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Taping of Farm Cruelty is Becoming a Crime

by on April 10, 2013

Taping of Farm Cruelty is Becoming a Crime

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7 Comments
  1. DannyTierney2016 permalink

    This article is a perfect example of how this powerful industry is trying to limit what people know about where their food really comes from. Factory farms have been able to put a huge veil over the food industry and most people have become very removed from understanding how their food is prepared. This huge industry is able to set the rules about what is humane and this has caused them to only be concerned about profit and not the welfare of the animals or the workers. Factory farms work hard to maintain this veil because they know that it is unsettling for consumers to know the truth. In the article Matt Dominguez (works on farm animal protection at the Humane Society of the United States) accurately explained what factory farms are trying to do by saying, ‘“Instead of working to prevent future abuses, the factory farms want to silence them,” he said. “What they really want is for the whistle to be blown on the whistle-blower.’”

  2. emilyquinn14 permalink

    This issue of silencing whistle blowers in the meat industry is one example of why neoliberal theories can be problematic. While people should be able to make their own decisions based on knowledge of the environmental impact, the information they need may not be available. As we can see with these new laws being passed, lawmakers are attempting to block the general public from understanding what is being done to their meat.
    That’s a big issue because the public pressure associated with revealing animal cruelty can be huge. The article notes how McDonalds ended their relationship with one supplier because of what they saw in undercover video footage, and for a corporation as massive as McDonalds that is no small feat. If other suppliers were under pressure because they knew the same thing could happen to them, they would probably be more likely to treat animals better. If undercover work is illegal though, there won’t be any of this pressure affecting their behavior.

  3. A particularly salient quote is “Instead of working to prevent future abuses, the factory farms want to silence them.” This statement embodies a major theme of this entire unit on food and environmental effects. Similar to the oil industry, the factory farm industry rather spend money on lawsuits to cover up their infractions than take time to correct them. The suggestion to make video taping illegal is a convenient cover up for factory farms. I will not deny that I see the logic in this case from the defense lawyers against factory farms. In some respect, a breach of trust is broken between the farm owners and the undercover workers. Yet, this does not lessen the wrong doings of the abusive owners. I watched a few moments of the man abusing the hogs and I quickly had to take it off. After watching these videos, it is difficult to see the rationale in claiming these video tape should be declared “illegal”. They uncover the veil factory farms and government continue to wear for the “sake” of the public — more like for the sake of capitalism.

  4. It’s hard to believe that the Ag-gag bills are trying to stop activist in finding and releasing the truth. Why do these food industries want people to be quiet? They know that if people know the true things will change for the better, at least for the people consuming the food. If these laws continue to restrict people from taping videos, the the truth can’t be revealed at all. They want reporters to report within one or two days. According to Matt Dominguez that is not feasible. Dominguez writes: “Undercover workers cannot document a pattern of abuse, gather enough evidence to force a government investigation and determine whether managers condone the abuse within one to two days.” If this was possible it will be done. It is clear that factory farms don’t want to stop the obese, but rather hide what is going on with animals in these “farms.”

  5. This article shows just how powerful these factory farms really are. We already saw in Foer’s book how these farms were able to get bills passed just so that they could treat animals more cruelly than usual. I think that it is so twisted how these companies are able to have so much control, even over the government. Their commercials on tv seem so deceiving when they talk about how responsible they are. I wonder how any changes will be made if consumers are constantly left in the dark about what is really going on.

  6. Adam Schmidt permalink

    This article is astonishing and supports Foer’s description in the book about the cruelty animals are treated with at these factories. It is disturbing to think that this is really what goes on in our food industry. I don’t understand the claim that the videos should be illegal. if anything what the companies are doing to their food should be illegal.

  7. ginner35 permalink

    This article really sheds light on the fact that food companies are trying to hide how their food is produced. Food companies are able to control and influence the industry themselves, which obviously they will focus on benefitting their business. Like Adam said, these videos would bring a visual aspect to Foer’s claims of animal cruelty in his book. This would cause a perception of the food companies that comes nowhere close to the responsible perceptions that are illustrated on commercials and advertisements.

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