Animal Welfare (July 2009)

Animal Welfare: Congress must close fur-labeling loophole

Imagine going to your favorite department store in search of a gift for a loved one. A particular item catches your eye, a coat for example, one with a fur-lined hood labeled or advertised as fake or “faux” fur. Now imagine that what you thought was synthetic fur turned out to be that of an animal — even worse, that of man’s best friend.

Animal Welfare: Primates require specialized care of professionals

As a Republican and an advocate of smaller, less-intrusive government, I would not typically be seen as the most likely proponent of protecting animal welfare. But I believe we can achieve sensible solutions in bridging the gap between our safety and the welfare and proper treatment of animals.

Animal Welfare: Unscrupulous dealers usher ‘random-source’ dogs and cats into labs

Imagine that your beloved family pet was stolen, sold to an individual who beat her, starved her, failed to give her the necessary veterinary care, and eventually sold her to a laboratory where painful and often deadly medical experiments were conducted on her. Well, it’s happening across the country right now.

Animal Welfare: Allow science, not emotion, to tell us whether farm practices are humane

Americans have long enjoyed the safest and most plentiful food supply in the world. Our agricultural success has laid the foundation for our economic success, and in turn, our preeminence in world affairs. The Industrial Revolution was largely fueled by innovations in agriculture that allowed fewer people to produce greater amounts of food. Relying on others to produce our sustenance, we could now pursue ventures in manufacturing, finance, academia and a host of other interests not related to survival. Increased urbanization, which greatly accelerated after World War II, caused Americans to become further removed from the production of the food they eat. As a consequence, contemporary Americans largely have very little knowledge of what is required to run a modern, sophisticated farming operation.  We take for granted that we can travel to the nearest grocer where the shelves are fully stocked, buy not only what we need but also what we want, and then return home to literally enjoy the fruits (or meats) of someone else’s labor.

Animal Welfare: Cruelty barbaric in itself, and tied to other offenses

Animal cruelty is more than violence against animals. Gang activity, illegal gambling, drug trafficking, illegal immigration and acts of human violence all go hand in hand with animal cruelty. It is barbarism and desensitizes those who participate in it to the pain and suffering of others.

Animal Welfare: Healthy livestock, poultry in industries’ best interest

It is easy to forget that the reason we raise hogs, cattle, and chicken is for human consumption. That fact is often glossed over by animal rights activists. If there were no market for meat, there would be no supply. These animals are not the pets we so love but part of our national and global food chain.

Animal Welfare: Food Safety Enhancement Act is misguided

A series of food-borne illness incidents over the past year or so has focused attention on our food regulatory system. As American consumers demand more food and fiber from both home and abroad, Congress has a responsibility to oversee our legal and regulatory framework and continually look for ways to improve the food safety system. As Congress and the administration consider food safety reform measures, we must consider both the benefits and costs to consumers, as well as to those who produce, process, and distribute to American and international consumers what is already the safest food supply in the world.