What Do YOU Think: Would You Support This Animal Rights Initiative?

This morning, as I was reading my morning Register, I found this intriguing article. Apparently, we may be voting next year on an initiative that would require farmers to provide more “living space” for their animals. Even if these animals are being raised for food, they would have to be treated more humanely.

The measure would force farmers to change current practices that keep most egg-laying hens, veal calves and pregnant pigs in small cages or boxes for most of their lives. It would require that enclosures be big enough for the animals to fully extend their wings or legs, lie down, stand up and turn around.

Well, shouldn’t farm animals be treated more humanely? The farmers are saying they already treat their animals well, and that this is just a thinly veiled effort by radical vegans to shut down the meat and dairy industry in California. However animal rights activists say that they’re not trying to indirectly ban dairy and meat, but only ensure that these farm animals are treated humanely. OK, so who’s telling the truth here?

What do YOU think about this proposed animal rights initiative? Is this just an attempt to put meat and dairy farmers out of business? Or is this just an attempt to give farm animals a better life? I want to hear what YOU have to say about this proposed ballot measure, so please say what’s on your mind.

Go ahead. Make my day. Fire away and have your say! :-)

  7 comments for “What Do YOU Think: Would You Support This Animal Rights Initiative?

  1. October 8, 2007 at 10:06 am

    It’s hard to imagine a more moderate initiative than the Prevention of Farm Animal Cruelty Act. All it does is ensure that many farm animals simply have enough room to turn around and extend their limbs. This is an issue on which meat-eaters, vegetarians, and vegans can all agree: it’s cruel and inhumane to confine farm animals for months on end in ways that prevent them from engaging in the most basic movements.

    More info at http://www.HumaneCalifornia.org

  2. Jenny
    October 8, 2007 at 11:05 am

    Yes, I would support this initiative 100%. The agribusiness industry is telling us that they treat the animals humanely because they are interested ONLY in making a profit. Average Californians know better and the good folks supporting this initaitive are motivated by compassion, not by money.

  3. Andrew Davey
    October 8, 2007 at 11:23 am

    Mr. Schapiro & Jenny-

    Thanks for dropping by! And yes, to be honest, I agree with you on this. I don’t see how this would hurt farmers, and I don’t see why we should oppose giving these animals better lives. There’s no reason for these animals to be incarcerated, so what’s so bad about treating these animals with a little more respect?

    Anyone else-

    Any good reason NOT to support this initiative?

  4. October 8, 2007 at 11:54 am

    You guys posted about this already, here. =)

    I’m always surprised at the excuses I hear for people who don’t care that their meat, milk or egg animals are treated so poorly. I think it’s a defense mechanism first – there’s a kind of guilt that people have when they know a situation but don’t want to deal with it. But I’m sure we’ll get some responses here as to why producers should have the right to continue torturing animals.

  5. Andrew Davey
    October 8, 2007 at 1:53 pm

    Michael-

    Oops! Sorry about that! Well, what can a little more publicity do to hurt? ;-)

    And speaking of hurt, I find it astounding how any one could possibly defend hurting animals. Now I may be a vegetarian, but I don’t see how any of my carnivorous friends and family could defend animal torture. In fact, I don’t know any one who has. So who could oppose such a common-sense approach to ensure the humane treatment of farm animals?

  6. October 8, 2007 at 2:30 pm

    Michael said: “But I’m sure we’ll get some responses here as to why producers should have the right to continue torturing animals”

    I’m not in favor of torturing animals, but I am in favor of eating them. I see this as a transparent first step in the agenda of PETA-types to ban the eating of animals but anyway. Is being in a small cage torture? I guess you’d have to measure stress levels or something to know for sure, hopefully if this initiative goes forward, we’ll see some research to back up or refute such an argument.

    Also, to respond to Andrew: “I don’t see how this would hurt farmers” — in their pocketbooks. Could put them out of business, if they can’t turn a profit with the smaller number of animals they could have under the new laws.

    Animals are legally problematic. They’re classified as property (and why should anyone tell you what you can or can’t do with your own property), but they’re alive and cuter than plants (and nobody wants to see something cute harmed). That’s something we humans gotta deal with…

  7. Andrew Davey
    October 8, 2007 at 3:08 pm

    Adam-

    Well, that’s the problem. Some just see animals as “property”, but can “property” feel pain? Animals do. Also, you mentioned this possibly hurting the “bottom line” for farmers… Well, how so? I mean, don’t farmers care about the quality of the products they offer to consumers? We consumers are willing to pay for quality, but NOT for tortured animals.

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