Humane Society Prez Says A Vote For Obama Is A Vote For Animals

Illustration for article titled Humane Society Prez Says A Vote For Obama Is A Vote For Animals

More precisely, Humane Society president Wayne Pacelle says Sarah Palin has a "very hostile record toward animal protection." But Pacelle has other fish to not fry this election day: the Humane Society is backing Prop. 2, a California measure that would insure the humane treatment of farm animals. Pacelle's Ken-doll mug has been all over the news in anticipation of the measure — he was in last week's New York Times magazine, and today he tells Time what he thinks about meat, Palin, and PTSD.Pacelle says Sarah Palin led "a program that promoted aerial gunning of wolves and bears." But California animal farming may be scarier than Alaskan bear-hunting. Earlier this year, a Humane Society undercover investigation of a Southern California slaughterhouse led to the biggest beef recall in US history. Humane Society videos showed cows too weak to stand being dragged by chains and shoved by forklifts. Pacelle says, "I do worry about post traumatic stress disorder with our investigators because they see the worst things that humans do to other creatures." Prop. 2 would hopefully change things. It requires that pigs, hens, and calves be able to "stand up, lie down, turn around, and freely extend their limbs" by 2015. Seems like the least we can do, but some critics say it's part of a stealth campaign to turn America vegan, or that it will put farmers out of business and drive up egg prices (“Do we want chickens to flap their wings?" asks one farmer. "Or do we want to eat?”). Pacelle counters that any competent farmer should be able to adapt to the new standards by 2015. And he's not interested in getting Americans to quit eating meat. "We're a pluralistic society," he says, "and we have pluralism when it comes to food as well." As a vegetarian, I can get behind this — there's nothing I hate worse than when meat-eaters assume I want to rip the hamburgers out of their hands. But what do you, vegetarians and meat-eaters alike, think about factory farming and its regulations? Is it enough to treat our animals better, or should we all be going veg? Putting Animal Cruelty on the Ballot [Time] The Barnyard Strategist [NY Times]

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ms negative toils in obscurity

humane treatment ftw. my grandma used to keep a few free-range hens for eggs and I swear they're smarter than people ever give them credit for. I wouldn't put having personalities past them.