Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Michigan Caves To HSUS Pressure

Michigan House passes animal care legislation
By Shannon Linderoth Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Last week, the Michigan House of Representatives voted 87-20 to pass farm animal welfare legislation. This legislation was not the same legislation passed out of the Ag Committee. Due to compromise negotiations, the committee bill was gutted and replaced with a substitute bill that calls for confinement standards as primarily dictated by the Humane Society of the United States, not the “gold standards” many ag groups originally sought.

In a statement sent to Dairy Herd Management, the Michigan Farm Bureau (MFB) says it did not negotiate the compromise legislation of Substitute H-4 for House Bill 5127; the negotiations were strictly between the Michigan Pork Producers Association (MPPA), Michigan Allied Poultry Industries, Michigan Agri-Business Association, and the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS).

MPPA and Allied Poultry expressed to Farm Bureau that in light of the unknown fate of an HSUS-driven ballot initiative, they felt the substitute legislation was in the best interest of their members, and they asked for Farm Bureau’s support.

After long and thoughtful consideration, the MFB Board of Directors decided to honor the pork and poultry industries’ request and support their legislative effort. Meanwhile, Farm Bureau, in the interest of its entire membership, will pursue a substitute bill for House Bill 5128 which would advocate scientific-based animal care standards for all livestock species through the establishment of a Michigan Livestock Animal Care Standards Board with oversight from the Michigan Department of Agriculture.

The decision to support the pork and poultry industries’ compromise legislation was reached, in part, based on the following:

Farm Bureau is a general farm organization and its membership includes pork and poultry farmers.

MFB member-developed policy strongly opposes the use of ballot initiatives as a way to regulate modern livestock production and management practices.

The compromise legislation appears to diffuse this threat, at least in the near future, because in negotiating the legislation, HSUS has said it “will not pursue a Michigan farm animal confinement-related ballot measure prior to the effective date of the law.” Link

After some incredible momentum had been built against the agenda of the Washington, DC based lobbyist group known as the Humane Society of the United States, the pork and poultry growers caved to their blackmailing attempts. What is being reported as a compromise is in reality a surrender flag. Animal agriculture gained nothing in this deal and the livestock abolitionist group got everything they wanted, and the livestock will suffer the most now that they won’t be able to receive the very best care available. Even though the fight has been lost in Michigan, the courage being shown by the farmers and ranchers in Ohio still serves as a model for how to deal with this issue. In no way will HSUS now leave Michigan alone, they will just put them on the back burner until they return to completely and totally eliminate the livestock industry. Their stated goal is not to change livestock handling practices, but rather to abolish animal agriculture.


Anonymous said...

Michigan should have fought it, and at least left HSUS with less money in their banks. Troy- Thanks for sharing this story.

Robin Rastani, Ph.D.
AKA "cownutritionist" on Twitter

Mat Thomas said...

"the livestock will suffer the most now that they won’t be able to receive the very best care available"

So you're seriously claiming that cramming chickens in battery cages so they can't even turn around or raise their wings during their entire lives is giving them "the very best care available"?

Anonymous said...

There was no momentum in favor of the Farm Bureau- proposed bills. On the contrary, momentum had grown AGAINST the Farm Bureau-proposed standards in Michigan, not only from persons concerned about animal welfare, but also environmentalists, small family farmers, local government organizations, and many others. The industry standards that the Farm Bureau bills would have made mandatory on all farms, big and small, were not considered "gold standards." They were out-of-date industry standards, and their adoption would have imposed huge audit costs on farmers while accomplishing little or nothing in the way of improved animal care.

Anonymous said...

I am afraid after watching HSUS for a number of years that there will be less and less farming in Michigan. The agenda of the animal rights organization, HSUS, is ending meat eating period or using an animal in anyway, but expecially for food.

Animal Rights is based on the idea that humans must not use or own animals at all. The organizations who support this philosophy work by changing the laws to eliminate the raising of farm animals for food and clothing, hunting, trapping, fishing, rodeos, circuses, zoos, the use of animals in lifesaving research, and the breeding and ownership of all animals as pets and companions. They are even against the use of guide dogs and service dogs.

Animal Welfare is based on the principles of humane care and use of animals. When one supports the idea of animal welfare it means they believe that humans have the right to use animals and own them, but with that use and ownership they must take responsibility to provide proper and humane care and treatment. Organizations that support animal welfare are those who work to improve the treatment and well-being of animals. HSUS, and animal rights organization like PETA does not have the best interest of the animals at heart, it is the non use of any animals.