May 2010 Archives


Last nights episode of "Issues with Jane Velez-Mitchell" on CNN's Headline News Network carried an eye-opening report on MFA's undercover investigation at Conklin Dairy Farms in Plain City, Ohio.

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PH2010052604735.jpgYesterday police arrested one of the dairy workers documented maliciously torturing animals at Conklin Dairy Farms in Plain City, Ohio by an undercover Mercy For Animals investigator. Billy Gregg, Jr., 25, was taken into custody by the Union County Sheriff's Department and charged with 12 counts of misdemeanor cruelty to animals.

MFA commends the City Prosecutor and law enforcement for their swift and decisive apprehension of Gregg, a violent individual who is extensively documented sadistically abusing newborn calves and cows.

Following the arrest, MFA conducted news conferences statewide and released the undercover footage of farm workers beating, stabbing, clubbing, and kicking cows and calves. Even the owner was caught on camera kicking a cow.

A media flurry erupted as the case crossed the nation on outlets such as CNN, ABC, FOX and the Los Angeles Times, and in scathing coverage on CBS affiliate WOIO in Cleveland. The case went on to receive worldwide coverage, including in the UK and Australia.


MFA's investigator documented Ohio dairy workers:

    • Violently punching young calves in the face, body slamming them to the ground, and pulling and throwing them by their ears
    • Routinely using pitchforks to stab cows in the face, legs, and stomach
    • Kicking "downed" cows (those too injured to stand) in the face and neck
    • Maliciously beating restrained cows in the face with crowbars
    • Twisting cows' tails until the bones snapped

The deplorable conditions uncovered at Conklin Dairy Farms highlight the reality that animal agriculture is incapable of self-regulation and that meaningful federal and state laws must be implemented and strengthened to prevent egregious cruelty to farmed animals.

Compassionate consumers can end their direct financial support of farmed animal abuse by rejecting dairy, and other animal products, and adopting a vegan diet.

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Chilling undercover footage recorded during a new Mercy For Animals investigation exposes dairy farm workers sadistically abusing cows and young calves.


Captured on hidden camera, the shocking scenes of abuse reveal a culture of cruelty at Conklin Dairy Farms in Plain City, Ohio. During a four-week investigation between April and May, MFA's investigator documented farm workers:

    • Violently punching young calves in the face, body slamming them to the ground, and pulling and throwing them by their ears
    • Routinely using pitchforks to stab cows in the face, legs and stomach
    • Kicking "downed" cows (those too injured to stand) in the face and neck - abuse carried out and encouraged by the farm's owner
    • Maliciously beating restrained cows in the face with crowbars - some attacks involving over 40 blows to the head
    • Twisting cows' tails until the bones snapped
    • Punching cows' udders
    • Bragging about stabbing, dragging, shooting, breaking bones, and beating cows and calves to death

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After viewing the footage, Dr. Bernard Rollin, distinguished professor of animal science at Colorado State University, stated: "This is probably the most gratuitous, sustained, sadistic animal abuse I have ever seen. The video depicts calculated, deliberate cruelty, based not on momentary rage but on taking pleasure through causing pain to cows and calves who are defenseless."

Immediately upon completion of the investigation, Mercy For Animals contacted the City Prosecutor's Office of Marysville regarding the ongoing pattern of abuse at Conklin Dairy Farms. MFA is pushing for employees of the facility to be criminally prosecuted for violating Ohio's animal cruelty laws.

The deplorable conditions uncovered at Conklin Dairy Farms highlight the reality that animal agriculture is incapable of self-regulation and that meaningful federal and state laws must be implemented and strengthened to prevent egregious cruelty to farmed animals.

Although many of the abuses documented at Conklin Dairy Farms are sadistic in nature, numerous MFA undercover investigations at dairy farms, pig farms, egg farms, hatcheries and slaughterhouses have revealed that violence and abuse to farmed animals - whether malicious or institutionalized - runs rampant nationwide.

Compassionate consumers can end their direct financial support of farmed animal abuse by rejecting dairy, and other animal products, and adopting a vegan diet.

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njmagazine_image_2010-05-20_cs_20100522_1200.jpgOn Saturday, in the National Journal Magazine's cover story titled "Animals Rights on the March," journalist Paul Starobin chronicles the history of the animal rights movement, and how it has evolved into "a sophisticated, well organized movement." As is often the case with social justice causes, the marginal has become the mainstream, according to Starobin. Highlighting the success of California's 2008 ballot initiative requiring farmers in the state to provide animals with adequate room to turn around, lie down and extend their limbs, Starobin observes that the American public seems to favor according at least minimal rights to farmed animals.

Starobin also details ambitious initiatives spearheaded by movement leaders, such as the establishment of a Federal Animal Protection Commission, modeled on the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, and a campaign to garner legal standing for non-human animals.

The article discusses the place veganism holds in today's animal rights movement, and hails the Pew Commission's call for an industry-wide adoption of "five freedoms" for farmed animals, which Starobin suggests are emerging global standards. The Commission's five freedoms include freedom from hunger, thirst, discomfort, pain and fear, among others.

Click here to read the entire article.

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high_energy_vegetables.jpgOn Wednesday, The Washington Post reported that the "Meatless Mondays" campaign launched by Sir Paul McCartney in 2009 is gaining momentum. Restaurants, public schools, hospitals and government officials across the country are embracing and implementing the idea.

This month high-profile chef, Mario Batali, joined the campaign, offering two vegetarian entrées on Mondays at each of his 14 restaurants. In October, Baltimore City Public Schools stopped offering meat on Mondays to its 82,000 students, estimating a 120,000-pound reduction in meat purchases per school year as a result.

Similar initiatives are underway to reduce meat consumption in the U.S., such as the "Balanced Menu Challenge," spearheaded by the group Healthcare Without Harm, which asks hospitals to commit to a 20 percent reduction in meat purchases. Thirty-two U.S. hospitals have signed on so far.

The idea of a meat-free day is also gaining ground in the European Union, receiving an official endorsement from the city of Ghent in Belgium last year.

Click here to read the entire article.

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Hundreds of proud vegetarian and vegan New Yorkers marched through the streets of the city during the 3rd annual Veggie Pride Parade.

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Photo credit: Exercise Compassion.
Many marchers displayed elaborate veggie costumes, green hair and outfits and creative signs and banners to express their love of all things veggie.

The parade culminated at Union Square where an estimated 1,500 people were able to listen to inspiring talks from noted animal rights leaders, enjoy free vegan food and visit exhibitor booths staffed by a variety of pro-veggie organizations including Mercy For Animals.

Veggie Pride 2.JPGVisit ChooseVeg.com for tips on marching toward your own vegan lifestyle.

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Decked out in their fanciest duds, the who's who of vegan socialites in NYC celebrated their love of cruelty-free, vegan living at the first ever Veggie Prom in Brooklyn.

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Veggie Prom emcee Michael Parish Dudell, Veggie Conquest's Jessica Mahady, and the prom king and queen Marisa Miller Wolfson and David Benzaquen.
 
Better than your high school prom, this spectacular event was organized by Veggie Conquest, an amateur vegan cooking competition in New York City, and emceed by Michael Parrish Dudell of Ecorazzi.com and Vegdaily.com.

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Veggie Prom attendees Marisa Miller Wolfson, Michael Parrish Dudell and Robyn Lazara.

In addition to free, mouthwatering vegan desserts, DJ's and dancing, and a prom court made up of inspiring local animal activists, the event raised money to benefit Mercy For Animals' work on behalf of farmed animals.

Want to get started on your own fun filled vegan journey? Click here to find out how easy, fun and delicious transitioning to a vegan lifestyle can be.

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Twenty-two newly erected MFA billboards are urging commuters in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area to ditch meat in place of a compassionate, vegetarian diet.

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Reaching over a quarter million drivers a day, the campaign consists of a series of billboards asking, "Why love one but eat the other?" starring an adorable puppy and loveable piglet, as well as a cuddly kitten and fuzzy chick. The other billboards feature an image of a sow locked inside a tiny metal gestation crate on a factory farm, and pose the question "How much cruelty can you swallow?"

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MFA has run similar effective campaigns, encouraging consumers to "Choose compassion, Choose vegetarian," in New York City, Chicago, Boston, Michigan, Denver, Las Vegas, Toronto and Toledo.

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It is with great excitement that we announce to you that Mercy For Animals is expanding its vital campaigns on behalf of farmed animals to the lone star state - opening an office in Dallas, Texas!

We're bringing our vital work for animals to millions of Texans. Through grassroots activism, education and advertising campaigns, research and undercover investigations, and work with news media, MFA will broaden our efforts to open consumers' hearts and minds to the plight of farmed animals and empower them to make humane food choices.

It is also with great honor that we introduce you to Eddie Garza, MFA's Texas Campaign Coordinator. Eddie will be leading MFA's efforts in all of these areas.

With this expansion we are also opening a Texas Advocacy Center, centrally located in Dallas. Now, with our new Advocacy Center, we'll be able to do more than ever to involve more activists in our groundbreaking work to protect animals. Check out these photos of the Advocacy Center.

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Our new center is so much more than an office; it will serve as a vital resource and clearinghouse of opportunities, information, and support for activists interested in protecting farmed animals! We will offer:

If you live in the area, please consider attending one of our upcoming Texas events.

For more information on the center, and to get active with MFA in Texas please email Eddie at EddieG@MercyForAnimals.org.

Thank you for all of your continued support - which has allowed MFA to broaden its vital campaigns to Texas, one of the most influential and dynamic cities in the nation. Your involvement and dedication have enabled us to move closer to the day when all animals are treated with the respect and compassion they deserve.

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nathanrunklesmallweb.jpgOn Monday the Encyclopedia Britannica website posted a stirring interview with MFA's founder and Executive Director, Nathan Runkle. Marla Rose, a contributing writer for the "Advocacy for Animals" section of the site, conducted the interview and posed several thought-provoking and poignant questions.

Entitled "A Powerful Voice for the Voiceless," Marla's interview with Nathan delves into his evolution to a vegan lifestyle, the inspiration and driving force behind his founding of MFA at age fifteen, as well as his advice to young people looking to become active in the animal rights movement. Nathan also reflects on the future of farmed animal advocacy and the likelihood of seeing a "meatless majority" in his lifetime.

Click here to read this inspiring interview and to learn more about Nathan's ambitious vision for the future of MFA.

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3868774299_c5d4a7de2b.jpgNothing warms people up to the idea of cruelty-free living like great tasting vegan food. Add some delicious desserts to your vegan advocacy efforts and you have a recipe for sweet success! Proving that the quickest way to someone's heart is through their stomach, more than 120 groups across six continents participated in the 2nd annual Worldwide Vegan Bake Sale in an effort to introduce people to the joy and tastiness of vegan foods.

Last year, the event raised over $25,000 for a variety of charities and was named the 2009 "Veg Event of the Year" by VegNews Magazine. This year, the World Wide Bake Sale has already garnered some great media attention and is helping to raise thousands of dollars for animal protection and advocacy groups, including Mercy For Animals.

Feeling inspired? Check out Mercy for Animals' Feed-In page for more information and ideas on how to hold your own vegan bake sale. Click here to search dozens of free, mouthwatering vegan desserts.

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About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries from May 2010 listed from newest to oldest.

April 2010 is the previous archive.

June 2010 is the next archive.

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