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'Factory Farms' Aren't Farms: They Are Concentration Camps for Animals


Business  (tags: abuse, americans, business, consumers, corporate, corruption, dishonesty, economy, farming, finance, government, investments, money, politics, society, sustainabledevelopment )

Kit
- 495 days ago - commondreams.org
The freedom-busting terrorists in this fight are not those who reveal the abuse, but the soulless factory-farm profiteers in the corporate suites and the cynical lawmakers who serve them.



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Kit B. (276)
Thursday April 25, 2013, 11:52 am
Image courtesy Animal Blawg


'Factory Farms' Aren't Farms: They Are Concentration Camps for Animals

In most state legislatures today, "off the wall" has become the political center, and bizarre bills are no longer unusual.

Still, it seems strange that legislators in so many states — including Arkansas, California, Florida, Indiana, Missouri, Ohio and Vermont — have simultaneously been pushing "ag-gag" bills that are not merely outrageous, but downright un-American. Each is intended to quash free speech by banning journalists, whistleblowers, workers and other citizens from exposing illegal, abusive or unethical treatment of animals that are incarcerated in the factory feeding operations of huge corporations.

Our nation's founders mounted a revolution to establish our free-press and free-speech rights, enshrining them in the First Amendment to ensure the free exchange of ideas — even when the Powers That Be didn't like the message that such freedoms produce. In fact, the Founders knew from hard experience that the protection of those freedoms was especially essential when the Powers That Be have something they're eager to hide from the citizenry.

Yet here comes a mess of so-called "conservatives" attempting to use state government to outlaw messengers who shine a light on corporate wrongdoing — turning those who expose crimes into criminals. Even kookier, these repressive laws declare that truth-tellers who so much as annoy or embarrass the corporate owner of the animal factory are guilty of "an act of terrorism."

Oddly, each of these state proposals is practically identical, even including much of the same wording. That's because, unbeknownst to the public and other legislators, the bills don't originate from the state lawmakers who introduce them. Instead, they come from a Washington-based corporate front group named ALEC — the American Legislative Exchange Council.

This infamous "bill mill" periodically convenes its corporate funders to write model bills that serve their special interests. Then ALEC farms out bills to its trusted cadre of state lawmakers across the country, who introduce them as their own, not mentioning the corporate powers behind them.

The secretive ALEC network produced the model ag-gag bill in 2002 and began shipping it from state to state under the ominous tile, "Animal and Ecological Terrorism Act."

The freedom-busting terrorists in this fight are not those who reveal the abuse, but the soulless factory-farm profiteers in the corporate suites and the cynical lawmakers who serve them.

Actually, factory farms are not farms at all. They are corporate-run concentration camps for pigs, cows, chickens, turkeys and other food animals.

Held in corporate confinement, these creatures of nature are denied any contact with their natural world, instead being crammed by the thousands into concrete-and-metal buildings, where they are locked in torturously tiny cages for the duration of their so-called "life" — which is nasty, brutish and short. All this merely so food giants like Tyson Foods, Smithfield and Borden can grab fatter and quicker profits. Their abusive industrial system is so disgusting that America's consumers would gag at the sight of it.

That's why they're desperate to keep you from knowing what goes on inside. Nonetheless, word has been getting out, as animal rights advocates, consumer groups, reporters, unions and others have exposed some of the realities of animal confinement to the public, including showing wretch-inducing photos and videos. Rather than cleaning up their act, however, the industrial food powers have simply doubled down on disgusting by getting industry-funded state legislators to go after anyone who reveals their ugly secrets.

Their attack on whistleblowers will gag you almost as badly as viewing the gross animal abuse. But, really, who do they think they're fooling? If they have to pass a law that says, "Don't look here," people will naturally wonder what they're hiding — and will demand to see it and change it. Six states have passed ag-gag laws, and six more are presently moving toward passage. To see what your legislature is doing — and to join the fight to stop factory farming everywhere — go to humanesociety.org.
*************

By: Jim HIghtower | Common Dreams |
 

Kathy B. (98)
Thursday April 25, 2013, 12:44 pm
I always wondered how they could call animals confined to small spaces and crammed together 'farming'. It is most assuredly not my idea of farming.

I'm glad that it now has a more proper name!
 

Sue Matheson (70)
Thursday April 25, 2013, 1:08 pm
I agree with this.
 

Tammy Baxter (9)
Thursday April 25, 2013, 4:23 pm
thank you
 

JL A. (275)
Thursday April 25, 2013, 4:36 pm
As always, follow the money provides the answer
 

Carmen S. (611)
Thursday April 25, 2013, 5:36 pm
no use for factory farms, thanks Kit
 

Helen Porter (40)
Thursday April 25, 2013, 10:43 pm
meat is chemicals and pain

I sure don't want such to be part of my body!
 

Carlene V. (203)
Friday April 26, 2013, 5:20 am
Factory farms are horrific places where animals die horrific deaths. It is important that these so called farms are brought to our attention so we can petition and boycott them, only then things might change.
 

Ben Oscarsito (335)
Friday April 26, 2013, 6:05 am
Yes, indeed. And, some people wonder why I became a vegetarian in 1975...
 

Dandelion G. (386)
Friday April 26, 2013, 8:21 am
The title says it all.....

The pain and suffering of these animals is going into the flesh of their bodies that the people then consume. If we keep eating pain and suffering we become pain and suffering.
 

Pat A. (117)
Friday April 26, 2013, 8:21 am
It is very alarming to see that six states have passed Ag-Gag laws and six more are moving towards doing so - and in The Land of The Free! I don't think the free are so free any more, sadly. Green star and my thanks for posting this news item.
 

Gene Jacobson (251)
Friday April 26, 2013, 8:32 am
"Actually, factory farms are not farms at all. They are corporate-run concentration camps for pigs, cows, chickens, turkeys and other food animals."

Having grown up on a family farm, I have always known where my food came from. But those family farms were never like this. Animals were well-treated, cared for, loved even. It was a natural life style in which everything was used and reused, recycled into the circle of life. It wasn't a bad way to grow up. We ate what we grew, had virtually nothing "store bought" until I was in my teens. These modern concentration camps aren't farms at all, though they have virtually driven the family farm out of business. It isn't possible for a young family to make a living anymore on their own. Farms that were handed down from generation to generation are no longer being handed down because the cost of machinery and other assorted costs involved in running a farm are just too prohibitive. The people who have created this horrible way of life for the animals we have domesticated are soulless as are their minions in legislatures. They have their counterparts in big box stores that have killed of the downtown small businesses all over America so that a few families, Sam Walton's for instance, might enjoy wealth beyond imagining, beyond hope of ever being spent in a single lifetime unless they want to buy a small country, and I don't doubt some do. Their money is already there waiting for them. These factories that treat our companions on this planet so horribly are so amoral that I can't even get my head around the idea of anyone ever thinking this is a good way to make a living. Or that they cannot see, feel or understand the suffering they bring into this world. The only thing they are good for is to show the rest of us just how bad humanity can be at its worst and in the doing, show us what we are NOT. Other than that, they are useless excuses for human beings. Terrible people, like most of the 1%. I'm glad I was born where and when I was and that I have never let myself slip into the idea that money at any cost is what I'm here for. I'll die a happier man than those fools and for that I am grateful.
 

Patricia H. (468)
Friday April 26, 2013, 8:40 am
noted
 

Shanti S. (0)
Friday April 26, 2013, 12:28 pm
Thank you.
 

Janet R. (34)
Friday April 26, 2013, 1:40 pm
I get sad when I read the conditions these poor animals are in. They did not give their permission to be treated this way and to be inhumanely killed. I am so glad that I don't eat meat and contribute to the demand that causes the suffering of these animals.
 

Roxy H. (340)
Friday April 26, 2013, 3:22 pm
What bothers me the MOST about this Deception... is the TERM AG-GAG and the way the Laws are put into state by state... Look at me and Cher's Threads we have been tirelessly trying to get Ag-Gag noticed and Stopped for months and they have been slipping through the system and no one has been looking... First of all.. I have been in the courtrooms against many of these lawmakers .. these laws are covering up a lot to do with CISPA and Spying and Fracking and Water and Environment and FOOD and Chemicals and they have it being pushed as "agriculture bills" and some are even going under the false label of FARM RIGHTS... Now I have a TON of information and many states are passing many of these, Indiana is VOTING TODAY and they have the rules on theirs that DIRECTLY INVOLVE FRACK MINING AND FOOD AND WATER... that you can not take photo's or report or video-tape anything to do with leaking frack wells, seeping oil, mining gone wrong... You Are A Criminal! yes yes yes... and here is a few links just added today......

Tennessee Lawmaker Compares Factory Farm Investigations to Rape
http://www.greenisthenewred.com/blog/tennessee-ag-gag-compared-to-rape/6935/

Two views on ag-gags: The investigator and the farm advocate
http://grist.org/food/two-views-on-ag-gags/

URGENT: Indiana Ag-Gag Bill Resurfaced, Democrats Ousted from Committee
http://www.greenisthenewred.com/blog/indiana-ag-gag-vote/6926/

If you know anyone in Indiana, please share this immediately. Indiana’s ag-gag bill, which makes it illegal to expose factory farms, clearcutting, and fracking, has resurfaced and it is being rushed through the legislature.

The bill had been watered down in response to massive public backlash against it. But now, Senate Bill 373 has all the anti-consumer language all over again. The provisions were inserted by the original Senate author Travis Holdman(R). As the Indianapolis Star reports:


Sen. Karen Tallian, the Portage Democrat who was removed from SB 373, accused Republicans of “dirty rotten kind of blackmail technique” to try to get her to approve the bill.

She said she had talked the penalty down to an infraction — akin to a speeding ticket — rather than a misdemeanor that carries a penalty of up to a year in jail.

“They came to me and said, ‘Make the choice. Either you sign it and it will stay an infraction with the Senate version or don’t sign it, and all this other stuff is going in,” Tallian said. “We agreed uanimously (in the Democratic caucus) that we weren’t buying this. It’s a bad bill and we’re not signing.”

Because the Democratic conferees refused to sign the revised version, Republican legislative leaders removed them from the committee.

The bill criminalizes anyone who video records or photographs animal welfare, environmental, workers’ rights, and health violations not just in factory farms, but in any industrial or mining operation as well. Anyone who records such abuses has 5 days to turn the footage over to police — but they are expressly prohibited from giving it to the media.

I just found out the committee is voting tomorrow. If you care about the environment, animal welfare, workers’ rights, or food safety, act now:


Contact Speaker of the House Brian Bosma as well as President Pro-tem of the Senate, David Long, and urge them not to support the Ag Gag Bill conference report and stop this legislation. Tell them instead of trying to shield bad actors and discourage whistleblowers, they should be working to protect the public.

To find your legislators, please go here:
http://district.iga.in.gov/districtlookup/

To e-mail your legislators, visit:
http://www.in.gov/cgi-bin/legislative/contact/contact.pl

The Senate switchboard is: (800) 382-9467 The House switchboard is: (800)382-9842



 

Roxy H. (340)
Friday April 26, 2013, 3:47 pm
to an even MORE Astounding attempt to shut the media and keep us unaware of the dangers of the chemicals and hazards.EVEN MORE DANGEROUS THEN AG-GAG! It came to my attention a whole new group of people and a worse attempt of laws going state by state that needs to be brought out in the public and needs attention and THESE PEOPLE NEED HELP! Is the Doctor-Gag laws! yes, here is the facebook page they started in an attempt to fightback before the rules start gagging them. My tired team of undercover reporters have been blogging and trying to get the word out and we are back logged and constantly getting tackled by USA media. But here is some of the stuff that needs to be brought out ASAP!

Doctors Without Fracking Gags
https://www.facebook.com/DoctorsWithoutFrackingGags
Remove the medical gags from our doctors. Doctors and Patients must be able to talk about fracking chemicals and their health.

Meanwhile in California "the proposed regulations include a doctor gag rule that would prevent physicians from sharing critical health information with patients who may be suffering from fracking related chemical exposures"
http://www.psr-la.org/stop-the-doctor-gag-rule-proposed-in-ca-fracking-regulations/

Obama Poised to Deliver Another Blow to Whistleblower Protections
http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2013/04/obama-whistleblower-case-national-security-sensitive?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter












NYPD will deploy 'harmless' gas into subway in terror response drill
http://rt.com/usa/nypd-gas-subway-terror-drill-416/


Fuel barges explode, causing large fire in Alabama
Read more: http://www.ctvnews.ca/world/fuel-barges-explode-causing-large-fire-in-alabama-1.1252991#ixzz2RXY5fDfJ


Senate Won't Vote On CISPA, Deals Blow To Controversial Cyber Bill
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/25/cispa-cyber-bill_n_3158221.html

ACLU: CISPA Is Dead (For Now)
http://www.usnews.com/news/articles/2013/04/25/aclu-cispa-is-dead-for-now
 

Roxy H. (340)
Friday April 26, 2013, 3:52 pm
you understand, some of the people i associate with have been labeled with such lovely names as , Whistleblower, eco terrorist, animal rights freak, enviro terrorist, oh many many more lovely names, but those names can get them arrested and put away without having to be charged. held indefinite detention.
 

Kit B. (276)
Friday April 26, 2013, 3:57 pm

Those are names many of us would wear with pride, Roxy.
 

Eric M. (0)
Friday April 26, 2013, 6:48 pm
Famed Kentucky novelist, poet and essayist Wendell Berry (a fifth-generation farmer himself) had this to say in the frontspiece of the book CAFO: Concentrated Animal Feeding Operation (2010):

"The principle of confinement in so-called animal science is derived from the industrial version of efficiency. The designers of animal factories appear to have had in mind the example of concentration camps or prisons, the aim of which is to house and feed the greatest numbers in the smallest space at the least expense of money, labor, and attention."
 

Kit B. (276)
Friday April 26, 2013, 6:59 pm

If that was the goal, they succeed. Now we need to not buy their products.
 

Kathy Niell (95)
Friday April 26, 2013, 8:08 pm
The knowledge of what goes on in factory farms and slaughterhouses induced me to become a vegetarian six months ago. It's not easy; but I will NOT be a part of this cruel machine that grinds up animals as if they are nothing!
 

Sherri G. (111)
Friday April 26, 2013, 11:55 pm
Thank you KIt - I know stupid CA tried this but I think we have stopped it here but I will keep watching.
 

Abdessalam Diab (153)
Saturday April 27, 2013, 12:56 am
A wide boycott campaign may be useful.
 

Anne P. (248)
Sunday April 28, 2013, 8:32 am
Thanks for posting, Kit. The main reason to go organic vegan! The animals have no voice - we must advocate for them, with every bite of food we take. Eat like you give a damn!
 
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