Jan 19, 2009
||Michigan, United States|
Myspace blocks any links taken off myspace so here are all the links from this.
Montcalm Co. Michigan HELP PUT A END TO ANIMALS GOING TO RESEARCH
Montcalm Co. Michigan-
Dealer Sell Dogs To Research Labs
WE CAN put an end to this dirty practice
R&R Research http://guide.labanimal.com/guide/companyd.jsp?b=5285 of Howard City, Michigan has been under contract with the Montcalm County Animal Shelter for purposes of euthanizing their unclaimed animals after the mandatory 5 day hold. For a period of time, and up until recently, the gassing of the animals had been carried out in a "CO2 barrel."
R&R Research may also come into the shelter and pull any animal he deems appropriate post the hold time, for sale to research labs.
R & R Research, A History of Shady Dealings
Cited for Animal Care Violations
***Yes, It's a For Profit Business (From MI Animal News)
To listen to the B Dealers and their supporters, you would hear a tale of altruism, concern and philanthropy. The B Dealers claim they are helping humanity by taking pets from shelters and selling them to research institutions. They rarely include the fact that they are for profit corporations, making money off of each animal that they sell. For example, USDA records indicate that R & R sold 592 animals in 2004, leading to gross receipts of $99,723. In 2005 R & R earned gross receipts of $179,115 based on the sale of 611 animals. 2006 was a really good year, R & R gross receipts were $196,272 based on sales of 621 dogs and cats. Montcalm County is giving dogs and cats to R & R and based on its submission to the USDA, R & R resells the animals for an average of $311 each.
2004 through 2007 shelter statistics http://www.michanimalnews.com/Montcalm_Killing_Fields.html
The shelter reports reveal that no attempt to save animals lives is made by the Montcalm County Animal Control Shelter. Less than 10% of the dogs and cats are returned to their homes or adopted. Research dealer R & R took 14% of the shelter animals and gassed the remaining 70%.
Dogs Cats Total
Admitted: 4109 3926 8035
Returned/owner: 550 6 556
Adopted 431 99 530
Given to Research 519 297 816
Killed by Gas 2271 3382 5653
R & R is one of 5 active Class B Dealers http://www.docstoc.com/docs/2832874/dba-michigan in the state of Michigan who is permitted BY LAW to take animals for this profitable business. Please read this recent article http://www.michanimalnews.com/co2_euth_followup.html by Justine DePalma of the Michigan Animal News http://www.michanimalnews.com/Home_Page.php who has done extensive research on the subject with the latest information of the euthanization practices as well as the continued agreement with Moncalm Co.
We can make a change to STOP THIS and the time is NOW
The contract with R&R Research is up for renewal in January and the city commission will have the first of its hearings on January 12th. Please make your voices heard and use the sample letters below to be sent to the City Commission of Montcalm Co. along with the city of Stanton's mayor. Be sure and specify where you are calling/emailing from so they are aware that this of national concern to the outcome of Montcalm's animals.
Please be polite as it a more effective means of communication of these issues
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org (yahoo.com) or email@example.com (comcast.net) for additional information
Thank you to Susan, Maria and Polly for your work and research for the Montcalm animals.
FW: From Susan Hayley firstname.lastname@example.org,
Subject: Help STOP it, Pound Dogs & Cats Sold for Research, Montcalm Co, MI
A few weeks ago many of us rescues, transporters and other animal lovers were all included in a series of e-mail pleas that were an effort to rescue 11 dogs headed to a research lab. Several of us have combined our efforts, including web searches, to try to help stop the practice altogether. This letter comes to you in hopes that you will all join in to send a strong message to the people who can do something. And if we all write to them it WILL be a strong message. We have effected change before with our combined voices.
I am told that Montcalm County, Michigan, routinely sells animals to research. Several rescuers have been working non-stop to rescue animals from that facility--from a fate worse than death. But what also has to be done is to stop the practice. The county's contract with the Class B dealer (R & R Research of Howard City, Michigan) is up for renewal in early January. The Montcalm County commissioners need to hear from all of us that this barbaric practice has to stop.
Please ask the county commissioners to vote not to renew the contract with R&R Research. Be persistent. Be well reasoned. And always be polite.
There are two sample letters at the bottom of this email. This will come up for a vote at the commissioners meeting on Jan 12, so please do not delay.
Montcalm County Board of Commissioners
211 W. Main St.
PO Box 368
Stanton, MI 48888
Commissioner Marcia Walker
email: email@example.com (chartermi.net)
Commissioner Tom Lindeman
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org (sbcglobal.net)
Commissioner Ron Retzloff
email: email@example.com (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Commissioner John Johansen
email: email@example.com (pathwaynet.com)
Commissioner Carl Paepke
NO EMAIL ADDRESS
Commissioner Ron Baker
email: firstname.lastname@example.org (hotmail.com)
Commissioner Pat Carr
NO EMAIL ADDRESS
Commissioner Roger Caris
email: email@example.com (gccmha.org)
Commissioner John McCrackin
NO EMAIL CONTACT
City of Stanton Mayor
Mayor Robert Burns
225 S. Camburn St. Mailing Address
Stanton, MI Zip Code: 48888
Phone: 989 831-4440
E Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org (cityofstantonmi.com)
Sample Letter 1
Ladies and Gentlemen:
People throughout the country (and throughout the world) have learned of the plight of stray animals in your county—first abandoned by their people, only to then face the ultimate betrayal—being sold to an unethical Class B dealer for subsequent use as research animals—with the whole operation being funded by taxpayers despite their vehement protests.
Montcalm County is one of the few remaining counties in the country that still betrays the trust of its citizenry by turning animals from the "shelter" over to the atrocities of research. Not only is the practice barbaric, outdated and sharply criticized by ethicists, medical experts and animal lovers alike, but the lab that Montcalm chooses to deal with (R&R Research, Inc. of Howard City, Michigan) has come under fire for unethical operations and flagrant violations of law.
R & R has engaged in less than ethical practices including listing itself as an animal shelter in the yellow pages. The State of Michigan Attorney General's Office ordered the ads removed. Quite obviously, R & R is no shelter. Ionia County Animal Control ended its relationship with R & R after it was discovered that a dog that an Ionia Animal Control Officer claimed was shot to death, was actually at R & R Research. An undercover investigation by WOOD TV in the 1990's showed video of R & R owners gassing animals in a rusty 55 gallon drum. In 2006, the USDA cited R & R for improperly transporting dogs. The poor creatures were chained to the side of a livestock trailer, which is illegal since the regulations demand that each
animal is transported in an individual compartment. In 2005, a USDA inspection found sick cats, quarantined without a treatment plan. In both cases, it's clear that R & R's actions led to the suffering of animals.
Compassion and ethical considerations aside, Montcalm County is, in this time of financial crisis, enriching R & R, a private corporation, at the expense of its taxpayers. Montcalm County is giving dogs and cats to R & R and based on R & R's own submission to the USDA, R & R resells the animals for an average of $311 each.
The only one who has benefited from the deal is R & R which resells animals at a huge profit. The animals don't win since they loose the chance at finding a new home. Montcalm County looses any income from adoptions and also the goodwill that a well run shelter generates. Instead, the relationship between the dealer and the shelter is a source of bad publicity for Montcalm County and its elected officials, with many groups even calling for a boycott of all Montcalm businesses until the shelter stops selling to research.
I respectfully request that, in considering the renewal of the R & R contract (or even entering into one with another Class B dealer), you take into account the concerns and welfare of your community (economic as well as social) and have Montcalm County take another step into the 21st century by leaving pound seizure behind. Please do not renew the R & R contract. It is the ultimate betrayal.
Polly Grunfeld Sack
Fairport, New York
Sample Letter 2
To whom it concerns,
Please vote against renewing the R & R Research contract on Jan 12.
The contract allows innocent dogs and cats, some of them surrendered pets, to be turned into research subjects where they suffer cruelties and atrocities. I have read of some researchers putting acid in a dogs eyes, inflicting pain and withholding pain medication, gassing the animals, chaining them, allowing sick animals to go without treatment. I have read that R & R has been criticized for violations and for cruelty.
Breeding and using companion animals for research purposes is barbaric and inhumane. Allowing it to continue is wrong.
It is understandable that people can become desensitized to behaviors, conditions and practices once they have become accustomed to them. This could make it seem "normal" for dogs and cats to be used and abused in this way when it has been happening unchallenged for generations. Or sometimes human
nature can cause people to turn a "blind eye" to awful things and simply be in denial. I'll bet those poor animals aren't in denial.
Please open your hearts and vote accordingly to STOP the practice of using companion animals in research. Please do not renew the R & R contract. Please embrace compassion and courage.
Susan Hayley, Director
Angel Dog Rescue
"Not to hurt our humble brethren [the animals] is our first duty to them,
but to stop there is not enough. We have a highter mission:
to be of service to them wherever they require it."
Saint Francis of Assisi
Oct 30, 2008
Sowing The Seeds Of Insecurity -
By Geri Guidetti Copyright email@example.com
The Future Of Our Food Supply
Food Supply Update - January 10, 2002
An ill-wind blew across Percy Schmeiser's land in 1996. Today in his 70s, the third-generation Saskatchewan, Canada, farmer has been growing and improving his own canola (oil seed) crops for 40 years. Each year, he would save some of his harvested seed for planting the following year. Though some farmers in the surrounding area were growing Monsanto's patented, genetically modified (GM) Roundup Ready canola, Schmeiser was not. He was growing his own, but the wind blew and bees flew, both apparently carrying grains of GM pollen from neighboring fields into Schmeiser's crop. Or maybe it was GM seed transported from surrounding farms that often blew off trucks traveling the roads adjacent to Schmeiser's land. No matter. Without his knowledge or consent, errant, patented Monsanto genes had apparently been incorporated into some of the Schmeiser family's 1997-harvested canola seed. In 1998, the farmer planted over a thousand acres of his land with the seed he had saved from the previous year's crop. A hired Monsanto investigator analyzed samples of canola plants taken from Percy Schmeiser's land, and the company found evidence of its patented genes in the plant tissue. When Schmeiser refused to pay Monsanto fees for use of its patented herbicide resistance technology, technology he neither bought nor wanted, Monsanto sued him. According to a report on the trial (<http://www.percyschmeiser.com/www.percyschmeiser.com), Monsanto sought damages for patent infringement totaling $400,000. This included about $250,000 in legal fees, $13,500 for technology fees, $25,000 in punitive damages and $105,000 in the profits Schmeiser realized from sale of his contaminated 1998 crop. Monsanto vs. Percy Schmeiser was heard in a Canadian court June 5 - 20, 2000. According to reports, Monsanto never directly tried to explain how their genes got into Schmeiser's field. In fact, the Western Producer, a Canadian agriculture magazine, quoted Monsanto attorney, Roger Hughes, as saying, "Whether Mr. Schmeiser knew of the matter or not matters not at all." In other words, Schmeiser's fields were contaminated by Monsanto's GM technology, and it didn't matter if Schmeiser was aware of the contamination or not. They were going to make him pay for it! Percy Schmeiser said, "It was a very frightening thing because they said it does not matter how it gets into a farmer's field; it's their property.......if I would go to St. Louis (Monsanto headquarters) and contaminate their plots--destroy what they have worked on for 40 years--I think I would be put in jail and the key thrown away." On March 29, 2001, nearly three years since the contaminated canola was discovered in Schmeiser's field, Canadian Judge W. Andrew MacKay agreed with Monsanto that it did not matter how its genes got onto Percy Schmeiser's fields; the farmer was still guilty of having them without having paid for the privilege. (You can read the entire decision at http://www.fct-cf.gc.ca ). Sadly, as part of the damages, the farmer also lost 40 years of work improving his own canola seed line, as his crop was confiscated. As you might imagine, the decision has had a chilling effect on farmers here and around the world. The Washington Post reported that a National Farmers Union spokesman said the organization has been following the Monsanto vs. Schmeiser case "...with apprehension. We're extremely concerned by what liabilities may unfold for the farmer, particularly with cross-pollination of genetically modified plants." The National Farmers Union represents 300,000 U.S. farmers and ranchers. Monsanto has filed hundreds of similar patent infringement lawsuits against farmers in the U.S. and Canada. Some of those farmers in North Dakota and Illinois are counter-suing the company for deliberately causing genetic pollution and then suing its victims. Win or lose, many face financial ruin from the court battles alone. The Percy Schmeiser case, and others ongoing and to come, does not bode well for farmers, or even backyard gardeners, here or abroad. The idea that individuals can be held legally and financially responsible for the fate of patented pollen and seed blown by the wind or carried by insects in open field conditions is simply absurd. In fact, Monsanto knows it and maintained that all a farmer has to do if he or she discovers Monsanto's patented plants growing on their land is to call the company and they will come out and take care of the problem. For starters, how would a farmer even know his field had been contaminated with Roundup Ready GM canola? The plants are often visually indistinguishable. The only way he'd know is by spraying his crop with Monsanto's Roundup herbicide to see if it had resistance. Obviously, he wouldn't do that because the herbicide would kill his own non-resistant, non-GM crop! Percy Schmeiser and other farmers regularly spray Roundup around telephone poles surrounding their fields to keep them clear of crops and weeds. When Schmeiser had sprayed around his telephone poles in 1997, he was surprised to see that some of the canola plants did not die. He suspected contamination. If a farmer does identify GM plants in his field, according to Ann Clark of Plant Agriculture, University of Guelph, Guelph, Ontario, Monsanto would likely come out and spray the offending plants with the herbicide of choice, 2,4-D. But, as a farmer, would you call the company if their offending plants were interspersed with your own crop, the latter likely to be killed or damaged by the toxic herbicide? Such treatment would be especially catastrophic for an organic farmer whose field could no longer be certifiable as organic for years to come. For some perspective on the potential scope of the GM gene pollution problem, in the year 2000, Monsanto's GM seed was planted on 103 million acres worldwide, accounting for 94% of the global area sown to genetically modified seed (RAFI). The potential for the GM contamination of millions of more acres of land and for thousands more victim farmers is simply mind-boggling. In fact, in June, 2001, Canadian CBC radio reported that genetically engineered canola plants had spread across the Canadian prairies. University of Manitoba plant scientist, Martin Entz said that GM canola had spread much more rapidly than originally thought and that it was "absolutely impossible to control." Impossible to control also describes another 2001 GM debacle--the contamination of U.S. food supplies with StarLink corn, a GM corn intended by French parent company, Aventis, for animal consumption only. StarLink contains an insecticidal toxin, Cry9C protein, 50-100 times more than that in GM corn intended for humans. The protein had the potential to trigger severe allergic reactions. Aventis had assured EPA officials that StarLink would only be sold to farmers growing it for livestock. Dealers selling the corn would see to it that each farmer signed an agreement to provide a 660-foot buffer strip around his or her StarLink fields to prevent contamination of nearby cornfields with StarLink pollen. Grain elevators were also to be told at the time of sale that the corn was not for human consumption. Sadly, virtually every level of the program to protect humans failed miserably. During the year 1998, 10,000 acres in the U.S. were planted to StarLink. In 1999, it had grown to 250,000 acres. By 2000, StarLink corn was planted on 350,000 acres in the U.S. and co-mingled with other corns by 2200 farmers in 12 states, according to Seed Savers Exhange. During 2000, 98 of Iowa's 99 counties grew StarLink! About 10% of all corn stored in the U.S. is now contaminated with StarLink corn. In 2001, the USDA earmarked up to $20 million of taxpayers' money, money originally intended for natural disaster relief for farmers, to help buy back 300,000 to 400,000 bags of contaminated seed. Containment, not control, was the only possible solution, as the damage to the U.S. seed stocks is permanent. The genes are "out there", replicating themselves in the chromosomes of other corn varieties meant for human consumption, and likely finding their way into any food containing corn products such as corn syrup and corn starch--nearly every sweetened, thickened product in the "modern" diet. If there is any reassuring news in this new reality, it is that the concentration of Cry9C is likely to be so low in current and future foods contaminated with the original StarLink genes that allergic reactions to this particular protein are highly improbable. That is, however, very small comfort given the scope and biological significance of this single genetic event. August, 2001, was a particular low point in the battle for a ban on the Terminator gene technology. Terminator technologies use genetic engineering techniques to program a plant's DNA to kill its own embryos (suicide seed) thus forming sterile seed. The plant-to-seed-to-plant-to-seed, etc, cycle of life is broken, preventing a farmer from saving harvested seed to grow next season. It will ensure that farmers must return to the seed company year after year to purchase expensive seed, often with heavy GM seed technology licensing fees added. The first Terminator was created and announced by our own U.S. Department of Agriculture in partnership with a U.S.-based cotton seed company, Delta & Pine Land Company. They were granted a U.S. patent on the technology in 1998. (See June, 1998 Food Supply Update at www.arkinstitute.com). In August, the USDA announced that it had agreed to license the technology to its corporate partner, the first step toward commercialization. Delta & Pine Land Co. has said it has every intention of commercializing it. "USDA's decision to license Terminator flies in the face of international public opinion and betrays the public trust," said RAFI research-director, Hope Shand. "Terminator technology has been universally condemned by civil society; banned by international agricultural research institutes; censured by United Nations bodies....and yet the U.S. Government has officially sanctioned commercialization of the technology by licensing it to one of the world's largest seed companies." Silvia Ribeiro, also of RAFI, added, "USDA's role in developing Terminator seeds is a disgraceful example of corporate welfare, involving a technology that is bad for farmers, dangerous for the environment, and disastrous for world food security." The USDA and Delta & Pine Land Company, at last count, own three Terminator patents. This is an egregious use of U.S. taxpayers' dollars to support corporate profits instead of public good, to advance the portfolios of restrictive corporate patents on life instead of improving the lives and livelihoods of U.S. farmers and the consumers they serve. Terminator technologies will not be a boon to U.S. farmers or struggling Third World farmers who are considered prime targets for Terminator seeds. It will make them ever more dependent on the corporate seed and chemical companies. Remember, once the genetic genie is out of the bottle, you can't put it back. If Terminator genes pollute surrounding fields and wild plants, the consequences will be far greater than the corn debacle. Neighboring farmer's crops may produce sterile seed. What if that farmer is a seed grower, growing seed stocks for the country's next crops? Multiply that scenario by tens of thousands of farmers. Can Terminator eventually terminate all seeding plants? No one, not a single corporation or government official, can assure you it will not. Remember Percy Schmeiser! Remember StarLink! Here is a rundown of Terminator patent holdings current to 2001: Syngenta (Novartis) has two Terminator patents. Syngenta (Zeneca) has four. Delta & Pine Land/USDA have three. BASF (ExSeed Genetics, LLC/Iowa State University) have one. DuPont (Pioneer Hi-Bred) has one. Pharmacia (Monsanto) have one. Cornell Research Foundation has one. Purdue Research Foundation (with support from USDA) has one. It is important to take stock of where we have been in the big food picture in recent years because it speaks volumes about where we might be going this year and beyond. In light of the September attacks on the U.S., it is critical that we pay attention to every aspect of our food supply system with unprecedented vigilance. The truth about security with respect to food and terrorism is simple, really: there is none. The Schmeiser decision, StarLink tragedy and Terminators all point to a future in which individuals will have little or no control over the content of the food they eat, and little control over production. If individuals are discouraged by court decisions from feeding themselves--if they abdicate all rights to control the ways and means of livelihood and food production, turning control over, like serfs, to their corporate lords, then we are lost. For years these Food Supply Updates have discussed the insanities of a food production system growing ever more concentrated, technology, oil and chemical dependent, biologically and chemically contaminated, remote from its nearly 300 million completely dependent consumers, and controlled, from seed to mouth, by a relative handful of very powerful people. The long list of cumulative observations and warnings voiced in this newsletter over the years (read earlier Food Supply Udates archived at www.arkinstitute.com ) could just as easily be viewed as an ongoing tutorial for those determined to ferret out our vulnerabilities. Our vulnerabilities can easily become someone else's opportunities. We must keep one watchful eye on our current food supply security system, a "blanket" riddled with holes, and the other on the ongoing, ominous shift in the control of food from the farmer and consumer, to governments and a few very powerful, multinational corporations. How might our new agricultural technologies be used against us? Is Terminator gene technology a potential terrorist weapon? What is the relationship between "X" government with "Y" corporation? What is their global agenda? See what I mean? It is a daunting task, but more than ever, our lives may depend on it. Stay tuned. Geri Guidetti The Ark Institute Note: This and all Food Supply Updates may be reprinted or distributed electronically, only in their entirety, including attributes and contact information. They must be offered free of charge. Edited versions must receive prior consent of author. Food Supply Updates are archived at The Ark Institute's web site at www.arkinstitute.com. The Ark Institute PO Box 142 Oxford, Ohio 45056 www.arkinstitute.com firstname.lastname@example.org
Oct 30, 2008 2:06am
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