Thursday, February 28, 2008

Have you seen the full video?

As you may have noticed, I tend not to blog about subjects that are already getting a plethora of media attention. However, I did want to post something related to the latest beef recall, which is the largest in U.S. History. I find it very interesting that this recall was prompted by a video done by the Humane Society were someone went undercover and simply filmed what was happening. The cows, to pass USDA inspections (which occur at scheduled and predictable times) have to be able to stand. If they can't, due to sickness, weakness or injury, they are supposed to be humanely euthanized. This video shows the brutal attempts to make extremely sick or weak animals stand, by beating them, shocking them, pulling on them with chains and heavy equipment, even maneuvering them with a pallet loader ramming into them or rolling them.

I found many excerpts of the video on Youtube but I couldn't locate the full one except on the NY Times link. I waited awhile to see the video because I knew it was going to be bad. It is bad - but you should see it.

It's great that this got out, and made a lot of people think about eating beef. However, there are equally horrifying videos documenting totally inhumane treatment of pigs, chickens and other animals. Here is one that deals with turkey processing. This one covers conditions for several types of animals going to slaughter. These videos and others like them didn't get the same kind of coverage. Is it the link to school lunches that made the beef video so compelling that action was taken?

Although they can be hard to watch, it's better than living in denial that these things are going on. If they are to stop, Americans in mass have to demand better conditions for animals, or stop eating meat. I believe the videos are a powerful educational tool about how things are.

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