Washington, DC – Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM) president Neal Barnard announced last week that Nanci Alexander—ex-wife of Houston Rockets owner Leslie Alexander—would receive his group’s first “Art of Compassion” award at the organization’s star-studded 20th Anniversary gala on April 16. Nanci Alexander, Barnard said in a press release, “is a role model of compassion for animals and for people.” But publicly available IRS records show that her family foundation has directly funded a violent animal-rights group described by the U.S. Department of Justice as a “domestic terrorist threat.”
The Boca Raton, Florida-based Alexander Foundation has donated $200,000 to People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals and $211,500 to its affiliate, PCRM. But in 2001 and 2002 it also made two donations totaling $3,500 to SHAC (“Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty”), a multinational organization whose tactics have included death threats, car bombings, and physical assaults. In June, seven of SHAC’s U.S. leaders will be tried on federal terrorism charges in New Jersey.
By the time the Alexander Foundation made its first grant to SHAC, that group’s violent activism had already resulted in eleven car-bombings in Great Britain, the baseball-bat beating of a medical research executive, and countless well-publicized threats of death or bodily harm. In 2002 the respected Southern Poverty Law Center wrote that SHAC’s campaign consisted of “frankly terroristic tactics similar to those of anti-abortion extremists.” As President of the Animal Rights Foundation of Florida, Alexander Foundation Vice-President Nanci Alexander should have been aware of SHAC’s history before approving any donations.
According to the February 23, 2004 issue of Newsweek, PCRM president Neal Barnard co-signed a series of intimidating letters (on PCRM letterhead) with Kevin Kjonaas, then the U.S. president of SHAC. The letters were part of a campaign aimed at crippling a New Jersey company whose work includes medical research which requires the use of animals. Kjonaas, who also formerly served as a spokesperson for the FBI-designated “terrorist” Animal Liberation Front (ALF), is among the SHAC leaders who will face federal terror charges in June.
“Nanci Alexander’s foundation has funded domestic terrorism, and PCRM has shown its true colors by honoring her with its ‘Art of Compassion’ Award,” said David Martosko, Director of Research at the Center for Consumer Freedom. “It’s disturbing to see what PCRM considers ‘compassion’.”
In honor of PCRM’s 20th Anniversary, the Center for Consumer Freedom (CCF) is shining a light on the group’s unholy alliances, suspect pronouncements, and questionable leadership. Visit www.consumerfreedom.com/PCRM for more information.