Have our US Dept. of Agriculture enforce and make work the Humane Slaughter Act of 1958.

  • by: Wednesday
  • recipient: Powers that be at the US Department of Agriculture

There are too many documented evidences of inhumane slaughter coming to light over the last several years. Dating back to a Washington Post article published in 2001, 'They Die Piece by Piece' written by Joby Warrick, a worker in the meat facility said that many of the steer that approached his station for "cutting" were not properly stunned or rendered insensible to pain and still alive when he cut. I placed the link to the entire article below. 

"It takes 25 minutes to turn a live steer into steak at the modern slaughterhouse where Ramon Moreno works. For 20 years, his post was “second-legger,” a job that entails cutting hocks off carcasses as they whirl past at a rate of 309 an hour. The cattle were supposed to be dead before they got to Moreno. But too often they weren’t. “They blink. They make noises,” he said softly. “The head moves, the eyes are wide and looking around.” Still Moreno would cut. On bad days, he says, dozens of animals reached his station clearly alive and conscious. Some would survive as far as the tail cutter, the belly ripper, the hide puller. “They die,” said Moreno, “piece by piece.” – Washington Post

https://www.uta.edu/philosophy/faculty/burgess-jackson/Warrick,%20They%20Die%20Piece%20by%20Piece%20(2001).pdf

This is not the only documented case of the Humane Slaughter Act being violated. A documentary entitled, 'Earthlings' directed by Shaun Monson and narrated by Academy Award Nomonee Joaquin Phoenix chronicled the day to day practices on animal farms and factories had a segment on slaughterhouses and shown animals fully conscious while approaching the cutting stations. Workers still cut these animals while still alive.

These are not isolated events and are still practiced. Meat needs to be produced to keep up with "supply and demand" and stopping the line would cost thousands of dollars for meat packing plants to "re-stun" conscious livestock. We witnessed this past November of 2013 Tyson Companies, one of the largest producers of; chicken, pork and beef products recently pulled their livestock from a contracted farm due to horrific abuse practices on it's pigs and piglets. 

I am not asking you to stop eating meat as I have no power in that. However, I am asking people that eat meat, vegans and vegetarians to stand with me and work today, together to make certain animal suffering is reduced and the Humane Slaughter Act signed into law by Dwight D Eisenhower on August 27, 1958 is enforced! 

§ 1902 . Humane methods

Current through Pub. L. 113-36. (See Public Laws for the current Congress.)

No method of slaughtering or handling in connection with slaughtering shall be deemed to comply with the public policy of the United States unless it is humane. Either of the following two methods of slaughtering and handling are hereby found to be humane:

(a) in the case of cattle, calves, horses, mules, sheep, swine, and other livestock, all animals are rendered insensible to pain by a single blow or gunshot or an electrical, chemical or other means that is rapid and effective, before being shackled, hoisted, thrown, cast, or cut; or

(b) by slaughtering in accordance with the ritual requirements of the Jewish faith or any other religious faith that prescribes a method of slaughter whereby the animal suffers loss of consciousness by anemia of the brain caused by the simultaneous and instantaneous severance of the carotid arteries with a sharp instrument and handling in connection with such slaughtering.

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, concerned citizens can change the world. Indeed it is the only thing that ever has." -Margaret Mead

Peace and Light

U.S. Department of Agriculture 
1400 Independence Ave., S.W. 
Washington, DC 20250


Attention: Livestock and slaughter (APHIS)


To whom it may concern,


I am writing today with a very deep concern and a heavy heart regarding the abusive methods of slaughter of factory farmed animals in our nation's slaughterhouses. My stated goal? I am requesting the US Dept. of Agriculture will work in enforcing the below.


Slaughtering animals raised for human consumption humanely according to the statues;


§ 1902 . Humane methods


Current through Pub. L. 113-36. (See Public Laws for the current Congress.)


No method of slaughtering or handling in connection with slaughtering shall be deemed to comply with the public policy of the United States unless it is humane. Either of the following two methods of slaughtering and handling are hereby found to be humane:


(a) in the case of cattle, calves, horses, mules, sheep, swine, and other livestock, all animals are rendered insensible to pain by a single blow or gunshot or an electrical, chemical or other means that is rapid and effective, before being shackled, hoisted, thrown, cast, or cut; or


(b) by slaughtering in accordance with the ritual requirements of the Jewish faith or any other religious faith that prescribes a method of slaughter whereby the animal suffers loss of consciousness by anemia of the brain caused by the simultaneous and instantaneous severance of the carotid arteries with a sharp instrument and handling in connection with such slaughtering.


From what I have been reading and seeing in circulating videos, I don’t believe the above is being instituted in our nation’s slaughterhouse. There are too many documented evidences of inhumane slaughter surfacing over the past several years.


Dating back to a Washington Post article published in 2001, 'They Die Piece by Piece' written by Joby Warrick, a worker in the meat facility said that many of the steer that approached his station for "cutting" were not properly stunned or rendered insensible to pain and still alive when he cut.


"It takes 25 minutes to turn a live steer into steak at the modern slaughterhouse where Ramon Moreno works. For 20 years, his post was “second-legger,” a job that entails cutting hocks off carcasses as they whirl past at a rate of 309 an hour. The cattle were supposed to be dead before they got to Moreno. But too often they weren’t. “They blink. They make noises,” he said softly. “The head moves, the eyes are wide and looking around.” Still Moreno would cut. On bad days, he says, dozens of animals reached his station clearly alive and conscious. Some would survive as far as the tail cutter, the belly ripper, the hide puller. “They die,” said Moreno, “piece by piece.” – Washington Post


I can only imagine the horror a poor animal must feel. Sadly, this is not the only documented case of the Humane Slaughter Act being violated. Among many, is a documentary, entitled 'Earthlings" directed by Shaun Monson and narrated by Joaquin Phoenix, chronicled the day to day practices on animal farms and animal factories (footage taken from workers) had a segment on slaughterhouses and shown animals fully conscious while approaching the cutting stations. Workers are still instructed to cut these animals while still alive. You may say, “These are exaggerated claims,” however, I beg to differ as cows and pigs do not perform on movies sets, that suffering is real. I thank people that film these horrors to show how barbaric people are. These are not isolated events and are still practiced. Meat needs to be produced to keep up with "supply and demand" and stopping the line would cost thousands of dollars for meat packing plants to "re-stun" conscience livestock.


We witnessed this past November of 2013 Tyson Companies, one of the largest producers of; chicken, pork and beef products recently pulled their livestock from a contracted animal farm due to horrific abuse practices on its pigs and piglets. Upon hearing this I reached out to Tyson and received a reply from Jill Usrey in Food Safety and Quality Assurance and she said on the matter;


"Like you, we’re disturbed by what we saw in the video. We do not own this farm and the workers involved are not employees of Tyson Foods; however, we will not tolerate this abuse. We have terminated our contract with the farmer and have taken steps to ensure the proper care of the animals. We’re serious about proper animal handling and expect the farmers who supply us to treat animals with care and to be trained and certified in responsible animal care practices." – Jill Usrey


Tyson has taken steps. They made a change, change is where it starts. however how many are not?


To end, there is a short story by an author Orson Scott Card titled, “The Kings Meat.” It is about an alien couple that comes to Earth and breeds. They consume rather eat people. They take people’s children, wives and eat them. However, there is a Shepard that goes on behalf of the people of earth and convinces the alien couple to only eat non-essential parts like leg’s or limbs so they will not all die. This saves the lives of many people. The moral of the story, if a group of beings ever colonized this planet, maybe it is us who will one day be in factory farms and on their dinner plates. Comeuppance is always lurking.


What I ask is that the Humane Slaughter Act kindly be enforced in slaughterhouses today, because I know that they are not. I feel a need and am moved that during the act of slaughter the animal be rendered unconscious. If there is a breach in the system, can we correct it?  Please show mercy on them.


I would kindly request a follow up on the steps that will be taken. I am also including a list of signatures of people from the USA and many other countries who are concerned citizens and we are in bonds with them which suffer.  


Plant – Animal – Human ….Make the connection


Thank you for your consideration.


Sincerely,


Rebecca Egan-Nunez 

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