Proposition 2 – Revisited

prop2I'm a lazy voter.  I don't like to immerse myself in politics months before an election.  Typically, I wait until a few weeks before an election to start reading about the issues and then make a decision.  This year in California, we have a proposition in front of us, Proposition 2, which deals with the confinement of farm animals.  Recently, I read that the Humane Society recommends voting yes on Prop 2 and I thought to myself that I would need to look no further.  If they're behind it, this measure must be worthwhile.  After my post, Sat of Bacon and Tofu submitted a comment leading to a post entitled What to Do About Proposition 2 on the Animal Rights: The Abolitionist Approach.  The author, Gary Francione, is adamantly against Proposition 2.  His summary has swayed me to the "no on 2" camp.

The decision about how to vote on Proposition 2 is not one that requires that advocates choose between more animal suffering or less. It is a choice between continuing to promote the “happy meat” movement that is taking things in the wrong direction or getting down to serious animal advocacy that will really make a difference.

If you vote in California, it's worth taking a look at the entire post.  Thanks Sat!

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Comments

  1. I hope at the very least that you will write a letter to the HSUS explaining your position. If you vote NO and don’t write a letter, your no vote will sound like it’s coming from the meat and dairy industry rather than the abolitionists.

    Me, I would vote Yes.

    It’s not a choice between promoting happy meat or doing real animal advocacy, it’s a choice between voting yes or voting no. If you want to abstain from voting and go do real animal advocacy, fine. But don’t pretend a vote against animal agriculture reform is “real animal advocacy.” It’s not.

  2. Wow – I’m really surprised to hear you will be voting no on prop 2.

    It’s great that more and more people are moving to a vegetarian or semi-vegetarian diet… but let’s get real. The majority of people will continue to eat meat.

    This is a basic but very worthy proposition that first helps to educate the public about how animals are abused and starts a movement in the right direction to more humane methods of animal farming.

  3. I have some criticisms of Prop 2. But in one fell swoop it may reduce the suffering of hundreds of millions of animals. Rather than promoting happy meat, it is getting people to consider animals’ interests. This is why the meat, dairy, and egg industries are spending millions to fight it.

    There may be no worse torture in animal agriculture than battery cages. Imagine living your whole life never being able to raise your arms or walk on solid ground. We cannot deny millions of birds some relief from this torture simply because we have insufficient faith in our ability to advocate veganism in a cage-free world.

  4. I should also add that the meat industry has been promoting happy meat for decades, and will continue to do so whether or not animals are forced to endure the most heinous factory farm abuses. Every picture of every animal on every carton of eggs or carton of milk or jar of barbecue sauce or side of a delivery truck is happy, healthy, and content, and living in pristine, sunny, Old MacDonald’s-like paradise.

    Remember the “Happy Cow” ads. The Califormia milk board showed the most hideously deceptive portrayals of cows in lush surroundings, growing up with their moms and grandmoms, living the life of Riley. The reality was cows in muddy dry-lot dairies or chained inside in bars, never seeing any pasture; newborn calves pulled away from their grieving mothers; spent cows forced to give so much milk during their abbreviated lives that they can no longer walk and are kicked or prodded to the slaughterhouse-bound truck.

    Industry happy meat promotion predates reform measures by decades and goes on independent of welfare reforms.

  5. Bea Elliott says:

    Hello… and if I may say to Julia – You are right that “the majority of people will continue to eat meat”. But they will continue to do so especially if they feel morally sanctioned by “larger cage” or more “humane” meat. I think it’s great that Prop2 has exposed so much of the abuse that takes place… I believe lots of people have gone veg just as a result of this. But ” larger cages” in 8 or so years, falls terribly short of being any kind of “benefit” to the animals (n0w).

    I think this is a great time to plug one of my favorite sites that takes a humorous look at the sick notion of “happy meat”: http://suicidefood.blogspot.com/

  6. I agree. When I let my family members know about this proposition, I told them that I was personally against it because it maintains the status quo of seeing animals as food products that should be “made safe”. For example, I find the animated advertisement for the proposition to be atrocious; hens are dancing in the background in small cages while a pig at the foreground holds up an egg and says that food will be made safer. If that doesn’t say “animals are here to provide us with food – and they like it!” I don’t know what does. If we don’t challenge the assumptions behind propositions and laws such as these, we will never really change the system.

  7. In reply to Gary above..

    I remember when people sued the Milk/Cheese people for their “happy cows” commercial. The argument was that it was false advertising – an animal being forced to live in its own waste, being fed hormones and other ground-up animals, could not be described as a “happy” existence. While the judge threw out the case due to its being un-provable in court, the judge did say something along the lines of, “I agree; if I lived in those conditions, I wouldn’t say I was happy”.

  8. Francione is passionate, and I admire that, but I SO disagree in an all-or-nothing approach. Prop 2 may be too little too late, but it is still doing something. And something is better than nothing.

  9. Julia: “The majority of people will continue to eat meat.”

    And if we keep telling them that eating meat is OK, nothing will ever change.

    Sue H: “Francione is passionate, and I admire that, but I SO disagree in an all-or-nothing approach.”

    Um, Francione is a little bit more than just passionate. He has been at this for decades and has written several books on the topic that explain his positions at great length. Anyone who thinks that his approach is all-or-nothing, obviously has not read any of them.

    Abolitionism actually provides guidance for incremental campaigns and changes. But, simply put, an abolitionist vegan would be against a campaign that promotes animal products, instead opting to spend resources on campaigns promoting veganism. Hello…. it’s kinda common sense. Are a little bit larger cages really the best idea we have?

    All that money that goes into Prop. 2 (and that’s a LOT more than what has ever been spent on vegan campaigns) could have been used to create new vegans. If we just created 1000 new vegans in this country, we’d save roughly 100,000 animals per year. I don’t understand how anyone can claim that veganism-focused campaigns are not able to alleviate suffering and death. They in fact seem much more effective than pretty much all of welfare campaigning that passes for “Animal Rights” these days.

  10. Hi Kim,

    I wouldn’t characterize showing stomach-churning videos of hens suffering horribly in battery cages as the epitome of promoting animals as food. Rather, it makes people aware of the animals’ interests, and generates sympathy for them, and that is the primary basis for deciding that it is wrong to exploit them.

    I’ve personally witnessed people watching anti-battery-cage videos and being so affected by the hens’ sufferig that they decide right then and there to give up eggs. Groups such as Compassion Over Killing report that when they publicize battery cage horrors, they get a flood of emails from people saying that they never realized how horrible hens were treated and commiting to give up or substantially reduce their egg intake.

    If the industry thought that Prop 2 was pro-animals-as-food, they’d be right behind it, instead of spending millions of dollars and airing prime-time commercials to fight it. They don’t want people thinking too much about the source of their meat, dairy, and eggs. They don’t want them thinking about animals’ sentience or interests. They want the animals to be invisible, or they want people to think that animals are perfectly happy in fairy-tale farms.

    On a massive scale, Prop 2 gets people to thinking about farmed animals as individuals with needs and interests. That is what the meat industry is afraid of. That is something we can build on. Yes, of course we need to go further than that. And yes, some of the pro-Prop 2 materials are deplorably imply that getting rid of the worst confinements equates to erasing cruelty. That is my biggest criticism of the campaign. But it’s good that people are now at least considering the animals’ needs rather than totally ignoring them. In my consistent experience over the last several years, that emergent concern for farmed animals makes my vegan advocacy easier. I can explain to people who already have some sensitivity about the issue that there are many more cruelties in animal agriculture and that happy meat is a myth. Then we seque to vegan solutions that truly do provide a path to kindness and respect for animals.

    Though a desire for happy meat is misguided and morally insufficient, it’s better than having no consideration whatsoever for the animals who are raised and killed for food. Recogniton of farmed animals as thinking, feeling individuals provides a basis for further lifestyle and moral evolution. It is a critical first step.

    Again, we should not be denying millions of animals some relief from their intense suffering simply because we’re afraid that if they’re not in the inner-most circle of Hell, we’ll be unable to effectively advocate veganism.

  11. Hi Kim,

    The salient points in the Happy Cow ads are:

    - They were not stopped.

    - Virtually everyone who watched them was not privy to a court case in which the other side presented its arguments, and thus were prone to associate happy cows with dairy farms. In fact, people who consume animal products are predisposed to believe that the animals are treated well. That is one reason why ad campaigns like Happy Cows work so well.

    - The dairy industry promoted happy meat big time in the complete absence of reforms. Industry happy meat promotions are not dependent on reform measures.

  12. Gary: Everything you say as positive aspects of Prop 2 campaigns, could also be done (and I think, would be a much better fit) in the framework of campaigns focusing on veganism without the harm of essentially OK’ing “happy meat”.

    Prop 2. is absolutely pitched as a way to increase profits for producers. Go to the HSUS website and read the documents yourself. Consequently, not all of the industry is fighting Prop 2. If you go to their website, you can see a list of over 80 (!) industry groups and animal exploiters adamantly supporting it. Why? Because their profits will increase if Prop 2. passes. A rapidly growing segment of the animal industries is supporting Prop 2 and will profit from its passing. Should that not give the so called “animal rights” movement pause? We’re witnessing the industry adapting to changing circumstances — something industries are especially good at. We are essentially playing the role of economic advisers to the animal industries. For my part, I think that this is the wrong approach.

  13. Wow, I’m shocked to hear this. I hope you also took the time to read what the industry is saying in opposition to Prop 2 and are aware of the millions they’ve spent, and are trying to spend illegally, to keep this from passing. They hardly think this is going to create windfall profits and are expressing fear this will set precedents that will destroy their industry.

    A YES certainly sends a message that animals should get a vote, regardless of the “realities” of the specific welfare benefits in an industry that will continue to torture and exploit them. How do you change public perpeptions of animals’ “rights” unless you take advantage of large campaigns that at least address such issues?

    I think it’s fair to note that Francione consistently rails against HSUS and Wayne Pacelle and spends most of his “advocacy” energy trying to derail anything they support or initiate (in addition to pretty much any other organization besides Peaceful Prairie Sanctuary!) rather than directly advocate for animals. In other words he’s not out there meeting with the public to gauge general opinions, he’s not knocking on doors to get petitions signed and hearing the comments, he’s not doing tablings to directly discuss veganism or liberation, nor is he leafletting and seeing the lack of awareness that currently exists among the population. His opinions come from cloistered academic theorizing, which has its place, but it’s only one small aspect.

  14. Hi Barna,

    The overwhelming message of Prop 2 is that certain cruelties to animals are unacceptable and should be outlawed.

    All the big agribusiness players – the ones that control the vast majority of the animal agriculture market – are adamantly opposed to Prop 2, because it cuts into profits, and because it is making people consider the interests of farmed animals. That’s why they’re spending millions to defeat it. They also realize that there could be a domino effect. If voters can outlaw three cruelties this year, why not three more cruelties 5 years down the road?

    The whole business strategy of confinement operations is to increase profits: animals who don’t move eat fewer calories and get fatter quicker. If free-range was the profitable way to go, the industry would already be there. But 95% of hens are in battery cages. The plan by some pork producers to do away with gestation crates only came after voters in various states decisively sent a message that gestation crates were unacceptable; it’s an industry response to save face in light of shifting public attitudes and inevitable bans on the cruel practice.

    HSUS is trying to assuage consumers’ fears that Prop 2 will make their food costs rise. It may only have a minor effect on consumer prices, since ag prices are so artificial in the first place. But make no mistake – Prop 2 and other reform measures raise the cost of production. Combine that with more and better vegan alternatives, and growing concern for animals’ interests, and you threaten the viability of the animal agriculture industry from all different angles. The industry is aware of this cumulative effect, and that’s why it has spent big money on TV commercials and written one op-ed after another to derail this initiative.

    Whether this could be done as well as better with other strategies is a vaild question but not a reason to vote against Prop 2. The animals’ suffering is intense and urgent and we cannot deny them some measure of relief because of theoretical what-if’s.

  15. A no vote is morally unjustifiable.

    If you cannot support prop 2, please refrain from voting on it. A ‘no vote’ is not a vote towards vegan activism or abolitionism. A ‘no vote’ is a vote for animal agriculture.

  16. Kim: I’m not sure why I should waste even one second of my time listening to what the meat- dairy- and egg- industries are saying about their critics. In general though, any industry will at first loudly resist any change, but eventually be quite efficient in embracing it.

    Francione is in fact a hard-working activist. I’m not sure what you mean by “consistently railing” against the HSUS. He certainly is consistent in his criticism of welfare measures — would you prefer he does it inconsistently? He always lays out his argument clearly and with lots of footnotes so he is hardly a hot-headed agitator. He has been teaching animal rights at U.S. Law Schools for decades, which is no small feat in itself. Yeah sure, he doesn’t stand on the street and leaflet (anymore), but do Peter Singer or Tom Regan do that? (He should really be compared to his peers in academia than to Pacelle.) He constantly writes, gives interviews and speaks to and meets people around the world in an effort to reach out to as many as possible. Read his website. In any case, I certainly don’t have to defend Francione.

    But I find the level to which you dismiss theory troubling. Your usage of contemptuous terms like “cloistered academic theorizing” reveals much the same mindset that gets hockey moms elected to high office. In fact, a solid understanding and a consistent ideology are hard to come by and a big piece of the puzzle. Any social movement has to be built on these things. The lack of a consistent ideology (instead replaced by hype based knee-jerk reactionary activism run by large, corporate charities) is exactly what got us to the point of the current animal “rights” movement endorsing animal products, claiming that this is the best we can do.

  17. Hey Lane!

    A) LOVE YOUR BLOG! As a vegan, it’s great to have so much information that’s important to my life in one spot. It’s awesome.

    and B) I really want to encourage you to vote yes on Prop 2 and ask others to do the same!!

    If passed, this initiative will abolish some of the most cruel and inhumane farming practices in California, including battery cages, gestation crates, and veal crates. While this initiative won’t eliminate all cruelties associated with animal agribusiness, it will make it a criminal offense punishable by jail time for farmers to use these barbaric factory farming methods. It’s similar to environmentalists demanding stricter emission standards on cars — stricter emission standards don’t eliminate all environmental problems associated with cars, but they do lessen the impact cars have on global warming.

    This campaign is endorsed by animal groups from all sides of the spectrum. Some of the endorsers include not only Farm Sanctuary and HSUS, but also groups like United Poultry Concerns, In Defense of Animals, and Mercy for Animals.

    You may be interested in the essay on the Vegan Outreach web site regarding why so many vegans support efforts to abolish factory farming practices. It’s here:

    It’s difficult to overstate the level at which animal agribusiness is opposing the Prevention of Farm Animal Cruelty Act. The factory farmers are donating enormous sums of money to fight the initiative. You can see which agribusiness corporations are donating and how much here:

    The amount of money pouring in to defeat this initiative should help make it clear where big agribusiness stands. If that’s not apparent enough, see this editorial in Feedstuffs (agribusiness trade journal) calling on all animal agribusiness to come together to defeat the initiative. Even more, the March 8, 2008 edition of Egg Industry magazine calls the California initiative “one of the biggest and most important battles of U.S. egg industry history,” and quotes the president of the United Egg Producers as saying “We are in a battle to save our industry. We have to be united.”

    We too, must be united in our effort to abolish battery cages, veal crates, and gestation crates.

    I hope this is helpful. Thanks again for your work to help animals and your fantastic blog!

    Laura

  18. @Gary

    Um… As I stated in my first comment, the video is ANIMATED and made to support proposition 2. It was posted by Vegan Bits in the first blog about prop 2, and there is a link to that first post above – maybe check it out. There is nothing stomach-churning about the video, and if it made someone become vegan I’d be surprised.

  19. Barna: So you are interested in what those who support Prop 2 have to say, but won’t waste your time reading what those who oppose it are saying? Well, if you did take the time, you’d discover that the industries correctly understand that this isn’t about ending the discussion at welfare, but that it’s about ending animal industries altogether – one proposition at a time. Industry believes every animal advocacy group working on Prop 2 wants the abolition of animal exploitation, regardless of the current agenda or enacting welfare legislation as an interim measure. And what do you know, they’re right! That’s why they are fighting the passage of this bill.

    Funny that you claim you don’t have to defend Francione, after you did just that. Yes, he consistently advocates against other activists and their campaigns, regardless of the issue. He is coming at this with a long-standing bias. His primary audience is either students, other acacemics or those exposed to animal issues and veganism through the work of the very organizations he criticizes. He’s the opposite of a Sarah Palin, but in many ways just as bad. Someone who is ensconed in intellectual thought, but lacking the ability to connect with “regular” people. No true motivator of change can be so alienating.

    Overall, I don’t find his arguments particularly compelling as they lack any basis in societal perceptions or reality. To put it in perspective, approx .02 – 1.3% of the population is vegan and of that, I don’t know if the number of “activist” vegans would even register as significant. Compare that with the billion+ budget of animal industries, and an entire society entrenched in animal use as the norm, and you start to get a picture of the challenge using “vegan outreach” exclusively. Where does the money come from that these larger groups use to run campaigns like Prop 2? Primarily welfare-based solicitations. Would the same donors give for vegan outreach campaigns? Will they donate for the abolition of animals as food? Where would that money come from exactly that you claim HSUS should be using for vegan outreach?

    Barring a natural occurence or economic catastrophe causing the cessation of the animal industries, we’re going to need money to run campaigns to change perceptions. And Prop 2 is about perceptions probably more so than it is about the relief of suffering. If you live in California and you are voting against Prop 2, you better make sure you know what you might be voting against.

  20. kim: Why is Niman Ranch not fighting Prop. 2 but actually endorsing it? According to your logic, they would be stupid to endorse it. Yet this is exactly what they did, and not only them. Over 80 corporations and industry groups endorse Prop. 2. They did so because it will increase their profits, and because their industry will be still protected by the law and because hordes of “concerned” customers will rush to buy pieces of animals that were slaughtered on their ranches. If this is really the best we can do, I’m not sure I want to be a part of it. Or perhaps Niman really wants everyone to go vegan? Hmmm… don’t think so.

    I’m sorry you don’t find Francione’s arguments compelling. I think his is some of the clearest argumentation I have ever seen.

    A large reason why veganism is so miniscule in this society, is because it is not being promoted enough. You can’t underfund vegan education like it done by the dominant organizations (who are all about this “veg” bullshit and giving awards to KFC, Wolfgang Puck and Temple Grandin), and then expect it to grow. Frankly, I’m surprised there are this many vegans given how severely underfunded and underdeveloped vegan education is.

    Certainly, few meat eaters would give money to veganism-based campaigns, but do we really need their money? Perhaps if we change the kinds of campaigns that are being waged, and if we stop paying a guy in a pinstripe suit $300,000 / year to “lead” us out of his D.C headquarters, we’d not need that much money after all. (Gee, where did I hear this before?)

    The animal rights movement is practically nonexistent in the States, but if we’d put our energies into building a vegan movement, we’d surely grow and become more influential over time. That is, in theory. We don’t know for sure, because we have never tried.

  21. Kim,

    The bulk of the pictures and videos used to promote Prop 2 talk about and show severe misery suffered by animals in factory farms. For many people, this is their first exposure to the reality of 95% of meat, dairy, and egg production. It is shocking and evokes sympathy, and that is a very good thing.

    Barna,

    Again, all the heavy hitters that represent the vast majority of animal agriculture are firmly opposed to Prop 2.

    In every industry contraction, there are always some winners, financially speaking. Niman Ranch isn’t fighting Prop 2 because Prop 2, sensibly, aims to ban the most torturous abuses, which Niman does not do, so they be positioned to steal a little bit of market share from their competitors. So you have a very small percentage of the industry that is in opposition to the rest of the industry; a little divide and conquer can be an effective strategy. Furthermore, if all animal products cost as much as much and required as much land as Niman Ranch products, animal consumption would drop precipitously, and the market for vegan alternatives would skyrocket.

    But Niman’s time will come. Prop 2 is being led by long-time ethical vegans. I don’t always agree with HSUS’ tactics but you better believe Wayne Pacelle and the folks in HSUS’s farm animals division will not be satisfied to stop at a “happy meat” nation. Again, the ag industry understands this, which is why they’re afraid of Prop 2. They know that it doesn’t end there.

    You claim a) that vegan campaigns are under-funded and b) that vegan campaigns don’t need funding. I say funding helps: it allows you to air TV commercials, hire lobbyists, and mass-produce brochures, among other things. And there’s nothing stopping any vegan group from engaging in as much fundraising as they want. I heartily support that.

    If HSUS were to do nothing but vegan outreach would they fare better? Would animal suffering be reduced more quickly? Who knows? Campaigns against vivisection have been mostly abolitionist for over 150 years, and there’s more vivisection than ever. The fact is, HSUS has got the animal ag industry – which dwarfs HSUS – quaking in their boots as never before. Animal agriculture has never spent a fraction of the time and resources used against Prop 2 to fight any other activist campaign. We can talk about theory all we want, but HSUS is obviously doing something right.

    What we vegan actvists should do is not try to derail Prop 2, which, I predict, will lead to a string of reforms that reduce anmal suffering. Instead, we should creatively capitalize on it. For instance:

    - Let people know that, now that they’re interested in ending farmed animal cruelty, here’s how to go farther. “Hey, responsible Californians – did you know….”

    - Constructively, politely criticize HSUS. I’ve done it and gotten results. Granted, they’re not going to radically change overnight. Ask them to be more forthcoming in their pro-reform sites about abuses that aren’t covered by the reform. Use emerging public interest in reform as jumping off points (e.g., web links) to vegan recipes, product recommendations, and FAQs about vegan food and slaughterhouses.

    There are many ways that vegan activists can leverage the work of “mainstream” groups like HSUS. I think that’s a more productive use of our time than griping about salaries, or trying to stop a measure that will give hundreds of millions of animals some desperately needed bit of freedom from torture

  22. I would like to say that I am personally very active within the Agriculture Industry. I am a hard core agriculturist and know first hand how to treat animals with care and respect. I have a BA in Animal Science and Agriculture Education. I am against Prop 2 for many reasons, I even wrote an argumentative paper on it. If passed this will make the prices for meat and eggs go way up. This may not apply to vegans or even vegitarians but it will to the majority of the US population. When one thing goes up in price alot of other things follow. Cages are not cruel to animals, on the contrary, they are very beneficial. They keep the animals in a safe enviornment where they can be monitored and fed. One example is farrowing crates: thier purpose is to make sure the young pigs have space to move when the sow lays down so they do not get squished and die. The sows are able to stand up and move and are only in there for a short period of time because then the piglets are weaned. This proposition will not make food safer. If we are to have cage-less chickens then they are more seseptible to contract the AI disease from outside birds. This will go into the meat and eggs and passed on to the comsumer. This proposition will also drive egg producers out of CA and then shift our dependence on eggs from Mexico and other out of state producers who do not have the same standards when it comes to food as we do. People may think this is all for the well being of animals and believe anything they see on the internet or the big screen. I,on the other hand, have seen this up close and personal with my own eyes and deal with it everyday of my life. I do not trust things from movies or internet videos because they are most likely giving you false information.

  23. Hello Gary… I’m certain that you are expecting disagreement – here’s a starter:

    You say you “know how to treat animals with care and respect”. That is definately a contradiction as “care and respect” would imply that the animals were left to live their lives free of captivity… and oh yes – free from an end at the slaughterhouse.

    People who depend on “experts” to guide them in the care of “food” animals are severely lacking “common sense”. I don’t need a degree to know that animals that can’t tend to their young, can’t groom themselves, can’t excape their own excretement – are not happy. It’s really just that simple.

    “Experts” are hired and trained by the industry – of course they are going to advise those methods that make the most money for that industry. It really is just that simple.

    Perhaps the cost of animal “foods” will go up. Perhaps this the reality of what things “should” cost? If we also eliminated the artificial price supports and supsidies to animal agriculture – then the price of animal “foods” would be more realistic. It’s just that simple.

    “Cages are beneficial to animals” – In the case of the sows… when left to nature mother pigs lean on their front feet and gently lay down to avoid crushing their young. In fact, there’s a national “problem” with feral pigs… If they kill their young by such clumsy mothering… how then are there so many to be “over-populated”?

    Besides, isn’t it true that the industry allows for a certain “percentage” of mortality? Doesn’t the industry routinely “cull” runts, or eliminated whole barns because of a downed market? So now we are to believe that the farmer is concerned with the .0? percent that may accidentally be harmed by mother? Sounds like it’s an excuse to control the animal (economically)… it’s just that simple.

    And the birds… now – they are a different story here. Even though it’s known by common sense (and “experts”) that they are territorial and require space to establish a “pecking order” – the industry still wants to pack 6 – 8 birds in a tiny cage so that it encourages cannibalism. Oh but wait! The “cure” for that is to sear their beaks off! Again, it is so the industry can make their profit. It’s just that simple.

    These birds supposedly would poop on their eggs and encourage A-flu? So how do you explain all the free range birds and backyard birds? After cats & dogs backyard pet chicks are most popular… How is it that those eggs are sold/eaten without poop – and without “Avian – flu” outbreaks? In fact, isn’t it so – that birds kept in filthy conditions encourage A-flu… certainly the videos inside factory egg farms are filthy beyond disgust.

    I too don’t trust information from the internet or from videos especially when it concerns animal agriculture and the way it tries to convince common people to ignore their common sense. They lie and distort the truth in order to justify the way they raise animals for “food”… It’s just that simple.

    Egg hens are “spent” after a short miserable life – there is no “humane” end for them – or for any animal that is raised for “food”.

    It is impossible to grow and consume animal products and remain “humane” or “ethical”… It’s just that simple.

    A plant based diet… better for health, better for the planet and certainly better for the animals. Go Vegan

  24. I want to start out by stating I have been vegetarian for 8 years because of my moral objections to eating meat.
    I also work closely with the meat industry. I personally know the goals of meat producers.
    It’s true that they want to maximze profits, but today’s producers understand and acknowledge the evidence that shows HAPPY animals produce the BEST product. The industry is not in medieval times. Enclosures protect young and provide the HEALTHIEST enviroment for the animals in question. Producers take their product very seriously and are continually working to enhance the quality of life of their stock and therefore the quality of meat produced.

  25. Hi Jeanette – it’s wonderful that you’re a vegetarian for moral reasons – I do wonder though… are you aware of the way baby cows are treated in the dairy industry? And the way egg hens live? These practices encouraged me to go from 5 year vegetarian to vegan… It is said, there’s more suffering in a glass of milk than a steak – No icecream cone is worth the torture these animals endure.

    In any case, those who raise animals for slaughter, I’m sure are focused on the welfare of their product en mass… They take into account the whole “barn” or “house” full of animals – An expected (and acceptable) amount of mortality is part of the industry standard. They really don’t consider the individual animal – when there are 1,000 hogs in one building – the concerns of 5 or 10 that aren’t particularly “happy” don’t amount to much. The same is true in chicken houses – I’ve been inside of a very “modern” egg factory – and I truly understand that the “cages are more valuable than the birds”. The needs of a few hundred individual birds make little difference when you have a million…

    The producers take their “product” seriously – as long as on the whole they are making a profit. The well-being of many animals slip through the cracks in a systems like this. The “quality” of life any factory farmed animal is fleeting and questionable – Common sense tells most that if an animal cannot stretch, lie down, move, groom them selves, etc… it’s got to be a pretty horrible life. The industry sees them as “healthy” if they keep making eggs or can get to the slaughterhouse (alive) to make “meat”.

    Sorry – this is not “concern” for the well being of the animal – it is making profits “efficiently”. And it is not “neccessary” or “essential” to man’s health & well-being. It is suffering that is needless – Go Vegan.

  26. I a see your point and agree with most of what you’re saying. The problem is that I am also concerned with human welfare. Making changes in production in the way prop 2 indicates would drastically increase the prices of the goods. With the economy the way it is, I think it’s likely that people will chose to eat less animal products than before, but there is also a number of people who simply won’t be able to afford the goods.
    It may seem like a good idea to economically drive down the demand for animal products, but I think its important to consider all the effects of prop 2.

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