Most people tend to ignore animal welfare because they think their governments or animal groups are taking care of whatever needs to be taken care of. They generally think it is okay to eat animal products, while at the same time believing it is not okay to treat animals badly. What many fail to understand, however, is that bad treatment is built into the food system. And part of the reason for that failure is that they are kept in the dark, like the proverbial mushroom, and fed bullshit.
Keeping people eating animal products requires skillful manipulations and rationalizations to maintain ignorance and to manipulate choice. • • •
You need to be heartless to be a factory farmer, but if you do begin to see and acknowledge the suffering around you, what do you do?
This farmer was prompted to speak out after hearing Joe Perdue’s agrispin in a promotional video, saying “Doing the right thing is things like treating your chickens humanely.” This is a standard platitude for the meat industry, which appropriates the language of animal welfare for self-promotion and profit. In fact, the Perdue family has a long history of animal abuse and run-ins with animal advocates, along with their “pile of poultry puffery hiding the brutal realities of an inhumane industry.”Henry Spira took them to task back in the 70s for this, see http://www.upc-online.org/henry_tribute.html. • • •
If you don’t know about this guy, here is the TED blurb by way of explanation:
In 2002, investigative journalist and TED Fellow Will Potter took a break from his regular beat, writing about shootings and murders for the Chicago Tribune. He went to help a local group campaigning against animal testing: “I thought it would be a safe way to do something positive,” he says. Instead, he was arrested, and so began his ongoing journey into a world in which peaceful protest is branded as terrorism.
And featuring on the TED blog is an interview with Potter that provides more of an overview. • • •
This is case study of how governments and agribusinesses put profit above animal welfare and cannot be depended upon to ensure proper standards are met. The failure to comply with standards occurs daily around the world in slaughterhouses, on factory farms, and in testing facilities.
This example concerns a massive culling operation in South Korea that began on November 29, 2010 and ended March 2011. It entailed all manner of incompetence, standards violations, and moral failings from beginning to end. Korea is not alone in such failures, but this example serves as a wake up to the disregard for animal suffering by governments and meat industries that goes on everywhere. • • •
“The United States Department of Agriculture isn’t simply relinquishing its humane-slaughtering oversight to the meat industry, but is, without the knowledge and consent of Congress, abandoning the function altogether.”
— Gail Eisnitz
In April of last year Gail Eisnitz from the Humane Farming Association in America headed a major expose through the prestigious Washington Post newspaper. It was based on the unspeakable and gut-wrenching torture and death that goes on behind closed doors in modern day slaughterhouses.
If ever there was an excellent reason why animal rightists have maintained that welfarism (old and new) doesn’t work, can’t work and won’t work this interview will leave the reader in no doubt whatsoever as to the facts of the matter. • • •
They die piece by piece: Investigation reveals rampant cruelty in industrial slaughterhouses
by Joby Warrick, Washington Post Staff Writer
Washington Post, April 10, 2001
In the blink of an eye: A secret video made by a worker at a meatpacking plant in Pasco, Wash., showed that this steer, which supposedly had been stunned, had blinking reflexes, indicating it was still conscious.
It takes 25 minutes to turn a live steer into steak at the modern slaughterhouse where Ramon Moreno works. For 20 years, his post was “second-legger,” a job that entails cutting hocks off carcasses as they whirl past at a rate of 309 an hour. • • •
You’d be a fool to expect that women, society’s traditional nurturers, can be more trustworthy than men to do the right thing by other creatures. The following case on former Deputy Assistant Secretary for Fish and Wildlife and Parks in the US, Julie MacDonald shows why. It also shows the danger of promoting people into positions of power, who, as attack dogs for religious right-wing conservative politics, typically have anti-animal welfare agendas.
What led up to Julie MacDonald resigning on April 30, 2007, amid scandal and in disgrace. What did she get up to?
Broadly, “Ms. MacDonald has betrayed the mission she swore to uphold,” as U.S. • • •