A Deal in Ohio — But at What Price?

David Cassuto
In Ohio, HSUS, the ag industry and the state government have made a deal.  In exchange for HSUS not supporting a fall ballot initiative on animal welfare issues, the Ohio government and animal industry will take action on exotic animal importation, veal calf housing (they will “transition to group housing”), other livestock issues, and the puppy mill industry.      
Compromise, by definition, is never ideal.  Still, this agreement, wherein pig gestation crates can remain in use until 2025 and existing battery cage operations can remain in operation indefinitely, gives up a lot.  A heartbreakingly large amount.  Sometimes, not nearly enough is just not nearly good enough.

4 Responses

  1. I have to believe, if only for my own sake, that Wayne Pacelle saw something that made this the better option that maybe we on the outside cannot.

  2. I think this was also very frustrating for the thousands of people who had collected signatures for the ballot measure. These people (and the people who signed) clearly cared enough about animals to take the time to do this, and while this compromise is arguably the result of the threat the BM posed, it’s still sort of a slap in the face to them to not go forth with the BM, especially with such a weak compromise.

  3. A weak compromise? While I may not agree with the animals in group housing (I deal with it every day and see how horribly animals treat each other and how much safer they are when individually housed), the Livestock Care Standards Board was created to ensure the welfare of Ohio Livestock without crippling the Ohio farmer. HSUS ballot initiative would have accomplished both and it is shameful that they care so little for the humans involved in agriculture.

    I did not expect anything less than to see a move to group housing…after all, what the consumer believes to be best is sadly what ends up being done regardless of how much evidence there is to the contrary. I’m just glad that the Board and OFBF were there to make it somewhat feasible for producers to accomplish it without going under in the process.

    The saddest part of all is that radical activists dream of some impossible utopia where farmers have a few pigs/chickens/cows out back on a plot of land and that supposedly feeds the world. Putting a stop to scientifically proven acceptable means for raising our livestock is only going to push the little farmer out even moreso, leaving the large farms (the only ones who can hope to afford the costly, unneccesary changes) to carry the extra weight. Irony at it’s best…

  4. […] and my deck with its accompanying martinis.  I’ve also been pondering the Ohio deal I blogged about before getting on the plane last week.  As you may recall, the ballot initiative in Ohio […]

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