Chicken CAFO (source)
I can't believe that some Republican legislators are campaigning to take off President Grant's picture on the 50 dollar bill and replace it with President Reagan's. It makes me wonder how ridiculous notions like this ever get started.
First off - President Grant, as Lincoln's top general in command after the fumbling and bungling attempts of General McClelland, turned the tide for the boys in blue and for US. Had it not been for these two great men- would we today be one or two nations? Would there still be slaves in the South if they had won? I use to think I wasn't the brightest of people when it came to politics, but I'm finding out - I'm not half bad. I certainly think taking President Grant's picture off the 50 dollar bill is a stupid idea. I hope others will think so too, and that this idea will die on the vine.
Re President Reagan - I would like to know why he is held in such high esteem. I hope someone will correct me if I am wrong, but I blame his administration for the introduction of those horrible CAFOs from hell. If I am right - then he deserves censure for this- not praise. For the past 30 years I cannot even imagine who many billions of animals have suffered in them. I would not like that to be part of my legacy as president. I would not like that to be part of my legacy as CAFO owner either.
And the sufferings of these incarcerated animals in battery cages, gestation crates, and veal crates are not minuscule. They are horrendous. In 2007 I had been so happy to find out that the horrible veal crates were going to be phased out, but I was shocked to find out just this week that the target date for this is 2017.
2017? Why should it take 10 years to accomplish something like this? These corporations had their instruments of torture up in probably 6 months or less. And they are given 10 years to dismantle them? Someone on the PETA internet post commented re the time line that 10 months would be ample time. In the meantime how many millions of these tiny male calves are going to suffer in "iron masks"?
But it is not their faces which are encased but their whole bodies in small wooden crates. As Humane Farming notes - hour after hour - day after day, month after month - that's how they live -unable to walk or even turn around. To keep them alive they are given antibiotics. Penicillin, Neomycin, Streptomycin, and Clenbuterol are drugs which all have been found in veal. And these will be passed on to consumers. I hope that if consumers aren't concerned about calf suffering, they will think twice re eating veal and the antibiotic implications. I hope that restaurant owners will develop consciences and not provide it on their menu - even if they lose customers. Ditto - foi gras- another food which causes torture to the geese.
I just thought of something beautiful I read on Care2. Sorry, I can't remember the wonderful person who was teaching children to treat caterpillars with compassion.
Asked why he wasn't devoting more time to teaching children to be compassionate to each other, he said that if they learn compassion to a caterpillar which is causing them no harm and which they can maliciously kill and don't, then he is teaching children to be kind to each other.
For me it is a very beautiful teaching. I wish that I had learned it as a child but then I don't believe I was guilty of maliciously killing anything at that time. However, that's going back over half a century. One can't recall everything that happened when a child. In this regard, I wanted to tell the priest this story because he one time told us in a sermon how delighted he was as a boy to squish the worms who came out after a spring rain. I don't believe today that he shows much concern for animal suffering if at all. And sadly, this is quite prevalent in Christian circles generally.
Are atheists more compassionate? That question always intrigues me when people tell me that there is no God. Sadly, I doubt that they are any more compassionate then even the religious people who should take their cue from a loving and compassionate God and don't.
I remember spending my last year of high school at a Catholic boarding school in Pennsylvania. The nuns kept cows and calves. I often times would steal away by myself to the barn to see the calves. They were so beautiful. Little did I know then that the males would probably be slaughtered for veal. Yes, I have eaten veal in my lifetime and it is something I regret today. Thankfully, I have eaten no meat for the past 30+ years so I can now look at these beautiful calves and tell them how much I love them and all their animal brothers and sisters.
What can we do to speed up the dismantling of the veal crates? I hope that all the animal rights organizations: Humane Farming, Farm Sanctuary, HSUS, IDA, PETA, and any others would join forces and work on this together. Tell us what we can do to free these innocent "by-products" of the milk industry so that they can once again run freely in the meadows with their moms. I think all those who care should write the President and the legislators. Yes, I intend to do so as well.