Category Archives: humane
I was reading today that slaughterhouses in New South Wales (Australia) have been employing a “new” and “improved” method of murdering animals. It’s considered a “humane” alternative to the current torture which occurs routinely in every slaughterhouse worldwide. If you have been paying attention to my blog and my abolitionist page LiveVegan, you would probably understand by now there is NO such thing as a “humane” slaughterhouse and even if there were, it would still be unjust.
Here we are again, with yet another myth about “humane” murder using “controlled atmosphere killing” (CAK) slaughterhouses. It is claimed to be the “biggest” and “best” and “state of the art equipment”. Why CAK? Because it’s cheaper, it reduces worker injuries, ensures that animal’s flesh is “undamaged”, cuts down on bacteria and is a public relations exercise in which industry can tell Australians that these pigs were killed “humanely”.
PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) has been promoting “controlled atmosphere killing” in Australia for a number of years now. What happens inside a ‘state of the art’ Australian execution gas chamber? Recent evidence reveals crate after crate of pigs thrashing and screaming and gasping for air. Is it any surprise filling a chamber with CO2 would make anyone panic and feel terrified? The company which uses this method would be aware that using CO2 would produce a sense of asphyxiation and they would be aware that using an inert gas instead would not produce this same feeling of suffocation, but CO2 is cheaper and industry is about economic efficiency, not any concern for nonhumans. Nonhumans animals are viewed as mere economic commodities. In any event, whatever the method, all methods of killing are morally wrong and death is the ultimate “harm”.
Remember that this “improved” slaughter method has not been employed because it’s “humane”, it’s been employed because it’s economically efficient. In short, animal welfare is all about economic efficiency, not about nonhumans. That’s the first thing we need to understand about welfare. The second thing to understand is that welfare is designed to make people feel comfortable about consuming animals. The third thing is, as is evidenced here, that it does little or nothing for animals and is just a slightly different form of torture. But even if we stroked their heads, cuddled them, talked to them calmly and played Mozart while we murdered them, it would still be unjust and morally wrong. Despite what utilitarians like Peter Singer claim, nonhuman animals have an interest in their lives continuing.
Abolitionist veganism recognises that it’s not HOW animals are being used that is the issue, it’s THAT they are being used at all that is the problem. We recognise that nonhuman animals deserve one very basic right — the right not to be used as property. If we believe animals matter morally, then we need to stop eating, wearing and using them.
What is beyond sad is we have an entire animal movement dedicated to promoting “humane” use of animals, instead of promoting the solution to ending animal use – veganism. What those who promote welfare “reform” do not seem to understand is that they would get their reforms anyway if they promoted veganism to the public, because industry would respond with these reforms. Industry would do this to prevent people from rejecting animal use, and to make people “feel better” about using animals. In fact if everyone promoted veganism clearly, industry would probably go above and beyond these pathetic “reforms”. Instead, all large animal organisations like PETA, HSUS, Animals Australia, Mercy for Animals etc., partner with industry, help them peddle their products, assist them with their PR campaigns and regularly promote the idea that it’s morally acceptable to use animals as long as it’s “humane”. They are the self appointed “watchdog” for industry.
Speaking of the lengths we go to find “better” ways of doing the wrong thing. Yesterday I saw this article; “Scientists race to develop farm animals to survive climate change” in which it says “The idea is to create animals that are more efficient“. I mean seriously? Scientific evidence (ignored by mainstream media and played down by the IPCC) about climate change would strongly suggest our species only has a few decades left before near-term extinction, and we are engaged in this kind of irrationality? Species fail.
Let’s stop the nonsense and stop looking for “better” ways of doing the wrong thing. Please go vegan and educate others to do so. It’s the minimum standard of decency. If we claim to be against violence and injustice, it is the only rational response.
If you’re not vegan, please start here
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Recently on a mainstream talk show (The Ellen Show), Wayne Pacelle from the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) asked for the support of high-profile talk show host Ellen Degeneres to urge her large audience to speak out against the California “Ag gag” laws. HSUS (along with PETA and other large animal organisations) bring in big bucks using their undercover investigation “cruelty” videos in their requests for donations. Mr Pacelle might have been concerned that HSUS’ main source of fund-raising (HSUS undercover factory farming “cruelty” vids )– was being threatened by the possible introduction of these laws which would make it illegal to film “abuses” in factory farms. Today a California assembly member withdrew the bill that would limit undercover “abuse ” investigations.
Wayne Pacelle, who is CEO of the Humane Society of the United States made a statement on “The Ellen Show”.
Mr Pacelle said:
Every animal deserves “humane” treatment.
No Mr Pacelle. Every animal deserves at least one basic right — the right not to be used as property. That means we need to stop using them for food, clothing, entertainment or other reasons. We need to go vegan. Mr. Pacelle appears not to understand that ALL animal use is abusive. He does not seem to understand that it’s not HOW animals are used, it’s THAT they are used that is the problem.
There are many problems with the HSUS’ welfarist position and Mr. Pacelle’s recent statement. Here’s just a few:
1st: there’s no such thing as “humane” use of animals. There’s no such thing as “happy animal slavery” or “happy animal products”. There’s no such thing as non-abusive use of animals or non-abusive slaughterhouses. There’s no such thing as non-abusive “free range” facilities and non-abusive “organic” farming, and there’s no such thing as non-abusive factory farming and even if there were, it would still be unjust.
2nd: EVERY nonhuman animal deserves the right NOT to be used as property.
3rd: The HSUS welfare position says to the public that it’s morally acceptable to use animals as long as it is done “humanely”. But we need to examine our own speciesism and ask ourselves would it be acceptable to promote “humane” child slavery? If the answer is no, then why do we think it morally acceptable to promote “humane” animal slavery?
4th: Promoting “humane” animal exploitation (welfare “reform”) instead of promoting veganism (which is what large animal organisations like as HSUS, PETA and others do) makes the non-vegan public feel good about eating, wearing, and using animals. Obviously reinforcing the property paradigm is not in the interests of nonhuman animals. Promoting “happy animal slavery” and the regulation of animal exploitation reinforces speciesism, reinforces the property paradigm; and reinforces that it’s acceptable to exploit animals.
Welfare-based “reform” does little to nothing to “improve” the situation for animals. Animal welfare has been around for over 200 years and we see more animals being used in more horrific ways than ever before. Welfare “reform” will only ever go as far as it does not interfere with the profitability of industry. You may have noticed that increasingly large animal organisations are partnering with industry.
The truth is the regulation of animal exploitation will *never* bring an end to animal exploitation. Unfortunately Veganism is not the moral baseline of all large animal organisations, so they are part of the problem, not the solution. If they are concerned about non-human animals, the very least they should be is vegan organisations that only promote the end of animal use, not ‘better’ ways of doing the wrong thing.
Just to be clear, Mr Pacelle (who makes a six figure salary) has said on numerous occasions that HSUS has no interest in ending animal agriculture. So why would vegans support and donate to this or any other large animal organisation which does not have veganism as its foundation? It is astonishing and shows our own level of speciesism.
No ethical vegan, nor anyone of conscience, should ever support the continued use of non-human animals in any way. We should not support any animal organisation that makes such use “acceptable” and promotes “humane” use. We should not support single issue campaigns campaigns that promote one species as more important than another or promotes the idea that one form of animal use as worse than another. We should not support any large animal organisation that does not have veganism as their core. In fact, we do not need these organisations at all. Veganism is a grassroots, nonviolent, political movement and it’s growing every day.
For more information, please view these essays:
On Cruelty Videos
“In truth, anti-cruelty laws are based solely on maximizing the efficiency of animal exploitation and have nothing to do, in any practical sense whatsoever, with the type or severity of the cruelty or maltreatment.”
Animals Australia (a large animal “protection” organisation) has launched another confusing campaign, this time focusing on the dairy industry and the dairy calves. Male dairy calves are “by-products” and are of no use to the dairy industry. Animals Australia’s “dairy calf cruelty investigation” campaign was sparked by “hidden” camera footage obtained of “abuse” of young dairy calves at a slaughterhouse.
On their Facebook page and website a caption accompanies an image of a young calf peering through a crate:
Hidden cameras have captured the illegal abuse of week-old dairy calves. But legalised cruelty continues. Help save other calves from abuse by exposing animal cruelty.
First, the most obvious omission is that nowhere does it say we should go vegan. Second, “abuse” implies that the normal functioning of a slaughterhouse is non-abusive. In their campaign it also notes there are certain “humane” legal codes of animal use which are not being adhered to. These so-called welfare “codes of practice” would be considered torture if they were applied to humans, but they are promoted as “humane” when applied to nonhumans.
Let’s consider why industry have these codes of practice.
One of the main reasons that these torturous welfare codes of practice are place is they are part of an industry public relations campaign. They help increase industry’s profitability by soothing the public’s conscience, believing that industry cares about animals. Large animal “protection” organisations like Animals Australia and others, assist industry by monitoring the implementation of these torture codes and promoting them as something to be upheld, something that is “humane”. This demonstrates profound moral confusion on the part of Animals Australia and it is false and misleading.
William L. Garrison (May 1, 1845, an American abolitionist)
So profoundly ignorant of the nature of slavery are many persons, that they are stubbornly incredulous whenever they read or listen to any recital of the cruelties which are daily inflicted on its victims. They do not deny that the slaves are held as property; but that terrible fact seems to convey to their minds no idea of injustice, exposure to outrage, or savage barbarity.
If I may give an abolitionist vegan’s viewpoint. First, abolitionist vegans (myself included) would view the very fact that nonhuman animals in society are viewed legally as property as morally wrong. We believe their property status needs to be abolished and this can only be done through nonviolent vegan education. Second, it doesn’t matter if nonhumans are from factory farms or mom and pop small hobby farms. It doesn’t matter if calves were stroked gently and sung sweet songs before they were murdered. The fact that they are used at all is morally unjustifiable. Abolitionist vegans recognise that nonhumans love and value their life; they have interests, likes and dislikes; and they are moral persons. We understand it is irrelevant whether they are “like us” or not. All that matters is sentience. Abolitionist vegans regard ALL animal use as abuse. The issue is not treatment, the issue goes beyond this to the very immoral act of using them.
Frederick Douglass, (1818-1895, an American abolitionist) said:
“Those who profess to favor freedom and yet depreciate agitation, are people who want crops without ploughing the ground; they want rain without thunder and lightning; they want the ocean without the roar of its many waters. The struggle may be a moral one, or it may be a physical one, or it may be both. But it must be a struggle. Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will.”
There is a clear difference between the way regulationists like Animals Australia view nonhuman animals, and the way abolitionist vegans view nonhuman animals. In fact, the philosophical positions are completely different and that’s why there exists two separate and distinct movements today. When advocates of regulation criticise abolitionists claiming we are “divisive” or accuse us of “in-fighting” for criticising their campaigns and position, we point out to them that this could only be so if we were all part of the same movement, but we are not. One should welcome criticism if it is constructive.
Sadly, Animals Australia -as with other large animal orgs- does not say to the public that we humans are responsible for great violence when we use animals for food, clothing, entertainment or other reasons. It does not suggest to the public that the way to stop this situation and all forms of animal use is to go vegan. No. Instead, Animals Australia suggest that we are able to “save” dairy calves from “abuse” by “exposing it“. This is a confusing message.
Animals Australia ask their non-vegan donors and the non-vegan public to write and complain to the dairy industry. Little do they realise that the dairy industry will *always* have male calves as a “by-product” of their industry and they will be murdered. The public also do not realise that the animal use industry will do little to nothing to “improve” conditions for animals if those “improvements” negatively impact on their profitability. For industry, animals are economic commodities, nothing more. Industry has no real interest in their “welfare”. The “improvements”/”reforms” — if you could call it that — will be tiny (if any), and it’s a question of if or when they will be implemented.
This is the nature of animal welfare “reform”. It makes the pubic feel better about animal use; it does little or nothing to “improve” conditions for animals; it promotes the idea that it’s morally acceptable to exploit and murder nonhuman animals as long as it done “humanely”; it misleads the public into believing animal use can be made “humane”; it increases consumption of animal products and use; and it further entrenches animals in the property paradigm. We need to realise this about welfare “reform” and stop promoting it as if it something good for animals and start promoting veganism.
Animals Australia’s “dairy calf cruelty investigation” campaign also says to their non-vegan donors that animals need to be properly stunned before slaughter and that all slaughterhouses need CCTV cameras. This suggests to the public that it’s OK to exploit nonhuman animals as long as it is done “humanely” and that there are “humane” ways to murder nonhuman animals. If the public believe this then they have obviously never been to an everyday slaughterhouse or they believe it because it’s better than having to think about it.
Animals Australia also suggest to their non-vegan donors and the non-vegan public to go dairy free. Why dairy free? Why not just ask them to go vegan? (Veganism is more than a diet). Their donors and the public are the very people who are creating this horrific situation not just for these animals, but globally for 56 billion land animals per year and many many more sea animals per year. Large animal “protection” organisations around the world have a big problem mentioning veganism. There’s reasons for this, and most are financial.
Animals Australia have many celebrities who speak for them, who are their ambassadors. It is very unusual if one of their celebrity spokespersons are vegan, yet they are supposedly advocating for nonhuman animals.
An an essay on UVE Archives so eloquently stated:
So, the donors create the problem through the extreme speciesism of consuming animal products, which leads to the breeding, confining, torturing, and intentional killing of the innocent. Then the donors send their money – tens of millions of dollars of it annually – to PETA and HSUS to attempt the absurdly impossible: regulate a perpetual holocaust of billions of victims annually. These big groups are beholden to the very donors who are creating the problem that needs to be fixed.
It is a classic circular farce and would be a knee-slapping hilarious example of human stupidity if it were not so tragic.
We cannot regulate the holocaust. We need to stop it by going vegan and encouraging others to do the same.
I should also mention this “dairy cruelty” campaign follows closely on the heels of their recent “Make it possible” campaign (focusing on factory farming with no mention of veganism) which pulled in mega-donations and their most recent frivolous Australia Day “Everyone deserves a day off” campaign (no mention of veganism).
Cruelty investigations are a very popular and effective way of raising donations for large animal “protection” organisations. Cruelty investigations are a never-ending source of donations, because while society continues to use animals as “things”, as resources, there will always be abuse. The “cruelty investigations” will go on ad-infinitum while the public is not vegan. And who is going to tell the public to go vegan? The evidence would suggest it will not be regulationist organisations.
As UVE Archives states in an essay about PETA’s cruelty investigations:
[u]ndercover investigations are more of the same single-issue and welfare campaigns dressed up in a heroic gown. Whereas a human rights organization would unequivocally claim that rights violations – slavery, exploitation, and killing – are wrong and should end, PETA merely wants the target exploiter to observe traditional welfare standards while rights violations continue.
“Undercover investigations are just another example of PETA’s role in the industry-welfarist partnership as both strategic advisor on quality control and traditional welfare cop.”
“PETA doesn’t oppose industry’s exploitation per se; they just want industry to exploit and kill according to generally accepted exploiting standards and to receive their compensation from consumer-donors for their work as industry’s quality control auditors.
Undercover investigations should function in an animal rights movement the same way they do in a human rights movement: to bring attention to the issue and continue a dialogue about ending rights violations. In other words, undercover investigations should function solely as a catalyst for vegan education. Outside of that particular context, they are worse than useless. In supporting PETA’s attempts at improving quality control over exploitation and killing through undercover investigations, donors ultimately support industry.
Animals Australia is really no different from any other large animal “protection” organisations. They usually have a huge donor base who are not vegan. PeTA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) and Animals Australia (and other organisations like them) never ask any of their donors to go vegan, one reason being they do not wish to challenge their donor base as it may affect their donations. It’s a business decision. So they usually partner up with industry, promote one speciesist single issue campaign after another asking for donations but not asking their donors to be vegan. They do not have veganism as their foundation.
Their philosophy is that one can be a slave owner and still respect and love their slaves, that their slaves are “happy slaves” even while they are being murdered. One only has to view many of the public’s comments on Animals Australia’s Facebook page to see that their philosophy is working.
I will leave you with this comment I left a couple of days ago on Animals Australia’s Facebook page under the image associated with their campaign for dairy calves. I hope someone was paying attention.
The way to end this unending stream of animals who are victims or “by-products” of the dairy industry, is not to find “better” ways of transporting them to slaughterhouses. It’s not to find “better” ways of murdering them, because there’s no such thing as “humane” murder and even if there were, it would still be wrong.
The solution to address this and all forms of animal use is to go vegan and stop using animals for food, entertainment, clothing, and other reasons. We ourselves need to stop participating in animal use. We are the public. We create demand for animal products and animal use every time we go to the store, sit down to eat, every time we purchase a pair of shoes, a woollen coat, go to the zoo, or the circus, buy an animal, and so on. We are the culprits for the violence, for situations like this, and it does not matter whether an animal is young and cute or not. All that matters is sentience as to whether they have the right not to be used as property. It is WE who need to change, not industry. So let’s start changing our own lives and take violence out of our lives and become vegan. No need to point fingers at anyone. It’s we who need to change. Here’s a great vegan resource http://www.VeganKit.com/ It’s easy to become vegan. 🙂
Thanks for listening
For more information on this issue:
UVE Archives: “On Cruelty Videos”
Animal Cruelty: Who is to Blame?
PETA’s Undercover Investigations: Another example of the welfarist business cycle.
What’s wrong with Single Issue Campaigns
How Should We Respond to Australia’s Live Export Ban or Its End?
The last few weeks I’ve taken the opportunity to point out the moral confusion in campaigns by a large animal protection organisation “Animals Australia”. Advocates for Animals Australia keep telling us that AA does not endorse or promote “happy meat” or “happy animal products” and yet they regularly post campaign information like this:
“Did you know that pregnant mother pigs can legally be confined to a crate so small they cannot even turn around — for their entire pregnancy? ‘Sow stalls’ are undoubtedly one of the cruellest devices ever inflicted upon animals in factory farms. But there’s hope…
In a big step forward for pigs, Coles starts 2013 by ensuring that NO Coles-brand fresh pork products come from suppliers who confine pregnant pigs in sow stalls!
Please join us in thanking Coles for leading the way – and encourage them to continue fighting factory farming by addressing other practices such as surgical procedures of piglets without anaesthetic, and confining mother pigs in crates after birth. Click here to discover what pork labels really mean for pigs: http://www.MakeitPossible.com/pigs
Thank you Coles, for helping to get pregnant mother pigs — and hens (http://on.fb.me/ZyQp09 ) — out of cages!
This would never have happened without caring people like you leading the way. Every meal is a choice. Every shop is a vote. By choosing kindly you can help animals with every bite! Learn more: http://www.bit.ly/cmxNLc “
I wrote a comment to this on their page:
I’m a little confused.
How is murdering sentient beings for their flesh (“pork”) a big step forward for pigs? Wouldn’t a big step forward for pigs be if we became vegan http://www.VeganKit.com and educated others to become vegan so that the pubic ceased using animals for food, clothing, entertainment and other reasons? Not only pigs would not be exploited and murdered any more, but no other animals would be exploited either including dairy calves which is what the most recent AA campaign is about.
I’d like to share a commentary by Dede River on her Facebook page about “Animals Australia” (a large animal “protection” organisation). An “Animals Australia” advocate claimed that AA is pragmatic and veganism is not important in helping animals.
Here is Dede River’s Facebook commentary to this claim of “pragmatism”:
“The other day, a friend of mine asked how I would respond to the persistent claim that welfarism is somehow more “pragmatic” a way to help non-human animals than veganism.
My response is that, if their goal is to end the abuse of non-human animals, welfarists don’t understand what “pragmatic” means. “Pragmatic” generally means taking a practical, rather than an ideal, approach. An example would be, if the goal is to build an environmentally-benign house, using low-intensive energy local materials, load-bearing straw bale might be an ideal solution in some areas. However, given building codes and all that, a more pragmatic plan might be using some form of timber to carry the load, and wrapping with straw bales. This is not ideal, but since the ideal means fighting councils and state regulations, often for years, it might be more practical, hence, it is the pragmatic solution. On the other hand, using standard building practices, pre-built steel trusses, glass-fibre insulation, is really easy in terms of getting builders and council approval, but cannot be considered pragmatic, since it entirely fails at the goal of using low-inherent-energy local materials for a result that conserves energy.
If, as it should be, our goal is to eliminate the use of non-human animals, then the ideal is to absolutely stop using these other beings. Pragmatics might mean that we do continue to use some things that harm other beings, at least until there is an alternative. Most vegans continue to use cars, and roads, and computers, even though non-human animals are used and harmed in their creation, because not to would nearly completely isolate us. At the same time we try to get manufacturers to change. But wherever we can, we simply don’t use animal products, don’t eat them, don’t wear them, don’t use them as entertainment. That’s pragmatic.
It is not “pragmatic” when someone claiming to “help” animals promotes “humane” forms of animal use. It is not pragmatic, because it is not consistent with the goal of ending animal use. Using animals “better” doesn’t stop use, it makes it acceptable. Barn-laid eggs just means that instead of putting chickens in cages, we cram huge numbers into a barn. They are still bred, male chicks still killed, still live an unnatural and awful life, are still slaughtered at the dictates of economics. They are still used. The fact that someone feels a little warm glow at choosing a “barn laid” or “free-range” box of eggs does not make their action more ethical. It does not “help animals”. Quite the opposite, it allows continued exploitation of non-human animals with less guilt.
Groups like Animals Australia claim to be pragmatic, because they are reducing suffering. If the goal is reducing guilt about animal use, they can be said to be pragmatic. If the goal is actually ending use of non-human animals then they are not pragmatic, they are counter-productive. Animals Australia mainly focuses on “better” use, with almost no mention of non-use. Their ideal seems to be a world in which animals are all “free-range”, in other words, their “solution” is keeping animals in paddocks, rather than in stalls. Certainly stalls are awful. That doesn’t necessarily make paddocks better. It doesn’t change much of the “management” practices: de-horning, branding, de-sexing males, cropping tails, taking babies away, ultimately killing these beings when they are “market-ready”. I live in a rural area where I see cows in paddocks. They aren’t happy, and they aren’t free, and they are still seen as an economic “crop” that will be harvested. They certainly don’t have rights. They are certainly not “liberated”.
Making people feel they are doing something “for animals” is not the same as recognising that we have no right to do things to non-human animals. It just lets the exploitation continue. “Humane” animal products is just an exercise in marketing, that changes nothing essential. Worse, it fosters the notion that “humane” products are just another range of products, and “market choice” remains with the consumer. We decide which products we prefer at a price. Nowhere it their any call for people to recognise that using animals is simply unethical, simply wrong.
Pragmatically, telling people that using animals is wrong is the most practical way of getting people to stop using animals. Telling people that there are better, more humane ways of using animals is not a method of ending animal use, not at all. Telling people that it is wrong to use animals, and to stop, is called advocating veganism. Advocating veganism is the only practical, pragmatic way of ending animal use.”
For an earlier essay by myself about Animals Australia, please view here
This is a spoof edited version of AA’s “make it possible” campaign poster where their focus is factory farming instead of ending animal use and where they ignore veganism.
POSTSCRIPT by Dede River (Jan 11th, 2013):
I get amazed sometimes when I hear those who defend Animals Australia talking about their fabulous campaigns to “end factory farming”. What they don’t emphasize is that these campaigns promote “alternatives” to factory farming, and these “alternatives” are just other ways of marketing the products of death and pain. The other thing they don’t emphasize is that 98% of beef and sheep production is currently “free range”. About 2% of cows or sheep are ever fed in feedlots, generally only in the last few months of their lives, the rest being spent “free range”.
I’m not saying feedlots are good, not at all, but I am saying that living in paddocks, “free range”, is not a great life for non-human animals. Paddocks are often fodder-poor fenced rectangles that may, if the animals are lucky, have a tree. Temperatures vary from high 40s C(+104 F.) in summer, to below freezing in winter, and there is no shelter. Yes, there is “room” but that is not the measure of well-being, and the space of a paddock is not equivalent to the natural range of a herd of cows. In addition, cows and sheep are subjected to a variety of “management practices”, including removal of young cows (bobby calves) or sheep from their mothers, gelding of males, branding, de-horning, docking their tails, and a variety of other things prior to the decision to transport and kill them. Living in paddocks is not a “happy” life. It is not “liberation”. It is not any kind of recognition of rights. Non-humans in paddocks live and die entirely in accord with human economic decisions, with a desire to maximise profits generally translating to minimising expenses, or decision on when to kill.
With current climate-related problems, drought, flooding, fires, etc, conditions for “free-range” animals generally are getting worse.
Other things Animals Australia, and other animal welfare organisations don’t mention is that the animals Australians eat most of are cows. Chickens comes next, followed by sheep and sea creatures. Pigs are at the bottom of the list, with one study cited by the Australasian Agribusiness Review citing figures of 31% as people who don’t eat pork. In this case, increasing “free range pork” is not a great victory for non-human animals. In terms of diet, the much higher percentage of people who eat lamb, relative to people who eat “mutton”, means most sheep are killed for food before they reach maturity. Living on a paddock doesn’t change that. What else is not mentioned is that the natural habitat of pigs is forest understory, not over-grazed paddocks.
This facts mean that the whole “end factory farming” campaign is something of a bitter joke, one unlikely to affect most non-human animals used for food. When we look at chickens, generally the most extensively factory-farmed animals, and compare commercial cage production vs high-volume “free range” production, the conditions for the chickens are not substantially better for the latter. They are still raised under shockingly bad, highly stressful conditions, the “management practices” are generally the same, and the rationale for which chickens to kill, and when to kill them, are the same. “Roasting” chickens are usually killed very young, and subjected to an intense regime of hormones and water-retention agents to make them fat and tender. “Laying” chickens are subject to different chemical and hormonal regimes, the males killed brutally as chicks, and the females killed once they are “spent”, a process that doesn’t take long. These factors don’t change with “free-range” chicken production. Allowing thousands of chickens to mill in a huge crowded barn or yard is not “kind treatment”.
Simply put, ending factory farming in Australia will not markedly improve the situation for non-human animals. Buying animal flesh that has been “certified” as better in some way, might give you an inner glow, but it’s not improving the situation for nonhuman animals to any real degree. And even if animals were cossetted, fed treats, patted and cuddled, and then anesthetised prior to killing them, it is still a violation of other sentient beings, ones that have their own instinctive and considered goals and desires. It doesn’t matter how “nicely” we rob them of their autonomy, and then rob them of their lives. Using nonhuman animals for our entertainment, aesthetics, or palate pleasure is simply wrong. Which is, of course, simply another way of saying, “Go Vegan!” Not only do we need to go vegan personally, we need to let others know that using non-human animals is wrong; we need to spread veganism.
Not vegan? Please start here http://www.VeganKit.com
For those who keep claiming that Animals Australia does not promote “happy animal exploitation” or “happy animal products”, please view a few recent tweets from their Twitter page:
Animals Australia @AnimalsAus on Twitter
“What do pork, bacon and ham labels REALLY mean for pigs? Find out how to choose kindly: http://www.MakeitPossible.com/pigs #makeitpossible ”
Animals Australia @AnimalsAus on Twitter
“In great news for mother pigs, all @Coles-brand fresh pork products are now sow stall free! Thanks Coles 🙂 https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid”
Animals Australia @AnimalsAus on Twitter
“Every time we shop we can vote for a kinder world. Discover what different egg labels really mean for chickens: http://www.MakeitPossible.com/eggs ”
Animals Australia @AnimalsAus on Twitter
“Thanks @Coles for helping to free hens from battery cages! Coles starts 2013 by removing all Coles cage eggs from sale! pic.twitter.com/lXDpWkz1 ”
Damir Kotorić @damirkotoric to Animals Australia:
@AnimalsAus @coles Well done Coles but let’s not forget the consumers who made this happen by shopping ethically.
Animals Australia @AnimalsAus respond to Damir:
“@damirkotoric @Coles Definitely! Kind choices are powerful choices. #makeitpossible ”
Is there any mention anywhere by Animals Australia for the public to consider becoming vegan and stop using animals for food, clothing, entertainment or other reasons? No. Nowhere to be seen. This is very sad indeed.
To all of you who think this is acceptable, I want to ask you one thing. If your child was being exploited, would you want that to end, or would you suggest that it’s acceptable for them to be exploited as long as it’s “humane” (there’s no such thing), and in the end, it’s OK that your child be murdered “as long as it was “humane”.
View the video in this post of a “humane” slaughterhouse.
Remember: In the end they all end up at the same slaughterhouse whether they are from factory farms, “free range” facilities “organic” and so forth. And remember they are all forms of torture if you have ever been to a “free range” facility, it is a nightmare.
Remember too that all male chicks from hatcheries that supply Coles and the egg industry are ground up alive or suffocated. They are “by-products” of the egg industry.
Want to see a “humane” slaughterhouse video? http://youtu.be/bCcUV-Yg-bc
Thank you for your consideration.
PS: I’ve been “discussing” (a polite way of saying it goes nowhere) on the Animals Australia site the problems with Animals Australia promotion of “happy animal products” and “happy animal exploitation” and their anti-vegan position with some advocates of Animals Australia. Amazingly although it’s all over AA’s “make it possible” site, advocates deny that AA promote “happy animal exploitation”. Maybe someone could ask them why people — who are not going to eat pig flesh (or any other animal products or use animals)– need to “Make sense of pork, bacon and ham labels”? http://www.makeitpossible.com/guides/pig-meat-labels.php
A New Perspective on Happy Cows and Animal Rights
“Sitting in my office in downtown Boston, I stared out the frosted glass and dreamed of Italy. A small farm filled with animals wandering in green pastures, clucking at my heels, waiting eagerly to have grain and hay thrown into their troughs. One more month, and I would be volunteering on a small organic dairy farm nestled in the pristine Italian countryside.
While I had been a vegetarian for five years at that point, I loved cheese, and the idea of being as close to the source as possible was enticing. I wanted to know where my food came from, to be part of its growth and life. What could be more idyllic than to live my life by the chimes of the church bell and oscillating calls of impatient cows?
When I first arrived, the farm was everything I had hoped for. Each morning I awoke to the church bells I had dreamed of. After a classic European breakfast, complete with fresh milk, I trudged up the hill to clean out the cow and goat stalls, and feed the chickens. Then, if the weather suited, I would go for a walk in the woods with the goats, or down to the pasture with the cows. It was serene.
The story I truly want to tell you though is about one cow in particular, a cow to whom I owe a great deal:” To read full story — http://gentleworld.org/bruno-a-new-perspective-on-happy-cows/
Cows love life as we do and do not want to die.
Please go vegan http://www.vegankit.com