Herd About It?
by Ana Grarian
I was doing a Google search for a book I wanted to read and this image came up as a result. Who the hell would treat pigs like this? Pigs are wonderful social animals. They like to nuzzle and cuddle with each other. When raised traditionally they have a relationship with their caretakers. This is sick and disgusting! Please don’t eat anymore pork unless it is from a source that you can verify as humane. If you’d like to help in a peaceful, civil disobedience campaign, print this picture and leave it behind at grocery stores. Ooops, Ana Can’t tell you that, it might be against Veggie Libel laws. Write to the commercial companies that supply the stores and tell them you don’t want pork from this kind of facility. Ask your senators, representatives and state officials to ban this kind of abusive industrial ag.
Thank you to Sara Novak for the fine article at the link below,
and to Seven Trees for a photo that brings home what factory farming really means.
My friend who grew up on a farm (the one who loved all animals except chickens that I’ve mentioned before) said much the same thing about the pigs he tended. Of course, they did roll in mud on warm days to keep cool, which probably led to them getting a bad name as an ‘unclean’ animal, but they were as intelligent as dogs, were able to recognize their ‘humans,’ developed relationships with each other and their tenders, and even responded to simple commands. He claimed an older pig who was raised humanely in a large open pen with plenty of porcine ‘pals’ actually rendered more and better-tasting meat than the factory-raised pigs, so, ironically, the greedy agro-corporations that do this kind of disgusting industrial farming were, bottom line, getting less back for their investment. Crazy: they tried to make up for it by packing more pigs per square foot with the end result being the photo in your article. Here are a few quotes I found on the subject of animal cruelty:
“The greatness of a people can be measured by how well it treats its animals.”
— Mahatma Gandhi
“Of all the animals, man is the only one that is cruel. He is the only one that inflicts pain for the pleasure of doing it.”
— Mark Twain, “The Lowest Animal”
“Once you admit that we have the right to inflict unnecessary suffering you destroy the very basis of a humane society.”
— John Galsworthy
“Now what is it moves our very heart, and sickens us so much at cruelty shown to poor brutes? First, that they have done us no harm; next that they have no power whatever to resistance; it is the cowardice and tyranny of which they are the victims which makes their suffering so especially touching.”
— Cardinal Newman
“Not to hurt our humble brethren is our first duty to them, but to stop there is not enough. We have a higher mission – to be of service to them wherever they require it. If you have men who will exclude any of God’s creatures from the shelter of compassion and pity, you will have men who will deal likewise with their fellow men.”
— Francis of Assisi
“We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals.”
— Emmanuel Kant
“The tendency to cruelty should be watched in children and if they incline to any such cruelty, they should be taught the contrary usage. For the custom of tormenting and killing other animals will, by degrees, harden their hearts even toward man. Children should from the beginning be brought up in an abhorrence of killing or tormenting living beings.”
— John Locke
“We need another and a wiser and perhaps a more mystical concept of animals. Remote from universal nature and living by complicated artifice, man in civilization surveys the creature through the glass of his knowledge and sees thereby a feather magnified and the whole image in distortion. We patronize them for their incompleteness, for their tragic fate for having taken form so far below ourselves. And therein do we err. For the animal shall not be measured by man. In a world older and more complete than ours, they move finished and complete, gifted with the extension of the senses we have lost or never attained, living by voices we shall never hear. They are not brethren, they are not underlings: they are other nations, caught with ourselves in the net of life and time, fellow prisoners of the splendour and travail of the earth.”
— From “The Outermost House” by Henry Beston
“I am sometimes asked ‘Why do you spend so much of your time and money talking about kindness to animals when there is so much cruelty to men?’ I answer: ‘I am working at the roots.'”
— George T. Angell
Thank you for all those wonderful quotes. It brought happy tears to my eyes to know that great people have expressed these ideas. Perhaps, perhaps we will be able to overcome these practices. If not, our cubicles will become locked and we will be literally chained to our desks.
It’s pathetic that some people are, mentally if not physically, in the same pens that the pigs in your picture are in. As you wrote, they are locked in their psychic cubicles and chained to their desks, mostly due to fear and ignorance. I once worked in a building for senior citizens and it was sad to occasionally see someone with only months to live realize, as one put it, “I’ve lived my life rolled up in the back of a drawer. I wasted it. I never knew how much was out there.”
Ana has found that Organic Valley sells pork and other meat products as well as dairy. I have written to them to see if I can endorse their products. They say the livestock is raised humanely, but I need to see exactly what that means.
If you are in CNY I heartily recommend Autumn’s Harvest Farm
Fridays NY Times pg B5 reports that Smithfield reported a quaterly profit after more than a year of losses. Smithfield makes profits on treating pigs in the inhumane manner pictured above.
Smithfield’s cheif executive Larry Pope said it’s biggest obstacle in the last 2 years has been in it’s hog production segment, but they have closed unprofitable plants.
It’s time to make ALL plants that use these despicable methods unprofitable.
And might I suggest that if the board of Smithfield thinks these kind of production methods are ok – they should agree to live like this for one week – no breaks.