Wool Festival in NYC Will Celebrate Cruelty to Animals

The Campaign for Wool will stage a propaganda extravaganza in New York City’s Bryant Park on September 27th, complete with live sheep. The festival, called “Wool Uncovered,” will not uncover the dark side of the wool industry.

Charles, Prince of Wales, launched The Campaign for Wool in 2010 when he “noticed an overall decline in the industry, with the price of wool dropping along with the number of sheep worldwide.” Care2 has reported on the heinous conditions sheep undergo during transport in and out of the United Kingdom.

The event will feature a host of eye-catching vignettes, according to DNAinfo.com New York. Thirty sheep will munch the grass in a plexiglass enclosure; professionals will demonstrate how wool is sorted; yoga will be practiced on wool rugs. DNAinfo reports that “Organizers said they also want to drain the fountain in the park for the day and fill it with wool and yarn, as well as cover several trees in the park with wool fabric.”

The authority that approved the event, Manhattan’s Community Board Five, is especially excited to have live sheep in midtown. “It’s just a lot of fun,” the Board’s manager told WNYC. A spokesperson for the public relations firm handling the event said that the live sheep in the park would be the event’s big draw.

A New York City sweater designer interviewed about the event told the New York Post that she was “under the impression that [collecting wool] doesn’t hurt the sheep.”

She is wrong.

Meet Louise, a sheep who narrowly escaped death and made it to Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary. Before her rescue she was farmed for wool (the Woodstock website contains an error: Louise was not raised for lamb meat). Her tail was amputated, probably without anesthetic. One of Louise’s hooves was not trimmed, causing it to grow too long and twist her ankle. She fell over and couldn’t get up.

Louise froze to the ground.

The farmer knew she was down and left her there to die.

A neighbor rescued her and she found her way to the Woodstock sanctuary. She lost part of her left ear to frostbite, and she had to wear special shoes to adjust her ankle. But nothing helped her foot and she still limps.

Louise’s sad history hasn’t turned her against people. “She will put her face right next to yours as you pet her head,” the sanctuary reports.

The sheep I have met at Woodstock, Farm Sanctuary and Catskill Animal Sanctuary remind me of big, gentle puppies. Many of them will lean against me, hoping for pets and cuddles. And these are sheep who have never met me before.

People think of shearing sheep as doing them a favor, but it is a favor they wouldn’t need if it weren’t for human manipulation — and in most cases, it is more punishment than gift. Sheep that have not been genetically manipulated grow enough fleece to keep them warm and shed it in the summer. But sheep like merinos have been bred to produce far more wool than they need and not to shed. They even have too much skin, which wrinkles up to create more surface area for wool to grow.

The way these sheep are shorn is shameful. Shearers are paid by volume, so they have every incentive to move quickly and no incentive for caution or attention to the sheep’s wellbeing. One eyewitness reported that “the shearing shed must be one of the worst places in the world for cruelty to animals…I have seen shearers punch sheep with their shears or their fists until the sheep’s nose bled. I have seen sheep with half their faces shorn off.”

The celebration of wool in Bryant Park won’t reveal these truths about the wool industry, and the 30 sheep grazing behind plexiglass will surely have intact faces.


Related Stories:

Hellish Journeys for Australian Sheep

Tell Australia’s New Prime Minister to End Sheep Abuse

Think Wool Is A Great Alternative To Fur? Think Again



Sheri D.
Sheri D6 years ago

Thank you for writing this article.

Joy Dantine
Joy Dantine6 years ago

Consistent Synergy: ALL THOSE WHO DO NOT CARE "MOST" FOR LIFE CARE "MOST" FOR CHEMICALS. Scenario One: I witnessed a BASF gathering last evening where those in attendance had opportunity to a "game" of "DOVE SHOOT". Scenario Two: Persons who wish their life away or others to any degree are either "chemically imbalanced" or become "chemically imbalance" with drug intake.

Colleen Prinssen
Colleen Prinssen6 years ago

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4bpkd_kPvI0 acrylic is best

Lydia S.
Lydia S6 years ago

Nigel G wrote: " Every industry that utilises animals has little to no compassion for the animal, it couldn't really otherwise the commercial viability would be undermined. Buying products from such industries simply maintains the inherent cruelty. I implore everyone to avoid buying these products and looking for alternatives, they are out there."

Sorry, but I don't subscribe to vast generalizations ...

that's like saying: "Every industry that utilizes human labor has no compassion for its workers (since there is so much worker abuse, and virtual slavery in sweat shops -- and that means ALL manufacturing is inherently cruel, because most manufactured goods now come from so called "Third World Countries" which have little or no Labor Laws!)

How about a little "reason, logic, balance", etc. I will continue using wool & other natural fibers ... I avoid PetroChemicals and Synthetics, which cause various health problems. Anyone wonder why we have so many "NEW" Auto-Immune Disorders!?


Helle H.
Helle H6 years ago

I've seen on the televison how the shave the sheeps, and it doesn't look good. They handle them as they were a thing. Try that if you go to a barbershop.

Lisa D.
Lisa D6 years ago

I have to agree with Lynda in this case, I do believe that the author is exagerating immensly, im not saying that no animal abuse exists, because although i have never heard of it till today with sheep, im quite sure there are some sick people out there, however can we say that they are ALL abused?
What is important is to have these industries monitored to ensure that no animal is harmed intentionally during the process, and catch the ones that do

Lynda H.
Lynda G6 years ago

The author promotes a ‘sanctuary’ farm, which is a domestic animal zoo or public farm. It charges money for people to come and pat the ‘exhibits’. Funny how all the cries of “exploitation!” disappear when you call it a “sanctuary”…

“The sheep I have met…remind me of big, gentle puppies.” This is a lie to make you feel all warm and fuzzy about sheep. The author is trying to trick people who have had no real contact with sheep. They are not like puppies.

“One eyewitness reported that “the shearing shed must be one of the worst places in the world for cruelty to animals…I have seen shearers punch sheep with their shears or their fists until the sheep’s nose bled. I have seen sheep with half their faces shorn off.” Who? Someone from PeTA? That would be a reliable report, wouldn’t it! Shearers do not punch sheep: there is no need. They sit amazingly still while being shorn. You cannot shear half a face off. Look at electric hair clippers: could you shear half your face off with one of them? What a load of BS.

The author is an animal abolitionist. She doesn’t want you to eat meat, fish, cheese, honey or eggs. She doesn’t believe you should own cats or dogs, because they eat meat. She doesn’t really care about sheep: only the agenda of compulsory veganism, under the banner of ‘animal rights’.

Lynda H.
Lynda G6 years ago

AR author Piper Hoffman is messing with your mind! At least she is trying to: green stars for everyone who sees past this propaganda!

Look at the title of the article. Is it honest? Is it a festival to celebrate cruelty to animals? No. It is a festival to promote wool - a sustainable, natural product that generally provides a long, good life to sheep.

“Care2 has reported on the heinous conditions sheep undergo during transport in and out of the United Kingdom.” This has nothing to do with wool, nor the festival. It is only there to connect something negative to the topic, to manipulate the reader to believe wool is cruel.

“Louise” the ‘rescued’ sheep has nothing to do with wool. It is a Suffolk, raised for meat, which the author lies about to negatively connect it with the topic. The author also makes an assumption about the docked tail, to link wool with cruelty in your mind. There are valid and humane reasons to dock tails, and it is usually done now with a band or with topical anaesthetic. According to the original story (no names, so nothing can be verified) it was actually the alleged “rescuer” who neglected to trim the hooves. It is also common practice to cut the ear of stolen livestock to remove the ID tag or tattoo.

Carrie Anne Brown

thank you for sharing

Colleen Prinssen
Colleen Prinssen6 years ago

David V.. it's a good thing i like repeating myself.

do you know what the man made materials are made out of right?