(UN)SURPRISING RESULTS OF AN ANIMAL RIGHTS GROUP'S DAIRY FARM "INVESTIGATION"
It is extremely disappointing that whenever we hear about new cases of undercover investigations on farms revealing animal abuse and mistreatment we no longer ask about the punishment of those involved, but how promptly the investigation was handed over to the proper authorities and if that investigation was viable. The reality of the situation is that everyone knows the ‘abusers’ will be punished appropriately -- what we question is the intentions of the ‘investigators’ involved. Do they truly have these animals’ best interests in mind? Case in point: Cactus Acres Holsteins, the Morgan County, Colorado dairy farm that has recently come under fire for a video released by the radical animal rights group Mercy For Animals. For clarification before we continue: It is agreed upon that anyone who has stabbed or beaten animals, as this radical group alleged, will certainly face ethical questions of their actions and, as the industry has repeatedly shown, be punished accordingly. Nevertheless, we have a few questions for the other side as well: 1) What stimulated your Los Angeles-based group’s interest in a dairy farm in Colorado, and why did the USDA not have the same information? 2) After receiving the first video ‘proving’ the abuse, why did you not immediately hand that information over to law enforcement officials who could make a difference, instead of hoarding the material for over 2 months? 3) If all you truly care about is animal well-being, which can be ensured when information like this is properly handled, why do you advocate veganism at the end of the video you released to show people about the abuse instead of proper care of farm animals? If the allegations they made are in fact true (we question the dependability of this) then keeping the video from the authorities not only prolonged animal mistreatment, but severely hindered appropriate legal ramifications. There is no situation in which holding the videos for two months would help animals, but there would be self-beneficial advantages to keeping the video for so long. It is a digital age, and these groups are extremely capable of editing footage, taking sections out of context, or manipulating viewers. Yet, even if this group does not edit their video like many other animal rights advocacy groups have done in the past, they are willingly prolonging abuse and increase the likelihood of future abuse to better advance their private agenda – Funding. That doesn’t sound much like they have animal welfare in mind… It seems likely that dairy operators are correct in their evaluation of groups such as this one; they seek "change through deceit and misconception, rather than working with the industry to proactively address their concerns." But the change that they want to take over is not what you would think - animal welfare; instead, they advocate the end of consumption of all animal products, be it milk, meat, or eggs. These radicals wish to limit what can go on the American dinner plate. If, under the rouse of animal rights, editing a video here and there and falsely accusing individuals of abuse are what is needed, then they consider that a necessary evil to achieve results. The whole issue is summed up perfectly by Monica Massey, a Dairy Farmers of America corporate affairs VP, who said:
“Long ago we took a stand on this issue. Make no mistake; we have a zero tolerance for animal abuse. We also have zero tolerance for the manipulative practices of extremist organizations that are coming onto our dairy farms and inciting this abuse, recording it and not reporting it.”
Wait, did they say, “inciting this abuse”? Yes, they did. This brings us to the most vital question to ask Mercy For Animals: 4) Why does DFA have a security video of some of your ‘animal rights advocates’ beating and seriously injuring dairy cows with a milking machine? The individuals who claim to be enlightened in the ways of ethical animal treatment are shown committing blatant violations themselves. In every situation of alleged abuse, the USDA and proper authorities punish those involved. We strive for ethical, clean, and efficient food production so that we can feed the 9 billion people that will be on this earth in 2050. Will Mercy For Animals punish their operative accordingly though? I guess we will have to wait and see, there has been no statement regarding this thus far. Luckily, dairy farmers have a different set of moral boundaries than these animal rights extremists and have turned their own video over to the USDA. We can expect some form of ramification for this individual’s behavior, even if Mercy For Animals tries to protect its members. Keeping this situation in mind we have one final question, this time for you: Should investigations like this one be forced to report their findings 24 hours after finishing and/or register with the proper authorities beforehand?