people who appreciate us for standing and speaking up for the animals who have no voice than those who are against us. Towards the end of the event, an elderly Korean couple walking by approached our Korean volunteer and said to her, “Are you trying to raise awareness? This is a huge problem in South Korea. (홍보하시는거에요? 진짜 한국은 이게 큰 문제야.)” and walked away. We are thankful that not every Koreans are angry at us as our purpose of being out there on the streets is not to embarrass or single out South Koreans but to expose the cruelty taking place in South Korea with the hopes of recruiting people to help our cause by going online, sign petitions and take actions to help these animals. Overall this was one of the best day with tons of people learning about this cruelty for the first time and wanting to help.
Anyone can stand up for the animals. It doesn’t take much-only a commitment to help and few hours of your time. We provide the leaflets to you free of charge if you live within US. If you live outside of US, please still contact us and we will let you know if we can mail them to you at free of charge. If you live in San Francisco Bay Area, we are always looking for caring volunteers to help our events so please check out our events page and contact us if you would like to volunteer.