Factory farm “waste lagoon” photo scares the internet »
You may have seen this going around last week—it’s effing grody to the max! It’s a feedlot “waste lagoon,” as Mercy for Animals called it. This satellite pic was posted on reddit and people were like, “ew!” I don’t blame them. Even that crooning crab Sebastian couldn’t have set the mood in this lagoon. And that crustacean knows how to set the mood.
From Mercy for Animals:
With over eight billion animals raised and slaughtered on today’s factory farms each year, waste is not only a grave environmental concern, but a major public health hazard. Communities near factory farms have complained of farmers spraying feces and urine into the air, a method employed to “dispose of” animal waste. In addition to jeopardizing human health, this practice can contaminate local rivers, streams and soil. Waste lagoons can also overflow or leak toxic material into surrounding areas.
According to the Natural Resources Defense Council, “People who live near or work at factory farms breathe in hundreds of gases, which are formed as manure decomposes. For instance, one gas released by the lagoons, hydrogen sulfide, is dangerous even at low levels. Its effects—which are irreversible—range from sore throat to seizures, comas and even death.”
Nice. I wonder if a pic like this actually changes anyone’s mind about eating meat/dairy? Or at least makes them more conscious of factory farms? It must, right? It’s a goddamn blood-red WASTE LAGOON!
Update: PCT record broken! »
That rad vegan we told you about earlier this week, Josh Garrett, has gone and shattered the speed record on the PCT! He finished in 59 days, 8 hours, and 59 minutes—that’s an average of 45 miles a day.
Let’s just ponder that for a minute. You wake up, you walk a marathon, then you’re like, sweet, let’s walk 20 more miles or so, then you go to bed on the ground, then you wake up and are like, hey, let’s do that again today! For two months straight. Dude must be tired, someone get him some vegan ice cream or something.
He’s still collecting donations for Mercy For Animals, so maybe this is a good way to nag your friends to give money? A couple days ago Josh’s girlfriend told The Spokesman,"He’s sleep-deprived and exhausted. He wants it over. The only thing keeping him going is thinking about the animals he’s representing." THINK ABOUT THE ANIMALS! And how gross his feet must look. No wait, don’t think about that, sorry.
Vegan Hiker set to break Pacific Crest Trail speed record! »
The Pacific Crest Trail runs 2,655 miles, from Mexico to Canada. Hiking it is a pretty badass feat that normally takes a fit, outdoorsy person, oh, five or six months. But Josh Garrett, an incredible vegan, is about to finish it in about 59 days, probably tonight or tomorrow morning. The previous record is 64 days.
Even better? He’s doing the hike to raise awareness for Mercy For Animals. There’s still time to sponsor him, and MFA has a great Q&A with him on their site.
Look for an update when he CRUSHES it! Go Josh!
Say word? MTV, VH1, Bravo and HULU? That’s a big deal! What do you think? Is it good enough to represent us on the mainstream stage? Will it turn-off meat eaters or open some minds? Furthermore, do you think advertising in the mainstream media is a necessity or could it be bad for the veggie and AR movements? Or what? Discuss!
NYC: Dun-Well Doughnuts and Upton’s Naturals Pop-up shop is today! »
OMG OMG OMG check it out:
Kick off the NY Veg Food Fest weekend in style! Upton’s Naturals will be teaming up with us for a pop-up vegan sandwich shop benefitting Mercy For Animals. Featuring a small sandwich menu that will include the option to slice open the donut of your choice and add a couple slices of hot Bacon Seitan - it is a thing of beauty! All sandwich shop proceeds will be donated to Mercy For Animals, making this an easy way to support a great organization.
Holy cannoli that sounds awesome! Check FB for whatever details you should need to get to this pop-up and freak the eff out on some bacon donut sandwiches.
Paul Shapiro’s Animal News You Can Use! »
It’s Paul Shapiro’s weekly dose of all things animals! Yes!
It’s almost Thanksgiving…Wondering how most turkeys are treated? Check out the newly-released Mercy For Animals investigation documenting appalling abuse of turkeys raised for Butterball.
(You may also want to take a look at this week’s NY Times’ major feature on vegetarian Thanksgvings.)
Finally, if you’ve got some time and want a fascinating read, here’s Washington Monthly’s new feature, “Obama’s Game of Chicken.” As they bill the story: “The untold story of how the administration tried to stand up to big agricultural companies on behalf of independent farmers, and lost.”
Video of the week: Not quite the lion and lamb laying down, but at least the dog and the fawn…
It’s Paul Shapiro’s Animal News You Can Use! »
Paul Shapiro is back with all the animal news you need. Let’s go:
Ever wonder what the meat industry’s tired of? Well, Pork Magazine’s editor wrote this week, “I am getting tired of the constant barrage of announcements driven by the Humane Society of the United States against the U.S. pork sector, and I know you are too.”
One thing you may not be tired of is good news like this: industry publication Feedstuffs has a story this week about a formerly pro-gestation crate animal scientist who now concludes that a transition away from the crates will indeed work, and that producers seem to be getting dragged “kicking and screaming into another inevitable change.”
Other good news: HSUS is proud to be named this year as VegNews magazine’s “Nonprofit of the Year!”
A new undercover investigation by Mercy For Animals documented egregious cruelty at a large dairy producer.
Video of the week: Rescued ducks hit water for the first time! [Ed.: UGH THIS IS TOO AWESOME]
Reminder: Milk is far from victimless »
Warning: This video is pretty brutal.
[Can’t see the video? Watch it on Vegansaurus.com]
People consuming dairy and eggs contributes to profound abuse of cows and chickens. If you still drink milk and eat cheese, you should watch this. If you don’t, I advise you avoid it. But next time someone says, “but cheese tastes good,” refer them here.
Mercy For Animals makes history! First-ever cruelty to animals FELONY conviction! »
MFA made history last week, when Brian Douglas of Butterball factory farm pleaded guilty to felonly cruelty to animals on August 28th. It was the MFA undercover investigation at the farm in Hoke County, North Carolina that sparked what is believed to be the “first-ever felony cruelty to animals conviction related to birds used for food production in US history.” Douglas will serve 30 days in jail, followed by 42 months of probation, for the horrifying violence towards the butterball turkeys he executed. On August 31, Butterball employee Rueben Mendoza also pleaded guilty to felony identity theft and misdemenor cruelty to animals. He faces a “consolidated sentence of a minimum of 8 months, and a maximum of 19 months, in state prison”.
I can’t watch the undercover video at the Butterball Factory farm. But it’s up on MFA’s site if you can stomach it. To show my advocacy however, I like to sport my MFA “Not Cool” t-shirt around town. If you get one too, we’ll be twins! We can start a club! Maybe wear them to Vegan Drinks so we’ll know to schmooze with each other? If the merch doesn’t appeal to you, you can always donate to the cause as well! Man, I love Mercy for Animals, and the incredibly difficult work they do on the behalf of animal rights.
The little chick in the stomach is saying “Not Cool”. I love, love, love it!
Of course there always needs to be a naysayer, doesn’t there? Examiner.com plays that role well with this article which I think screams, THANKS A LOT CAPTAIN OBVIOUS AND BY THE WAY, MFA IS A VEGAN NON-PROFIT. Rachel touched upon all the same points, about the injustices that the workers must face on on these farms, back in Febuary. I think she covered this issue in a much more compassionate and well-informed (I’m not biased!) way. Thoughts? I noticed there’s nowhere to leave comments, but that might be a good thing considering the comments section usually makes me
want to throw myself off a building sick.
ANYWAY. No more turkeys for holiday feasts, or sandwiches OR ANYTHING. Why eat an animal when we can have delicious vegan turkeys???? RAINBOW please order more this season; I did not get one last year and it gave me a case of the sads. Actually no, because I made this delectable tart, but I want both this year!
[Photos via MFA.org]
This gets the Graphic as Fuck rating. Very hard to watch, I won’t blame you if you don’t (unless you eat pigs, in which case you should be forced to watch it a million times). This video was released by Mercy for Animals last month, documenting cruel conditions for pigs in Walmart pork suppliers’ factories.
Mercy for Animals is encouraging people to contact Walmart and tell them these conditions are horrible and unacceptable. So I drew attention to this campaign on our fb, which I guess means I don’t believe all animals should ultimately be free? That’s at least the conclusion one vegan came up with.
The truth is, I do think all animals should be free to live life undisturbed by humans. I don’t think we should kill them to eat them. But what I do think is that while we work towards that ultimate goal, we should also be doing whatever we can to improve the lives of animals that are currently suffering in extremely horrible conditions.
One fundamental issue may be that I don’t think death is the worse thing to ever happen. I think a life of pain, suffering, and misery is far worse. While I don’t want any animals killed for food, yes—I would rather a pig live the highest quality of life possible before they are killed, rather than suffering their whole lives and then being killed. I know conditions sans gestation crates aren’t anywhere near the highest quality of life, but it’s better, and what I’m really addressing is the underlying philosophy.
I also think it’s very self-important to decide that helping animals that are suffering right now isn’t worth it. They’re immediate comfort does matter and helping to alleviate their pain to any degree doesn’t mean we can’t also work towards complete freedom for all animals. It’s like the people who oppose “welfarism” have decided these animals should be left to suffer as a sacrifice to our cause. Like I’ve said in the past—tell that to a chicken being trampled on the bottom of a battery cage. Did they agree to this martyrdom?
I know the argument that promoting “happy meat” is somehow detrimental to our cause because then that 1% of people who actually eat “happy meat” will think it’s ultimately OK to eat meat. I disagree. When you really get down to it, I would rather have people eat “happy meat” than factory farm meat if it means less suffering for millions of animals. But to the point, I think anytime you make people actually consider maybe animals shouldn’t be tortured for food, you are awakening them to animal rights. You’re also awakening them to the idea that food choices are about more than what tastes good. And as we’ve seen, though many of us remain “welfarists” as they like to call us, meat sales are falling. Promoting improved living conditions for suffering animals hasn’t skyrocketed meat consumption.