Cruelty to Animals

May 27, 2010

As a follow up to yesterday’s post, I want to spread the word about a recent incident involving animal cruelty that was picked up by Huffington Post. If you can’t stomach the video, just know that it contains footage of cows and calves being beaten, poked, and stabbed with pitchforks and stomped on by workers at Conklin Dairy Farms in Ohio. The story broke in an undercover investigation by animal rights group, Mercy For Animals. Stories like this are the biggest reason I eat a vegetarian diet and get my dairy and eggs from small, local farmers. I refuse to support cruetly to animals whether it be on a large or small scale farm.

Look, I’m not a bleeding heart animal lover. I don’t own a pet (although my boyfriend’s dog lives with us and she’s growing on me), nor have I had a particularly close relationship with any animal/pet in my life. But, I am a decent, good human being who does not support injustice. I won’t tolerate it against women, children, victims, the needy, and I certainly won’t stand for it against defenseless animals. People who commit these acts, in my opinion, equate to the dregs of society- the lowest of the low who take their frustrations out on innocent animals.

Of course, one could argue that such incidents are isolated and entirely dependant on individual workers, rather than farm owners/operators. I whole heartedly disagree. The very premise of factory farming is to treat animals as a commodity-not as living, breathing beings. This mentality breeds animal abuse and desensitizes workers to animal suffering. Large scale farming consists of too many moving parts, allowing abusive workers to fly under the radar (only to be caught if they are stupid enough to make a video of their acts and then post it on youtube.com). Additionally, these large farms hire the cheapest of cheap labor to maximize profits, thereby tending to hire workers with little education and even less incentive to do the job right.

Just a few months after deciding to go vegetarian I saw this video and knew there was no turning back (warning! this video is graphic and disturbing). Although this particular video is specific to the fur trade in China, it is representative of the abuse that animals suffer around the world for human consumption (slaughterhouses, puppy mills, etc). Knowing the extreme torture that animals suffer definitely makes that leather handbag, fur coat, and bbq sandwich a lot less appealing.

For more information about harmful animal practices worldwide, see PETA’s website.

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  1. Animal Byproducts
  2. The ethical issues concerning animal slaughter
  3. What does “free range” and “cage free” really mean?
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  5. Farming thoughts

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