The Viva Vine: vol #4, no #3: May/June 1995

UK McLibel Campaign : Mc Skeletons being brought out of the McDonald's closet

Why would a $24 billion company care to bring a suit against a couple of unemployed social activists? McDonald's is probably wondering that right now itself.

Ever since it decided it was going to bring libel charges against former postman Dave Morris and gardener Helen Steel for being part of a group which published a very creative and convincing anti-McDonald's pamphlet, the fast food monolith has been saddled with the task of straightening out quite a dent in its image. High profile and be-wigged witnesses have been marched into UK High Court one after the other to answer the pamphlet's accusations, that is that McDonald's underpays its employees, destroys the environment including the rainforests, contributes to the torture of animals, advertises (panders) to children and exacerbates hunger around the world.

The now already one year old case first began after 4 years of preliminary hearings, and is predicted to go for at least another 8 months with an estimated 180 witnesses and an estimated final cost of 2.5 million to British taxpayers -- not to mention the cost in the millions to McDonald's shareholders.

The fact remains, that without the libel suit, the claims of the pamphlet would certainly have been dismissed by the public as extremist rant. But now the claims are news all over the world.

Donations can be sent to: McLibel Support Campaign, Box 62, Craftsbury, VT 05826. Call: 802-586-9628.

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