The animal rights struggle is one of the keys to every other issue and struggle, because of the way it intersects with everything else, materially, intellectually, and spiritually.
Many people seem to think that human rights issues are "more important" than animal rights. They say we shouldn't "spend our energy" focusing on animal rights until we've got human rights figured out.
Well... we're here to speak the radical truth that animal rights are not merely "as" important as human rights... but FOUNDATIONAL to them. We won't be able to make this world kind towards humans UNTIL it's kind toward animals. Animal rights come FIRST. They're not an afterthought, but a PREREQUISITE.
Because how we treat animals says everything there is to say about who we really are, at our core.
You can't judge someone (not accurately, anyhow) if you only see how they behave towards those of high social status, those who have power over them - like kings, government officials, bosses, clergymen, cops, and so forth. Because there are perfectly selfish reasons to show respect and kindness towards those people.
Nor can you tell by how they treat their peers - those on equal social footing. Everyone *needs* to cooperate with their peers - we need friends, family, co-workers, and associates, in order to get by in this world. So again, we have perfectly selfish reasons to treat these people in a respectful way, so that we can cooperate with them, and avoid conflict, and get what we need.
So how do you see who someone really is?
You can only see someone's true self - their soul - when they're interacting with someone of LESS social status, with LESS power, than themselves. Those whom they have power OVER. Those whom there is no social prescription to show kindness towards. Those toward whom they can be cruel and apathetic, without fearing any punishment, neither from law nor from social sanction.
THAT will show you who a person REALLY is.
Now, answer this question: Who has the least power in this society? Who is afforded the most pathetic and anemic protections by our "laws" - if they're even afforded any at all? Whom does this society consider the lowest and least important?
Why, animals, of course.
The way a person treats animals is the clearest window into their soul.
And the same applies to a society. The way our society treats animals provides a window into our society's soul.
If you show no mercy to those with less power than you, why would you deserve mercy from those with more power than you?
The fact is, as long as our society is cruel toward animals, it doesn't deserve to fix its other problems. If we don't respect animal rights, we don't deserve our own rights.
No other issues are solvable while this one remains ignored. It is of the utmost importance.
And thankfully, the consciousness of animal rights is finally starting to take hold. The recognition of the sentience of animals, of their equality to us in spirit, and their intrinsic worth that transcends their mere "usefulness" to us, is expanding rapidly. More and more people are surrendering their efforts to backwards-rationalize speciesism and human supremacism as anything other than a despicable bigotry on par with racism, fascism, and religious fanaticism.
While everything else has come to a stalemate, this one issue - animal rights - is gaining steam.
It is the epicenter of hope on this planet. If you're looking for specifics, on HOW animal rights and human rights intersect, we've got a more detailed explanation of the cause-and-effect, here.