How could I possibly forget the image in my brain of a live pig being scalded to death? I was very, very young, and the pig had been strung up by its ankle sinew. It screamed all the way down.
During my last year of high school, a friend showed me how he shot cows in the head for his dad’s butcher shop. Sometimes the bullet went wrong, so he had to shoot the writhing animal again. These animals would fall against the cages, with feet struggling to stand back up.
All these images are so horrible, how can I possibly eat meat?
How can I?
I’m not going to post any disgusting pictures that match up with this story from COAST TO COAST AM from Sunday night (April 27). You would be so disgusted you would never read this blog again.
On Sunday night’s program, George Knapp was joined by Wayne Pacelle, president of the Humane Society of the US, along with undercover investigator Cody Carlson and public policy manager Matthew Dominguez, for a discussion on how animal activists have infiltrated big agricultural operations and exposed the terrible horrors that go on inside. Pacelle observed that, while the Humane Society is concerned about a variety of threats to animals, the factory farming industry is particularly distressing because it effects billions of creatures that are both incredibly mistreated as well as overlooked by the general public that would rather not know about the extreme means by which their food is obtained. He described factory farms as massive facilities where hundreds or thousands of animals, such as cows, pigs, and chickens, are housed in tiny cages where they are raised for food.
Pacelle detailed one Humane Society operation where a member of the group went undercover inside a major diary farm in California. The investigation showed how cows at the facility were milked to the point of exhaustion and, ultimately, collapsed from the stress. These ‘downer cows,’ as they are called in the industry, were then dragged or pushed into slaughterhouses where they were, stunningly, turned into meat to be used for the national school lunch program. As a result of the investigation, Pacelle said, the USDA recalled a stunning 143 million pounds of beef that had been produced from the plant. Carlson, who personally participated in a number of undercover investigations, also described witnessing shocking conditions that animals in factory farms were forced to endure.
In response to the undercover work being done by animal activists at factory farms, the agriculture industry has now begun pushing for “Ag Gag” laws that aim to thwart such investigations. Different forms of the legislature, which has been passed in seven states, makes it illegal to photograph or videotape a farm without permission and outlaws animal activists from getting jobs at factory farms. Additionally, the law would require anyone with evidence of animal cruelty to turn over their information within 24 hours or else they, themselves, will be prosecuted. The guests lamented that, without the surreptitiously garnered evidence for animal abuse on factory farms, it would be nearly impossible to enlighten the public about the situation nor gain the support of legislators for tougher regulations.