A couple days ago I posted about George Carlin’s routines focusing on euphemisms and soft language. In one he says, “I don’t like words that hide the truth.” I’m guessing he’d be laughing (or cursing) in his grave at the goodie that the opponents of California’s Prevention of Farm Animal Cruelty Act have developed.
The Prevent of Farm Animal Cruelty Act is a California ballot measure set for the November 2008 election. If passed, it would mean a phase out of not only gestation crates (for pregnant female pigs) and veal crates (for baby male calves). But, it would also mean the end of battery cages (which are the cages that egg-laying hens, known as “battery hens,” are crammed into.), the first such measure for any state in the U.S.
According to a recent post by Humane Society of the U.S. CEO Wayne Pacelle, industrialized factory farmers and others who oppose the measure, and thus support continued extreme animal cruelty and suffering, are calling themselves “Californians for Safe Food.” Pacelle says,
Of course they can’t call themselves Industrialized Factory Farms Seeking Profits at the Expense of Animals Committee. Or the Committee for Treating Animals Like Objects. We wouldn’t expect that sort of suicidal honesty. But Californians for Safe Food? These people have no shame. Are there no limits to their duplicity?
Pacelle goes on to list some of the major contributors to the CFSF campaign, including companies that have had to pay fines to settle animal cruelty charges or for false advertising, and industries that flourish off of factory farming methods.
If you look on the website of Californians for Safe Food, you’ll see a “fact sheet” with information such as that a “special interest group has undertaken a nationwide effort to ban current safe and humane farming practices, particularly regarding housing requirements for egg-laying hens.” (emphasis mine) (I love the “housing requirements part. Nice touch. Housing. As if most of the egg-laying hens in the U.S. don’t spend their horrific existence in a space about the size of a standard piece of typing paper.)
They also state that the measure would “jeopardize food safety and public health, effectively eliminate local, California-grown eggs, lead to consumer reliance on eggs shipped from other states and Mexico, and drive up grocery and restaurant prices.” Then it just gets sillier and more deceptive.
Unfortunately, people tend to freak out when they hear “safety” and “higher prices” and “someone’s trying to take something away from you without your consent” without doing any investigating or critical thinking. It’s sad that industries are so bent on maintaining the status quo, even when it’s contrary to what most citizens want. As Ruth Harrison said:
“If one person is unkind to an animal it is considered to be cruelty, but where a lot of people are unkind to animals, especially in the name of commerce, the cruelty is condoned and, once sums of money are at stake, will be defended to the last by otherwise intelligent people.”
The Humane Society of the U.S. has started a $20/20 campaign to help raise funds to counteract the enormous amount already acquired by those who support animal cruelty ($20 to help save 20 million lives). If you feel called to help financially with the campaign, you can make a donation on HSUS’s site. I know I’ll be making one.
Image courtesy of Farm Sanctuary.
(Thanks to Vegan.com for the heads up about this news.)
Filed under: animal protection, campaigns, farmed animals | Tagged: campaigns, deception, factory farming, farmed animals, Humane Society of the U.S., Language, Prevention of Farm Animal Cruelty Act | 2 Comments »