vegansaurus!

11/14/2012

Los Angeles City Council passes Meatless Monday resolution!  »


Good job, Los Angeles City Councilwoman Jan Perry and Councilman Ed Reyes! With the support of your colleagues, you made L.A. the largest U.S. city to lend its support to Meatless Mondays. Which is great! We are proud of your initiative.

Of course, we see this as ascending one more rung on the meatless ladder, eventually achieving such heights as Ghent’s civic Vegetarian Thursdays, and one day going full veg, once we become a totally socialist nation of bread lines and communes omg—but for now, it is a good step, a non-binding resolution, and we applaud it. As does our Meatless Monday spokesbeing, we’re sure.

We love you, Los Angeles! Congratulations!

[photo of Flore Vegan biscuits and gravy by Laura!]

10/08/2012

Guest Post: Meatless Monday Murderers? Chico State students not stoked for Meatless Monday!   »

A few weeks back, someone in the USDA sent out a newsletter that seemed to favor the latest push to wean Americans off of their meat addiction, Meatless Mondays. But as soon as the proverbial ink dried on this newsletter, the clowns in the meat industry cried louder than the millions of livestock they brutally slaughter everyday, claiming this new fangled Meatless Monday was a detriment to the farmers of our fine country. The idea behind USDA’s Meatless Monday was part of a “green” initiative, not so much a diet. Their endorsement of Meatless Mondays was meant as a push to lower the ecological footprint. Well…how dare they.

The outcry from the middle states, the ones with right-angle-borders and no indoor plumbing, makes some sense. But here, in my supposedly progressive state of California, we’re having a similar issue. California State University, Chico, may be the latest school to participate in Meatless Monday. However, the school’s agricultural department, both students and instructors it seems, are taking to the school’s Facebook page to voice their displeasure over the decision to being part of a Meatless Monday campaign. 

Seems not-so-shocking, right? An agricultural department not wanting to be part of an event that caters to consumption of…agriculture. But it gets worse. Chico is like many Cal State schools that has multiple areas where students can find food. This Meatless Monday event is only going to take place in ONE dining hall, Sutter Hall, where only ONE of the five food stations would be serving meat-free dishes on ONE of five days of the school week. Whole lotta ones.

This Tuesday, October 9th, there will be a Meatless Monday meeting held on Chico’s campus at 5:30 PM in BMU 209. The Humane Society of the United States will be on hand talking about the Farm-Animal Rights Movement as well as the Meatless Monday campaign. If you or anyone you know lives or works near Chico, I encourage you to voice your support. Both in terms of a greener planet and healthier diets, we have to crawl before we can cartwheel off the pommel horse. Bullies like the Ag Department at Chico and the meat industry on the national level will do anything to stop us from crawling. And are proud to do so. Just take a look at these comments:

And now I’m off to grab a hamburger. 

Courtesy of Jennifer Ryder Fox, Dean of CSUC School of Agricultural. This is how she signed off on an e-mail to all the agricultural students where she stated she was appalled by the school’s decision to include Meatless Mondays. She also went on to say:

…which was clearly influenced by the Humane Society of the United States, who uses its cover of a caring, moderate animal welfare organization to advance its true mission of ending animal agriculture.

Right. Now let’s mirror that to the comments made on Twitter by Iowa Senator Charles Grassley after USDA pulled their newsletter:

I will eat more meat on Monday to compensate for stupid USDA recommendation abt (sic) a meatless Monday.

Perhaps the Dean and the Senator should hook up on LinkedIn.

Visit Chico for Animal Rights FB page to learn more about AR efforts on campus. 

Andrew E. Irons is a blogger from Long Beach, Calif. He co-created and contributes to Rhode Island-based hip-hop website The Echo Chamber Blog under the pseudonym Verbal Spacey. You can track his daily diatribes by following him on Twitter.

09/14/2012

It’s Paul Shapiro’s Animal News You Can Use!  »

It’s Animal News You Can Use from Paul Shapiro! Yay, Paul! Yay, Animals!

Huge news this week: Big agribusiness lost another round in its continued assault on Prop 2, the ballot measure we waged four years ago in California to ban various factory farming practices. A federal judge in Los Angeles ruled in HSUS’s favor and threw out a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the law.

Also big news is that meat consumption is in significant decline in the US. Here’s a new piece from me looking at the trend and the reasons behind it. And here’s a nice segment from the ABC San Francisco TV affiliate about HSUS helping a local school district implement Meatless Monday.

Speaking of big, my friend Big Bruce Friedrich has a good new essay about how the pork industry’s leadership is both anti-science and anti-animal.

P.S. Video of the week: Man apologizes to cat by building him an amazing gift.

07/30/2012

The Meatless Monday Unicorn is clearly nonplussed, as per usual. If you don’t know about the situation with the USDA and Meatless Monday, catch up. 
As always, you can send the MMU directly to your omni pals via flickr. 

The Meatless Monday Unicorn is clearly nonplussed, as per usual. If you don’t know about the situation with the USDA and Meatless Monday, catch up

As always, you can send the MMU directly to your omni pals via flickr

07/27/2012

It’s Paul Shapiro’s Animal News You Can Use!  »

It’s Paul Shapiro's Animal News You Can Use! WOOHOO!

Good news: A judge has rejected the foie gras industry’s attempt to put a hold on California’s new law banning the force-feeding of ducks (and selling products from force-fed ducks).

More good news: North America’s largest foodservice distributor, Sysco, is the latest food giant to come out against gestation crate confinement of pigs.

In response to the gestation crate debate, the National Pork Producers Council’s communications director was seriously quoted in the National Journal this week saying: “So our animals can’t turn around for the 2.5 years that they are in the stalls producing piglets…I don’t know who asked the sow if she wanted to turn around.” (No, this isn’t a quote from 30 years ago—it’s July 24, 2012. Seriously. Yes, I know.)

Amazingly, USDA put out a newsletter this week including a mention of the health and environmental benefits of Meatless Monday. This of course drew immediate outrage from the meat industry and its allies in Congress (Rep. Steve King from Iowa tweeted that it was “heresy”), prompting USDA to immediately remove the newsletter and announce that it wasn’t properly vetted. Lots of coverage on this, though the national AP story put it best when it aptly concluded, “The USDA often promotes the beef industry by encouraging Americans to eat meat.” (NPR and NY Times had good coverage, too.) 

Video of the week: Best way to prevent dog shedding… (Or, if you want to upset Rep. King, feel free to share HSUS’s fun Meatless Monday video online today!)

USDA retracts support of Meatless Mondays, is beef industry’s puppet  »

Man, this is so gross. Even more proof that the governmental agencies put in place to protect us only care about appeasing the big money$$$. 

From the USDA Twitter:

You can just imagine how that went down. Like, lower level people at the USDA were all, “sure, Meatless Monday, that’s cool, Americans should eat several fewer pounds of shit-laced meat a day!” and then the beef industry bigwigs saw it and freaked the fuck out because, “OMG AMERICANS EATING FEWER DEAD ANIMALS THAT’S UN-AMERICAN!! AND ALSO, HOW WILL WE GET RICHER AND MAKE EVERYONE ELSE SICK AND POOR???” and then they called the USDA bigwigs who—shocker!—are some of their bff’s/former employees and BAM, Meatless Monday retracted.

What. a. bunch. of. bullshit. LITERALLY.

06/18/2012

Hey, MMU! Thanks for the business advice. It’s great to see you applying your MBA. 
You can check out the Meatless Monday Unicorn on Flickr to send to your omni pals!

Hey, MMU! Thanks for the business advice. It’s great to see you applying your MBA. 

You can check out the Meatless Monday Unicorn on Flickr to send to your omni pals!

05/03/2012

Paul Shapiro presents: debating ducks, changing climate, and funny felines!  »


It’s Paul Shapiro’s Animal News You Can Use! Yay!

Amazingly, even though they’ve had more than seven years to find an alternative to force-feeding, a small gaggle of foie gras enthusiasts in California are trying to repeal the upcoming July ban on the force-feeding of ducks for foie gras (and the sale of products from force-fed animals). I did a 20-minute debate about this on Southern California’s NPR affiliate yesterday, and an hour-long debate on Northern California’s NPR affiliate today.

Speaking of feeding, as far as what we’re feeding ourselves, the title of the Forbes article says it all: “Eating Less Meat Is World’s Best Chance For Timely Climate Change, Say Experts.” Meatless Monday recipes, anyone?

Some good news: HSUS’s Smithfield exposé video yesterday won a 2012 Webby Award! (The Webbys are kind of like an Oscars of online content.) We’re psyched.

Finally, last week’s video was the double-dutching dog. This week it’s the treadmill-loving cats.

04/10/2012

Paul Shapiro presents: Ducks in the newspaper and cats in bed with you!  »


It’s Paul Shapiro’s Animal News You Can Use! Yay!

In an LA Times op-ed today, the chairman of California Democratic Party lays a strong smack-down on those who want to repeal the state’s upcoming ban on force-feeding ducks for foie gras.

Food service giant Sodexo reports on the Meatless Monday efforts in its cafeterias: “Of the 74 percent who offered Meatless Monday, the majority of providers, 76 percent, said that the campaign was ‘easy’ or ‘very easy’ to implement and 65 percent said they will continue to promote the campaign with an additional 24 percent noting that they may continue.”

Speaking of, the Des Moines Register notes that demand for meat is falling due to many forces, including both the popularity of Meatless Mondays, as well as “a more powerful animal rights movement.” The article illustrates this by saying “Wayne Pacelle, president of the Humane Society of the United States, took his agency from its traditional role as protector of the nation’s dogs and cats into a political activist organization that has pushed, with partial success, referendums against animal confinements.”

(While on that topic, Michigan papers reported this past week on HSUS’s efforts to get Domino’s pizza to stop buy pork products from producers that use gestation crates for pigs.)

P.S. New report says sleeping with your pets is good! How about also working with them on top of you?

If that doesn’t make you love cats, this video of the week might get you closer.

04/02/2012

Paul Shapiro presents: Meatless Monday, mischief in Iowa, and HSUS is Hitler?  »

It’s Paul Shapiro’s Animal News You Can Use! Yay!

Want to start your Monday off well? HSUS’s Meatless Monday video won a Telly Award!

The irony of this one really made my day. The Iowa Farm Bureau—the same folks who supported a bill to ban hidden cameras on factory farms—recently had an employee doing something on his coworkers’ chairs that he might not have been doing had he known there was a camera there. What exactly was he doing? See for yourself.

Industry publication Meatingplace isn’t exactly a fan of HSUS. In fact, they recently compared us to Hitler. Well, in their new issue, while they didn’t exactly say they like us, they did editorialize about our gestation crate efforts with words that were quite remarkable. Specifically about McDonald’s and gestation crates, they said HSUS got “the last word in its long argument with the meat industry,” that it’s “game over,”  that “the McDonald’s announcement makes the move inevitable” and that it’s “is a game-changer.” And in the same issue but a separate article, Meatingplace concluded that “HSUS is kicking down crates left and right — not to mention doors.” Boom.

Photo of the week: My cat Sam getting ready in the morning—isn’t he cute?!:

Video of the week: This past Saturday was Cesar Chavez Day. Here’s a great short video of the heroic farm worker advocate speaking about animal protection, including farm animals.

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