Government and media propaganda hoax continues as parents in Maryland hoodwinked and threatened into believing it is the law to vaccinate kids, error-strewn Fox news report relays disinformation
Paul Joseph Watson & Steve Watson Prison Planet Wednesday, November 14, 2007
News networks and state authorities are once again engaging in mass public deception by claiming that vaccines for children are mandated by law and that parents will go to jail if kids do not take their shots. In reality, there is no law that says you have to vaccinate your children and waiver forms for personal or religious exemptions are freely available.
A situation in Prince George's County, MD. has attracted media attention and once again provided the platform for a propaganda push that falsely implies it is the law for children to be vaccinated with mass produced big pharma shots that are often not stringently tested and have been linked with dangerous side-effects.
More than 2300 children in Prince George's County have been expelled from school for up to a month and a half because they have not received their shots for chicken pox and hepatitis B. This Saturday the parents of more than 1600 children have been ordered to attend Circuit court, where medical officials will be on standby to forcibly inject their children in a scenario befitting of a science fiction horror movie.
School officials have said the parents will receive a verbal reprimand from the judge and be ordered to have their children immunized in the courthouse. The students would then be allowed to return to school. Parents who refuse to comply will get fines and could be jailed for ten days.
"If the child is not here Saturday, then we will move on with the process, meaning that the PPWs and the counselors will put together the packet to take before the state's attorney's office, asking, requesting that criminal charges be implemented," Dr. Betty Despenza-Green, the chief of student services, said from the courthouse Tuesday.
"We can do this the easy way or we can do this the hard way, but it's going to have to get done. I'm willing to move forward with legal action." said State Attorney Glenn Ivey.
Letters ordering the parents to show up at Prince George's Circuit Court for a court hearing and a free vaccine have been issued with the warning "unexcused absences by your child may subject you to a criminal charge."
The report is completely riddled with errors and distortions from beginning to end.
The Fox reporter states "A new law was passed last year requiring children from 5th through to 10th grade to have the vaccine". This is completely untrue. The vaccine has been mandated by the state but there is no law in the U.S. that requires mandatory vaccinations of any kind. The report mentions the waiver forms only after claiming that it is the law. How can there be a waiver form that allows someone to break a law?
This is why the parents who do not comply will be charged not under vaccination laws (because there aren't any) but under truancy, neglect or child in need of supervision laws, which state that the parent is culpable after 30 days of a child's unexplained absence from school.
The school itself triggered the truancy violation by unfairly kicking the kids out of school, and failing to inform parents about vaccine waiver forms.
The news report quotes befuddled members of the public, who claim that kids not getting vaccinations endangers those that have had them. How on earth can that be the case if the vaccination is supposed to provide immunity against the disease? In reality, the vaccinated kids are more dangerous to others, considering the plethora of cases where vaccines have induced debilitating side-effects as levels of autism soar to unprecedented levels.
There is no law in America, aside from those applying to medical workers, that says you or your child has to take any vaccine whatsoever, no matter what any executive order, requirement, mandate or policy dictates, there is no situation where you can go to prison for refusing a government vaccine under the U.S. constitution and the law of the land.
As in the case of all other vaccines, executive orders and court mandates merely state that the vaccine is "recommended," yet the mass media drumbeat constantly conditions people to believe that if they don't take their shots they will be kicked out of school, arrested and thrown in jail. This trick will continue to hoodwink Americans into taking all manner of dangerous and untested vaccines, the number of which rises every year, until they realize that there is no law that forces them to take any vaccine.
Here is an example of a vaccine waiver form, this particular one is for Maryland, the state in question in this case, proving that enforced vaccination is not the law and that personal and religious objections are applicable.
The good news is that concerned parents across the U.S. are leading a nationwide revolt against unnecessary, untested and dangerous vaccines as CDC records show a growing amount of religious exemptions on vaccine forms.
Earlier this year we reported on the furor surrounding the HPV vaccine, which experts have slammed as untested and has continues to be linked to dangerous side-effects. A media propaganda campaign along with an executive order issued by Texas governor Rick Perry has had parents in Texas and other areas of the country fooled into believing the vaccine is now the law and young girls must take it. Merck Pharmaceuticals are capitalizing on this fraud by making obscene profits from a crony deal with Governor Rick Perry, while children are put at risk.
Vaccines and drugs that are not stringently tested and are instead foisted upon populations for the purposes of making obscene profits have a clear history of deadly consequences.
Consider the case of Bayer Pharmaceuticals, who deliberately dumped a vaccine that was known to be contaminated with AIDS virus on the European and Latin American market after it killed people in America. Thousands died from an action that the U.S. government allowed to happen through the FDA.
Peruse the plethora of examples where vaccines containing mercury, live HIV virus, live cancer and other horrors have wrought misery after victims were bullied into taking them by government mandates that they were deluded into thinking was the law.
The history alone, a legacy that led former director of the National Institute of Health Dr. James R. Shannon to state, "The only safe vaccine is one that is never used," implores us to stand up and expose this hoax and ensure that similar executive orders and mandates are not passed elsewhere in the country as a result of cynical greed driven lobbying and corporate crony payoffs.
More parents across the country should rally to denounce this development, which sets the pretext for the state to dictate the health of their children, as well as moving us closer to legislation which would allow Americans to be forcibly vaccinated at gunpoint against their will during a time of manufactured crisis, such as in the case of a human to human bird flu pandemic.
Listen to Alex Jones' analysis on this topic here.
I was awoken at 05.20 by a policeman putting his head though the sash window. As I walked off to the bathroom to make myself presentableish he jumped through the window to let his chums in.
It was very odd that the dogs were so relaxed, as though they knew those who came to raid, possibly I am being paranoid by speculating that the police have been in the house whilst I have been out but mention it to enable others to be more careful. They then started to search the house displaying a warrant issued by Hampshire magistrates which was to allow a search for the following;
"Computer based electronic devices, peripherals, magnetic or optical media (eg CD, USB, pen drives), Conventional Telecommunication devices (eg landline and mobile telephones, Blackberries), current critical conventional communication devices (eg fax machines, personal data assistants), documentation identifying communication opportunities or identities (eg top up vouchers, customer bills), evidence of association and support of animal rights extremism (eg literature, documents, photographs, diaries), financial documentation, (bank statements, receipts), evidence of travel (eg maps, satellite navigation".
In other words it was a fishing expedition, an attempt to intimidate and disrupt. I was NOT arrested and still have no idea why they burgled me and will be seeking legal advice.
Then 1946, 689, 1932, 956,1181, 1315 and 35 (there were a few other s but they escaped before I got their numbers) started a rather cursory search of the house with one weirdo filming me all the time. I regret to report that they really did not seem that bothered about helping me store various boxes of stuff and took just the computer, a few bank details, video and stills cameras.
Interestingly they took an old 20 year hard-drive which will cost them several thousand pounds to access and will then involve a police officer reading through hundreds of irrelevant files many of which consist of 10 year old essays on midwifery which have been printed off and been subjected to scrutiny on 2 previous occasions. Some unfortunate minion will have to spend hours locked in a dark room trawling through it all yet again, what a shame! Never mind, someone might throw him/her the odd donut once a day.
After an hour and a half they got really bored and went on their way. I then had to go to work.
Animal rights people are often accused of violence and "harassment" but I am not aware of any activist gaining entry to someone's home, stealing their possessions, detaining them for over an hour and filming them throughout!
In my case this was not an attempt to solve a crime, or to prevent one, this was an attack on me because of my beliefs and an affront to any notion that we live in a free country. Of course I am not at liberty to comment on any other raids or persons who were also attacked on 1st May 2007 suffice to say that I probably had the very least disruption judging from what I have heard especially concerning the disgraceful violence inflicted on Freshfields animal rescue and it was refreshing to see journalists questioning the police on this matter at the press conference.
NETCU press released the story of the raids at 06.30, 08.30 and 13.30 with a press conference at 11.00 at Netley presided by ACC Steve Watts (who squirmed quite a bit when asked about Freshfields) which appeared all over their website. The intention was clearly to stop people protesting against vivisection, to stop people from associating with those who protest against vivisection and to silence any criticism against animal experimentation.
Questions which must be asked of NETCU concerning these events are:
1. Who do they define as an "extremist"? Someone who hands out a leaflet saying circuses are cruel? Someone who stands quietly on a demonstration holding a banner? Someone who has written a polite letter against vivisection to a newspaper or to a laboratory?
2. What is "harassment"? Pro vivisectionists have written statements concerning other cases saying that they are "harassed" by the mere sight of a protestor or receiving a non-threatening letter criticising their vile deeds, is it appropriate for the police to even respond to this nonsense let alone actively encourage, indeed harass vivisectors to complain?
3. Why do those who support vivisection deserve more police protection than other members of the public? 7 years ago I was involved in a case(i.e accused with others of burglary resulting in a 3 week Crown Court trial) which involved an incident room and several hundred thousand pounds of public money because 10 pieces of scrap paper had been "stolen" from a laboratory bin. It is somewhat difficult to imagine anyone else walking into a police station reporting the exact same circumstances (this "crime" was reported 3 months later) and being treated with anything but contempt. Why do vivisectors get preferential treatment whilst "ordinary" folk are often ignored by the police when they need urgent assistance?
4. Why is NETCU so blatantly pro vivisection? Why does their links page include pro-vivisection pressure groups such as the Research Defence Society? Is it really appropriate for police officers to determine whether or not the practice of vivisection is right or wrong? What next, are NETCU going to make a political statement on for example abortion then hound the campaigners who have the opposite view to them, or will they wait to be told the "correct" political stance by government before daubing one side with the "extreme" label? We already know that NETCU consider it extreme to actually question the wisdom of NPower defiling Radley Lakes and poisoning the surrounding land, police have been all too willing to attack peaceful protestors protecting the environment, their homes and families. Is anyone who questions a corporation now an "extremist"?
5. ACC Adrian Leppard talked of the harassment and intimidation of vivisectors and their supporters. Animal rights people have been threatened and attacked. I was attacked by an off duty police officer whilst on a demonstration and sustained life threatening injuries being hospitalised for 3 weeks and this could well be the worst violence inflicted throughout the entire SHAC and Newchurch campaigns. There have been numerous injuries which required hospital treatment including broken bones. NETCU conveniently omits the threats of violence and actual violence against animal rights people. If harassment, intimidation and violence are issues then let us all have a full and frank debate taking BOTH sides into consideration. Let us all not forget that anything that has happened to humans is nothing compared to the 500 animals killed at HLS EVERY day, we regard each as an individual and as important as any human. An inquisitive mind may ask why the police have had to pay so much compensation to activists after blatant unlawful arrests, assaults and malicious prosecutions and why the police assume themselves to be above the law when they kidnap and hospitalise activists or sit back and watch as activists are beaten by security guards or hunt heavies?
6. Thugs who steal family members (usually much loved cats and dogs)and demand money with menaces often torturing the poor creature are given free rein to continue by the police who do very little to help the distraught victims of this despicable crime. If animal rights people can be charged with blackmail for campaigning peacefully against vivisection then why haven't these lowlife been charged with this very serious offence? In fact if campaigning is now considered to be "blackmail" the big question is; can the UK actually be considered a democracy? Surely the point of democracy is the ability of everyone who wishes to to question and protest via demonstrations, petitions, letter writing, etc against a real or perceived grievance? Are we now in a society which only allows government approved demonstrations such as the pro-test demos? Is it the case that if you as an individual or part of a group for example want to stop a school being closed and organise a campaign against the council that you too will eventually risk being charged with blackmail and potentially spend 14 years in prison?
7. Do NETCU seriously think that they are going to stop us?
I am sure that Superintendant Pearl will be keen to answer these queries and others. NETCU give their address as:
NETCU PO Box 525 Huntingdon Cambridgeshire PE29 9AL United Kingdom
Dec 15 - CHILDREN with high IQs are more likely to be vegetarians when they grow up, according to new research.
A British study of more them 8000 men and women aged 30 whose IQs had been measured when they were 10, showed that the higher the IQ, the greater the odds of being a vegetarian.
"People who are more intelligent as children, who will obviously keep that intelligence when they are 30, were more likely to say they are vegetarians at that age than those that were less intelligent, " said Dr Catherine Gale, an epidemiologist at the University of Southampton in England.
She said the findings, which are published online by the British Medical Journal, were consistent with other studies showing people who are more intelligent tend to eat a healthier diet and exercise more.
"There is quite a lot of evidence linking vegetarianism to a lower risk of heart disease. People who are vegetarians tend to have lower blood pressure, lower cholesterol levels and they do have a lower risk of dying from coronary heart disease," Dr Gale said.
For each 15-point rise in IQ scores in the study, the likelihood of being a vegetarian rose by 38 per cent. Even after adjusting to factors such as social class and education, the link was still consistent.
More than 33 per cent of the men and women in the study described themselves as vegetarians but said they ate white meat and fish. Just over 4 per cent were strict vegetarians and 2.5 per cent were vegans, who eat no animal products at all, including eggs and dairy.
1. The philosophy of animal rights is rational Explanation: It is not rational to discriminate arbitrarily. And discrimination against nonhuman animals is arbitrary. It is wrong to treat weaker human beings, especially those who are lacking in normal human intelligence, as "tools" or "renewable resources" or "models" or "commodities." It cannot be right, therefore, to treat other animals as if they were "tools," "models and the like, if their psychology is as rich as (or richer than) these humans. To think otherwise is irrational.
"To describe an animal as a physico-chemical system of extreme complexity is no doubt perfectly correct, except that it misses out on the 'animalness' of the animal."
-- E.F. Schumacher
2. The philosophy of animal rights is scientific Explanation: The philosophy of animal rights is respectful of our best science in general and evolutionary biology in particular. The latter teaches that, in Darwin's words, humans differ from many other animals "in degree," not in kind." Questions of line drawing to one side, it is obvious that the animals used in laboratories, raised for food, and hunted for pleasure or trapped for profit, for example, are our psychological kin. This is no fantasy, this is fact, proven by our best science.
"There is no fundamental difference between humans and the higher mammals in their mental faculties"
-- Charles Darwin
3. The philosophy of animal rights is unprejudiced Explanation: Racists are people who think that the members of their race are superior to the members of other races simply because the former belong to their (the "superior") race. Sexists believe that the members of their sex are superior to the members of the opposite sex simply because the former belong to their (the "superior") sex. Both racism and sexism are paradigms of unsupportable bigotry. There is no "superior" or "inferior" sex or race. Racial and sexual differences are biological, not moral, differences. The same is true of speciesism -- the view that members of the species Homo sapiens are superior to members of every other species simply because human beings belong to one's own (the "superior") species. For there is no "superior" species. To think otherwise is to be no less predjudiced than racists or sexists.
"If you can justify killing to eat meat, you can justify the conditions of the ghetto. I cannot justify either one."
-- Dick Gregory
4. The philosophy of animal rights is just Explanation: Justice is the highest principle of ethics. We are not to commit or permit injustice so that good may come, not to violate the rights of the few so that the many might benefit. Slavery allowed this. Child labor allowed this. Most examples of social injustice allow this. But not the philosophy of animal rights, whose highest principle is that of justice: No one has a right to benefit as a result of violating another's rights, whether that "other" is a human being or some other animal.
"The reasons for legal intervention in favor of children apply not less strongly to the case of those unfortunate slaves -- the (other) animals"
- John Stuart Mill
5. The philosophy of animal rights is compassionate Explanation: A full human life demands feelings of empathy and sympathy -- in a word, compassion -- for the victims of injustice -- whether the victims are humans or other animals. The philosophy of animal rights calls for, and its acceptance fosters the growth of, the virtue of compassion. This philosophy is, in Lincoln's workds, "the way of a whole human being."
"Compassion in action may be the glorious possibility that could protect our crowded, polluted planet ..."
-- Victoria Moran
6. The philosophy of animal rights is unselfish Explanation: The philosophy of animal rights demands a commitment to serve those who are weak and vulnerable -- those who, whether they are humans or other animals, lack the ability to speak for or defend themselves, and who are in need of protection against human greed and callousness. This philosophy requires this commitment, not because it is in our self-interest to give it, but because it is right to do so. This philosophy therefore calls for, and its acceptance fosters the growth of, unselfish service.
"We need a moral philosophy in which the concept of love, so rarely mentioned now by philosophers, can once again be made central."
-- Iris Murdoch
7. The philosophy of animal rights is individually fulfilling Explanation: All the great traditions in ethics, both secular and religious, emphasize the importance of four things: knowledge, justice, compassion, and autonomy. The philosophy of animal rights is no exception. This philosophy teaches that our choices should be based on knowledge, should be expressive of compassion and justice, and should be freely made. It is not easy to achieve these virtues, or to control the human inclinations toward greed and indifference. But a whole human life is imposssible without them. The philosophy of animal rights both calls for, and its acceptance fosters the growth of, individual self-fulfillment.
"Humaneness is not a dead external precept, but a living impulse from within; not self-sacrifice, but self-fulfillment."
-- Henry Salt
8. The philosophy of animal rights is socially progressive. Explanation: The greatest impediment to the flourishing of human society is the exploitation of other animals at human hands. This is true in the case of unhealthy diets, of the habitual reliance on the "whole animal model" in science, and of the many other forms animal exploitation takes. And it is no less true of education and advertising, for example, which help deaden the human psyche to the demands of reason, impartiality, compassion, and justice. In all these ways (and more), nations remain profoundly backward because they fail to serve the true interests of their citizens.
"The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be measured by the way its animals are treated."
-- Mahatma Gandhi
9. The philosophy of animal rights is environmentally wise. Explanation: The major cause of environmental degradation, including the greenhouse effect, water pollution, and the loss both of arable land and top soil, for example, can be traced to the exploitation of animals. This same pattern exists throughout the broad range of environmental problems, from acid rain and ocean dumping of toxic wastes, to air pollution and the destruction of natural habitat. In all these cases, to act to protect the affected animals (who are, after all, the first to suffer and die from these environmental ills), is to act to protect the earth.
"Until we establish a felt sense of kinship between our own species and those fellow mortals who share with us the sun and shadow of life on this agonized planet, there is no hope for other species, there is no hope for the environment, and there is no hope for ourselves."
-- Jon Wynne-Tyson
10. The philosophy of animal rights is peace-loving. Explanation: The fundamental demand of the philosophy of animal rights is to treat humans and other animals with respect. To do this requires that we not harm anyone just so that we ourselves or others might benefit. This philosophy therefore is totally opposed to military aggression. It is a philosophy of peace. But it is a philosophy that extends the demand for peace beyond the boundaries of our species. For there is a war being waged, every day, against countless millions of nonhuman animals. To stand truly for peace is to stand firmly against speciesism. It is wishful thinking to believe that there can be "peace in the world" if we fail to bring peace to our dealings with other animals.
"If by some miracle in all our struggle the earth is spared from nuclear holocaust, only justice to every living thing will save humankind."
Mundo Botanica, the maker of vegan mineral makeup, botanical skin care, hair care and natural fragrance products introduces its new Sevi line of Taklon cosmetic brushes, free from animal bristles.
Baltimore, MD, June 19, 2006 --(PR.COM)-- Mundo Botanica, the maker of vegan mineral makeup, botanical skin care, hair care and natural fragrance products introduces its new Sevi line of Taklon cosmetic brushes, free from animal bristles.
“We started making plan derived aromatherapy products free from parabens, synthetic fragrance, sulfates, formaldehyde releasing preservatives, artificial dyes in 1997, after not being able to find alternatives to help our ailing family member, Mundo – the earth loving German Shepherd. As our company grew, so did the customer demand for new as natural as it gets products, hence we started to add products for people such as Vegan skincare, mineral makeup, hair care and fragrances made with certified organic or wild-crafted raw materials.
Our motto has always been about making a difference, being honest and creating products that are based on our way of life -- straightforward, honest and cruelty-free. We always want to make sure that our footprints match this very motto. So when we needed cosmetic brushes for our mineral makeup line, we walked the talk and created a brush line that did not put even one animal in harm in the name of beauty,” said Sevi Kay, Founder and main formulator for Mundo Botanica.
The new MB cosmetic brush line is created with 100% Taklon fibers that offer the perfect combination of softness and delivery. Each brush was designed to pick up color well and deliver a smooth makeup application.
The cruelty-free brush line consists of five easy to use cosmetic tools:
Blush Brush: blush brush is very soft and allows you to apply your favorite blush with ease. Suggested retail price: $22.00
Flat Top Powder Brush: The flat versatile head offers the perfect palette for your natural minerals. Suggested retail price: $28.00
Angle Liner + Brow Brush: Lining your beautiful eyes should not be so painful. Create a seamless application with ease and you can even use this versatile brush on your eyebrows. Suggested retail price: $13.50
Eye Shadow + Highlighting Brush: The perfect eye shadow and highlighter brush for your collection -- it will help you create different looks with ease. Suggested retail price: $15.00
Detailing Brush: From detailing to smudging this is your multitasking buddy! Suggested retail price: $12.00
“Our company prides itself on putting the profits back into what goes inside the bottle, as well as our community, but this was one of our dream projects that we were determined to fulfill.” added Kay.
“We are proud to be the first mineral makeup company to create a truly cruelty free brush line like this” said Laura Williamson, Production Manager.
Mundo Botanica hopes that other natural makeup manufacturers join in and look into adding truly cruelty free tools to their lines, which will strengthen the cosmetic industry’s united voice that no being should be sacrificed in the name of beauty.
The Mundo Botanica 100% Taklon cosmetic brush line is one of the many Vegan products created with you, your loved ones and our ecosystem in mind.
The full cosmetic line is available online at www.sevicosmetics.com and can also be seen at the Natural Products Expo East 2006 held at the Baltimore Convention Center between October 5-7, produced by New Hope Natural Media.
As Wal-Mart begins bolster their selection, advocates worry about quality
The Associated Press
Updated: 6:09 p.m. ET May 30, 2006
SAN JUAN BAUTISTA, Calif. - Earthbound Farm’s fields of organic baby spinach and romaine lettuce are a living symbol of the organic food movement’s explosive growth in recent years.
What started two decades ago as a three-acre roadside farm in this valley 90 miles south of San Francisco has grown into the country’s largest grower of organic produce, with more than 100 types of fruits and vegetables on 28,000 acres in the U.S. and abroad.
Earthbound’s extraordinary growth is only the most visible example of how organic farming is changing. Small family farms created as an alternative to conventional agriculture are increasingly giving way to large-scale operations that harvest thousands of acres and market their produce nationwide.
And with Wal-Mart, Safeway, Albertson’s and other big supermarket chains expanding their organic offerings, the transformation may only be in its early stages.
“I don’t think (consumers) have any idea just how industrialized it’s becoming,” said Michael Pollan, a journalism professor at the University of California, Berkeley, and author of “The Omnivore’s Dilemma.” “There are some real downsides to organic farming scaling up to this extent.”
Pollan and others worry that the expansion of “Big Organic” will lower food quality, weaken standards and hurt small family farms. As organic goes mainstream, critics say, the movement loses touch with its roots as an eco-friendly system that offers a direct connection between consumers and the land where their food is grown.
Byron Albano, who handles marketing for Cuyama Orchards, his parents’ 210-acre organic apple orchard in Santa Barbara County, worries the entry of Wal-Mart and other supermarket chains will “lead to organic produce becoming a commodity with prices being dictated by those buyers.”
Other experts say the trend simply gives more consumers access to high-quality food and keeps prices down. It’s also good for the environment because fewer pesticides and fertilizers will pollute the air and water.
Despite its size, Earthbound Farm follows the same practices as smaller organic farms. It rotates crops to enrich the soil and avoid disease, doesn’t use chemical fertilizers or herbicides, and brings in syrphid flies and other beneficial insects to control pests.
Earthbound’s bagged salads and other organic products are now sold in more than 80 percent of U.S. supermarkets.
“Earthbound Farm’s mission is to bring the benefits of organic to as many people as possible,” said Myra Goodman, who founded the company with her husband Drew.
Organic food only makes up 2.5 percent of U.S. food sales, but it’s the fastest growing segment of the market. Sales reached nearly $14 billion last year, up from $6 billion five years earlier, according to the Organic Trade Association in Greenfield, Mass.
“Consumers see organic products as fitting in with a healthful life,” OTA spokeswoman Holly Givens said.
To meet growing demand from increasingly health conscious consumers and supermarket chains, farmers and ranchers are scaling up production and converting land to meet organic standards set by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
According to the USDA’s rules, organic produce must be grown without synthetic fertilizers or bioengineering and animals raised without antibiotics or growth hormones. A separate industry of government-approved organic certifiers has emerged to inspect farms and food handlers to ensure they conform. Some advocates don’t think the rules go far enough and are asking for a requirement that dairy cows be pasture-fed, not raised on feedlots.
The latest USDA survey in 2003 found that 2.2 million acres of farmland and ranchland had been certified organic, but that number is believed to have risen substantially since then, said Jake Lewin, director of marketing at California Certified Organic Farmers, one of the country’s largest certifiers.
Concerns about the increasing commercialism of organic farming reached a new level this spring when Wal-Mart announced it was joining other major grocery chains in ramping up organic sales.
Some small farmers worried that the world’s biggest retailer, notorious for squeezing suppliers to get the lowest price, would push them out of business.
Other advocates welcome the news, saying growers would benefit from rising demand and consumers would see prices drop. In the past, organic food has been associated with high-end retailers like the Whole Foods Market supermarket chain.
“It will bring organic to a whole new economic stratum that our farmers’ markets and natural food stores have been unable to reach,” said Bob Scowcroft, executive director of the Organic Farming Research Foundation in Santa Cruz, Calif.
But others worry that as more farmers shift to organic production to meet the needs of big supermarket chains, they will drive down food quality and weaken standards.
For example, some suppliers have been marketing organic soybeans and other products grown overseas, where it’s harder to determine whether farms meet U.S. standards, said Ronnie Cummins, national director of the Organic Consumers Association, in Finland, Minn.
“We’re heading for a consumer crisis over standards and the outsourcing of organic products from overseas,” Cummins said. “There will be continuing conflict between consumers, the USDA and companies not playing by the rules.”
UC Berkeley’s Pollan encourages environmentally minded consumers to shop at their local farmers’ market. When they buy organic products in supermarkets, those items must be refrigerated and often transported long distances, consuming as much fossil fuel as the conventional food system, he said.
“If organic means anything, it should mean that this food has a lighter environmental footprint,” Pollan said. “It’s really the supermarket and the supermarket shopper that drive the industrialization of organic.”
But Earthbound’s Myra Goodman said organic farmers can’t be expected to solve the problems of the U.S. food distribution system. Her company has a good relationship with Wal-Mart, whose organic expansion plans represent “the democratization of organics.”
“The vast majority of food is bought in supermarkets,” Goodman said. “Those people should have an organic choice.”
Robert Cohen proposes a way for vegans to get their daily B-12 without taking supplements:
Warning to my readers: Today's column contains explicit sexual themes. If you embarrass easily, or if your religious, moral, or ethical beliefs prevent you from reading material of a sexual nature, please, read no more. In today's commentary, I discuss the science of sex in as dignified and delightful a manner as I am able, sometimes using a bit of humor, but continuously recognizing that such concepts may be offensive to some people, so please, if you find such discussion inappropriate, stop reading immediately. If you are easily offended by material of a sexual nature, please exercise the use of your "back" button now.
Without embarrassment, this is a subject that needs to be discussed. I am past the point of being disgusted by know-it-all vegetarian and vegan nutritionists and dieticians who believe that one must take artificial supplements derived from cow intestines, containing Vitamin B-12 in order to maintain good health. The fact that vegans have B-12 in their bloodstreams is evidence enough that we're somehow obtaining it. Low dose, high dose, it really doesn't matter. Fact is that we need just a few micrograms of B-12, and a five-year supply is stored in the average human liver. That fact alone negates the scare tactics of those who criticize the pure vegan diet, or dispense supplements as a part of their self-sustaining practices.
Vegan blood contains some B-12. In that, there is no debate. Vegan semen and vaginal secretions contain many times more Vitamin B-12 than does human blood.
The solution? Make love. Enjoy oral sex. The ingestion of sexual body secretions from your lover will insure good health for you.
In addition to the usual frogs, snails, and puppy dogs tails, what are little boys made of? What exactly is in semen?
Ten percent of semen consists of sperm cells, up to 500 million per ejaculate. It takes only one sperm cell to fertilize an egg. I often wonder why the other 499,999 are necessary.
What constitutes the other 90% of semen? In addition to enormous amounts of vitamins, enzymes, and amino acids, semen contains up to 20 times the level of Vitamin B-12 as does human blood serum. Vaginal fluids contain a similar makeup, rich in B-12.
Scientists knew this nearly 20 years ago, but had no socially-tactful way to transmit this information to the lay person. (Yeah, I know, you love my use of the English language).
As early as March of 1984, Carmel Bernstein and a team of investigators published evidence in the Journal of Clinical Investigations (73;3, Vitamin B-12 in human seminal plasma) revealing that blood has one-tenth the amount of B-12 as does male semen. Eight years later, the Scandanavian Journal of Clinical Laboratory Investigations (Hansen, 1992 Nov;52(7):647-52) determined that B-12 levels in human semen run as high as 20 times that of blood. Similar amounts of B-12 have been found in vaginal secretions.
Second and final warning. For those of you unwilling or unable to discuss or partake in the loving art of cunnilingus or fellatio, read no more. What follows is descriptive.
Many people have an aversion to oral sex because of the taste or smell. Can that often be justified? Absolutely.
Long ago, in the days before artificial modern-day perfumes and deodorants were used to mask human odors, people enjoyed body smells. Don Juan would keep handkerchiefs under his armpits and wave them in front of ladies' noses. That action was designed to bring them to arousal from his own natural essences and bouquet which contained pheromones, chemicals containing natural sexual messengers that communicate instinctual feelings shared by all mammals. Truth revealed: Why does a male dog mount and hump a human female leg, thrusting his pelvis as if in the act of copulation? It's not because he smells your puppy, ladies. It's because he smells your very own pheromones which trigger a genetically pre-determined fixed action pattern in Fido's brain.
On to the olfactory bouquet from your own essences.
Dairy farmers know that if their cows eat onions or garlic less than 30 minutes before milking, those powerfully offensive smells will be included in their body secretions which are then transmitted to their milk. A similar event occurs with human body fluids. You are what you eat. Deer know when meat-eating humans walk into the woods. Vegans have a way with denizens of the forest. Vegans do not eat other living creatures. Deer can tell by human smells. So can dogs and other mammals possessing keener olfactory senses than humans.
For many years, non dairy-using Japanese people called Americans "butter-people," for the rancid smell that would seep out of our pores. I can smell butter people. I am amazed at the number of people calling themselves vegan who are actually dairy users. I can smell the aftermath of pizza 24 hours after a vegan eats one by his or her offensive odor. The mozzarella turns rancid from within. Its smell lingers on a user's breath. Milk the cow and get the garlic or onion milk. Milk the human and get Kentucky-fried chicken essence.
Humans who eat meat ingest large amounts of sulfur-based amino acids. That is one of the qualities of meat protein. The sulfur becomes a part of their own smell and taste. Eat large amounts of methionine and you'll taste quite rancid.
I have met many vegans who relate anecdotal evidence of how other vegans make better lovers because they "taste better." Where are Masters and Johnson when you need them? The good that comes from this column will result in two lovers enjoying a large meal of fresh pineapple before their next bout of foreplay. Gourmets and epicurians of the world, unite. Your next dose of love will contain the best vitamin pill in the world. Was it Mary Poppins who sang, "Just a spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down"?
Remember, for B-12, make love, and do so with good taste.
8 year-old Ahmad Sharif lost his eyesight and right arm after being caught in crossfire and 3 year-old Alaa Khalid Hamdan was seriously injured when a U.S. tank opened fire on her family's home. Their fathers join them to tell their stories and two activists speak about their efforts to bring the children to the U.S. for medical treatment. We turn to the war in Iraq. It has now been over three years since President Bush ordered the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq. At the time he vowed to make every effort to spare innocent lives and that the U.S. forces would go to Iraq with respect for its citizens, its civilization and the country's religions.
But three years later Iraq is a devastated country. Tens of thousands - if not hundreds of thousands — of Iraqis have been killed and the violence is only increasing. The actual death toll among Iraqis may never be known. In 2004, the British medical journal Lancet estimated 100,000 Iraqis had died since the war began.
Many of those killed have been children. Today, to mark the beginning of the fourth year of the Iraq war, we are going to hear about two Iraqi children who suffered near life-threatening injuries.
We speak with Ahmad Sharif and his father, Jabbar Sharif. Two and a half years ago Ahmad lost his eyesight and right arm after being caught in crossfire. He first came to the United States last year and received prosthetic eyes and an arm. He was brought to this country by Elissa Montanti, founder of the Global Medical Relief Fund. Ahmad and Jabbar They are translated by Hesham El-Meligy, an advisor to the Global Medical Relief Fund
We also speak with Khalid Hamdan Abd who brought his three-year-old daughter Alaa to the United States for medical treatment. Last May a U.S. tank opened fire on their home in the town of Al Qaim near the Syrian border. Two of Khalid's sons died as did three of his cousins. The infant Alaa was seriously injured.
Thanks to the organization No More Victims, she recently had surgery in the United States to reconstruct her abdominal wall. She also underwent eye surgery to remove shrapnel and to reattach her retina. According to her surgeon she would have been blinded for life if she had not undergone the surgery. We also speak with Cole Miller a Hollywood screenwriter and founder of NoMoreVictims.org. They are also translated by Hesham El-Meligy, an advisor to the Global Medical Relief Fund. AMY GOODMAN: We'll turn to Alaa and her father in a few minutes, but we begin with an interview I did on Friday with another Iraqi child seriously wounded in the war.
AMY GOODMAN: Today, we are joined by Ahmad Sharif — he's eight years old — and his father, Jabbar Sharif. Two-and-a-half years ago, Ahmad lost his eyesight and right arm after being caught in crossfire. He first came to the United States last year, received prosthetic eyes and an arm. He was brought to this country by the group, Global Medical Relief Fund. We are joined by the group's founder, Elissa Montanti, and the father and Ahmad will be translated by Hesham El-Meligy, who is an advisor to the Global Medical Relief Fund. And we welcome you all to Democracy Now!
HESHAM EL-MELIGY: Thank you, Amy.
ELISSA MONTANTI: Thank you.
AMY GOODMAN: Elissa, tell us about this project, how you are helping people, and particularly, tell us about Ahmad.
ELISSA MONTANTI: Right. It was founded, Global, in 1997, when I started helping Bosnian children, and most recently, 2003, when I went into Iraq to go to the hospitals and visit, you know, the families of these children. I was just overwhelmed with the devastation. I immediately started to compile lists of children that needed help. And the Shriners Children Hospital provided the prosthetics for all the children I bring from these countries. So I started bringing one boy, which took a year later. Long story short, I have helped eight children in the past two years. And Ahmad's story is just a tragedy. They all are. But his case came to me actually through the military. And it was too late to save his eyes. And Columbia Presbyterian helped and through them we were able to get him prosthetics.
AMY GOODMAN: Hesham, can you describe what happened? And then, if you would translate for Jabbar and Ahmad.
HESHAM EL-MELIGY: Sure. As you said, two-and-a-half years ago Ahmad was coming back from his school, accompanied by another student, his friend, walking to home. They live in Sadr City in Baghdad. In front of their house, there was an exchange of weapons for amnesty: If you give up your weapon, we are not going to charge you with anything. American troops were there. Iraqi troops were there, the new government. And Iyad Allawi was visiting this location to oversee the exchange. So a group of people — I don't know what, insurgents, terrorists, whatever you want to call them — came and started firing, wanting to assassinate Iyad Allawi. So American troops responded to the fire indiscriminately, just shooting everywhere.
So, Ahmad started running to hide somewhere with his friend, and when the firefight stopped, he started running home, which was close. Unfortunately, all of a sudden, a big boom happened. It turned out to be a tank shell fired from an American tank, hit Ahmad directly in his right arm and blew it off to the extent that some of the bones of this arm were glued to the body of the other child. But Ahmad kind of screened him, so he was fine from that accident. Also, what happened is a grave wound to Ahmad's face, as you can see, this is much better now, and also led to his being blind, severe detachment to the retinas beyond repair.
AMY GOODMAN: Ahmad, do you remember what happened to you?
AHMAD SHARIF: (translated) He said, all I remember is the big bang, and I woke up in the hospital.
AMY GOODMAN: And Jabbar Sharif, where were you at the time?
JABBAR SHARIF: (translated) It was at that time in Ramadan, and we were preparing the breaking the fast meal. And it was about 4:00 or 5:00 p.m. All of a sudden, we heard this big explosion. And the neighbors knocked on the door, saying that Ahmad got hit, and we’re taking him to the hospital.
AMY GOODMAN: So you got him to the hospital. How did you end up here in the United States?
JABBAR SHARIF: (translated) His older son, Asad, his late son, Asad, who died — actually what happened is Sad is the one that came last year with Ahmad in last April —
AMY GOODMAN: How old is he?
HESHAM EL-MELIGY: He was 28. So they stayed here for like two months until Ahmad finished his prosthetics and other stuff. And he's the one who applied for medical help and assistance. So, he got introduced to Elissa through an Iraqi doctor also, who heard about her activities here with the Iraqi children. So what happened, when they returned back in, I think, in June and then they were preparing to come back here this December, the father was driving the car from Baghdad to Nasiriyah, where they were trying to move. A car accident happened, Asad died. And Ahmad actually lost his spleen in that accident also.
AMY GOODMAN: Ahmad, how are you getting around without your arm?
AHMAD SHARIF: (translated) Without a prosthetic arm or the regular arm, of course, I can’t do anything. But when he was fitted with the prosthetic arm, he was so happy, and he started clapping, actually.
AMY GOODMAN: How do you feel being in the United States?
AHMAD SHARIF: (translated) I am very grateful to Elissa and that she is helping me and giving me a prosthetic arm so I can, you know, search my way around.
AMY GOODMAN: What are the things that make you happy now, Ahmad?
AHMAD SHARIF: (translated) The most – the best time here that I do is staying with Elissa. He loves her; he is in love with Elissa. And she also is very caring of him. She is a magnificent woman.
AMY GOODMAN: And how long are you staying here in the United States, Jabbar Sharif?
JABBAR SHARIF: (translated) As long as it takes for the medication, which is about at least two months.
AMY GOODMAN: Do you have a message, Ahmad, that you would like to share with children in the United States, other kids your age?
AHMAD SHARIF: (translated) He, of course, he would like to meet some of them. But, unfortunately, he cannot see anything. I mean, he just loves to play. He is like a beacon of love.
AMY GOODMAN: Elissa, your trip now, where does Ahmad and his father, Jabbar Sharif, where do they stay and what are the plans?
ELISSA MONTANTI: This is another story. I have had a facility since 2000 under the archdiocese, given to me by Catholic charities, which was once an orphanage, and it was an empty shell. It was an infirmary. And I was in People magazine and went – no — that was Parade back then. And I went to IKEA and Home Depot and asked if they could refurbish, and they did, which is wonderful. But now, I'm being asked to leave, because they want a local program in there. And quite frankly, it is very upsetting, because there's issues with the daycare, mothers who do not like my program. I have brought 52 children — 51. And you know, it’s just — the resistance because of where they come from — Bosnia, Africa, the tsunami, Indonesia, and now Iraq. So I need to leave, and I'm in search of a new home actually for the children. However, I am confident I will find something.
AMY GOODMAN: Where is this home?
ELISSA MONTANTI: In Staten Island.
AMY GOODMAN: And you are looking for something in Staten Island?
ELISSA MONTANTI: Yeah. But what — you know, we’re really a small charity, but what makes it so wonderful is that I have the Shriners Hospital, Columbia Presbyterian, and it’s a very personal charity. It’s not 9:00 to 5:00 Monday through Friday. Hesham has joined forces with me, when I needed an interpreter. And now he's like, you know, my side, my right hand. But there are — my waiting list is about 50 children from Iraq. And I have a Pakistani child coming next week. And I'm overwhelmed, because there are so many children that need help.
AMY GOODMAN: How can people reach you?
ELISSA MONTANTI: They could reach us by our website or our toll-free number (1-866-734-4673). Our website is www.globmed.org.
AMY GOODMAN: For “Global Medicine.”
HESHAM EL-MELIGY: Without the “e,” the globe without the “e”.
ELISSA MONTANTI: Without the “e.” Kanen, the first boy I helped, who is now my adopted son from Bosnia, who is a triple amputee, he designs and manages the website. So it’s back when we designed it that the “e” came out. But anyway, there are so many children. And the need is great. And every child I bring has a story. Little Dalal, who was here, lost her home, her eight-year-old brother. And, you know, it is just heart-wrenching. And the sad thing is that as generous as Americans are, and they are, there is also the other face, which is so sad, so, so sad, and we need to pray.
HESHAM EL-MELIGY: We had another kid, a little Iraqi girl, six years old. Her name is Dalal. She's from Basra. In the very beginning of the war, March 30 of 2003, her house was hit by a missile from an American fighter jet, and destroyed the house, killed her brother and injured her mother. And, of course, she lost her leg, her right leg in that accident. She was only three years old at the time. She just left a few days ago. And, I mean, if you see these children and everything on the website, actually, there's a lot of photos, a lot of stories. We need the help to be able to continue to do such work.
AMY GOODMAN: I wanted to end with Jabbar Sharif. Are you afraid to return to Iraq now?
JABBAR SHARIF: (translated) The southern part of Iraq is a little more stable than Baghdad and the north. So, they are actually moving from Baghdad to Nasiriyah in the south, seeking, you know, better —
AMY GOODMAN: And Ahmad, as we end this interview, do you have advice for children who have been hurt like you have? Maybe a story to tell.
AHMAD SHARIF: (translated) He says, stay strong.
ELISSA MONTANTI: He’s such an inspiration.
HESHAM EL-MELIGY: Yes.
AMY GOODMAN: Well, thank you very much for coming to our studios.
ELISSA MONTANTI: Thank you very much.
HESHAM EL-MELIGY: Thank you very much.
AMY GOODMAN: Ahmad Sharif, eight years old, his father Jabbar Sharif, and Elissa Montanti of Global Medicine. This is Democracy Now! It's called Global Medical Relief Fund. When we come back, three-year-old Alaa joins us.
AMY GOODMAN: We continue to look at the impact of the invasion and occupation on Iraqi children. We turn now to three-year-old, Alaa Khalid Hamdan. She and her father also joined us in our studio on Friday.
AMY GOODMAN: Today, we’re joined by Khalid Hamdan Abd and his three-year-old daughter Alaa. Last May, a U.S. tank opened fire on their home in the town of Al Qaim near the Syrian border. Two of Khalid’s sons died, as did three of his cousins. The infant, Alaa, was seriously injured. Thanks to the organization No More Victims, she recently had surgery in the United States to reconstruct her abdominal wall. She also underwent eye surgery to remove shrapnel and to reattach her retina. According to her surgeon, she would have been blinded for life if she hadn’t undergone the surgery. Cole Miller also joins us, a Hollywood screenwriter and founder of nomorevictims.org. Our guests will be translated by Hesham El-Meligy, an advisor to the Global Medical Relief Fund. We welcome you all to Democracy Now!
COLE MILLER: Thanks, Amy.
AMY GOODMAN: Can you start by talking about No More Victims and this family?
COLE MILLER: Well, No More Victims, I founded it back in September 2002, in anticipation of the invasion, because I wanted to show the human face of collateral damage. And we went over, we originally tried to go over and get a girl named Israa Abdul Amir out prior to the invasion. I then — I felt that once we put these projects together and we began bringing children over, that other communities would want to get involved and bring children themselves.
So I started to acquire medical reports. One of those medical reports was for Alaa Khalid. And then what I thought happened would happen did happen. A 22-year-old law student with two children of her own from central Florida contacted me, saying she wanted to help a child, that if one of her children was in the situation that these children are in, she would want someone to help her and to help her child. So I then sent her the medical reports, and she went out and pounded on doors and hospitals and doctors' offices and got the medical care set up in her community, and then I organized the process of getting her here. And so, a 22-year-old law student with no resources to speak of, no time and two children, actually saved this child's eyesight. And that's something the communities in the United States can actually do.
AMY GOODMAN: And what actually did the doctors do on her eye? What was in her eye?
COLE MILLER: Well, she had 17 pieces of micro-shrapnel in one eye and 11 pieces of micro-shrapnel in the other eye, and a detached retina. She was blind when she got here. She had sensitivity to light only in one eye. And Dr. Saad Shaikh, a very gifted retinal surgeon, removed the micro-shrapnel. There were a number of surgeries that took many hours, and it was all donated care. And we’re very, very grateful to him. He extracted the micro-shrapnel, reattached the retina, and then she convalesced for a period of about three weeks with plastic goggles taped over her eyes. Afterwards, about a week later, they took the goggles off, and they put on a pair of glasses, and she stood up and walked over and picked up a toy.
AMY GOODMAN: Cole Miller is with us, as is Khalid Hamdan Abd and his daughter, Alaa, who you hear is sitting on the chair. Welcome to Democracy Now! Can you talk about what happened and when it happened?
KHALID HAMDAN ABD: (translated) The accident happened on March 5, 2005. Last year. He was at work at this time, and they heard about the explosion that happened, and they ran home. They were a close distance to home. And they found the injuries and fatalities that happened.
AMY GOODMAN: Alaa’s playing with a little clock.
KHALID HAMDAN ABD: (translated) There were five deaths in the family, on two families, him and his brother's, and also nine injured, including Alaa with her eyes injured and the shrapnel filling her face also.
AMY GOODMAN: So, how did you make the trip to this country? And do you know who attacked your family?
KHALID HAMDAN ABD: (translated) It's most probably it was a tank shell that hit the house, because it was a long distance and there was no air – I mean, fighter jets flying at this time. And he doesn't know for sure but, you know, the accident itself made him busy with the fatalities.
AMY GOODMAN: And what are your thoughts, being in this country now, in the United States?
KHALID HAMDAN ABD: (translated) I'm pleased and praise be to God that I was able to come here and treat Alaa, my daughter, and I’m just like any other father who cares about his children, and that's why – that’s the most important thing to him.
AMY GOODMAN: Are you afraid to return to Al Qaim now?
KHALID HAMDAN ABD: (translated) It is kind of scary to go back, because even if you are just driving your car peacefully in the street, you might be shot by the American troops for no reason. So it is not easy to live there, and also going back is scary.
AMY GOODMAN: And does Alaa understand what happened to her?
KHALID HAMDAN ABD: (translated) Yes, she understands. She knows that the reason of the accident is American bomb that hit her and killed her brother and, you know, similar things.
AMY GOODMAN: And how do you feel that it’s an American bomb that killed your children and American doctors who are helping your surviving child heal?
KHALID HAMDAN ABD: (translated) When he was first told by this Iraqi doctor that they are going to try to get him out of the country for treatment, he said he thought it's going to be an Arab country, so he said, “Okay.” But when they told him it's America, he refused. And they told him again for three times, and he refuses; he doesn't want to go, until somebody told him that the people of America, the population, are different, different from the army. They are not the same. So, on that basis, he accepted to come here.
AMY GOODMAN: Have a safe trip home.
KHALID HAMDAN ABD: (translated) Thank you very much.
COLE MILLER: Amy, if I could say briefly, there are tens of thousands of children who have been injured in this war, and many of those children, their injuries are beyond medical remedy. But one other thing that we’re doing is we’re gathering up the medical reports and also the facts behind how they were injured, and groups in the United States are now organizing to provide advocacy for these children. There is a group in South Carolina that is now organizing, and they are going to be asking questions of the Pentagon. There is a little girl named Ayad, who picked up a cluster bomb in Baghdad. She was permanently blinded. There is no medical remedy. But they are now raising money in their communities and their churches, at their offices, and they are finding out the facts for themselves. Since we are not getting it through the mainstream media, they’re finding out the human stories of this war, and they are going to be advocating for these children. And if anyone wants to participate, please contact me. You can get to me through my website, which is www.nomorevictims.org, or send me an e-mail. I got hacked the other day, so not all the links work, but it will be up and working perfectly soon. But you can also contact me via my e-mail address, which is email@example.com.
AMY GOODMAN: Cole Miller, Khalid Hamdan Abd, and his daughter, Alaa. They were translated by Hesham El-Meligy. Again that group, nomorevictims.org, and the group that brought Ahmad Sharif to this country is Global Medical Relief. That’s globmed.org. And we’ll link to those groups on our website at democracynow.org .
Chicken and Fish: No Reason to Dismiss Their Plight
A reason for the public not considering this is, among many other factors, that we aren’t talking about mammals, but chicken and other birds. In fact, when talking about vegetarianism the public sometimes understand “red meat”. Disregarding other animals such as chicken or fish is something common. Perhaps animal rights campaigners are partially responsible for this, since we sometimes ignore or forget the fishes and birds when fighting for other animals.
This would be problematic in whatever circumstance, but it seems particularly shocking since they are precisely the ones that are killed by humans in higher numbers. We can see it by taking a look at the figures below. The table indicates the relative proportion between the number of lives that we take if we choose to eat the same weight of one animal product or another.
There is a difference in the number of animals that are killed for animal products. But, in any case, the most important thing to remember is that we can choose a vegetarian diet and choose food that doesn’t require us to kill anyone. Those who maintain that it’s important to save as many animals as we can will certainly agree with us at this point. This is in fact a common viewpoint. In the case of humans it is usually believed that is better to save the lives of many than to save the lives of just a few. Those who defend this view must hold a similar stance in the case of other animals. On the other hand, there are others who think that it doesn’t matter whether the animals who are killed are more or less: they will claim that the problem is that if something is wrong -because it harms someone- it shouldn’t be carried out, regardless of how many lives are affected. Those who defend this view will also agree with the conclusion we have reached: since a vegetarian diet avoids killing anyone as well. Our intention here is not to defend that eating certain animals is not as bad as eating others, but rather that many animals who are often dismissed should be taken into account as any others may be. Please note that by vegetarian we mean an animal-free diet (vegan diet) in the widest sense of the term, which means taking into account that eggs and milk also entail killing animals and causing suffering to animals.
How the calculations were made:
First of all, it is important to bear in mind that this calculus comes out of a generalisation which has simplified extremely what in fact is a very complex phenomenon. We are offering here just a general exposition of what the proportions may be under certain circumstances, regardless of the blurriness of the numbers we have drawn. Please mind that this is hardly avoidable in an exposition such as this.
We have then used milk as the index, so all numbers are in comparison to milk.
We have selected Sweden as the source for this study, but we believe that this can indicate more or less what the situation may be in other Western countries. We found the numbers above by dividing the total number of animals from a certain species that are killed in Sweden every year with the approximate amount of flesh they got from the animals. The information about the eggs is based on information from the egg producers on the average number of eggs that one Swedish hen normally produces during her life. We have also included all the young male chickens that are killed because they don’t produce eggs. The number of fishes is calculated from an approximate average weight of the two species of animals that were selected (although there are obviously variations between individuals).
Under the label “cows” we have also included calves, bullocks and bulls as well as adult cows who are killed when their milk production decreases. We have included in this calculus all these animals and not only cows since in order to obtain milk it is necessary to bring calves to life, which may be killed when they are very young or when they are older. At this point the proportion between milk and cow flesh is based upon the information that two thirds of the incomes of the cattle industry come from selling the milk and only one third from sending the animals to slaughter. We have then considered two thirds of the cattle to be killed because of the milk, and one third because of the flesh (we have not considered the production of leather in this calculation since we have focused on food production). Of course these numbers are very relative, since they depend on the particular prices of cow flesh and milk in Sweden in 2004. According to this, those two numbers (“milk” and “cows&rdquo appear to be the more unstable ones of the table, although they can nevertheless be informative to a certain extent.
It is important to take into account that the statistics only include the number of animals that are killed directly in the production, we have not included the number of animals that are killed because of the food the animals are fed or because of the environmental aspects of production. (If this was the case, many other animals should be counted: apart from the fishes, lots of other animals are trapped in nets, and countless are killed to to fed those that are grown in barns).
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