Month: April 2013
“Troubled slaughter: Big Ag fights to keep out prying eyes.” ~By Susie Cagle
There’s a Paul McCartney quote popular with veg-heads: “If slaughterhouses had glass walls, everyone would be a vegetarian.” It may not be quite as simple as all that, but he’s definitely got a point.
For a little over 10 years, groups such as Mercy for Animals, the Humane Society of the United States, and Compassion Over Killing have conducted undercover investigations into abuses and rules violations on factory farms, and publicized what they’ve documented to lobby for change.
It’s worked: Individual campaigns have resulted in business closures, criminal charges, and even broader changes in social behavior. That has got Big Animal Ag scared.
So it has done what Big Ag does best: crafted legislation and lobbied for it. State farm-protection laws, or “ag-gags,” as The New York Times‘ Mark Bittman lovingly called them, come in many different forms, mixing various combinations of restrictions on undercover filming and activist access to farms and slaughterhouses. Some of the laws give a nod to the value of whistleblowers but require that damning footage be handed over to law enforcement within a day […]
Update on Hope, a.k.a. Baby Mamma & Clothesline Happiness
Howdy GAL followers,
As some of you may recall, I blogged about a starving, skin & bones female cat that showed up at my doorstep in this post. I had named her Hope, well sort of. Since that day, Hope, who lately I seem to be calling Baby Mamma has faithfully been showing up for her twice a daily feedings. I have been unable to confirm if she has a litter, but I will say, after she eats, she always leaves heading in the same direction. And, her nipples are still enlarged. The good news is, since I started feeding her, she feels less bone-y and the vertebrae in her back is less pronounced. I am fattening her up which makes me feel good. 🙂
This morning, while Baby Mamma ate, I decided to snap a few pictures. If I may, I would like to reiterate: do not allow all of that fur to fool you, she is still incredibly thin.
Today in Massachusetts, it is a brisk 50-something degrees and let me tell you I have been dying, that’s right dying, to use my clothesline. As I sat outside on the top step talking to Baby Mamma, while my washing machine was running, I realized to myself, “Self, it feels like it’s warm enough to hang your sheets and blanket outside.” Sweet! As soon as my blanket was finished washing, I hung that out, while Baby Mamma gave me drive-by rubbings on my legs. I continued to sit with her while I waited for my sheets to finish washing. Not sure if I ever mentioned this before in previous posts but one of the things I loved about this house when I first looked at it, was the fact that it has a clothes line. Last year, we had such an awesome spring: 70 + degree weather, that I was able to use my clothesline at the beginning of March all the way through to October which sooooooooooooo totally rocks because it saved on my electric bill, not mention, it is soooooooooo much better for the environment. Go ahead and call me green, I don’t care. Know this: My electric bill all last summer was $35. How much was YOURS??? Hmmmmmmmmm? I work really hard to be environmental conscience and using my clothes line is one way that I can help the planet. I realize not everyone has this option but if you are allowed to have a clothesline, well the honey, I seriously recommend you invest in one because there is nothing, and I do mean nothing better than the smell of sheets that have been hanging outdoors. Mmmmmmmmmmmmmm.
It’s the little things in life, right?
Speaking of clotheslines. Have any of you heard about The Clothesline Project? No? CLP is a really awesome non-profit organization that allows women affected by violence to express themselves. Actually, rather than trying to tell you, how about I give you an excerpt:
The Clothesline Project (CLP) is a program started on Cape Cod, MA, in 1990 to address the issue of violence against women. It is a vehicle for women affected by violence to express their emotions by decorating a shirt. They then hang the shirt on a clothesline to be viewed by others as testimony to the problem of violence against women. With the support of many, it has since spread world-wide. See this list of videos on YouTube.
For more information, drop a line to our National Contact Person:
The Clothesline Project
13 Plymouth Road
Yarmouthport MA 02675
And before I close out this post, everyone, I give you my clothesline. Tadaaaaaaa!
Enjoy your weekend, everyone!
Indiana Ag-Gag Bill Resurfaced, Democrats Ousted from Committee
Cross Posted from Green is the New Red
If you know anyone in Indiana, please share this immediately. Indiana’s ag-gag bill, which makes it illegal to expose factory farms, clearcutting, and fracking, has resurfaced and it is being rushed through the legislature.
The bill had been watered down in response to massive public backlash against it. But now, Senate Bill 373 has all the anti-consumer language all over again.
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Wolf-Killers’ Admit They’re Sadistic Perverts
Paul Watson was right. In his foreword to my book, Exposing the Big Game: Living Targets of a Dying Sport, Sea Shepherd’s Captain Paul Watson wrote:
“Any man who has to kill a magnificent bear or bull elk to mount its head on his wall has some very deep and disturbing psychological and sexual problems. Hunting is no longer necessary for our survival but trophy hunting was never necessary for human survival. Trophy hunters can be described quite adequately as sadistic perverts and social deviants.”
Worst of all, they freely admit it.
An article by Cathy Taibbi in Examiner.com entitled “Wolf-killers admit it’s all about the sadistic sexual thrill” includes photos, links and quotes from one of the many anti-wolf Facebook pages where members brag about “’getting wood’ when seeing wolves trapped, tortured and killed, whether in images or in real life.” Flaunting the fact that they’re…
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Why Every Girl Needs A MGBF. (That’s: Male Gay Best Friend)
My friend and blogger: BlueInThisLight said to me recently that I should blog more personal stuff. That’s not to say he doesn’t appreciate my stance on animal rights. Rather, he prefers it when I share personal details about my life, like my Ghetto Frosting post. He said this post is his favorite. So in honor of Blue’s suggestion, I am going to blog about something that occurred to me today, while chatting via email with my MGBFF Wheeza (that’s his nickname. He calls me Woozan, btw).
Why every girl needs a male gay best friend (in no particular order):
First and foremost, a MGBF will tell you if you look fat in that outfit. Girlfriends lie. Some say it’s to protect your feelings but I fully believe it is the underlying competition thing. Your female BF does not want you to look better than her – whether that is conscious or subconscious I cannot say for sure, so I’ll leave it up to all those learn-ed psychiatrists/psychologists to determine.
He will tell you if your new haircut rocks or screams June Cleaver (that’s Leave it to Beaver for all you youngin’s who have no fucking idea what I’m talking about).
He will keep you out of bad lighting and taffeta. (I just shivered typing this.)
He will tell you if in fact your ass is getting fat.
He will tell you if the guy you are dating is a closeted homosexual or worse yet a lying cheating womanizer.
He will tell you if a man across the bar is giving you the hairy eyeball or is giving HIM the hairy eyeball.
He will tell you if you have spinach in your teeth and a stalactite hanging out of your nose.
He will give you the latest gossip in Rona Barret fashion, including gossip about YOU. E.g., Who is sleeping with whom. Who is hung like Ron Jeremy (or not). And who suffers from ED (I’ll leave you to figure this one out).
He can tell you what the trendiest cocktail is, who makes it and where the best restaurants are located to meet men: gay or straight. Something for everyone, see?
He will tell you if he suspects your female BF is pining for your boyfriend or husband and to watch your back cuz she suffers from SPS (that’s Super Pussy Syndrome – meaning she believes her pussy is so alluring she can steal your man with it).
He will teach you how to give a proper blow job, especially if the dude is uncut.
You can watch gay porn together, although he will be the only one able to jerk-off.
He will teach you everything you ever wanted or needed to know about sex toys.
If the new guy you just started seeing insists on you giving him a blow job (before you’ve decided if you even like the guy), your MGBF will give you an artillery of excuses to give as to why you cannot.
He will patiently listen as you drone on and on about your recent breakup, all the while reminding you that you are, in fact, better-off without that rat-fuck-son-of-a-bitch!
If you happen to get into a confrontation with another woman, he will gladly cheer you on from the sidelines (don’t expect him to intervene, he doesn’t want to risk damage to his face).
If you happen to get into a confrontation with your Ex boyfriend, your MGBF will bitch slap him with some damning evidence you had forgotten but he remembered because gay men have minds like an elephant. They remember everything, especially if it is negative.
He will encourage you to make drunk dials and even participate in the shenanigans. LOL!
He will always be your consolation prize when and if you need a date to an event and best of all, he won’t become jealous if you pick up a man while he is with you, rather, he’ll ask you if the guy has a “gay brother, father or uncle”.
You can go on vacations together without worry that an argument may ensue. Plus, within the hour of the plane landing, he will have mapped out all the hot spots.
He will happily watch a “chick flick” with you and afterwards, the two of you can forever quote movie lines back and forth, especially if it relates to whatever is going on in your respective lives.
He will pick you up at the drop of a hat, and take you to the trendiest watering hole….just so he can lament about his annoying nosey neighbors or so you can bitch to him about your catty & sometimes back-stabbing girlfriends (or the latest annoyance your husband/boyfriend is causing you).
If you dare him to go on a boondoggle with you, he will without pause.
He will also happily accompany you while you do a *drive-by*.
If you MGBF can fix shit, you know, like shit around your house or your car, well then all the better!
And lastly, if your MGBF can cook as well as mix fancy cocktails. Well then honey, you have struck gold!
In closing ladies, if you do not have a Male, Gay, Best Friend, then I highly recommend you go out and find yourself one because mine has proven time and again to be a valuable necessity in my life.
[Please note: this post is Wheeza Approved]
Chronicling the End, Part 1
The End. Everybody has one. Some are nicer than others. The end is not necessarily a bad thing, just an inevitability. What goes up must come down, but the end of one era can be a new beginning for another. Not all endings are unwelcome.
For instance, while the NRA and the Safari Club view the end of hunting as a bad thing, it would actually spell the beginning of a more agreeable era for wildlife—a time when human beings treat animals with respect and compassion, rather than objectifying and maltreating them.
Just as the end of winter brings the promise of spring, the end of the Anthropocene age will bring hope for new life to flourish.
Now, rumor has it there are those who think I’m too negative when referring to the future of humankind. But although I’m a realist when it comes to the future of our species…
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Often its the deepest pain
The Boston Marathon Bombing and Forgiveness
In light of this week’s tragic event (and as a resident Massachusetts) I hope the Marathon Bombing event does not give people cause to foster hate towards all Muslims. Remember: not all Muslims are terrorists. The corollary to this is not everyone who is a Christian is a member of the Ku Klux Klan. A few bad apples cannot be allowed to spoil the bunch. To that end, you cannot hate an entire religion because of a fragmented subset and I hope people will keep this in mind. I have already overheard people making negative comments about Muslims and it disturbs me to my very core.
People are grieving: the victims, and the victim’s families but keep in mind the family members of Dzhokhar and Tamerlan are also grieving. Now, before you rip my head off, remember the Buddhists principal teaching is forgiveness. We Bostonians stand a greater chance of healing and moving on from this tragedy if we keep that principle in mind. An eye for an eye has never solved anything, neither does fostering hate. Don’t allow yourself to become mired in hate as it is an ugly place to live.
My heart goes out to all victims on both sides of this tragic event.
-GAL April 19, 2013
Slaughterhouse Investigation Reveals Nasty Secrets
Yesterday before dusk, I noticed my cats were all acting strange, pacing back and forth from the dining room picture window to the back door. That usually means one thing: there is an animal outside. I decided to follow them to the back door to see what all the fuss is about. Sammy’s nub was all bushy (he lost his tail in 2009) and when that happens, it usually means there is a cat on the property (my cats do not go outside). As I approached the back door, there on the steps was a beautiful fluffy cat. I called out, “Hey baby! Hey Sweetie… are you ok? Who do you belong to?” She didn’t run away which is a good sign – it means she’s not a feral. I slowly opened the screen door and spoke to the cat in a very soothing tone while I approached. The cat seemed to relax. I crouched down and put out my hand to which she gave a head-butt. I gently stroked the top of her head as she moved closer towards me. Once she was almost parallel to me, I ran both my hands down the sides of her body and was horrified by what I felt: SKIN AND BONES. I immediately stood up, went back into the house, scooped up a cup of dry food and plated a dish of wet food. I brought both out to her and she gobbled up the wet food and then proceeded to eat up the dry. All the while she was eating, she had a very intent audience: me and my five cats – we all stared out of curiosity. I should probably mention I felt something else when I stroked her body: enlarged nipples. She either has a litter of kittens or had a litter. If her litter is still alive, it means they are outside somewhere and she’s been trying to care for them (and herself).
I took some photos of the cat: Don’t let all that fur fool you this sweet female is a bag of bones. I put some food out this morning but I have not seen her. I do not want to trap her in the event she is caring for a litter. Thankfully she and I have the weather on our side – the days are growing slowly warmer (as will the nights – eventually). For now I am going to continue feeding her… if I can gain her trust, maybe she will lead me to her babies – or her babies to my foods source – that is, if a litter even exists.
I decided to name this cat *Hope* because I told her, now that she has found me, I will make sure she is cared for.
Everyone, meet Hope:
Boston is on Lock Down Today
If you are following the news here in Boston, then you know one of the two Boston Marathon bombing suspects has been shot and killed (suspect #1) and suspect #2 is on the lam (turns out they are brothers from Russia). The city of Boston is on lock down. All forms of transportation have been closed. My employer has ordered all non-Boston-based employees to work from home.
This whole thing seems so surreal — I cannot even believe this is happening.
It really puts life into perspective, doesn’t it?
Honor Thy Father and Mother—Especially When They’re Right
Last August I wrote a post titled “Honor Thy Father and Mother, Except When They Misbehave,” wherein I argued to those who say, “But my father was a hunter!” Well, so? Look at all the other outdated activities or attitudes we’ve turned our backs on—slavery, racism, sexism all went out of fashion without anyone arguing, “But my father was a racist, sexist, slave owner!” What’s so sacred about hunting that makes it any harder to kiss goodbye than any of our parent’s other wrong-headed behaviors?
On the other hand, I feel sorry for today’s youth whose parents lived during more enlightened times; they really have to work at finding things to rebel about. Lately we’ve been seeing a disturbing new trend: some of today’s young people, who were raised in caring homes by non-hunting parents, are embracing hunting out of some kind of misguided sense rebellion for rebellion’s sake.
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Try not to take
A Kitchen Conversation
“Soooooooo no meat, no oil, no nothing?”
“Yep. That’s right.”
“How do you cook without oil?”
“I water saute’.”
“So no dairy either?”
“So then what do you eat?”
“Do you eat…say… a veggie burger?”
“Not really but I have eaten them in the past.
Generally I don’t’ seek them out as they are not the sort of thing I like to eat.”
“So what does your dinner plate look like?”
“I rarely, if ever, eat a traditional ‘dinner’ – if I eat at all. More often than not I will have baby spinach with fresh veggies and humus. Or a vegan protein drink mixed with almond milk. Maybe a bowl of cereal or sometimes nothing at all as I don’t always eat when I arrive home after a long work day.
“You don’t eat? Why not????” [Contorted facial expression]
“Because when I arrive home, it’s usually 7:00 pm or 7:30 p.m. and by the time I feed the cats, sort through the mail, prep my outfit for the next day, clean up after the cats, it is usually 8:30 – 9:00 p.m. and that is too late for me to eat, especially if I want to be in bed by 9:30 at the latest.”
“Huh. Well I just can’t wrap my brain around a vegan diet.”
“Watch undercover videos of animals being slaughtered — if that doesn’t turn you vegan, nothing will.
This is the conversation I had today with a co-worker while I was in the office kitchen heating up my lunch consisted of Rice & Rye paired with Potato, Cauliflower & Garbanzo Bean Curry.
IMHO, if you have to ask me what I eat, once you have removed: all animal flesh, ovaries and pus fluids, then you clearly do not have a clue about food.
Never search for happiness
Protected: Coping with Loss (or Painful News)
Hunting Conditions Us to Killing
The Following is an Op/Ed I sent to the New York Times in response to a recent article they featured glorifying hunting. For some reason, they didn’t print this—it must not have fit in with their agenda…
Hunting Conditions Us to Killing
I’d like to thank the New York Times for inadvertently giving us a glimpse inside the hunter’s mind, through their recent article, “Hunting your own dinner.” In my book, Exposing the Big Game: Living Targets of a Dying Sport, I spend an entire chapter probing “Inside the Hunter’s Mind” and I’m here to tell you, it’s a dark and disturbing place in there—and no one divulges that better than the hunters themselves. Here are a couple of quotes from hunters waxing poetic on the thrills they get out of killing:
“I had wondered and worried how it would feel to kill an animal, and now I…
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