Posted on June 29, 2010 by David
Robert Byrd was a United States Senator for 51 years. No one can be in the Senate for that long and leave an uncomplicated legacy. However, at least 2 things are very clear. One, Byrd was one of the most gifted orators this country has ever known. Two, he cared deeply about animals and loathed animal cruelty.
His 2001 speech on the Senate floor, which I reproduce here with a hat tip to the Animal Welfare Institute, says much, leaves much unsaid, and speaks to all who are capable of listening. Those of us who work in animal advocacy may have very different methods and views but we all abhor cruelty. Senator Byrd’s eloquent voice offers a lesson to us all and his common decency will be sorely missed.
July 9, 2001
CRUELTY TO ANIMALS
Mr. BYRD. Mr. President, a few months ago, a lady by the name of Sara McBurnett accidentally tapped a sports utility vehicle from behind on a busy highway in California. The angry owner of the bumped vehicle, Mr. Andrew Burnett, stormed back to Ms. McBurnett’s car and began yelling at her; and then reached through her open car window with both hands, grabbed her little white dog and hurled it onto the busy roadway. The lady sat helplessly watching in horror as her frightened little pet ran for its life, dodging speeding traffic to no avail. The traffic was too heavy and the traffic was too swift. Continue reading
Filed under: animal advocacy, animal ethics, animal law, animal welfare | Tagged: animal abuse, animal advocacy, animal cruelty, animal ethics, animal law, animal suffering, animal welfare, Animal Welfare Institute, animals, dogs, factory farms, farmed animals, industrial farming, pets, Robert Byrd, U.S. Senate | 2 Comments »
Posted on June 27, 2010 by David
The Asian Carp continues its long march to the Great Lakes. An invasive species that can reach 4 feet long and 100 lbs and consume up to 40% of its bodyweight daily, the carp will wreak havoc on the lakes’ ecosystem if and when it reaches there. Currently, it’s in both the Mississippi and Illinois rivers and travelling northward.
This situation is generating both panic and inertia. On the one hand are those who advocate severing all access points between the Mississippi basin and the lakes — arguing that the disastrous consequences of the carp’s reaching the lakes merit the drastic measures. On the other are those who say that doing so would destroy jobs without guaranteeing that the carp will be prevented from reaching the lake. It bears noting that the most recent carp find was only 6 miles from Lake Michigan. This means that the fish may well have already reached the lake and that the parties could be arguing about whether to lock the door behind the intruder. Continue reading
Filed under: animal law, environmental law, marine animals | Tagged: animal law, asian carp, environmental advocacy, environmental ethics, environmental law, exotic species, fishing, Great Lakes, Illinois River, invasive species, Lake Michigan, lake trout, lamprey eel, Mississippi Basin, Mississippi River, Pere Marquette River, sport fishing, zebra mussel | 3 Comments »
Posted on June 24, 2010 by David
The perseverating continues about whether to `compromise´and allow some whaling in exchange for countries like Iceland, Norway and Japan agreeing to slaughter fewer whales in fewer places. Even some major environmental organizations, including Greenpeace and the World Wildlife Fund, have signed on. As Stephanie Ernst points out, there is a dangerous ethical compromise in acquiescing to the killing of some in exchange for the survival of others. Continue reading
Filed under: animal ethics, animal law, animal welfare, environmental ethics, environmental law, marine animals | Tagged: animal abuse, animal advocacy, animal ethics, animal law, animal suffering, animal welfare, cetaceans, endangered species, environmental advocacy, environmental ethics, environmental law, environmentalism, Greenpeace, Iceland, International Whaling Commission, IWC, Japan, Norway, whales, whaling, World Wildlife Fund | 5 Comments »
Posted on June 23, 2010 by Seth
It appears that not only do we have unicorn meat on the menu, but lion meat as well. Yahoo! Sports reported on this “adventurous” new treat offered by an Arizona restaurant as a way to celebrate the World Cup. Though I’m not surprised, I didn’t know that lions were farmed for meat. I thought they were raised as ill-advised exotic pets. Apparently they are free-range from Illinois.
Call me crazy, but I can think of better ways to celebrate the culture of host nation South Africa than by eating a critically threatened animal. Then again, maybe eating through the British Coat of Arms is a proper post-colonial salute to the former mother country.
Filed under: animal advocacy, diet | Tagged: endangered species, farmed animals, free range, lion meat, World Cup | 1 Comment »
Posted on June 22, 2010 by David
Is it an animal law matter that the National Pork Board sent a `cease and desist letter´ to the folks at ThinkGeek, ordering them to stop referring to unicorn meat as `the other white meat?´ Well, I guess technically yes…
Filed under: animal law, animal advocacy, diet | Tagged: animal law, animal advocacy, diet, unicorn meat, National Pork Board, ThinkGeek | 4 Comments »
Posted on June 22, 2010 by David
Are you a herpetofauna attorney? Do you want to be? Do you know anyone who is? Or, like me, do you just like saying “herpetofauna attorney?” In any case, you may be interested in the job listing below with the Center for Biological Diversity.
Filed under: animal advocacy, animal law, endangered species, environmental law | Tagged: Administrative Procedure Act, animal advocacy, animal law, animal welfare, biodiversity, Center for Biological Diversity, endangered species, Endangered Species Act, environmental advocacy, environmental ethics, environmental law, environmentalism, herpetofauna, NEPA | Leave a comment »
Posted on June 21, 2010 by Seth
I am in San Diego, CA, a legendary city named after majestic sea creatures. I’ve enjoyed some of the great sights, but I would have been remiss not to visit the “World Famous” San Diego Zoo. I did so with some hesitation (and with a certain singer in my head). I was previously under the impression that the San Diego Zoo was more like a wildlife safari, where the people are in the cage moving in the environment. I was disappointed to find out that it is not. The Wild Animal Park of which I was thinking is a totally different place. The zoo is a rather nice zoo. It emphasises its conservation of endangered and threatened species. Zoos, however, are a contentious issue for many in the animal rights world. The question is whether animal exploitation is acceptable when the purpose is to bring the animals closer to humans. That’s a simplistic way of phrasing it, since circuses also bring animals closer to people, but are not something to celebrate. Yet many view the boredom and enclosed lives of animals in zoos just as poorly, arguing that media sources such as documentaries bring animals to life in a way that does not cause them suffering.
Filed under: animal advocacy, animal rights, animal welfare, circuses, endangered species, exotic animals, Uncategorized | Tagged: animal advocacy, animal rights, endangered species, zoos | 8 Comments »