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No Labor Day For Animals

No Labor Day For Animals

As many workers take this holiday Monday to relax, spend time with family, and enjoy the final days of summer, most spare no thought for those enslaved to human masters on farms around this country — those who get no holiday.

Historically, animals have made up the foundation of a nation’s work force.

They pulled our carts, our plows, our wagons, sleds and sledges. They carried us across great distances and into battle, many times suffering worse casualties than our own. They have been employed as our defenders and ultimately as our victims.

For non-human animals who have been dealt the brunt of human laziness, many times with maliciousness and extreme brutality, where is their holiday?

Although many tasks and chores once reserved for “beasts of burden” have now been relinquished to machines, animals of today still suffer the “employment” of humans, and with tremendous cruelty.

For egg-laying chickens who are bred to produce over 300 eggs a year, their job is an almost daily task with few days of rest and never a break from the extreme confinement of battery cages.

For dairy cows, who are expected to produce 6-7 gallons of milk a day – totaling, on average, 1,953 gallons of milk a year – not only must many of them endure abrasive milking machines, they must also deal with the grief of having their newborn calves ripped from them within days of giving birth.

The work hazards of being a dairy cow are chronic. Mastitis, a potentially fatal mammary gland infection that affects dairy cows, is extremely common. The swelling of the udders leads to pus actually being excreted into the milk Americans buy and consume — and it’s allowed. Milk containing 19% pus has been recorded on the market. In fact, all US states, excluding Hawaii, exceed the recommended industry standard of somatic cell count (pus).    

Lameness occurs often, due to Laminitis and filthy living conditions, such as being forced to stand in excrement and urine for long periods.

Animals such as dairy cows and egg-laying hens are not so much employed by farmers and agricultural corporations, since employment implies compensation and consent to agreed tasks. Animals viewed as food producers in this country could be called nothing other than slaves. They have virtually no rights and they are not compensated for their work other than to be provided with a place to live and food to eat. And these “compensations” may be torturous and scant at best. They did not agree to this way of life, but were instead born into it. 

The federal holiday of Labor Day came about due to President Grover Cleveland’s desire to quell growing hostility from the labor party in response to his ordering of troops to violently end the Pullman Strike in Illinois, which resulted in the killing of 13 strikers.

If those of us who truly care about animals were to stand up against the violent killing of 40 billion land animals every year, could we get a Labor Day for animals?

What would the world look like if animals were honored and respected?

What would the world look like if animal slavery were ended?


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6:01PM PDT on Oct 5, 2010

Yes, working animals are slaves and are treated like machines, just as it was with human slaves. Human slavery may have ended 'officially', but poverty and corruption ensure it is alive and well. There is a small chink of light for animal rights and that is our ability today to talk to each other, share information and organise ourselves to fight animal exploitation. What hinders the fight for animal rights is exclusiveness and infighting amongst like-minded people; we have to support each other and encourage those who are still discovering their own strengths, not criticise them for not doing enough and risk losing them from the cause. From an animal's point of view, every little bit helps.

8:24AM PDT on Oct 1, 2010

Noted and signed!

10:29AM PDT on Sep 25, 2010

Thanking Keegan & Sherry P. & Carole F.

2:51AM PDT on Sep 25, 2010

Thank you, Pat C.
If I can send a Green Star, would you get one!
(But I still do not know exactly how to do that I must improve my English).

1:50AM PDT on Sep 15, 2010

Yeah!!! Very sad to think that animals are never considered for anything and going on another article I have just read do not have any more worth than a chair, tells you everything. Very sad to think the human race thinks of animals they way they do. You see it with all the cruelty,abuse, neglect these beautiful creatures of our earth suffer everyday at our hands!!!
People need to stop talking and doing. The laws worldwide where animals are concerned is shocking. Actually there are no laws, just a waste of time. The Powers that be, need to act now!!!!

7:40PM PDT on Sep 10, 2010

Animals have no holidays! Humane treatment would be nice.

11:31AM PDT on Sep 10, 2010

i would hope there would be more kindness, love and respect for any living thing.

5:08PM PDT on Sep 9, 2010

After hearing about the horrors of egg laying factories, I only buy free range eggs on the RARE occasion that I buy eggs. I usually try to buy the eggs locally here in Maine from someone I know who raises chickens HUMANELY, not in a tiny space filled with countless other chickens.

3:46PM PDT on Sep 9, 2010

Non-human animals who "work" and have fun doing it asTaylor M. implies are well loved and cared for non-human animals. This is obviously not the case for non-human animals in factory farms who live in a state of misery and constant pain. The only way forward to end the barbaric slavery that goes on in factory farms is to go vegan. Vegan equals to good health and a sense of dignity for animals human and non-human alike.

3:06AM PDT on Sep 9, 2010


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