I know that writing this will only bring me further grief and add to the never ending critics who have been seeking me out to throw abuse at me and my family. I have already been under immense attack from various followers of one cult group, but regardless, I feel it’s important to set the record straight.

I believe social media has turned many animal activists into a fragment of what they once were. They have found a niche from which to catapult themselves to stardom, and it’s ugly. Almost gone are those who truly fight for the rights of animals. They have been replaced with people, aka “rescuers,” who seek to elevate themselves to hero status. Social media has become a place where you can tell a sad story, post a picture of an animal in distress, and start a funding campaign in the blink of an eye.

Many thousands of hard-earned dollars are pulled from the pockets of people who hope that the champion they elect will save the world. The problem is that good people who can ill afford to make donations often give whatever they can spare in the hope that their money will translate to productive action. They want to believe that their money will go a long way in stopping the atrocities they see and hear about. But when their savior gets found out as someone whose motives are questionable at best, it becomes incredibly painful and disillusioning for them – they feel absolutely cheated, and for good reason.

I have no t-shirts to sell or customized coffee cups to offer, just a voice for the countless dogs and cats that suffer every year at the Yulin festival, and throughout Asia. So here it is, my account of what I experienced at this year’s Yulin dog meat festival.