Archive for the ‘Animals’ Category

By Darren Smith, Weekend Contributor

washington-flag-sealIn what some regard as an affront to both free speech and whistleblowing, Washington legislators Joe Schmick, J. T. Wilcox, June Robinson, and Vincent Buys sponsored House Bill 1104 introducing the new crime of “Interference with Agricultural Production.” The bill, if signed into law, will have the effect of criminalizing whistleblowing and the free speech activities of those seeking to publicize allegations of animal cruelty and other concerning farming methods under the guise of protecting agribusinesses from economic harm.

The bill also provides for troubling retributions against those who have traditionally revealed acts of cruelty to animals and shown food safety abuses by several farms and businesses.

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la-alligator-secret-ktlaThere is an interesting case developing in California over an alleged serial killer that has prowled around a neighborhood for years. The alleged culprit is Jaxson, a female eight-foot alligator believed to be 40 years old, that was kept illegally by a Van Nuys family without a permit. The “Anatomy of a Murder” aspect of the case comes in with the findings of the police in the hidden box of Jaxson — two dead cats. The police are asking neighbors to report other missing cats. I am sure it was unintentional but one article reported the suspicion about missing cats before adding “[t]he house is a family residence with multiple occupants, but no children were found there.” I do not think Jaxson is to blame.

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220px-Foie_gras_DSC00180Foiegras4Another food ban has been struck down by a court. District Court Judge Stephen Wilson struck down the two-year state California state prohibition on foie gras as a violation of interstate commerce. The court issued its final decision on January 7th in Ass’n des Eleveurs de Canards et D’oies du Quebec v. Harris and found that the state law is trumped by the federal Poultry Products Inspections Act. Wilson acknowledged that there are few people in the middle of this debate: “This action for declaratory and injunctive relief touches upon a topic impacting gourmands’ stomachs and animal rights activists’ hearts: foie gras.”

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Screen Shot 2015-01-08 at 10.22.08 AMIt is bad enough that police officers now routinely turn their backs when New York Mayor Bill de Blasio approaches. Now the Staten Island Zoo has declared that neither he (nor any future mayor) will be allowed to hold Staten Island Chuck after he killed the last groundhog.

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Adolf_Hitler_retouched220px-EnichiresThis truly seemed like an April Fool’s joke or hoax, but farmer Derek Gow has a problem with Nazi cows. Gow’s cows are the only herd of Nazi-engineered cows in the country. However, he found that they have a habit of trying to kill everyone around them. It appears that the cows view all pastures as part of their Lebensraum and seek to eradicate anyone who is not a “Hecker super cows.”

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Tigress_at_Jim_Corbett_National_ParkThe appetite of Chinese consumers for endangered and threatened species is considered one of the greatest threats facing environmentalists and animal activists. Even Chinese diplomats have been accused of massive violations of laws protecting these species. As Chinese consumers acquire more disposable income, the demand for such products is increasing. The depth of this problem is illustrated in the recent prosecution of a wealthy real estate developer, identified only by his surname Xu, who (according to police) has “a special hobby of grilling tiger bones, boning tiger paws, storing tiger penis, eating tiger meat and drinking tiger blood alcohol.” He was convicted of killing and eating three rare tigers in the Chinese version of the Gourmet Club from The Freshman.
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ca29cf71-7e4e-4169-b762-f8a848b27466-bestSizeAvailableWe previously discussed how a Chinese zoo displayed a lion that caused a bit of a commotion when it suddenly barked. The zoo could to afford a lion so it made a large dog into a lion. An Italian circus in Brescia has proven even more daring – and dishonest. It dyed two chow-chow dogs to pretend that they were pandas. It did not seem odd to many people that a small zoo would have not one but two of the endangered animals.

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