Posts tagged farm animal welfare

If you’re against cruelty, why aren’t your senators?

Are you against dog and cock fitting?  Are you against hens in battery cages and inhumane factory farms? 

Whether you are a Republican or a Democrat, you are not going to be happy with this news. (The Republic, Seattle PI, SF Chronicle)

Last night the US Senate denied consideration and debate of two amendments to the farm bill that would 1) improve the lives of chickens on factory farms and 2) cracks down on dog fighting and cock-fighting (remember Micheal Vick’s major case).

Both amendments had considerable support in the US Senate and the egg industry reform amendment was sponsored by Democrats, Republicans and Independents including Sens. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., Scott Brown, R-Mass., Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., Susan Collins, R-Maine, Joseph Lieberman, I-Conn., Bernard Sanders, I-Vt., David Vitter, R-La. and Ron Wyden, D-Ore and several more. (HSUS)

Note that it was not the egg industry that was against this amendment!  In fact, the United Egg Producers Association was a huge supporter of the amendment and advocated for its passage.

So what went wrong last night?  A group of lobbyists (American Farm Bureau Federation, the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association and the National Pork Producers Council) are too afraid of their own customers.  Their fear — that they will have to be humane to animals. (HSUS)

“This is a matter of self-determination for the egg industry,” said David Lathem, second-generation egg farmer from Georgia and chairman of UEP in a press release several weeks ago. “No other sector of animal agriculture should prevent our industry from innovating, improving animal welfare, and finding best practices that will protect our farmers and answer major questions posed by consumers.”

So if congress will not or can not act on our behalf, we do it ourselves. 

First it’s our duty to stop buying any meat from producers who are continuing to treat animals inhumanely.  Meat can be obtained from local humane farms or easily from Whole Foods (see post here).

Second, support the Humane Society of the US who will work to include these amendments in the US House version of this bill (See Pacelle blog).

Lastly, write to your local newspaper in response to this news story (Seattle PI).  Let them know how factory farms, dog fighting and cock-fighting causes us personal pain as we feel deeply that animals, regardless of their role in agriculture, should be treated humanely.

Also, you can let you representatives know that you want to see action on humane issues for farm animals.

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Wayne Pacelle to visit Seattle

Wayne Pacelle (HSUS)

Start licking that fur and stay out of the mud to look your best for an honored guest to Seattle.

Wayne Pacelle, President and CEO of the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), will be speaking at the Seattle Northgate Barnes & Noble on June 16th at 11:00 AM. Our friends from PAWS in Lynnwood is co-hosting the event so you know we’ll all have a good time.

In January, Pacelle gave a compelling TEDx talk in New York focusing on topics in his book The Bond: Our Kinship with Animals, Our Call to Defend Them.  Also, here is an excellent review of the book from a Wisconsin newspaper.

Here are the details for the Seattle visit:

Humane Society of the United States President to Make Seattle, Wash. Appearance
Best-Selling Author of The Bond: Our Kinship with Animals, Our Call to Defend Them at Barnes & Noble June 16
 
WHO:         
Wayne Pacelle, president and CEO of The Humane Society of the United States
 
WHAT:        
Discussion, Q&A and book signing 
 
WHERE:       
 Barnes & Noble, Northgate Mall, 401 NE Northgate Way, Suite 1100, Seattle, Wash.
 
WHEN:         
Saturday, June 16, 11:00 a.m. PDT
 
The discussion and signing is co-hosted by PAWS.
 
Wayne Pacelle’s bestselling book The Bond: Our Kinship with Animals, Our Call to Defend Them (William Morrow) has been called revolutionary, uplifting and inspiring. Pacelle explains what underlies our age-old connection with other creatures and challenges readers to help build a more humane society. As Pacelle takes readers on a journey from the nation’s great open spaces to its crowded factory farms to the ice floes of Canada where seals are slaughtered, he illuminates the stark dichotomy we face in an age when animals are more beloved yet more abused than during any period in history. There is a better way, Pacelle argues, making the case for a humane economy based on ecotourism, fur-free fashion, improved farming systems, and other innovative models. It’s a message of hope and an inspiring call to action for all. The book debuted in a paperback version on April 3, 2012.
 
Pacelle will discuss the themes in the book and issues of local, national and international impact at the Seattle appearance.
 
During a quarter–century of leadership in the humane movement, most of it at the HSUS, Pacelle has become America’s foremost voice for those who cannot speak in their own defense, and has helped to bring animal protection from the margins to the mainstream.

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Sad, but true. And it doesn’t have to be this way.

Factory farming is likely one of the greatest atrocities of our modern-day.   Cows, pigs, sheep, lambs, and chickens suffer horribly and needlessly in the name of profit and even in the name of “progress”.  Meanwhile, while our government subsidizes animal-based agriculture at the expense of tax payers, the increase in human consumption of meat and dairy has led to extraordinary health problems due to obesity, cholesterol, and excess protein intake resulting from eating those animal products.  It doesn’t have to be this way.  Factory farming is not necessary.   See the video below shown during the recent Grammy Awards.

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