Bills in Calif., elsewhere across US would end undercover investigations of farm animal abuse

  • Article by: TRACIE CONE , Associated Press
  • Updated: March 17, 2013 - 2:33 PM
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swmnguyMar. 17, 13 4:05 PM

Interesting. Business interests are calling it "terrorism" when people photograph sadism, abuse, and putting diseased animals into our food system.

' Who benefits when animals so diseased they can't walk are sold to us for food?

I will admit that I am less than ethically perfect in that I love to eat meat, but I am too squeamish to kill animals myself to eat them. That's a failing on my part. But I do think it's perfectly reasonable for me to want some assurance that the animals other people kill for me were treated reasonably, and were healthy enough to be considered food.

I know that food-industry lobbyists have eliminated any real enforcement capability by the USDA. Inspectors have to schedule inspections way out in advance, and even when they do find violations, the penalties are laughably small. That's why we have so much food-poisoning and food-contamination in America.

These things ebb and flow. The last time we got to this point, Upton Sinclair wrote "The Jungle," and people were so disgusted by what was going on in the meat industry that we implemented inspections and regulations. As we hear more cases like horsemeat being labelled as beef, and foreign matter contamination, we'll bring back reasonable measures. When profit is the only functional incentive, people take chances. It will probably take a widespread outbreak of food-borne illness; a major scandal that kills people.

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greatxMar. 17, 13 4:44 PM

swmnguy says: "As we hear more cases like horsemeat being labelled as beef..." ---- The horse meat scandal is in EUROPE, not here. The worry of horse meat entering the human food chain is a bit of a **stretch** in the US.

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LicoriceMar. 17, 13 5:05 PM

I agree with the HSUS leader who said she wished the cattlemen actually wanted to stop cruelty, not the documenting of cruelty." And why am I not surprised to learn this is another ALEC initiative? Why would a responsible business want to belong to this amoral organization?

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mmediaMar. 17, 13 5:33 PM

The veal skinned alive video referred to in the article is rather damning evidence. The USDA inspector basically says something like, "I should not know about this; I'm supposed to shut you down if I see something like this."

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flatstanleyMar. 18, 13 4:01 PM

The sad part is that several of these efforts will probably be passed into law. It's sad and funny that we are making it illegal to document illegal activity. Tony Soprano should have gotten an ALEC membership, then they could have introduced bills making illegal for officers to go undercover and record their illegal activities.

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