Word Count: 2061As children, one of the first things we learn is to recognize the friendly barnyardanimals.
We easily can spot the furry cow with the gentle eyes, the feathery chickenswho run wildly about, and the pink pigs that roll in the mud. We may also sing about thatnice farmer, Old McDonald, and all of his nice animals. The truth is that Old McDonaldwith a straw hat has been replaced by a business man in the hard hat. Ninety-five percent of the meat we eat does not come from Old McDonald’s farm. Hens, chickens, turkeys, and over half of beef cattle, dairy cows, and pigs come from an;animal factory; (Sussman, 95) which is a mechanized environment. This new farmingmethod finds blue skies, tall silos, and grassy hillsides good for calendars but, bad forbusiness.Order now
Those pictures are not cost effective. Animals are not treated with the lovingcare of a farmer but, are treated like inmates on death row. Poultry, pigs, and calves are forced to live in total confinement never to see thelight of day until they head to the slaughter house. Hens are frequently crowded intosmall cages which they may not leave for a year or two. Pregnant sows are often put installs that are their homes for three months at a time. After having her piglets, a sow maybe pinned to the floor for four to seven weeks in order to keep the sow from rolling overon her babies.
Cows may be fed steady diet of molasses laced saw dust, shreddednewspaper, plastic pellets, poultry manure, and processed slaughter house wastes in orderto gain weight faster. Confinement is so complete that the animals do not have room tomove (206). Not only are the animals forced to live in this unnatural environment, they arealso pumped full off antibiotics, hormones, steroids, and are dipped in pesticides. Overhalf the cattle and nearly all pigs, calves, and poultry are fed a steady diet of antibioticsand related Jarboe 2medications to help control diseases. No one is sure what the long term side effects may be for people who consume these meat and dairy products (145).
Have you ever seen a big rig driving down a highway hauling cattle? A truckerhauling livestock can legally drive two to three days nonstop leaving the creatureswithout food or water. Truckers who do stop to rest or water their cargo do so becausethey choose to, not because the law requires it . It is not surprising that much livestock isdriven through days of suffocating heat and below zero nights uncared for, crowded, andsometimes literally frightened to death. Some of the animals arriving alive at theslaughter house have broken limbs or other injuries due to crowding and piling.
At thejourney’s end the cattle are already confused and frightened at their treatment and strangesurroundings. Now they must be sent through such procedures such as castration,dehorning, branding, and injections and various chemicals (Null, 86-87). The four slaughtering methods the government has declared humane are captivebolt, carbon dioxide, electrical stunning, and gunshot. The methods were devised fromthe Humane Slaughter Act of 1958. The Act says that all livestock must be unconsciencebefore slaughtering.
Unfortunately, the act has not provisions for punishment of thosewho choose to use an inhumane slaughtering technique (Sussman, 223). Captive bolt gun, which is usually used on cattle, uses compressed air or blankcartridges. The device fires a thick bolt into the animals’ forehead. Some bolts aredesigned to stun the animal by concussion rather than penetration of the skull. Carbon dioxide is used on swine and sometimes sheep and calves.
The animalsride on a conveyor belt into a pit filled with 65-75% concentration on carbon dioxide. The gas causes the animals to become unconscience. The electric stunner is handled by a packing house worker on any kind of animal. The stunners are shoved against the animal, shocking it into insensibility. If not handledcorrectly, the electical stunner can cause temporary paralyzation. Jarboe 3The gunshot method is preferred among small operations and most farmers.
A. 22 or . 38 caliber bullet is shot into the animals brain. Unfortunately, if the animalmoves it’s head at the wrong time, the bullet can miss the desired spot causing the animalto bleed in agony until another bullet is fired (224-226). Chickens continue to be treated like dumb birds.
In large poultry .