5@5 - What consumers can do to improve the lives of farm animals
July 13th, 2012
05:00 PM ET
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5@5 is a daily, food-related list from chefs, writers, political pundits, musicians, actors, and all manner of opinionated people from around the globe.

Editor's Note: Matthew Prescott is food policy director for The Humane Society of the United States.

As food policy director for The Humane Society of the United States,  I have the privilege of working with people all over the country taking steps to help farm animals every day. Fortunately for the animals, one needn’t be a full time advocate to help make things better for pigs, chickens, cows and other farm animals. Here are five small ways to make a big impact toward building a more humane food system.

Five Easy Things You (Yes, You!) Can Do To Help Farm Animals: Matthew Prescott

1. Change your diet
Many Americans eat way too much meat, though over the past few years, that amount has started to drop. Most of us know that eating large amounts of meat is bad for our health and the environment. It’s also bad for farm animals, the vast majority of whom suffer immensely on industrialized factory farms where they’re treated more like machines than animals.

If each American simply chose to go meat-free just one day a week, more than a billion fewer chickens, pigs and other farm animals would be caught up in the factory farming system each year. The Humane Society of the United States advocates an approach of reducing the amount of animal products in your diet, replacing animal products with plant-based options and refining your choices by being a conscious consumer and seeking products with a higher welfare standard.

As more people de-emphasize meat in their diet, it’s no surprise to see Meatless Monday programs taking root in households, schools, hospitals and restaurants. Meatless Mondays , a popular international movement that promoted by Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, offers a great opportunity to celebrate a fresh take on eating in a way that people can feel good about.

 2. Ask your legislators to support farm animal welfare reforms
Farm animals are often unprotected from everyday factory farming abuses, such as being locked in cages in which they can barely move an inch their whole lives.  There are no federal laws that protect animals on farms and only a few state laws that do. Many states even have laws that exempt common agricultural practices from animal welfare statutes - regardless of how abusive they are.

Right now, there are bills pending in Congress (H.R. 3798 and S. 3239) that would offer some protection to hundreds of millions of egg-laying hens. Amazingly, in an all-too-rare case of adversaries finding common ground, most animal protection groups and most egg producers jointly support the legislation. But other factory farming industries - like the industrial pork and beef industry - have voiced opposition.

 3. Support the movement to let pigs turn around
Last month, Eatocracy drew attention  to the misery of pig “gestation crates” - tiny cages that virtually immobilize breeding pigs. These cages are so small, the animals locked inside spend basically their entire lives unable even to turn around. Of all the hideous things that happen to farm animals, this is among the worst.

Fortunately, major food companies that purchase vast quantities of pork are taking a stand against this abuse. Since February, The HSUS has helped leading food companies announce policies that will require their pork suppliers to give pigs some freedom of movement and socialization. Taking this stance are some heavyweights in the food industry, including McDonald’s, Burger King, Wendy’s, Kroger, Safeway, Denny’s, Sodexo, Oscar Mayer, Kraft Foods, Sonic, Cracker Barrel, Carl’s Jr., Hardee’s and Baja Fresh.

Despite all of this, there are some major pork producers that refuse to budge, and continue defending lifelong immobilization. You can help pigs today by using resources on our site to take action and let your voice be heard.

4. Encourage food businesses to switch to more humane products
Each time you go out to eat or buy groceries, ask about more humane options. Grabbing some coffee? See if there’s soy cream available. As a customer, you deserve to know the source of your food, so don’t hesitate to ask.

Next time you are at your favorite restaurant, ask if the pork comes from factory farms that confine pigs in gestation crates, and if they do, explain why this concerns you. If they don’t have a veggie burger, ask why not. Every time you ask these questions, it plants a seed that can grow into significant change.

5. Get social! Let your online friends know you care
 The Internet has made helping animals easy. With just the click of a mouse – a simple “Share” or “Like” or tweet, for example – you can help reach vast audiences with messages of compassion for farm animals.

Is there someone you'd like to see in the hot seat? Let us know in the comments below and if we agree, we'll do our best to chase 'em down.

Posted by:
Filed under: 5@5 • Animal Rights • Business and Farming News • Farmers with Issues • Farms • Food Politics • Think


soundoff (555 Responses)
  1. johna

    So... are Wolves animal abusers too ?

    July 16, 2012 at 11:13 am |
    • Terry Ward

      Only if they're Werewolves..

      July 17, 2012 at 9:16 am |
  2. Nope

    From Washington Post, comments on gestation crates:
    "A 1997 report of the Scientific Veterinary Committee of the European Union — where a gestation crate ban will go into effect next year — noted that because 'overall welfare appears to be better when sows are not confined throughout gestation, sows should be preferably be kept in groups.'” Likewise in 2008, the Pew Commission on Industrial Farm Animal Production, after 21 / 2 years of research, recommended “'the phase-out, within 10 years, of all intensive confinement systems that restrict natural movement and normal behaviors, including swine gestation crates'.”

    July 16, 2012 at 10:03 am |
  3. ma & pa

    We don't assume that anyone pays attention to our earlier comments, but, to clarify: For generations one of the traits many small herds of cattle have been selected for is a calm disposition. That causes peace and thrift in the herd as it recognizes the farmer as the provider of necessities. That doesn't mean farmer needn't be aware of herd attitude which can get stressed because of dogs and other natural predators or "Oh, my gosh, where did my calf lay down while I ate?" anxiety. Good cattle have better things to do than chase farmers.

    July 16, 2012 at 2:16 am |
  4. ma & pa

    'busters teechur' seems to be too busy looking for faults in wording of the message, to get the message.

    July 16, 2012 at 12:36 am |
    • busters teechur's principal

      nothing else seems to make a point with buster...

      July 16, 2012 at 6:37 am |
  5. Terry Ward

    Welcome to this week's episode of 'Bickering With Vegans'...

    The ONLY reality show where every episode is exactly like the previous episode...

    July 15, 2012 at 5:28 pm |
    • animalsci2011

      Your exactly right. But its sure funny to watch play out.

      July 15, 2012 at 8:55 pm |
  6. Hog Man

    Well, if we all stop eating meat, we will really have a food problem...because you activists won't let us kill them. they weill need to continue to be fed for their natural lives, using food that otherwise could feed humans???? In the end there will not be any animals because there will be no reason to have them. Round and round we go!!!!!!!!

    July 15, 2012 at 9:14 am |
    • Lemon

      Hogman this doesn't say anything about stopping eating meat, just reducing the amount and treating animals in an ethical way. This is really a no-brainer unless you are totally ignorant and heartless.Of course this is the standard conservative kneejerk reaction to any article about animals so i'm not surprised.

      July 16, 2012 at 12:50 pm |
  7. Hog Man

    I hope that HSUS paid dearly for this ADVERTISEMENT!!!!!! SHAME on CNN for making this look like a news article.

    July 14, 2012 at 9:33 am |
    • petsheltermom

      HSUS has nothing to do with animal shelters, they give almost nothing to us. They are lying to america with every ad they air. They spend their money on lobying, more commercials, salaries and pension funds, and frankly, disinformation. Whether you eat meat or not, don't take any of what they say as anything but a lie.

      July 14, 2012 at 12:17 pm |
      • Terry Ward

        Sheltermom?

        right.

        And I'm an astronaut...

        July 16, 2012 at 8:39 am |
      • Nope

        Ridiculous post, so-called petsheltermom. Attacking the HSUS isn't going to make your case ... but what case are you trying to make? That animal cruelty is okay?

        July 16, 2012 at 8:49 am |
    • Nope

      It's an op-ed piece, Hog Man, and I must say, a well-written one. Why are you against the implementation of humane farming practices?

      July 16, 2012 at 9:58 am |
  8. Davis

    I gladly acknowledge opposing opinions, but I can get caught up in the passionate debates concerning these issues.

    Yes, "legally," Americans have a right to do whatever they please. I, however, have the right to inform the rest of us of the consequences of their decisions.

    Yes, I agree that meat consumption is not the only reason that Americans are suffering through an obesity epidemic. Nevertheless, there have been countless studies pointing to the negative health effects of meat, particularly red meat. Many of us are too busy with our daily, hectic lives to pay much attention to our health.

    I feel that it is the responsible course of action to enlighten these people, try to persuade those who disagree with me, and also be a voice for the voiceless millions who are languishing in facilities around the globe that exploit them.

    When I see an injustice, whether it is committed against people or animals, I like to speak up. You are entitled to your opinion, too, and I hope that I did not make you feel that I do not respect it.

    July 14, 2012 at 1:28 am |
    • Gravy rules

      Super. Pass the pork chops, shut your yap, and MYOB. I do so hope that you respect all of that.

      July 16, 2012 at 1:03 pm |
  9. ma & pa

    vchick knows nothing of "more hungrier" and less about more better or Sam. As for Rags' description of butchering in ones own kitchen, not real. Until modern times everyone knew how meat was processed for the table. When we were children, the butchers worked in view of the customers and would slice whatever cut of meat the customer ordered, directly from the carcase. The only nightmares we had of cows were of being chased by mean ones, when we brought them in from pasture to be milked. Most farm livestock has No interest in cuddling up to us as a good cat or dog would like to do. Large amounts of time must be spent to tame them gentle enough to be shown and judged at fairs. Abused animals do not thrive. A few don't thrive no matter how one works to help them. If allowed, some would bully and batter the calmer ones, and the farmer, to death if allowed. They need to be shipped days ago, already. Almost none seek human contact. We nurture fiber animals now, and grieve for a few who wanted to be pets and became very old. Our top-heavy, distanced culture would be hard pressed to explain itself to the sensible folk it came from.

    July 14, 2012 at 1:11 am |
    • Davis

      Eating meat is morally wrong, extremely unhealthy, wasteful, and unreasonable (considering the ethical, self-destructive, and environmentally destructive factors that are involved).

      I understand that traditions are hard to break, but in 1865 the U.S. broke one well-entrenched yet unjust and abusive way of life that existed in the South, and we can do it again.

      July 14, 2012 at 1:18 am |
      • Davis

        Apologies for the misplaced duplicate comment.

        July 14, 2012 at 1:18 am |
      • Hog Man

        You are a sick person comparing eating meat to slavery! Biblically, man has dominion over the animals, and this includes the right to eat them. I am sure you disagree. However, we humans have a responsibility to care for them properly, both ethically, and a well-cared for animal will be more productive for the farmer. I respectfully disagree with HSUS position on sow crates. I grew up with sows on pasture. I saw how they bullied out the weak ones. Crates reduce mobility, but do not make them completely immobile, as described in the article. If they did, they would not be able to walk from gestation to farrowing. They can stand and move back and forth. Crates allow the caretaker (farmer) to more readilly observe the condition of the animal, and provide the correct amount of feed and care to EACH animal INDIVIDUALLY. Modern animal housing facilities also allow for the animals to be warm in the winter and cooler in the summer. HSUS is using this debate to raise money for their officers, and stable of lawyers. I am sure some deeply believe what they are doing is "right" for the animals, but as the overall tone of the article alludes to, but doesn't say, is that many of these folks are VEGANS, which is their right, but they are doing whatever they can to force their lifestyle on everyone else...which is not right!. I don't force them to eat meat, they should not try to force me not to..either by choice or by making meat too expensive for anyone but the wealthy. This is already happening in Europe. The animal housing laws in the UK have caused a 50% reduction in the amount of pork produced there....the cost is simply too high for the farmer to raise them. So THINK about the consequences before you "buy in" to the HSUS line. Urge your friends and neighbors to contribute to their LOCAL humane society, which does care for stray and abused animals, unlike HSUS, who gives less than 1% of their $130 million budget to direct care of animals.

        July 14, 2012 at 9:26 am |
        • Antoinette

          So.... just because the Bible says so does not make it right.

          July 15, 2012 at 7:53 pm |
        • ag

          Don't forget that your bible also says that if you offer your daughters to strangers so they can rape them, you're a really cool guy.

          July 16, 2012 at 10:48 am |
      • Gravy rules

        How about the tradition of judging others' morals at which you are so adept. Can you spell h-y-p-o-c-r-i-t-e?

        July 16, 2012 at 1:05 pm |
  10. Davis

    Eating meat is morally wrong, extremely unhealthy, wasteful, and unreasonable.

    I understand that traditions are hard to break, but in 1865 the U.S. broke one well-entrenched yet unjust and abusive way of life that existed in the South, and we can do it again.

    July 14, 2012 at 1:01 am |
  11. Davis

    - Meat eaters risk serious and sometimes fatal illness from trichinosis, salmonella, mercury poisoning, and clostridium perfringens gastroenteritis.

    – Consuming meat, eggs, dairy food, and animal fat increases one's chances of suffering heart disease, atherosclerosis (hardened and narrowed arteries), high cholesterol, stroke, peptic ulcers, colon cancer, breast cancer, uterine cancer, cervical cancer, prostate cancer, osteoporosis, kidney disease, and even lung cancer.

    – Those who suffer from angina and other cardiac diseases, rheumatoid arthritis, kidney stones, diverticulosis, gall bladder disease, peptic ulcers, diabetes, asthma, and hypertension have been shown to benefit by switching to a vegetarian diet.

    – Our bodies have not evolved in a way that would make it natural to eat meat. The human intestinal tract is anatomically very different from that of natural carnivores, such as dogs and cats. Carnivore bowels are short and straight with smooth walls that guarantee short transit times. Human bowels are long and winding and full of pouches with deeply puckered walls. Wolves and other natural carnivores have highly acidic saliva and digestive secretions designed to dissolve the bones of their prey, whereas human saliva is highly alkaline, and human digestive secretions are far less acidic.

    July 14, 2012 at 12:46 am |
    • Davis

      Source: creighton . edu

      July 14, 2012 at 12:47 am |
      • Davis

        - The teeth, facial structure, and digestive system of humans do not closely resemble those of natural omnivores, such as bears. Rather, our teeth appear to be designed for the grinding of grains, vegetables, and fruits, and our intestines for their digestion. So human physiology suggests the evolutionary history of an herbivorous species.

        July 14, 2012 at 1:19 am |
    • Davis

      - The dentition, facial structure, and digestive system of humans do not closely resemble those of natural omnivores, such as bears.Rather, our teeth appear to be designed for the grinding of grains, vegetables, and fruits, and our intestines for their digestion. So human physiology suggests the evolutionary history of an herbivorous species.

      July 14, 2012 at 1:03 am |
    • Hog Man

      Really? Seems to me that many of the recent food recalls were on VEGETABLES, ORGANIC ones at that! Think CA lettuce. CO cantelope, etc. etc. The swine induistry has eliminated trichinosis in modern production buildings. The risk is still there, but very small in outdoor raised animals. There are other diseases that modern production has basically helped eliminate. Modern production are better for the animals and for the safety of our food, contrary to what HSUS would lead you to believe.

      July 14, 2012 at 9:31 am |
      • Nope

        Modern production methods are better for animals? Really? Come on.

        July 16, 2012 at 12:30 pm |
    • Gravy rules

      Fine. Enjoy your tofu and bean sprouts. Meanwhile, hand over that rib-eye in your shopping cart.

      July 16, 2012 at 1:07 pm |
  12. Davis

    Fact: Unhealthy eating (in large part caused by meat consumption) is dragging much of our population down. Vegetarians avoid many health issues faced by meat-eaters, thus living longer.

    – The United States has the most sophisticated medical technology in the world, and one of the most temperate climates, yet it is also one of the highest consumers of meat and animal products in the world, and has one of the lowest life expectancies of industrialized nations.

    – The cultures with the longest life spans in the world are the Vilcambas, who live in the Andes of Ecuador, the Abkhasians, who live on the Black Sea, and the Hunzas, who live in the Himalayas of Northern Pakistan. These people also enjoy full, active lives, working and playing at 80 and beyond. All three groups are either totally vegetarian or close to it; meat and dairy products combined account for only 1½% of the total calories of the Hunzas, the largest of the three groups.

    (source: creighton . edu)

    July 14, 2012 at 12:42 am |
    • buster

      you obviously have a knowledge above and beyond the average troll........I am still listening....However, why don't you tell the rest of us who you are or what you represent, because your rebuttals and information are professional. Don't be so arrogant and treat the rest of us like pawns.

      July 14, 2012 at 1:01 am |
      • Davis

        I represent myself and my own views. Being a little articulate and passionate does not make you a "troll" or the pawn of George Soros.

        July 14, 2012 at 1:04 am |
      • Davis

        Buster, look at these facts for a change and LEARN.

        July 14, 2012 at 1:05 am |
        • buster

          I almost wish you had not referred to Soros, because that is not part of the equation this evening, unless you think it is. I know the math of it all........fuel, fertilizer, animalgrowthperLB, because I pay for it. Like I said earlier it will be a comprimise dealt to all as far as food production for the planet (well I kind of mentioned that between the lines) and tonite we will not solve the problem. I do know that being militant will never solve the food problem which we will face. Good night. The exchange was good for me. (and we didn't get intothe rape of the oceans)

          July 14, 2012 at 1:18 am |
    • Davis

      - The Russian Caucasians, the Yucatan Indians, the East Indian Todas, and the Pakistan Hunzakuts are other peoples who live in harsh conditions, but they subsist with little or no animal flesh and have life expectancies of 90 to 100 years, some of the highest in the world. They are one of the best examples of how vegetarians (or at least people who avoid meat to a great extent) can bypass many of the health problems faced today by average meat-eating Americans.

      July 14, 2012 at 1:13 am |
      • Hog Man

        .....or perhaps it is because there is not enough meat available...at a cost..either in labor or monetary denomination. Perhaps some meat would allow them to live LONGER!!!!!
        Science by observation is not science and is not valid. Observation is only a means to create postulates that can then be researched by the scientific method (contols, tests, replicates, etc.).

        July 14, 2012 at 9:39 am |
      • Gravy rules

        Do us all a favor and move to Russia, the Yucatan, East India or Pakistan. Thank you.

        July 16, 2012 at 1:10 pm |
    • Gravy rules

      Oh yes... extremely unhealthy. That's why the life expectancy in this country continues to rise even though you obnoxious vegans are in a clear minority.

      July 16, 2012 at 1:08 pm |
  13. rancher

    http://humanewatch.org/ Get the truth on the HSUS

    July 14, 2012 at 12:42 am |
    • Nope

      HumaneWatch is a group founded by Richard B. (Rick) Berman. Berman is a former labor management attorney and restaurant industry executive who currently works as a lobbyist for the food, alcoholic beverage and tobacco industries. Read: big business, big agribusiness, the very group that feels threatened by HSUS.

      July 16, 2012 at 8:48 am |
  14. Morgan

    Hi everyone! I came across this article today in my email and thought I would take a chance to respond. My husband and I are beef farmers from the Midwest and I wanted to share some statistics with all of you that will kind of answer some questions that seem to be coming through in the comments.
    – 98% of farms in the United States are family OWNED and OPERATED. I am not sure why the terms factory farms keep getting thrown around, but keep in mind that nearly all of us are families and are a far cry from a factory.
    – Also, cattle that you may think of living their lives in feedlots actually spend nearly their entire life on green pastures and spend the last 4 to 6 months in a feedlot. The reason cattle are raised in feed lots and not simply roaming on pastures is because feeding them the last few months in a feed lot is more efficient with less resources, such as land, feed, and water.

    My husband and I take a lot of pride in what we do, we are considered one of the larger farms in our area and I can ensure you that we take excellent care of our animals. Our beef are tended to first thing at the start of every day. We monitor their feed rations accordingly and give them antibiotics when they are sick.

    As Americans we have the right to choose. To choose meat or to not choose meat and I think that is important to remember, that no matter what, it is our choice as individuals. That choice is something I value. I support our local farmers, but I also buy from the grocery store. I believe in supporting all types of farmers and truly value the choice that I have. I don't think the answer is to take away meat, I think the answer is to simply make the choice for ourselves.

    If anyone has any other questions about farming and food visit this website (www.FindOurCommonGround.com). I am a CommonGround volunteer and I spend a lot of time talking about life on our farm and how much we value the life we have and enjoy providing a safe, healthy, and affordable product to consumers.

    July 14, 2012 at 12:25 am |
    • Jack

      "Family-owned" means nothing, or very little at best. The abusive owners of a factory farm might be a father-son duo of animal-killing barons. What difference does it make?

      July 14, 2012 at 12:32 am |
      • Morgan

        Honestly, now it's just my opinion..but it makes a huge difference to me and the farmers I know..We are not factories. We are people that love what we do. I think it is unfair to assume that because some farmers abuse their animals that they give all farmers a bad name. I, in no way what so ever agree with animal abuse and I believe that the farmers that do unspeakable things to their animals deserved to be punished, but please don't let the bad seeds give us all a bad name.

        July 14, 2012 at 12:46 am |
        • Jack

          My core point is that your entire line of work is abusive in and of itself.

          If someone adds sadistic physical mistreatment to that, which "some" farmers do, then they are even more deserving of serious punishment.

          July 14, 2012 at 12:50 am |
      • Morgan

        I believe what we do is not an abusive profession, at all.. I honestly don't think anyway I portray what we do will change your mind. But, I hope you will be more open minded to farmers and ranchers.

        July 14, 2012 at 12:55 am |
    • Davis

      Morgan, "legally," you have a right to choose. However, animals never consented to being exploited and tortured for you to make a living. Therefore, your "ownership" of the animals on your lot is illegitimate. They are living beings that feel pain like we do and are far more similar to humans than you might imagine. Who gave you the right to have your way with them?

      July 14, 2012 at 12:34 am |
      • Morgan

        I think to say "we have our way with them" is a bit far fetched. Our animals are treated with respect. Not to mention the fact that animal abuse isn't something that occurs at every single farm. I often tell people it is unfair for you to assume I don't treat my animals respectfully since they may have heard of another farmer who mistreated theirs. If we want to argue on the feelings of pain, okay...some would say that plants feel pain. They are living, breathing organisms and react to sunlight and touch. Some would say talking to plants or playing music only helps them grow better, therefore portraying they have a reaction to the emotion of love. But, we eat them. Again it goes back to choice. But what choice should we make then? If both are considered living organisms.

        July 14, 2012 at 12:42 am |
      • Davis

        Morgan, there is clear PROOF that animals feel pain. No evidence of that same kind has ever been applied to plants. Structurally speaking, they are not CAPABLE of feeling pain; their anatomies are not complex enough. Avoid using unrelated arguments to take away from my key point. Animals and people are far more similar than most people realize. To enslave and exploit the former is a ridiculous indicator of the cheapness of society's morals.

        If you are kind to your animals, you deserve an honest "thank you." However, at the heart of what you claim to do is a serious injustice and an abomination that mankind has yet to overcome.

        July 14, 2012 at 12:55 am |
        • Morgan

          I am not trying to take anything away from what you are saying. But, I am intended to my opinion as you are intended to yours. There has been research on plants and emotions and their reaction to tropisms.

          I also realize when someone is so close minded they refuse to think of the other side of the argument. You are very much against meat eaters and anything to do with raising meat for consumption. You are so busy pointing fingers and making what you believe are the right decisions for everyone. You have been commenting about meat and how bad it is for your health...then you don't eat it. But you don't have the right to tell others not to. It isn't meat making America obese, it's Americans making themselves obese. It's a matter of making healthy choices, however the individual takes that is their choice.
          Like I said there isn't a whole lot of reason to continue commenting to you at all because you refuse to see the other side. And that's okay, you have the right to your opinion.

          July 14, 2012 at 1:15 am |
        • Davis

          I gladly acknowledge opposing opinions, but I can get caught up in the passionate debates concerning these issues.

          Yes, "legally," Americans have a right to do whatever they please. I, however, have the right to inform the rest of us of the consequences of their decisions.

          Yes, I agree that meat consumption is not the only reason that Americans are suffering through an obesity epidemic. Nevertheless, there have been countless studies pointing to the negative health effects of meat, particularly red meat. Many of us are too busy with our daily, hectic lives to pay much attention to our health. I feel that it is the responsible course of action to enlighten these people, try to persuade those who disagree with me, and also be a voice for the voiceless millions who are languishing in facilities around the globe that exploit them. When I see an injustice, whether it is committed against people or animals, I like to speak up. You are entitled to your opinion, too, and I hope that I did not make you feel that I do not respect it.

          July 14, 2012 at 1:27 am |
      • Gravy rules

        Did you know that alfalfa screams when it's harvested. You heartless cad!

        July 16, 2012 at 1:11 pm |
    • cymom611

      Morgan,

      Good try, but I'm not sure that we will be able to sway the crowd who constantly demonizes those of us who eat meat. I tried to go without meat for awhile in my teens, supplimenting with other forms of protein. I ended up in the hospital with a doctor telling me that I needed more protein.

      I too live on a family farm with a cow/calf operation, though probably less that what you have. We have around 70-80 cows. Our days are filled with immense joy (who doesn't love seeing a newborn calf take his first few steps?) and incredible sorrow. I watched my husband suffer a debilitating back injury for six months last year because he refused to give up saving a 400 pound calf from drowning in a drainage ditch that it had slipped into. I absolutely know that our cattle feel because they respond to us. During the hour it took us to free the calf, its mom and several other cows huddled together and watched us work, much like a human and her friends would look on as her child was being saved.

      I walk through the herd talking to the ladies all the time.

      This conversation is all about respecting the other's opinions. If they don't want to eat meat, that's their choice. I'm not going to force them to do it. But, they shouldn't be demonizing the ones who do eat it just because it goes against their beliefs. The beauty of this world is that we all can choose to believe in different ideals. The curse of it is that sadly we don't always respect that other people have a right to their own beliefs.

      May everyone have peace in their beliefs at the end of the day. I know I do.

      Thank you, Morgan, for trying.

      July 14, 2012 at 1:30 am |
      • NYFarmer

        A figure I saw was that there are 750,000 cow/ calf farms in the US average. 40 cows per farm. Why do we rarely hear from.these farms in the media?

        July 14, 2012 at 4:32 pm |
        • Hog Man

          Because that is not news. It does not create controversy. It does not sell adspace. Mnay of these news folks do not care about facts. They, too, even the good ones have been removed from the farm for too many generations. Thanks to Morgon for trying, but animal rights zealots are not "educable" on this subject. Many hold animals at a higher level of existance than humans, because "we should know better". I think we do know better...a well-balanced diet, which includes appropriate amounts of nutrient dense MEAT is the healthiest. The obescity crisis is about too many calaries and too little activity. Davis tries to blame meat, others blame high-fructose corn syrup, others blame too much junk food, others carbs. etc.

          July 15, 2012 at 7:44 am |
        • Nope

          Most of the meat we consume comes from the large factory farms, something like 90 percent, per figures from the USDA. Those are the places organizations like HSUS are targeting, not small family farms.

          July 16, 2012 at 12:47 pm |
      • Nope

        If you ended up in the hospital after giving up meat, you did something wrong, cymom611. There are plenty of sources of protein besides meat.

        July 16, 2012 at 12:48 pm |
    • Terry Ward

      Like the 'right to choose' whether we get ammonia/meat slime with our burgers?

      July 15, 2012 at 5:24 pm |
    • Nope

      Thanks, Morgan. Unfortunately, we seem to be mostly getting our meat from industrialized operations. Calculation based USDA ag census: "Factory farming now accounts for more than 99 percent of all farmed animals raised and slaughtered in the United States," from Farmforward.com.

      July 16, 2012 at 11:01 am |
    • Laurie G.

      Hi, Morgan. I just had to respond to your comment. I agree that most farmers treat their animals well keeping in mind that they are being raised as a food source! I'm from rural vt and a lot of backyard farm animal raising is the norm. These animals are cared for the same as any pet. People should applaud farmers like you who do care for their animals.

      July 16, 2012 at 12:40 pm |
    • Nope

      Morgan, thanks for your post. I went on your site and found some very vague language and a few shots of a video in the animal welfare section - it wasn't very informative or in-depth, more like a misty-eyed advertisement. No real facts, statistics, or, even, crate measurements. I think I'll stick with the hard facts from groups like the HSUS.

      July 16, 2012 at 12:46 pm |
  15. Davis

    Eating meat is unnecessary. In fact, it is a dietary luxury.

    Not only is meat production wasteful, it makes no sense that someone would sabotage their own health by eating it instead of far healthier (and often cheaper) alternatives.

    Natural selection will weed out the worst meat-eaters. 300,000 people die every year in America due to obesity-related health issues.

    Do yourself a favor and reduce the amount of meat that you eat or, better yet, eliminate it from your diet altogether.

    July 14, 2012 at 12:22 am |
    • Gravy rules

      Do us all a favor and shut your foolish pie hole.

      July 16, 2012 at 1:12 pm |
  16. Davis

    Fact: Meat production is unhealthy and, in many cases, even dangerous to people who live nearby. Furthermore, it is environmentally destructive (harming everyone in the community).

    – Livestock manure mixed with nitrogen from artificial fertilizers produces harmful nitrates which pollute groundwater and cause nervous system impairments, cancer, and methemoglobinemia (“blue baby” syndrome).

    – Cattle feedlots are a dangerous source of organic pollutants, accounting for more than half the toxic organic pollutants found in fresh water.

    – Cattle play a prominent role in global desertification as a primary factor in all four causes of it: a) overgrazing, b) overcultivation of the land, c) deforestation, d) improper irrigation techniques.

    (source: creighton . edu)

    July 14, 2012 at 12:18 am |
    • Hog Man

      Davis, You need to stop drinking this VEGAN coolaide. It has warped your mind, already. You seem to only believe the science on one side of this arguement. A couple years ago the UN released a study, which you would have loved...along the same lines you mentioned above. Then a few months later...they had to retract it....as they found that someone had manipulated the data to the extent that the conclusion should have been the opposite!!!! Animal agriculture was not causing all the problems as you describe above. Apparently Creighton, is just as unblievable as PEW. It is disgusting that PEW also falsifies their data, yet still gets credibility..because people don't know better. FACT (as you say) PEW came out with a scathing attack on Animal Agr. from an environmental standpoint. Then, some of the scientists, who PEW had hired, used their own money to purchase an ad in major East coast newspapers to refute the PEW report.

      PEW had hired them to do reasearch, which they did, and had peer-reviewed. However, their conclusion was not the result that PEW had preconcluded, so their report was not included in the PEW Report. Instead, PEW chose to cite nonpeer-reviewed data that backed their preconceived analysis. This is SHAMEFULL!!! IF you are supposed to be a respected scientific source, then you have a responsibility to use accurate, peer-reviewed sources when making your conclusion!!!!!!

      July 15, 2012 at 7:29 am |
      • Apollo

        Hog Man, I don't think Davis is interested in facts. I think he just likes typing words that only use one hand.

        July 15, 2012 at 10:24 am |
      • Vegemite

        How about a LITERACY CRISIS? Calaries? Obescity? Shamefull? You people are SCARY.

        July 15, 2012 at 3:51 pm |
    • Gravy rules

      Fact: You are an idiot.

      July 16, 2012 at 1:12 pm |
    • handsthatfeedheartsthatserve

      Davis I was wondering if you could give us more information about your sources from creighton.edu? Could you give me the exact articles you are quoting from?
      There has been quite a bit of discussion about meat eating and it seems most of it revolves around the issues of how animals are treated and obesity. I can testify to the treatment of cattle in our feedlot. We have hosted numerous non-farm people to our farm to learn about what we do and how we do it. Some of you would call us a factory farm because we have a feedlot. Like other farm folks that have contributed comments we, too, are a family farm with employees and believe it or not we do have standards in the beef business of how we care for cattle. http://www.explorebeef.org
      Many of us have decided to take our story to the city because there is much confusion about agriculture. http://www.findourcommonground.com
      When we want to talk about diet it is important to remember the increased sugar intake that has occurred over the past 40 years. A diet high in refined sugar is a leading cause of obesity. http:// http://www.obesity-info.com/2012/04/sugar-make-you-fat.html
      The human body needs to eat protein. Beef animals eat grass and grains and convert feed to protein.

      http://www.dummies.com/how-to/content/why-you-need-protein-in-your-diet.html

      I am giving just a few sources to encourage positive dialogue as we all continue to use the farmer motto "figure it out" in problem solving. We try to find the root of the problem before jumping to conclusions so that the response can be a long-term solution.
      When you go to the grocery store be grateful for the food choices we have in American thanks to the 2% of the population that chooses to bring you that food! http://www.cals.ncsu.edu/CollegeRelations/AGRICU.htm

      July 16, 2012 at 3:47 pm |
  17. Kevin

    My vegetarian friend suggested a video for me to watch one time. It was called "If Slaughterhouses Had Glass Walls Everyone Would Be Vegetarian." So disturbing.

    July 14, 2012 at 12:13 am |
  18. Davis

    Fact: Meat production is illogical and wasteful.

    16 to 21 lbs. of grain and soy are needed to produce 1 lb. of beef. 6 to 8 lbs. of grain and soy are needed to produce 1 lb. of pork. 4 lbs. of grain and soy are needed to produce 1 lb. of turkey meat. 3 lbs. of grain and soy are needed to produce 1 lb. of chicken meat

    (source: creighton . edu)

    July 14, 2012 at 12:12 am |
    • Jack

      People around the world are starving because some of us choose to use our grain as part of meat production instead of converting it into more directly edible foods.

      July 14, 2012 at 12:13 am |
      • Hog Man

        This is blatently false!!!!! At least until this years drought?.....there is plenty of food. It is hameful that politics and transportation/distribution are the real problem. I am not sure about the future, if the human population increases to 9B. In reality meat is a much denser, higher quality foodstuff, People crave it for more than just taste!

        July 15, 2012 at 8:00 am |
  19. Bapuji

    I'm from India and I'm a lifelong vegetarian. My heart cries out for these voiceless animals. I know I'm as helpless as them.
    But, what I find absolutely encouraging is that I hear voices in this country – pro animal and anti meat. I used to wonder if I'm weird to think so much about the animals. But, I'm now convinced others have similar feelings.

    What I find totally abhorrent is the Jewish and Islamic practices of letting the animals bleed to their death without any anesthetic. It's barbaric. That way, Christians are much better – at least they don't have such religious requirements about their meats.

    July 13, 2012 at 11:46 pm |
    • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

      And yet the Bengal Tiger is on the endangered species list.

      July 13, 2012 at 11:47 pm |
    • Davis

      We should pass a ban on those ritualistic methods of killing animals in addition to laws that provide greater oversight of farms (especially factory farms) and slaughterhouses everywhere in America.

      Such a law already came into being in the Netherlands.

      July 13, 2012 at 11:51 pm |
  20. Karl

    You may be correct. A meat eater might die from heart disease or cancel. You may be incorrect too. We might just as well get hit by a train or shot by George Zimmerman.

    July 13, 2012 at 11:45 pm |
    • Davis

      Well, since you appear to be in the same disgusting category of s c u m as criminals like Trayvon Martin, I would not doubt that you would be shot in self-defense by a law-abiding citizen. Anyway, most people die of natural causes. Meat-eaters life shorter lives on average.

      July 13, 2012 at 11:53 pm |
      • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

        Hmmuh. Hmuh.

        I smell Republican. No. Ron Paul. That;s it. ;D

        July 13, 2012 at 11:56 pm |
  21. Davis

    I hate being brusque in the way I say things, but there is no other way around this issue.

    Those who consume meat can enjoy high cholesterol, a greater risk of dying due to an unexpected heart attack and/or a form of heart disease, a stroke, cancer, and/or another obesity-related ailment, and a shorter lifespan.

    Load up on the steak. Darwin wins.

    July 13, 2012 at 11:39 pm |
    • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

      In other news, Spinach/tomatoes, apples, jo momma being recalled due to E. Coli deaths. 3 children dead.

      Go on....

      July 13, 2012 at 11:47 pm |
      • Davis

        In other news, an estimated 300,000 people will die this year due to obesity-related health issues.

        I can assure you that none – or very few of them – were vegetarians or vegans. Most were probably meat-eaters.

        July 13, 2012 at 11:49 pm |
        • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

          As most of the world's population is.

          In other news: of the 100% of the people that cross the street, someone will get run over. Also, 100% of the population dies of something.

          July 13, 2012 at 11:54 pm |
        • Davis

          Your argument makes no sense. You are a troll.

          July 13, 2012 at 11:59 pm |
        • Apollo

          Jdizz is making perfect sense. You couldn't hold up your side of the argument and resorted to name-calling. That's why you didn't make the cut for the middle school debate team. Try again when you get to high school.

          July 14, 2012 at 8:47 am |
        • Hog Man

          In all likelyhood, they consumer too much sugar and corbohydrates!!!!! If they had eaten meat and fat...like Adkins diet, they might still be with us. Also, not one person has mentioned that diet has little to do with cholesterol that is problematic. Our body produces most of the bad stuff....it is genetic. Yes there are all sorts of studies. These are fairly recent, I think. Some actually believe that if you eat too little cholesterol, your body will produce too much of the LDL. If it senses more in your blood, it will not produce as much. Let's be honest and tell both sides of the story.

          July 14, 2012 at 1:07 pm |
      • Rob

        How do you think the E. coli gets on the spinach/tomatoes, etc? Poor human handling and use of bad fertilizers, etc. E. coli doesn't naturally grow on tomatoes or spinach, so your argument is completely void.

        July 13, 2012 at 11:55 pm |
        • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

          Research "The Human Skin". Your mind = blo wn.

          July 13, 2012 at 11:57 pm |
        • Rob

          Are you implying that the human skin is a normal, natural environment for e. coli? We're not talking about Staph or Strep.. E. coli isn't a natural flora of the human skin.

          July 14, 2012 at 12:03 am |
        • Hog Man

          "it doesn't naturally grow on humas...."? Your gut is full of ecoli! ...and you think it will grow on chemical fertilizers? PLEASE wake up.

          July 14, 2012 at 1:08 pm |
        • Nope

          He's talking about waste runoff, Hog Man, as in the waste runoff from a farm, which might contain e coli.

          July 16, 2012 at 1:14 pm |
    • CraigW

      We can also enjoy our food.

      July 14, 2012 at 12:07 am |
      • Rob

        That's a subjective statement. Who are you to say people that don't eat meat don't enjoy their food?

        July 14, 2012 at 12:10 am |
  22. Karl

    I had some really tasty bacon for dinner tonight along with a couple of juicy fried eggs. I don't care how the critters it came from were treated nor will I ever. Animals are on this earth for humans to exploit for both food and labor.

    July 13, 2012 at 11:37 pm |
    • Davis

      Karl, you are an ignorant troll who comments just so he can stir the furor of others. I will not give you the attention your parents and peers denied you. Sorry.

      July 13, 2012 at 11:40 pm |
      • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

        You just did.

        July 13, 2012 at 11:51 pm |
        • Apollo

          HA!

          July 14, 2012 at 8:41 am |
    • Diane

      A heartless comment- animals, like small children are helpless, and have no voice. Maybe when you are old someone will treat you the way animals are treated!! You are sick!

      July 14, 2012 at 12:18 am |
      • Hog Man

        Perhaps at some point in your life, you can look face-to-face into the eyes of a hungry lion, about 10 feet away...then you will sense true "heartless". They are thinking of you as LUNCH!

        July 14, 2012 at 1:11 pm |
  23. animalsci2011

    Welp yall have fun arguing. Its an arguement that neither side will ever win because we are both too hard headed to see the other persons view. But have fun.

    July 13, 2012 at 11:36 pm |
  24. Steve

    I am irritated all of the uninformed people thinking gestation crates for pigs is bad. Has anyone who says they are bad, seen what happens if you do not put the pigs in a gestation crate. THEY EAT THERE OWN AND OTHERS YOUNG. Is it more humane to keep a pig in a crate for a short time while they are nursing or let little pigs get eaten alive? Stop all the BS about things unless you know and have been around what you are talking about.

    July 13, 2012 at 11:28 pm |
    • animalsci2011

      I am just glad they haven't decided to go after farrowing crates yet. Those are the ones that protect the piglets, not so much the gestation stalls. We can probably get by without the gestation stalls, but we must have the farrowing crates.

      July 13, 2012 at 11:37 pm |
      • rancher

        Don't forget sows will attack each other.

        July 13, 2012 at 11:47 pm |
      • Hog Man

        Yes we can "get by" without G crates. But why should we have to? The science is pretty clear that they are at least as good, if not better for the animals. The fighting etc. in pens can be really bad. In the end, we OWN these animals and should be able to care for them as we see fit, not as some folks that don't think anyone should eat meat think we should house them. OOOOOOPPPPPS I forgot....they don't think we should house them at all!!!!!!!!

        I hope as an animal scientist you will not buy into this loose-housing craziness. Been there...done that. We had loose housing, indoors, and had poor results and went to crates. Everybody, especially the sows are happier. When we first moved off pasture in the 80's, we had freestall sow pens. The sows almost all walked in off pasture, and went into crates (it was their choice). They could have stayed in the pens, but they chose to be in the crates. I presume because they felt safe. Other sows didn't bug them, etc.

        July 15, 2012 at 8:09 am |
        • animalsci2011

          Howdy Hog Man. Nice post. And yeah we could probably get by without the G Crates but all those poor little piggies will die because of it. There is even research now that is being published to suggest that the sow will kill the 3-5 smallest/weakest piglets to make sure she can feed the others. Pretty interesting resarch.

          July 15, 2012 at 8:45 pm |
    • Davis

      No slaughterhouse manager or big farm owner cares about pigs or their young offspring. Their reason for using gestation crates is to spend the least amount of money possible and cram as many profitable pigs into their property.

      July 13, 2012 at 11:42 pm |
      • Farmer Erica

        Why wouldn't we care about our animals? They feed our families and the world... they are our livelyhood. Have you ever seen the blood bath of a sow going after her babies? It is truly awful. The babies are completely helpless and are eaten alive. We don't use crates to harm the mothers but to protect both mother and babies.

        Why are farmers always picked on by you vegans? We are trying to make an honest living with the resources God gave us. Yes, there are a few crazies who mistreat their stock, but there are people mistreated every day. There are far more of us out here trying to be stewards of what God has put on this earth for us to use for the good of mankind.

        If you don't want to enjoy meat... that is your loss, but don't point your finger at us for using the resources we have been given.

        July 14, 2012 at 12:16 am |
        • Davis

          The mere fact that you take ownership of and exploit sentient beings for a quick buck is disgusting. Stop trying to paint industries that exploit animals as benevolent "stewards of God." You are all in it for the money. You could give a flying f*** about your cows, pigs, and chickens.

          I understand that you are being paid with blood money, but at least be a little more realistic.

          July 14, 2012 at 12:25 am |
        • Jack

          Gestation crates themselves are abusive. How would you like to be caged in your own muck like an African slave?

          Your remark about "a few" who abuse their animals is a gross understatement. Animal cruelty in industries that exploit animals for money is far more common than you think or are willing to admit.

          July 14, 2012 at 12:27 am |
    • Rob

      A lot of animals kill their own young on occasion. Lions, chimpanzees and even humans. Should we keep humans in small gestation crates until the mother has been proven not to have postpartum depression? Why do it to other animals?

      July 13, 2012 at 11:59 pm |
      • Steve

        Doctors give mothers bed rest for a month, I see no difference. The pig can stand up, stretch, and eat since this is only for a short time.

        July 14, 2012 at 8:33 pm |
  25. Mimi

    Why don't we stop the insults, kiddies, and make some positive suggestions. Here are a few: 1) Eat meat from local small farmers where you know the animals are not factory-farmed 2) Buy grass-fed beef at the supermarket 3) Buy organic and cage-free eggs 4) Buy chicken and other meat not treated with antibiotics. 5) Don't eat meat every day. I only eat meat or fish 3 or 4 times a week and I don't miss it a bit.

    July 13, 2012 at 11:19 pm |
    • animalsci2011

      Hello Mimi,

      I for one would like the farming industry to get together and come with a way to show what really goes on during the course of a day. I mean like someone going to farms, knowingly not being employeed by the operation itself and recording what goes on. I believe that if this happened it would open alot of eyes as to how animals are raised today.

      July 13, 2012 at 11:29 pm |
      • Davis

        I agree. We need to set up a live video feed that allows us to monitor every inch of every slaughterhouse and large farm in America. Only then will we be able to know the truth and prevent abuses. (Of course, that is unrealistic.)

        July 13, 2012 at 11:47 pm |
      • rancher

        Today my son was up at day light. He walked out into the pasture and made sure every cow and every calf was accounted for. It's hot and the flies are out this time of year so we check for pink eye. He made sure the water tank was full and all the bovines were looking healthy.
        The cows were grazing and the calves were nursing. Not very exciting. It is fun, in the cooler part of the day, to be out there because the calves are active. They will follow you then all the sudden just take off running the opposite direction. Goofy little things.
        In the heat they head to the trees for shade. Then back out for grazing as the temperatures cool. My husband and I were out in the evening, checking the herd over again, checking the grass conditions and opening gates into more pasture. We've got a new bull coming at 6 am so we wanted the cows up to greet him. I am sure some of them will be very happy to see a bull.
        While we were out there we cut down small cedar trees. The dirty things will take over a pasture. The bugs were biting but not too bad. Since it is still pretty hot we were sweating quite a bit. Ranching and farming is a dirty job.
        There you have it. Not exciting television is it?

        July 13, 2012 at 11:56 pm |
        • Davis

          "Rancher," not everyone runs a small, "family" farm like you. Watch footage filmed at slaughterhouses and you will get a dose of reality. Even if your story is true, you do not represent the majority of farms or animal-related industries.

          July 14, 2012 at 12:01 am |
        • Farmer Erica

          Davis, how do you know rancher's ranch is small? We feed 18,000 and this is the story of our day. We have three hands that help us make sure everyone is happy by the end of the day. You see one bad story on TV and assume that we are all evil. We are trying to steward the land and animals God gave us to use. Don't insult my hard work...

          July 14, 2012 at 12:20 am |
        • Jack

          You are an industry stooge who is spreading lies, "Erica" the "Farmer." There are MANY cases of animal abuse on farms EVERYWHERE, not just in the news once in a while.

          By the way, three farm hands is hardly enough to take proper care of 18,000 animals.

          July 14, 2012 at 12:30 am |
      • Hog Man

        Many hog farms are now doing this. If you want to see how contented these animals are all day long (yawn) watch http://www.realpigfarm.com. This is a 24/7 stream from a friend of mine's farm. One vew is gestation, the other farrowing.

        These animals sleep most of the day, are protected from each other. Properly fed well-balanced diets. Individually cared for. Etc. Some may still not like crates....but what you see is real. We have nothing to hide.

        Most of the HSUS videos are obviously staged, and frankly, the cameraman should be prosecuted. Even in cases of unstaged abuse, these folks let it go on, often for months, by their own admission, just to get a better video. wouldn't it be better for the animals if they discussed with their dupervisor the first time the observe it? They never do this...just let it goon until they can get the footage they want, and then let HSUS make it viral, just to get more money for the organization. This proves they don't care about animal welfare, or they would follow the protocols most have set up in their farms to deal with abusers.

        July 15, 2012 at 7:53 am |
        • Nope

          I couldn't find the live video, just some marketing stuff that actually showed some pretty crowded areas, stuffed with animals. Glad I don't make my living off of that kind of misery.

          July 16, 2012 at 1:19 pm |
    • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

      I actually agree with mimi

      July 13, 2012 at 11:50 pm |
  26. Davis

    God does not exist. Animals evolved alongside us by chance. Therefore, God could not have supported meat consumption.

    July 13, 2012 at 11:04 pm |
    • John

      You could also make the argument that a benevolent God would not support the gruesome abuses taking place in factory farms and slaughterhouses.

      July 13, 2012 at 11:04 pm |
      • chad rogers

        A benevolent God would make decisions based on facts.

        July 13, 2012 at 11:24 pm |
      • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

        Tell me any parent that can control their adult kids, and I will show you Hitler.

        Show me a parent that allows people to make decisions for themselves, and I will show you someone who resembles God's thinking.

        July 13, 2012 at 11:35 pm |
      • rancher

        Read the Old Testament. God gave instructions to cripple the horses after a battle.

        July 13, 2012 at 11:58 pm |
    • buster

      your a troll

      July 13, 2012 at 11:12 pm |
      • busters teechur

        "your"? Guess English word usage wasn't your first choice of electives at the trailer park.

        July 15, 2012 at 10:15 am |
    • buster

      when did you tell your Mom you failed philosophy class

      July 13, 2012 at 11:17 pm |
      • Davis

        Buster, your troll-like tactics are far too common on this site. You are a mental midget and you cannot defeat people who support compassion for animals in a debate, so you are forced to resort to insults. Anyone with common sense can recognize your way of distorting the truth in an honest exchange.

        July 13, 2012 at 11:31 pm |
        • buster

          Davis.....ok...maybe I am not as articulate as you....first, and I have seen from other posters this word "troll" ...explain...apparently everybody is a troll...and additionally explain to me what it is that you represent...Ii think I know and that is someone that does not eat meat ?? and this aryticle that has spawned all of this last hour is that of abusing animals. I know that soemone like you abhors any agriculltural raising of animals but I can assure you that my cattle are not in anyy way miistreated nor are any cattle of anyone I know. Gloves are off please explain I am listening.......my vision is comprimised

          July 13, 2012 at 11:51 pm |
        • Davis

          A troll is someone who does not contribute to any reasonable exchange by simply putting out lies, distorting the truth, and getting people angry without participating in the debate in any meaningful way.

          What I want is for both sides to present their evidence without acting like children. Unfortunately, if you act like a child, I will have to stoop to that level, too, by pointing out your mistakes.

          The only way to end animal cruelty is to take on the s c u m who benefit from it financially and to enact stricter punishments for those who are caught, in addition to laws banning gestation crates and other inhumane methods of keeping farm animals in one place.

          July 13, 2012 at 11:57 pm |
      • buster

        I agree with you 100%....The "gestation crates", I have to say this the first time I hve heard of them. Other crating of animals I am veryy much against. I am a person who has lived a life of raising beef animals in open range. Your side of the argument has always been an issue. Yours is a way of life and I do honor it. It has been a problem addressing the eating of meat with those who do not and a comprimise or rather (the moderation of diet) needs to met for the future of food for the planet......hopefullyb I have elevated from troll....(in case you did not see below< the stoiry about my dog was not comjured up)

        July 14, 2012 at 12:16 am |
        • Hog Man

          I was glad to see that "trolls" have been elevated to those that don't contribute to an arguement. I have always thought that one was labelled a TROLL if they disagreed in any way with the very left-wing, liberal ideas promoted in blogs like this. Anyone that disagrees with these folks is labelled a troll or an "indiustry schill". I am glad I can put in my 2-cents worth without having these labels applied to me.

          July 14, 2012 at 9:56 am |
  27. Politically Correct

    If it was not intended for us to eat meat, God would not have put it on this earth.

    July 13, 2012 at 11:01 pm |
    • Joey

      you are so ignorant.

      July 13, 2012 at 11:06 pm |
    • Hannibal Lecter

      PC, I agree.

      July 14, 2012 at 8:35 am |
  28. animalsci2011

    I am going to keep eating meat all I want because I know facts about what goes on in everyday livestock production. This guy knows little.

    July 13, 2012 at 10:53 pm |
    • animalsci2011

      Oh Ok. Sorry I know why now. He is a member of HSUS. No point in arguing with these people.

      July 13, 2012 at 10:54 pm |
    • Davis

      If you knew as much as you claim and you were an Average Joe without biases or links to the meat industry, you would probably be disgusted to the point of reconsidering your meat consumption. Nice try. No one with a brain is fooled by it.

      July 13, 2012 at 11:03 pm |
      • animalsci2011

        Davis notice the name I use to post on here. There is a reason. I actually am involved in the animal industry have been my entire life. I use my education to sort out what information is "staged" and what actually depicts the way animals are actually raised and taken care of.

        July 13, 2012 at 11:19 pm |
        • Davis

          You cannot ignore real-life abuses.

          Stop trying to say that the thousands of videos of animal cruelty filmed in large farms are mere hoaxes. There have been legal investigations, arrests, and widespread controversies as a result of REAL footage recorded secretly by activists. You cannot deny the truth.

          July 13, 2012 at 11:28 pm |
        • animalsci2011

          I don't honesly think Davis that you have a clue what you are talking about. The last undercover video I watched that was released by either PETA or HSUS showed PETA or HSUS workers who were hired by the farm/ranch mistreating the animals. Not actual lifelong workers for the farm.

          July 13, 2012 at 11:31 pm |
        • Davis

          You have no proof that the abusers were PETA or HSUS employees. That is a baseless accusation and a distortion of facts.

          In fact, there is no reason to believe that the abusers were activists. If the farm cares about its animals, why does it not monitor them and make sure that its employees treat them properly? How can such abuse go on without them knowing or caring?

          July 13, 2012 at 11:45 pm |
        • kellory

          @Davis,
          I know for a fact, that these animal rights groups can not be trusted to tell the truth! My uncle's Chestnut Horses were stolen off his property, beaten, starved, and and abused, by one of these groups!
          They did it to claim he had done it!
          Thankfully, he had had recent vet visits, and photos of his beloved horses, as well as the neighbors knew him much too well to believe that crap.
          It went to court, and by the time the thieves were forced by the court to produce the animals, they were in so bad a condition, all but two had to be put down. That broke my Uncle's heart, and he no longer raises horses.
          Don't you DARE tell me they care for the animals. To them, it is about power and influence, NOT the welfare of the animal, that really matters.
          Look up the public financial records of groups such as PETA. They spend enormous amounts for protests, advertising, politics, and lies, but not ONE ACRE purchased for animal habitat, wet lands, raising and releasing Game animals (quail, rabbits, pheasants, ducks, ect.) That is all done by hunter/ conservation groups such as Pheasants Forever, Ducks Unlimited, and many others. Just as Hunters Against Hunger groups feed the hungry, the homeless, and the poor.

          I have viewed many of these so called "truth films" shot by these groups about the evils of hunting. As a lifelong hunter of more than 35 years, I can clearly and easily see what has been faked by non-hunters. So far, I have not found ONE group of animal rights people, that can be believed, trusted, and respected. NOT ONE!
          You want to help animals? Join a conservation group such as Pheasants Forever, even if you don't hunt, you could be an asset. But join PETA, you are part of the problem.

          July 14, 2012 at 11:53 am |
  29. LeighVA

    I have been eating less meat lately, in particular, red meat and pork. I still eat fish and seafood, however. I especially don't like to eat pork~ pigs are far too intelligent. I eat chicken on occasion, however. I think chickens can still be considered 'vegetables'. That said, maybe I'll become a piscatarian.

    July 13, 2012 at 10:53 pm |
    • Davis

      Reduce your meat consumption and enjoy the long-term benefits.

      By the way, I find your "vegetables" comment about chickens to be quite strange.

      July 13, 2012 at 11:06 pm |
      • LeighVA

        The chicken comment was meant to be funny ~ actually borrowed it from someone who is a vegetarian. Ah, well.

        July 13, 2012 at 11:32 pm |
    • nimrod

      Why do you think eating fish (especially wild caught fish) is somehow morally better than consuming animal protein that was produced specifically for human consumption. Our seas are becoming dangerously over-harvested. Many fish stocks are being rapidly depleted. Believing that you can harvest any wild animal (including fish) in sufficient quantities to satisfy the protein needs of the burgeoning human population shows a total lack of understanding for how wild populations work.

      July 13, 2012 at 11:29 pm |
  30. john

    Yawn. Farm animals are FOOD.

    July 13, 2012 at 10:41 pm |
    • Mark

      I agree. But cruelty is cruelty.

      July 13, 2012 at 10:46 pm |
  31. Mark

    I'm a conservative, definitely not a PETA type. But I'll tell you what, having grown up on an Iowa farm and seeing how livestock is raised today makes me sick. No, I'm not talking about the average family farmer but I do point out the huge hog confinement lots, cattle confinement lots, and chickens. They are so jammed together it is pathetic. To avoid the disease that accompies close confinement, they are shot up with every conceivable innoculation and growth hormone. Pathetic, let them roam or don't raise them!

    July 13, 2012 at 10:41 pm |
    • John

      I am glad that someone in the political middle recognized what you did. It's time for common-sense laws that end the excess abuses but also keep reality in mind.

      July 13, 2012 at 10:44 pm |
      • Davis

        I can agree with you, John, BUT "reality" should mean phasing out meat production over time as the population

        transitions to healthier lifestyles and the number of farm animals is made to decrease. A smaller number of farm animals

        and animal-related facilities is easier to regulate, allowing the government to better enforce anti-cruelty legislation and

        improve the living conditions of these animals.

        July 13, 2012 at 10:59 pm |
        • nimrod

          I like meat. I don't eat beef all the time, but it is hard to beat a good, thick, bloody ribeye, just off the grill, hot on the outside and just warm in the middle.

          July 13, 2012 at 11:34 pm |
        • Jack

          If your tastes – not your rational mind – controls you, then that is quite a tragedy.

          July 14, 2012 at 12:03 am |
    • Hog Man

      Mark, you may miss the pasture lifestyle, and not appreciate modern production, but your analysis about overcrowding, antibiotics, hormones, etc. is just false. You have bought into the HSUS/PETA mindset. We had to use more antibiotics when we had animals all outdoors and on straw (farrowing). Hogs are not fed hormones. Anitibiotics are onlyu used strategically..sometimes proactively to prevent disease...which is much better than waiting until some are sick and dying. We know when they will become infected with certain things, by our records and experience, and can prevent it!

      July 14, 2012 at 9:44 am |
  32. Sajid

    STOP EATING THEM>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

    July 13, 2012 at 10:31 pm |
    • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

      More for US!! The majority of humanity, that is.

      July 13, 2012 at 10:34 pm |
      • Mad Sam

        Enjoy your heart attack in the near future, meat eater.

        July 13, 2012 at 10:38 pm |
        • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

          Eat right, work out, don't smoke or drink, abstain from sex.......die anyway.

          July 13, 2012 at 10:40 pm |
        • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

          Eat right, work out, don't smoke or drink, abstain from "da goodness of da beav".......die anyway.

          July 13, 2012 at 10:40 pm |
        • Guest

          It's entirely possible to eat meat in moderation, and maintain a very healthy lifestyle that will allow you to live well beyond the average life-expectancy.

          July 13, 2012 at 10:45 pm |
        • Davis

          Yes, but it has been indicated over time that vegetarian and vegan diets are far healthier than your average diet, which incorporates some amount of meat.

          July 13, 2012 at 10:51 pm |
        • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

          Dan – I don't doubt the health benefits of salads. But present the proof of the more swaying l parts of your claim.

          July 13, 2012 at 11:07 pm |
        • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

          Meant Davis. All this meat is making my brain decay.

          July 13, 2012 at 11:08 pm |
        • Davis

          That is not surprising. Red meat, commonly eaten by a large number of Americans, is extremely unhealthy. Look it up on Google and you will find countless reputable studies that support my argument.

          July 13, 2012 at 11:26 pm |
        • chad rogers

          well "mad Sam" since I excersize regularly, don't think so....

          July 13, 2012 at 11:29 pm |
        • Jack

          I doubt that the amount of exercise performed by the average person (the "Average Joe") is enough to stave off the effects of high cholesterol, being overweight, obesity, heart disease, etc.

          Besides, some people actually care about things other than themselves. They think with their rational minds, not their taste buds.

          There are plenty of appetizing meals that do not contain meat, by the way.

          July 14, 2012 at 12:06 am |
  33. Meateater

    What a crock! If the HSUS would spend some of the money they collect on animal care instead on advertising to get more money all animals would be better cared for. Also are you willing to pay more for your food? That is what will happen if some of these crazy laws are passed and there will be more starving people in USA!

    July 13, 2012 at 10:30 pm |
    • Mad Sam

      Actually, it would be far more efficient to feed everyone in the country based on a vegetarian diet. Ending animal exploitation would only make the country healthier and – quite possibly – even wealthier; there is no reason that people would starve. In fact, if you use a utilitarian approach and think in terms of efficiency, many pounds of non-animal matter are needed to produce one pound of meat, so producing meat is wasteful and illogical.

      July 13, 2012 at 10:33 pm |
      • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

        Elaborate on "non-animal matter".

        July 13, 2012 at 10:35 pm |
        • Mad Sam

          Vegetation, i.e. not meat. You should be smart enough to understand that.

          July 13, 2012 at 10:39 pm |
        • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

          I am actually interested in your thought, not your argument. How much of your salad do you think was fertilized with da caca? I know it has to have been at one point, hence the wash. I loves da salad, not da poo. But with slices of t-bone on top

          July 13, 2012 at 10:43 pm |
        • Mad Sam

          Savor your carcass flesh and its high fat content. Go ahead. Then do us all a favor and die of a stroke.

          July 13, 2012 at 10:45 pm |
        • Davis

          Easy there, Sam. I would not wish death unto any meat-eater, but I do take offense when trolls stir up trouble just so that their side of the argument benefits from the confusion.

          July 13, 2012 at 10:53 pm |
        • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

          Mad Sam has made his feelings known, and they are respected. It's the facts that are missing.

          July 13, 2012 at 11:09 pm |
        • Davis

          Troll, listen up: Mad Sam has a point. We can't turn a blind eye to severe abuses forever. He may be on the fringes, but at least he values some sense of justice.

          July 13, 2012 at 11:24 pm |
      • Joey

        at least someone on here knows what they are talking about. thank you.

        July 13, 2012 at 11:08 pm |
      • chad rogers

        SAmmy baby, STAY AWAY FROM MEAT! I'll take your share. Stay outta my way, I'll stay out of yours. capiche?

        July 13, 2012 at 11:31 pm |
      • nimrod

        Yes, but that animal matter is very energy dense, so the trade off isn't as significant as you are implying.

        July 13, 2012 at 11:44 pm |
      • Hog Man

        Sorry, but food is not just pounds. Meat, especially RED meat is a more concentrated form of nourishment that contains more protein and other vitamins and minerals that are often difficult to obtain through veggie diets. This too, is well documented in the literature. Without it, one must often have to consume "dietary supplements", which may or not be chemical based (oops), and some may acutally be extracts from animal by-products, meaning without we meat-eaters...you might not be able to get the supplement you need for survival and health.

        July 14, 2012 at 9:50 am |
    • nimrod

      Hear!! Hear!! That is right on. HSUS's ads are very misleading and make it sound like they are running animal rescue facilities and such when in fact, they are radical animal rights activists with a very extreme agenda and they actually use their monies to attempt to influence legislators, and interfere with the democratic process.

      July 13, 2012 at 11:41 pm |
      • Davis

        Plenty of groups and individuals use lobbying tactics and are still a healthy part of the democratic process. The NRA (which I like, sort of) is one of them.

        July 14, 2012 at 12:07 am |
        • Hog Man

          BUT...NRA is very forward about what they do. HSUS collects millions $19.95/month at a time, by advertising (which takes obout 45% of their budget) that implies they directly help care for animals. All you see is sad-eyed cats, dogs, etc. This actually takes money from local shelters, because many donors contribute to HSUS, thinking they divide up the money to local shelters. I can't believe some gov't agency cannot stop this FALSE ADVERTISING. I think HSUS, too, realizes they are pushing the envelope. Recently I saw an extremely small disclaimer along the lines that "HSUS is not related to local humane societies. However it is so small and short, that I had to pause my 42" TV to read it. This, to me, indicates that they know what they are doing is wrong! Why not put the disclaimer in readable type, and on long enough for people to read...or better yet, have the misguided movie star vocalize such at the end of the ad?

          July 14, 2012 at 10:04 am |
  34. Mad Sam

    How about the severe mistreatment of various types of animals (go to YouTube), cows and pigs that are slaughtered improperly (without being stunned first or being killed even when they are sick), etc?

    Steve, the evidence is overwhelming. The meat industry may be strong, but it cannot hide facts. Anyone who denies facts also has no concept of reality.

    July 13, 2012 at 10:30 pm |
    • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

      Michael Vick.

      July 13, 2012 at 10:36 pm |
    • Hog Man

      Many of these abuses are "staaged". Others are not common practice, but are never-the-less filmed by a infiltrator of HSUS. None of these folks have followed proper protocal of contacting the supervisors or even local authoritiesm as they are "required" by law to do. They simply watch and wait, take illicit films, and give to HSUS, who then exagerrates and edits and puts to it music (minor chords–ominous sounding). Just look at some of the angles that these are taken at.

      BTW there was a case a few years ago where a guy was hired by HSUS/PETA to pay elephant handlers to abuse the circus elephants as he filmed them. I think it was Ringgling Bros., but don't remember took them to court. The money trail led back to one of thses groups. The mistake was he was living way to high for his "pay grade". I think he is now in jail.

      July 14, 2012 at 10:23 am |
  35. Pam

    You can tell allot about a country by how it treats its animals. We exploit nearly everything on our planet, breathing and not! I eat meat, but I buy free range meat. If an animal is being raised solely for food, at least let it have some contentment out of its life time. Besides, all the fear the poor animals feel is excreted into their systems just like with us humans. In return you eat the meat flooded with not only antibiotics and other chemicals, but all the stress hormones.too!! If you truly cared to find out what is in the factory farm meats, you'd never eat it unless you are on a suicide mission!!

    July 13, 2012 at 10:26 pm |
    • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

      The Matrix amazed me on this point. Humans are a parasite. We will destroy this planet. We will consume it. We are responsible for it and all it contains.

      Uh, oh. I think that's what God told us in Genesis. Ooops. We need to take care of it, and each other.

      July 13, 2012 at 10:39 pm |
      • Davis

        Thanks, troll, for pointing out that many humans behave parasitically. Not all. MANY.

        Not everyone on the planet has proven himself or herself worthy of life. Just look at your average criminal, child predator, or animal abuser.

        July 13, 2012 at 11:08 pm |
        • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

          It's a fact that we are parasitic. How many trees have you planted to account for the anything you have printed or read? How many heads of lettuce have you replaced your salad with? Christmas trees? Eggs? Chicken? Radishes? Tomatoes? Steak? Burgers? Oil (LOL)? Glue?

          Shall I continue or have you done your part, parasite? Replace and nurture what has been given to you.

          July 13, 2012 at 11:13 pm |
        • Davis

          I have contributed in MANY ways and MANY places, from here to my parents' country in South America.

          Examples: Guarding sea turtle nesting sites as part of a months-long voluntary community service program, planting trees in forested areas that have been clear-cut in the Pacific Northwest and parts of Brazil, working in the U.S. Coast Guard and catching criminals of all types off the coast of Florida, being a street cop in Miami and catching the worst kinds of s c u m on Earth, being a volunteer with several local groups that have found and reported illegal fishing nets in local waterways, and the list goes on.

          I have done more than you will ever do, troll.

          July 13, 2012 at 11:23 pm |
        • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

          You know nothing about me or what I have done. Stop calling me names, or I'll tell mom.

          Nice work, by the way.

          July 13, 2012 at 11:40 pm |
        • Davis

          What an excellent example of a mental midget who lacks compassion ...

          July 14, 2012 at 12:08 am |
    • Hog Man

      Pam, you are obviously an HSUS troll or are extremely misguided. If you want to see "contented animals" just look at the sows in their crates on the following website. This is areal farm, and they stream a part of their gestation and farrowing barns for everyone to see...24/7..unjless there is some sort of internet problem.. They are proud of how they care for their animals. These sows are extremely content and comfortable. They would be fighting if not in crates. Your comments about antibiotics, etc., etc. are extremely misguided and come right out of the HSUS "playbook". Antibiotics are expensive, and are only used judiciously. Your desire for free-range is you choice, and I have no problem with that. Just remember that those animals also carry risks of disease that are avoided with indoor production. They also have the fear of predators, weather extremes, etc. Both methods of production are acceptable to the animals...they are just different. You should not disparage (sp?) one over the other.

      http://www.realpigfarm.com

      July 14, 2012 at 1:01 pm |
  36. Mad Sam

    How about the severe mistreatment of various types of animals (go to YouTube), cows and pigs that are slaughtered improperly (without being stunned first or being killed even when they are sick), etc?

    July 13, 2012 at 10:24 pm |
  37. Young MacDonald

    Dang it. While I agree that both chickens and cows should not be in tiny pens and live short lives in squalor, and that no one should eat the horrible product of antibiotic-injected beef, I grew up on a farm around cows and chickens. And the idea that these animals are some kind of downtrodden Disney characters is ridiculous. Cows are as dumb as a bag of bricks, and chickens have the sentient presence of a moth. They aren't intelligent and responsive like your dogs and cats, folks. Sorry, but that's just the doggone truth.

    July 13, 2012 at 10:20 pm |
    • Davis

      To anyone who cares about sentient beings (living things like you and me that feel pain like we do), their intelligence level matters very little. After all, would you abuse or somehow mistreat a mentally challenged kid just because he is not as smart as most of us?

      July 13, 2012 at 10:56 pm |
      • Hog Man

        We do care about them, and for them. During snow storms, wtc., we trudge to work. We get no vacation time or weekends off. they are alot of work We care about them and for them. then they are properly and humanely stunned and killed and processed for for their meat. it is true that we make use of every part of a pig but the squeal. Period.

        July 15, 2012 at 8:27 pm |
    • Rancher

      I find it hard to believe you worked on a farm. Pigs are way more intelligent than dogs and considered second to chimpanzees. The reason you might not perceive them as smart as a dog is because they are motivated by food and not your approval. Cows are not as smart but certainly outwit a cat.

      July 13, 2012 at 10:58 pm |
    • Young MacDonald

      Yep. I grew up there and worked with the animals from the time I was of any use to my father, which was at a pretty young age. We didn't have pigs, so I have no knowledge of them. But I've heard that they're smart.

      Maybe I was hasty with my comment, but I think two things set me off:

      A lot of folks are full of sympathy for such talk, but take no action–and devour meat every day–which is fine, because humans are omnivorous. Still, they don't seem to realize that there's a death involved–and that the slice of protein they consume is a cut-up chunk of an animal, wrapped up in plastic. People have no connection to the actual source of their meat. I remember the first time I held the halter of a young steer that was killed–to be butchered. The butcher used a bolt gun, and the suddeness of it shocked me. The man held the gun to its head and there was a sound and the animal crumpled to the ground, and then the butcher slit its throat, and hauled it up on a frame to let the blood drain out. I knew my father expected me to have no reaction, so I stood tall, but in truth I wanted to vomit, because I felt the life go out of it, just like that.

      The other thing that set me off is the smug face of the writer at the top of the article, so self-righteous and confident. There's something really annoying about that look. It's the look of someone who hasn't had much strife and pain yet in their life. You need a better look than that if you're going to stand around and tell people that they're bad, and then tell them what's truly good for them.

      July 14, 2012 at 10:32 am |
  38. RW

    To all those who show disregard for the suffering of other creatures with their pitiful comments, I wish you nothing but misery in your own little lives.

    July 13, 2012 at 10:12 pm |
    • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

      You are either Atheist or Baptist. Which one am I close to?

      July 13, 2012 at 10:17 pm |
    • buster

      OH PLEASE...what do you eat RW.....and what is the suffering of other creatures...let us not forget the plants or the bug that splatters on the windshield

      July 13, 2012 at 10:20 pm |
    • PantyRaid

      I hope someday you are so injured that you wont be able to move and your dog will get hungry and eat your face.

      July 13, 2012 at 10:26 pm |
      • buster

        I don't think you are understanding me. I don't mistreat animals. And if I was injured my dog would not eat my face because he is dead. I had to put him to sleep after a three year battle with diabetes...it was the worst day of my life. I should hope you would understand everything I have fought back with tonight but it is ok that you can not.

        July 13, 2012 at 10:45 pm |
        • Davis

          Buster, I have a feeling that you are a troll and that you just conjured up that story.

          Nice try at getting some sympathy for your side of the argument.

          July 13, 2012 at 10:50 pm |
        • buster

          Uh no Davis...I didn't conjure up that story...I miss very much my dog...He was a person with me every day for 14 years and rode in my truck sitting up in the passenger seat. In my small town people always knew it was me cuz buster was sitting in his seat....more I could say about him but pointless

          July 13, 2012 at 11:07 pm |
        • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

          Nice sentiment, but I think you're thinking of your Gramps. 'Cause Gramps would never say "cuz". He would kick your boohind for the misspelling.

          July 13, 2012 at 11:17 pm |
        • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

          And the grammar reminds me of them "Prince of Nigeria" e-mail scams.

          July 13, 2012 at 11:18 pm |
  39. Steve

    This individual clearly has not been on a modern family farm and mistakes many of the actions on a farm as cruelty. I encourage folks that before they believe such drastic accusations that they take the time to do their own research, talk with a farmer or even tour a farmer. Farmers want to be apart of the conversation. HSUS has only one goal in mind and that is to stop animal agriculture.

    July 13, 2012 at 10:04 pm |
    • Mad Sam

      Tell the "farm families" to make a living based on something other than the exploitation of sentient beings.

      F

      *

      *

      K

      the "innocent" farmers.

      July 13, 2012 at 10:09 pm |
      • Steve

        obviously you have no concept of reality. but fortunately there are people that actually do want to know facts.

        July 13, 2012 at 10:12 pm |
      • Davis

        Steve, open your eyes. Heart-wrenching cases of abuse are EVERYWHERE.

        July 13, 2012 at 10:53 pm |
    • buster

      thanjks for your input as mine was a little confrontational......I have seen this misguided dialouge for years and it really angers me...

      July 13, 2012 at 10:11 pm |
    • Laura

      How can you "tour a farmer"?

      Jokes aside, it must be recognized that unspeakable abuses occur almost every day at farms where animals are raised. The Internet is full of videos confirming this.

      July 13, 2012 at 10:12 pm |
      • Steve

        I would encourage you to look in your local community for a farm. If you are in an urban area I can understand that it would be a bit more difficult but contact some of the state organizations. There are always farmers who are willing to bring people to their farm and explain what they do. Do you have some specific examples of what you think farmers are doing wrong?

        July 13, 2012 at 10:14 pm |
        • Mad Sam

          How about the severe mistreatment of various types of animals (go to YouTube), cows and pigs that are slaughtered improperly (without being stunned first or being killed even when they are sick), etc?

          Steve, the evidence is overwhelming. The meat industry may be strong, but it cannot hide facts. Anyone who denies facts also rejects reality.

          July 13, 2012 at 10:26 pm |
      • buster

        Laura....you are uninformed.

        July 13, 2012 at 10:22 pm |
        • Davis

          Buster, you are uninformed and narrow-minded to such an extent that you purposely ignore the other side's arguments and evidence.

          July 13, 2012 at 10:54 pm |
      • DK

        Yes, because everything you read on the internet is true.

        July 13, 2012 at 10:33 pm |
        • Mad Sam

          @DK: Great. Are you telling Laura to completely ignore thousands of cases of recorded animal abuse simply because they are available to everyone on the Internet?

          Are you implying that every single instance of animal abuse recorded on a farm has been faked?

          G T F O of this discussion until your IQ goes up, numbnut.

          July 13, 2012 at 10:35 pm |
        • Laura

          DK, if you were not so narrow-minded, you would at least recognize the great extent to which animal abuse occurs at supposedly "legitimate" facilities like farms.

          July 13, 2012 at 10:36 pm |
      • rancher

        There are several you tubes where family farmers have posted their farms. I live in the heart of agriculture and the vast majority of us don't abuse any animals. The argument that a very, very small minority abuse livestock so all livestock production should be banned is totally irrational. There are pet owners who abuse their pets so should all of us be forced to give up our pets? Same logic. But that is a goal of HSUS to ban all animal ownership.
        HSUS is the same group that takes in millions of dollars every year but only spends 1% or less on animal rescue.

        July 14, 2012 at 12:10 am |
      • Hog Man

        Well, I could show you how, depending on what you look like! HAHAHA

        July 15, 2012 at 8:23 pm |
    • Rancher

      Steve the problem is that the majority of the food Americans eat does not come from a "family" farm. It comes from feed lots and factory farming. Almost all of the chain stores and restaurants purchase from these Big Agri. The point of the article is to get people to educate themselves as to where their meat comes. Is it a factory farm where pigs are held in gestation crates or is it a family farm where they can actually graze on a pasture and are not fed corn.

      July 13, 2012 at 11:06 pm |
      • rancher

        98% of farms are family owned.

        July 14, 2012 at 12:04 am |
        • Davis

          That is an enormous lie. Very few farms are owned and run by small families.

          July 14, 2012 at 12:09 am |
        • Hog Man

          I don't know exact nimber, but far and away, farms are owned/operated by farm families. I see the commenter now wants to debate the size of the family....apparently you have to be a "small farm family" to be OK. What is wrong with several siblings working together on a larger family farm, that can use many of the efficiencies of the "mega farms".? Do you need to be inefficient to be considered a good "small family farm"?

          July 14, 2012 at 1:15 pm |
  40. Kevin H.

    CNN is this truly news worthy? Oh by the way you have forgotten to tell your readers that by doing all this that they will be forced to raise meat prices again. We are already facing a market that is going to increase due to the drought conditions in the midwest. It amazes me that you only report the side of the story you want told and not the entire truth. What has happened to responsible journalism?

    July 13, 2012 at 9:59 pm |
    • Davis

      Yes, Kevin, this is newsworthy.

      I prefer to engage in an ethical debate that sits at the core of human nature rather than talk about Jersey Shore or an insignificant story about someone five thousand miles away.

      July 13, 2012 at 11:11 pm |
      • Kevin H.

        Davis, Who the hell said anything about Jersey Shore or some event 5000 miles away. The liberal media is doing another hit and run story to see whatever will stick. The liberal media does a hit and run story on whatever and whoever they take aim at to make rules for the masses good. I'm calling bullsh*t they have literally destroyed a company where I live and displaced a couple thousand workers in four different states with no consequences to them by telling outright lies. I personally believe in responsible journalism and you believe in fairy tales take off your rose colored glasses.

        July 14, 2012 at 12:21 am |
    • Kat Kinsman

      Hi there,

      We do in fact present the POV from both side, on a regular basis. You just happened upon one side's turn. Come back later this week for the response from a farmer, and dig into the article here: http://eatocracy.cnn.com/category/news/business-and-farming-news/farms/

      Kat Kinsman - Managing Editor, CNN Eatocracy

      July 15, 2012 at 1:53 pm |
  41. Krisagi

    Why is it there are more groups that are concerned with the health and well being of animals than there is for the health and well being of humans? In my opinion as long as the meat I eat is dead when it hits my plate at my table I dont care what happened to it while its alive.

    July 13, 2012 at 9:57 pm |
    • Fozzyspeak

      How despicable of you.

      July 13, 2012 at 10:16 pm |
    • Davis

      Be glad. You are among the ranks of the ignorant and cruel of this miserable world.

      You "do not care what happens to it before it hits your plate."

      By that same logic, could I serve you one of your own family members for dinner? What if that relative was abused and decapitated beforehand? Ah, yes, you would not care.

      You only care for living beings that are like you. What a load of selfish krap.

      July 13, 2012 at 10:49 pm |
      • Gravy rules

        Once again you prove your lunacy. Congratulations, you're number one... no wait... number two is much more appropriate.

        July 16, 2012 at 1:15 pm |
    • Apollo

      Krisagi, to answer your question, you're looking to openly at the article. It was posted to bring awareness to this topic, not to belittle all others. If you don't like the content of this thread then, by all means, go away.

      July 14, 2012 at 8:20 am |
      • Apollo

        *too openly*

        July 14, 2012 at 8:20 am |
  42. Mad Sam

    Ways to Clean Up America and the World

    – Make animal cruelty a capital crime, regardless of age
    – Give most prisoners and dangerous offenders lethal injections and use prison funds for our system of education
    – Phase out meat production and pet breeding over time (until both are eventually eradicated, leading to a world with fewer abused animals)
    – Use "advanced interrogation techniques" on terrorists as an example for all to see
    – Ban hunting, but lessen restrictions on civilian firearms ownership for the purpose of self-defense (a nationwide "Stand Your Ground" law should be enacted and state prohibitions regarding specific firearms should be overturned)

    July 13, 2012 at 9:57 pm |
    • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

      I can't wait until you're President. So I can be proud to defect to Argentina.

      But don't worry. Asst. Manager of Little Caesar's is all I have to worry about.

      July 13, 2012 at 9:59 pm |
      • Mad Sam

        - Use violent prison inmates as test subjects and ban animal experimentation
        – Legalize limited amounts of certain illegal substances and place their sale under government control
        – Criminalize bullying in schools

        July 13, 2012 at 10:07 pm |
        • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

          Ahh. The last point speaks volumes.

          July 13, 2012 at 10:15 pm |
        • buster

          oh,there it is...as bad as bullying in schools can be...I bet you got bullied and the big boys pulled your pants down and spanked ur pencildick

          July 13, 2012 at 10:30 pm |
        • Mad Sam

          Buster, go ahead and spew whatever nonsense you want. I am not a basement dweller who makes his money off animals' suffering.

          July 13, 2012 at 10:41 pm |
        • buster

          we don't have basements around here....so you live in a city somewhere that does...I can assure you I llive on high ground...some would say way up high on the hog...and the next time you do eat a soybean product it is very possible it came from me.......bon appetite you silly person

          July 13, 2012 at 10:56 pm |
        • Jake

          Buster, what a nice way to stir up trouble. Good job, troll. Your attempt to incite further insults from Mad Sam will hopefully lead to failure.

          July 13, 2012 at 11:13 pm |
    • Mad Sam

      Additional notes:

      – Seriously invest in alternative energy sources
      – "Liquidate" all sex offenders
      – Legalize limited amounts of certain drugs and put their sale under government control
      – Make bullying an offense punishable by up to 6 years in prison
      – Enact sanctions against countries where severe, systemic abuses of animals are well-documented

      July 13, 2012 at 10:02 pm |
    • Jake

      Nice name, Jdizzle. I can't wait until he becomes Fuhrer either. I will enjoy serving his army and wiping s c u m like you off the face of the Earth. Enjoy your last decades, troll.

      July 13, 2012 at 11:15 pm |
  43. Lila

    I care about this issue a lot. I fired off angry emails to Costco because one of their suppliers was caught abusing pigs and Costco pretty much shrugged it off. Here they are pretending to be a somewhat ethical company but when they had the opportunity to flex their muscles and do the right thing, they did nothing. Thank you for the work you do Mr Prescott. I'm happy you are suggesting people cut back vs going vegan which isn't realistic for most people.

    July 13, 2012 at 9:52 pm |
    • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

      Random e-mails will never make any noise, hence class action lawsuits. You sound like my idiot Dad, believing his e-mail to Obama was actually read by the president, all proud he sent one to him. If you want something revolutionized, start a revolution.

      Good luck, as vegetarians are the extreme minority – worldwide, hence the angst.

      July 13, 2012 at 9:58 pm |
      • Lila

        "my idiot Dad" you sound like a wonderful person, your Dad must be proud. Anyway, considering I've been a member for a decade and spend thousands every year, someone did take the time to write an email back with follow ups. They asked for my name and the number on my card so I wasn't some random person. Unfortunately there isn't enough people following this issue and it doesn't always get reported in the media. If more people had known I'm sure more emails would have been sent to them.

        July 13, 2012 at 10:06 pm |
        • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

          You just proved my point.

          July 13, 2012 at 10:21 pm |
        • Lila

          you didn't make a point. Just blah blah blah. Honestly I don't know why people like you and Kevin write nonsensical responses to everyone. Have you ever considered writing your own comment instead of boring others to death under their comment?

          July 13, 2012 at 10:27 pm |
    • Kevin H.

      Lila, I'm sorry but this isn't reliable or even truthful reporting you sight one incident of animal cruelty and think it's Costco's fault?
      You would rather see animals free range and then you would be critical when they were out in the cold during the winter months and you think thats humane. This is just another attempt by the Humane Society, Peta and Liberals to impose their radical views on the minority. Time to take off your rose colored glasses and know the facts that you won't hear at CNN.

      July 13, 2012 at 10:09 pm |
      • Lila

        Blech, what a bunch a blathering drivel. Try to educate yourself on this issue. Kroger and Safeway(both are listed above) came out immediately against the farm in Iowa that was caught abusing the pigs, Costco gave a weak response.

        July 13, 2012 at 10:16 pm |
    • PantyRaid

      You alone will change the world Lila.

      July 13, 2012 at 10:28 pm |
      • Davis

        Many people have changed the world by themselves.

        Your attempt to demean Linda and her attempt to contribute to a noble cause has just ended in FAILURE.

        July 13, 2012 at 11:16 pm |
  44. buster

    to the "moderators".....Why did my response get bumped off the air?..........I would say another liberal effort to keep the truth from being shown..........Please oh please all of you tofu eaters.go to Wikipedia and read up on fertilizer that grows the soybean that your beloved edamame is grown from...this article is irrresponsible and the animals being treated lilke this are raised by immigrants who have brought to this country the kind of methods indicated in the article. Don't cuss a farmer or a rancher with your mouth full of food.

    July 13, 2012 at 9:50 pm |
    • Mad Sam

      You typed in a word that triggered CNN's word filter and caused your comment to be blocked.

      Shove the tin foil hat where the sun doesn't shine, numbnut.

      July 13, 2012 at 10:13 pm |
      • buster

        no you numbnut...me not numbnut...you dumbdumb too

        July 13, 2012 at 10:27 pm |
        • Apollo

          Mad Sam is right and your response was flaccid – source considered.

          July 14, 2012 at 8:11 am |
  45. AsNaturalasGas

    hmmmm. ... time to go hunting ... they live the ultimate free range all their lives

    July 13, 2012 at 9:39 pm |
  46. Mensaboy

    What a load of crap.

    July 13, 2012 at 9:35 pm |
    • Mike

      Mensa must have really lowered their standards.

      July 13, 2012 at 9:39 pm |
  47. janniepannie

    just a comment....i am a waitress and when i ask a table of 20 people if they want seperate checks, they tell me it will be just ONE ticket...and when it's time to cash out, it was all seperate!!

    July 13, 2012 at 9:30 pm |
  48. Laura

    YES CNN! YES YES YES! May you continue posting articles like this on your main page? PLEASE??!!! You've done a good thing!

    July 13, 2012 at 9:18 pm |
  49. buster

    I have been in agriculture all of my life and the only "thing" I see that needs to be prosecuted is the person who wrote this extremely iresponsible article. However.........If "person who wrote article" wants to prosecute someone, go to the thousands of illegal immigrants who have brought to this country ways of raising animals as they do in their home countries. I can refer this bleeding heart asshole to the Texas Animal Health Commision to show him how they deal with those kinds of violators everyday. Other than that, don't cuss a farmer or a rancher with your mouith full of food.

    July 13, 2012 at 9:15 pm |
  50. Frank

    As you sow, so shall you reap. As much suffering you inflict on others, you will be allowed to suffer yourself. There is perfect balance in the universe. If you can arrange for animals to live a decent life before being slaughtered, you will be afforded the same privilege in some future life.

    July 13, 2012 at 9:11 pm |
    • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

      I agree. Treat your livestock with respect. Appreciate them, and pray to God they were healthy when you make a good roast, the protein is needed for more work tomorrow.

      Farmers are the most appreciative bunch of nature that I've ever been a part of. Vegans seem to despise it. Like an anorexic eating a cupcake,

      "I know I need it to live, but.......NOOOO!!"

      July 13, 2012 at 10:33 pm |
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