Business lobbyists ALEC shops bills to silence factory-farm whistleblowers

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…because producers of pork, poultry, and beef who rely on CAFOs or feedlots realize their business depends on their consumers not discovering the unhealthful conditions in which their food is produced. The consumer needs to know nothing except that bacon is tasty and comes in sanitary packaging, even if the creature from which it was cut lived its entire life without seeing the sun, knee-deep in vile-smelling filth, unhappy, and at enhanced risk of mass-infection.

Narrowcast, punitive laws of this nature in no way serve the public good. Perhaps regrettably, consumers retain the right to ignore the facts about the things they consume, but there can be no defense for an effort to prevent consumers from having even the option of informed choices. If pork, beef, and chicken producers are so worried about public reaction to their methods perhaps they should endeavor not to use methods any normal, compassionate human would find abhorrent.

Bills being shopped in six states by the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) would make it a crime to film animal abuse at factory farms or lie on job applications, in hopes of shutting down animal rights activists who infiltrate slaughterhouses to expose ghastly conditions.

“The meat industry’s response to these exposes has not been to try to prevent these abuses from taking place, but rather it’s really just been to prevent Americans from finding out about those abuses in the first place,” Paul Shapiro, spokesperson for the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), told Raw Story. “What they’re doing is trying to pass laws throughout the country that don’t just shoot the messenger, they seek to imprison the messenger.”

The proposals mandate that evidence of animal abuse be turned over to law enforcement within 48 hours, or face a financial penalty. Several of the bills bills also make it a crime to lie on slaughterhouse job applications, which activists commonly do in order to get footage like the content of a video published by the HSUS, embedded below.

Read more here. Here’s a partial description of conditions in a CAFO by someone who worked in one (click through for the full NSFL description):

The first thing one notices walking into a CAFO is the smell. It burns in the eyes and mucous membranes. This is the only air the animals gets to breathe all day…

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