Prisoned Chickens, Poisoned Eggs (Karen Davis, 2009): A vegan feminist book review, with recipes!

Wednesday, November 24th, 2010

Bizarro - Thanksgiving-Christmas

Two holiday-themed Bizarro strips.
In the first, a group of turkeys looks on in horror and disgust as a farmer, clad in the requisite red flannel, hauls two of their terrified brethren from the barn, seemingly for slaughter. Two turkeys in the foreground discuss this all-too-predictable turn of events: “This is all about ‘thanks.’ Next month, the massacre starts all over again in the name of ‘peace on Earth.'”
The second strip shows a turkey angel visiting with a reindeer, who looks a little mopey despite the festive bells slung around his neck. The wizened turkey advises, “I’m just saying, WATCH YOUR BACK. I was a holiday icon too, & look what happened to me.
Images copyright Dan Piraro.
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I realize that a review of an animal rights book isn’t wholly in keeping with the theme of veganmofo; so, to compensate, I’ve included a number of yummy, egg- and bird-free recipes at the bottom of this post. Hopefully this will help drive home that point that the atrocities described in Prisoned Chickens, Poisoned Eggs are 1000% unnecessary while also placating the veganmofo goddesses! (No smiting of my person, mkay? Nevermind that I also have a blog named Smite Me!)

Out of respect for my fellow mofo’ers, I’ve purposefully omitted any visual representations of animal exploitation from this post, so you can scroll through without worry.

Or, if you’d rather not read the review, you can jump straight to the recipes!

Book Review: Prisoned Chickens, Poisoned Eggs: An inside look at the modern poultry industry by Karen Davis (1996; revised 2009)

(Full disclosure: I received a free copy of this book for review from the publisher.)

[FYI: you can download a pdf copy of the first edition here. Also, by way of disclaimer, I received a free review copy of this book from the the publisher, The Book Publishing Company. As in, nearly a year ago. Slow, who me?]

Prisoned Chickens, Poisoned Eggs by Karen Davis (2009)

In the United States, nearly 10 billion chickens are slaughtered every year; worldwide, the number is 40 billion and growing, as agribiz continues to export America’s extremely unhealthy, meat-laden diet – as well as its industrialized method of animal “farming” – to developing nations. At any given time, 5 billion hens “live” in battery cages on American “farms,” so that their bodies may be exploited for eggs. Because male chicks are an unwanted byproduct of this system, 250 million of them are discarded – suffocated, gassed, ground up or merely thrown out, alive – annually.

While chickens – hens, roosters and chicks; mothers, fathers and children – represent the single most exploited species of farmed animals, they receive perhaps the least consideration. More chickens are enslaved and slaughtered per year than cows, pigs, sheeps and goats combined – and yet, along with cold-blooded mammals such as reptiles, chickens and other birds are not even considered “animals” under the U.S. Animal Welfare Act. (Granted, animals farmed for food and fiber are also not covered under the AWA, but this is perhaps small consolation, as they still fall under the rubric of “animals.”) Perhaps it’s their “alien” faces, what with rigid beaks where expressive mouths “should” be, but humans seem to have more trouble empathizing with chickens and birds than other farmed animal species, such as pigs and cows (who, of course, receive less consideration than “pet” species, such as dogs and cats).

In the intro to Prisoned Chickens, Poisoned Eggs, Karen Davis – founder and director of United Poultry Concerns (UPC) – reports that, when she first became involved in advocating on behalf of chickens in the late 1980s, these beautiful and abused creatures were largely overlooked in animal welfare and rights campaigns:

I was told by some that people weren’t “ready” for chickens. This proved to be false. The point, in any case, was to make people ready.

Thanks to the tireless efforts of folks like Davis, chickens are now central to the vegan and anti-factory farming movements. Prisoned Chickens, Poisoned Eggs – first published in 1996 and revised in 2009 – provides an accessible and compressive, if horrifying and hard-to-read, overview of industrialized chicken egg and “meat” production. (Something similar is sorely needed for fishes and other “seafood,” who seem to be the chickens and birds of this decade. But I digress.)

What with a 19-page reference list and copious quotations culled from industry publications and decades-old news clippings, Prisoned Chickens, Poisoned Eggs is meticulously researched and brimming with information. I’d hoped to include a list of talking points or key facts, but the sheer breadth and detail makes this nearly impossible. (That, and I’m not exactly about brevity, as regular readers well know!) Instead, let’s take this summary chapter by chapter, shall we?

(More below the fold…)

Intersectionality ‘Round the Interwebs, No. 17: F-O-O-D.*

Tuesday, February 16th, 2010

“assortment of vegan chocolates”: A dozen+ gorgeous vegan chocolates sit atop a white porcelain cake stand. Nom! CC image via quintanaroo (the chocolate-maker herself) on Flickr.
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Regretfully, I spent most of the long weekend either tossing and turning in bed, or retching and heaving over the toilet (read: vomiting; either way, what a mental image, yeah?), and thus was unable to get much of anything done. The perfect time for a link roundup! The commentary is rather sparse, but seeing as I feel like I’ve been through the ringer and back, I hope you’ll forgive me.

johanna @ Vegans of Color: Vegan cookbooks: helping folks eat the Other

The Vegan Ideal: A Western Vegetarian ‘Foray’ into Non-Western Culture

johanna and Ida provide several examples of the “exotification” of non-Western foods (“African,” “Asian,” Hawaiian and Cambodian, respectively), with an eye on vegetarian/vegan contexts (cookbooks and a veg gathering at veg-friendly restaurant).

Stephanie @ Animal Rights & AntiOppression: Domination and Rape in Avatar: This Is “Respect” for Animals?

While I’ve seen many a discussion of Avatar‘s problematic racial politics, anti-speciesist reviews appear to be few and far between. This piece from Stephanie is a must-read; the title says it all, really. (Mary also discussed the film back in December.)

Marji @ Animal Rights & AntiOppression: Sarah’s Diary: Remembering

Marji imagines what rescue hen Sarah’s diary might look like. It is predictably heart-breaking. I’ll be honest; I have not yet been able to read the entire piece.

Of course, I feel rather silly when considering Marji’s description of the “mock-diary”:

This is Sarah. She turns seven this February 14th. She is one of 2,000 hens we were legally permitted to pull from a small, 160,000 egg-laying hen operation. I know this diary is horribly anthropomorphic. I pulled Sarah out of that cage. For hours, I breathed what they breathed, saw and smelled their world. It was horrifying. I have tried, for years, to fathom what it must have been like for them from birth to grisly death. I can’t.

If there were a goddess, surely you’d find her volunteering at an animal sanctuary.

(More below the fold…)

A hen is a mink is a dog is a boy.* Also: site updates and intersectionality links!

Thursday, January 14th, 2010

“Mother hen”: Resting in the grass, a mother hen carries/camouflages four+ chicks under her wings. CC image via topinambour on Flickr.
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Along with The Simple Little Vegan Dog Book, the Book Publishing Company sent me a copy of Karen Davis’s Prisoned Chickens, Poisoned Eggs, which I’ve had my eye on for some time now. (The book is now in its second edition; you can download the first ed. for free as a .pdf file here, via United Poultry Concerns.) With five out of six chapters down, I’m not yet ready to offer a review, but I will say that it’s excellent – a must read, and a difficult one, at that. Not difficult intellectually, but emotionally: battery and broiler farms are the Seventh Circle of Dante’s Inferno come to life. You will need to read this book from the bottom of a dog pile – soft fur and warm bellies were the only things to keep me from breaking down in tears some nights. The scale and depth of suffering is simply unfathomable.

Anyhow, whether intentionally or not, Davis writes quite a bit about issues of intersectionality in Prisoned Chickens, Poisoned Eggs. The gendered nature of egg production is an obvious topic, but the shared suffering does not stop there. For example, Davis explains what becomes of “spent” laying hens – that is, hens whose bodies are (prematurely, tragically, needlessly) depleted of calcium and other nutrients, such that they’re no longer capable of laying eggs. Their fate is a gruesome one, however, it’s only one link in a long chain of abominations:

At slaughter, spent laying hens are a mass of broken bones, abscesses oozing yellow fluids, bright red bruises, internal hemorrhaging, and malignant tumors. They’ve lost 40 percent or more of their feathers, and because they are economically “worthless,” they sit in transport cages in all weathers at the slaughterhouse “until all other birds are dealt with – up to 12 hours.” The slaughtered birds are shredded into products that hide the true state of their flesh and their lives: chicken soups, pies, and nuggets, commercial mink and pet food, livestock and poultry feed, and school lunches and other institutionalized food service and government purchase programs designed by the egg industry and the Department of Agriculture to dump dead laying hens onto consumers in diced up form. **

In order to mask the abuses inflicted upon the bodies and psyches of egg-laying hens, the industry dismembers – nay, grinds – them into unrecognizable bits. These bits are then fed to the most vulnerable among us: enslaved and exploited nonhuman animals, including the dead hens’ kin; “pets,” including dogs and cats; children who attend public schools, particularly those who rely on the school lunch system; “institutionalized food service and government purchase programs,” such as those that “feed” incarcerated men and women; and working-class and impoverished Americans, whose only access to food may come in the form of fast food joints. One injustice fuels the next, with no end in sight. (Sigh. Where’s that dog pile?!)

(More below the fold…)

"…even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings…"

Thursday, May 21st, 2009

 

Prologue
Sound of a Battery Hen

 

 
You can tell me: if you come by the
North door, I am in the twelfth cage
On the left-hand side of the third row
From the floor; and in that cage
I am usually the middle one of eight or six or three.
But even without directions, you’d
Discover me. We have the same pale
Comb, clipped yellow beak and white or auburn
Feathers, but as the door opens and you
Hear above the electric fan a kind of
One-word wail, I am the one
Who sounds loudest in my head.

 
Over the past few months, I’ve written a series of posts on the themes of motherhood, maternal exploitation and deprivation, and the intersection of speciesism and sexism in Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson’s The Pig Who Sang to the Moon: The Emotional World of Farm Animals. Previously, I discussed examples of these vis-à-vis “pork production” and the “dairy industry.”

While Masson also explores the exploitation of sheep, goats, ducks and chickens in The Pig Who Sang to the Moon, the mother-child bond between a mother hen and her chicks receives the most attention of these remaining groups – so I’ll conclude my discussion with a look at “egg production.”

Photo via Jeanette’s Ozpix

In previous posts, I noted how female non-human animals (like their human counterparts) are especially vulnerable to exploitation because of their reproductive systems. Their ability to give birth – oftentimes referred to as a “miracle” in humans – makes them particularly valuable as the producers of future “commodities.” Their value, unfortunately, does not lead to preferential treatment from their captors. Instead, they suffer especially brutal and prolonged abuse.

As such, females become machines, assembly lines, destined to produce milk, eggs, flesh – and a replacement generation of baby-, milk- and/or egg- machines:

By the mere fact of their sex, sows, hens, ewes, does, nannies, cows and heifers – not to mention mares, bitches, jennies, jills, etc. – are ripe for especially brutal and prolonged exploitation. Oftentimes, this involves a constant cycle of pregnancy, birth, nursing and baby-napping, culminating with the female’s own death when she’s no longer able to breed or “produce” to her “owner’s” satisfaction.

Certainly, we recognize that the theft of a mother’s child is an atrocity when the victims are human mothers and children. At the same time, we argue that non-human animals deserve no rights because they are mere brutes, “lesser” beings, ruled by instinct and instinct alone. Yet, what is the drive to reproduce and parent if not an evolutionary instinct? And if we follow the popular line of reasoning – i.e., animals are creatures of instinct – does it not stand to reason that the maternal instinct is especially powerful in non-human animals?

Many – if not most – non-veg*ns find it difficult to relate to non-human animals, who (supposedly) are so different from us. At a fundamental level, our differing modes of communication make cross-species communication more difficult, particularly when one species (that would be us) has little interest in communication (and mutual understanding and respect) to begin with. Even so, many humans live with “pets,” the majority being dogs and cats; and, as we’ve come to recognize certain expressions and non-verbal cues in these mammals, such empathy can be extended to other, similar species – such as cows and pigs.

(More below the fold…)

UPC: Chicken Run Rescue Photo Contest

Tuesday, March 17th, 2009

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: United Poultry Concerns – news [at] upc-online.org
Date: Tue, Mar 17, 2009 at 2:20 PM
Subject: [UPC] Call for Entries: CHICKEN RUN RESCUE PHOTO CONTEST!

United Poultry Concerns
17 March 2009

Call for Entries: CHICKEN RUN RESCUE PHOTO CONTEST!

Submissions are being accepted for this year’s Chicken Run Rescue Photo Contest.

To view entries so far and vote for your favorite – visit and vote often:
http://www.brittonclouse.com/chickenrunrescue/photos09/index.php?x=browse

You will join Chicken Run Rescue and United Poultry Concerns in recognizing May as International Respect for Chickens Month by capturing the beauty, joy, intelligence, dignity, agility and zany exuberance of your birds in a photograph. Each year, twelve winning photos will be published in a calendar and winners will receive a free calendar. An exhibit of the winning photos will also be shown at the Justice for Animals Exhibition Space in Minneapolis, Minnesota. All calendar sales proceeds will enable Chicken Run Rescue to continue helping chickens for another year.

TO ENTER:

CONTEST RULES

Photograph everyday activities that are natural for your birds – no costumes, staged stunts or props. Chicken Run Rescue reserves the right to decline any images that conflict with our mission to promote the adoption of homeless chickens as companion animals and discourage breeding or buying. There are never enough homes for displaced animals.

Submission Deadline: May 15
Voting: Ongoing thru May 15
Winners Announced: June 4

Send HIGH RESOLUTION DIGITAL PHOTOS to chickenrunrescue [at] comcast.net. Include your name, title or bird’s name, address, phone number and email address.

(More below the fold…)

easyVegan Link Sanctuary, 09-11-07

Tuesday, September 11th, 2007

Action Alerts

Center for Biological Diversity: Save Panama Biosphere Reserve From Dams
Please join the growing international movement to protect this ecological jewel and voice your opposition to the proposed Hydroelectric Projects.

DawnWatch: UK media on meat and global warming 9/9/07
“Activists take Gore to task on his diet”

Defenders of Wildlife: Protect Utah Prairie Dogs and Other Wildlife
Fill out the form below to urge your Representative and Senators to support the Endangered Species Recovery Act of 2007 (H.R. 1422 and S. 700), important legislation that would help private landowners protect Utah prairie dogs and other imperiled wildlife that live on their property.

Earthjustice: Say No to the Blowing Up of Appalachia
Tell the administration to stop trying to diminish the buffer zone rule and start enforcing it!

Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC): Tell the U.S. Navy to Stop Killing Whales!
Ear-splitting military sonar is needlessly killing whales and other marine mammals throughout the world’s oceans. Yet the Navy has refused to put effective safeguards in place during testing and training.

(More below the fold…)

easyVegan Link Dump Sanctuary, 08-17-07

Friday, August 17th, 2007

Action Alerts

American Freedom Campaign: Encourage the presidential candidates to sign the American Freedom Pledge
I pledge to fight to protect and defend the Constitution from assault by any President.

Animal Welfare Institute (AWI): Pro-Animal Bills Pending in U.S. Congress: Please Visit Your Legislators
Pet Safety Protection Act, American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act & Dog Fighting Prohibition Act

Consumer’s Union: Don’t lick Elmo!
Urge your members of Congress to ensure that the products and food that end up on our shelves are safe.

Earthjustice: Stop the Owl Extinction Plan: Political Interference Puts Birds, Forests, and Science At Risk
Please take action to tell the Fish and Wildlife Service by August 24 not to bow to the timber industry while our nation’s forests, rivers, and wildlife pay the price.

Ecological Internet / Climate Ark: Jet-Setting Leonardo DiCaprio the Convenient Environmentalist
Growth in aviation threatens the Planet, celebrities flying in private jets are no friend to the environment, and shared climate sacrifice means the super-rich must swear off jet-setting ways.

(More below the fold…)

easyVegan Link Dump Sanctuary, 08-08-07

Wednesday, August 8th, 2007

Action Alerts

American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU): TELL CONGRESS: DON’T FAIL FREEDOM
Stand with the ACLU and demand that Congress live up to its promise to protect and defend the Constitution, starting with immediate fixes to the outrageous FISA legislation that made warrantless NSA spying on Americans legal.

DawnWatch: NPR commentary on dog fighting and canned hunting 8/8/07
“National Public Radio’s Morning Edition, Wednesday, August 8, 2007, aired a piece by commentator Frank Deford on dog fighting and on various forms of hunting”

DawnWatch: Wall St Journal front page on pig castration 7/6/07
“These Little Pigs Get Special Care From Norwegians But Meat People Squeal, And a Lot of Other Folks Are Holding Their Noses”

Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF): Pull Congress Back Into the Wiretapping Fight to Restore Your Rights
Tell your representatives to repeal this legislation and restore your rights now.

Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC): Urge Congress to clean up our beaches
Your senators and representatives have the opportunity to help clean up contaminated beaches and to make sure sources of beach pollution are identified and addressed.

(More below the fold…)

easyVegan Link Dump Sanctuary, 08-01-07

Wednesday, August 1st, 2007

Action Alerts

Amnesty International: Demand safety for environmental activists in Ecuador

DawnWatch: Outstanding veggie coverage on DC NBC affiliate 7/31/07

National Wildlife Federation: Pass a Wildlife-Friendly “Energy Independence Package”

Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC): Urge Your Representative to Vote YES on a Stronger Energy Bill!

Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS): Who will your representative listen to? You or corporate interests? [Talking points]

United Poultry Concerns (UPC): Protest Orthodox Union Event

Newsletters

VegCooking.com: Recipe of the Week: Crepes With ‘Cream’ Filling and Tart Cherry Sauce

(More below the fold…)

HSUS: Amazon.com Continues to Fight the Bad Fight

Thursday, June 7th, 2007

UPDATE, 6/8/07:

See also: AMAZON.COM SUPPORTS COCKFIGHTING Please Protest!, from United Poultry Concerns (UPC)

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Via the Humane Society of the United States:

Amazon.com Continues to Fight the Bad Fight

For at least two years, Amazon.com has been infamously—and incorrectly—touting its “right” to sell materials promoting illegal animal fighting, blatantly peddling dogfighting videos as well as cockfighting magazines like The Gamecock and The Feathered Warrior.

Amazon.com seems so determined to profit from illegal animal fighting that, rather than simply drop its sales of animal fighting materials, it has filed a motion against The HSUS in federal court, essentially asking that federal and state laws to protect animals be gutted to accommodate Amazon.com’s sales of animal fighting paraphernalia.

Amazon.com’s persistence is all the more disturbing because it comes just weeks after Congress passed legislation making it a felony offense to ship publications containing “commercial speech” for the purpose of promoting or “in any other manner furthering” animal fighting, in addition to the mailing of all other materials that promote animal fighting.

Fight Back!

Please tell Jeffrey Bezos, Amazon.com’s CEO, that it’s not too late to change course and do the right thing—and comply with the law.

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UPC Poultry Press, Spring 2007 edition now online

Monday, May 14th, 2007

The Spring 2007 edition of United Poultry Concerns’ Poultry Press is now available online.

The TOC for this issue is as follows:

* Is It Unscientific to Say that an Animal is Happy?

* New from UPC!

* Battery Cages Available as Fabulous Educational Tools from the Compassionate Living Project

* KSU Chicken Cruelty Case Moves Forward

* Anti-Cockfighting Forces Win New Mexico & U.S. Congress, Fight Amazon.com

* The Dynamic Between the Animal Industry and the Animal Movement

* Urge MORNINGSTAR FARMS to Eliminate Eggs

* Thank You, to Roberta Schiff

* INADMISSIBLE COMPARISONS Conference DVDs Now Available for Purchase

You can view the newsletter online here, or download a PDF version.

Back issues of the Poultry Press are available here.

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Can I get a cluck, cluck?

Friday, May 4th, 2007

Today is International Respect for Chickens Day, after all.

According to United Poultry Concerns, “International Respect for Chickens Day is a day to celebrate the dignity, beauty, and life of chickens and to protest against the bleakness of their lives in farming operations.”

In this vein, here’s how some vegans and chicken huggers are marking the holiday this year:

“I’m planning to leaflet at an outdoor concert.” – Laura Mungavin, Atlanta, Ga.

“I’m doing a display at my work place.” – Michele Walsh, Saxonburg, Pa.

“I printed fact sheets off your website and am assembling them into packets to distribute at my office.” – Chalon Carroll Young, Esq. Kissimmee, Fla.

“I’m president of a student group at Princeton University and we’re setting up a table and posting flyers.” – Jenny Palmer, Princeton, NJ.

“I’m the teacher-librarian at a big high school and we’re putting up posters to celebrate this great day.” – Patti Healey, Halifax, Nova Scotia.

“We’re asking you to capture the beauty, joy, intelligence, dignity, agility and zany exuberance of your chickens for our 2nd annual Chicken Calendar photo contest.” – Mary Britton Clouse, Chicken Run Rescue, Minneapolis, Minn.

“We have two groups of a total of 100 6th graders coming for a tour on May 4 and we plan to celebrate with them.” – Terry Cummings, Poplar Spring Animal Sanctuary, Poolesville, Md.

“We’re leafleting in front of the White House and in Takoma Park, Md around Roscoe the Rooster’s Memorial Statue.” – Karen Davis, President of United Poultry Concerns, Machipongo, Va.

Another idea: why not enter the 2007 Chicken Run Rescue Photo Contest?

(More below the fold…)

UPC: Please Thank IRA GLASS for Promoting Veg Change

Thursday, April 26th, 2007

Via United Poultry Concerns:

Please Thank IRA GLASS for Promoting Veg Change

Yesterday we announced that media celebrity Ira Glass, host of the wildly popular Public Radio International’s This American Life aired on National Public Radio, and now on TV, appeared on Late Night with David Letterman Friday, April 20th where he told Letterman and millions of viewers that his visit to United Poultry Concerns’ chicken sanctuary inspired him to become a vegetarian.

Please thank Ira Glass for bringing this important message to the public. We are So Honored & So Grateful to Ira Glass!

Contact Ira Glass at:

Ira Glass
This American Life
153 West 27th Street, Suite 1104
New York, NY 10001
Email: ira [at] thislife.org, web [at] thislife.org
Website: www.thisamericanlife.org/About_Contact.aspx

After the flip: the original alert, as well as a video (via You Tube) of the appearance.

Karen Davis, Chicken Advocacy, Vegetarianism Discussed On David Letterman

Ira Glass appeared on Late Night with David Letterman Friday April 20th promoting the television version of his radio show This American Life. Since 1995, Ira Glass has been host of Public Radio International’s This American Life. For 16 years before that, he worked as a producer, editor, and reporter on National Public Radio’s All Things Considered and Morning Edition.

At the midpoint of his conversation with Letterman, Glass described his encounter with Karen Davis of United Poultry Concerns and the huge letter-writing campaign UPC mobilized several years ago. He commented with amazement on the overwhelming task of advocating for chickens in a world where their death is everywhere you look, an “Armageddon” as he described it.

He described UPC’s sanctuary in the midst of a large poultry production area, where “little escaping chickens” falling off trucks are brought to UPC’s sanctuary for safety, how he was invited to visit and upon meeting the chickens discovered they are indeed little individuals with personalities – “this one’s shy, that one’s outgoing.”

When he asked Letterman if he had ever met a chicken, Letterman quipped about meeting one on the end of his fork. He asked Glass if he had made dietary changes since then and Glass replied that he thought of those chickens every time he took a bite of chicken after that and that he has indeed become a vegetarian.

To view the segment on You Tube, visit http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J1TcL0wZ-pM

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UPC: Chickens Sadistically Abused at Kansas State University Basketball Game

Monday, February 26th, 2007

UPDATE, 2/28/07, via United Poultry Concerns:

We’re pleased to announce that the Kansas State University administrative offices have issued an open letter to KSU fans condemning the mistreatment of chickens at the basketball game on Monday, Feb. 19th.

KSU letter: http://www.k-statesports.com

UPC Action Alert: http://www.upc-online.org/battery_hens/22607ksu.html

During our investigation, United Poultry Concerns discovered that a Sports Illustrated website, SIOnCampus.com, encouraged and gave instructions on how to conduct a “chicken toss” as #32 of the “102 More Things You Gotta Do Before Your Graduate.” We are pleased to announce that as a result of our conversation today with the site’s producer, Andy Gray, the “chicken toss” has been deleted. Mr. Gray said he agreed it was not appropriate for the site to encourage college athletes and their fans to mistreat animals.

We thank everyone who contacted President Wefald and the athletic director and coach at KSU on behalf of the hens who were so cruelty mistreated on Feb. 19. Your letters made and are making a difference. We’re continuing to work with the University to strengthen its policy against mistreating chickens and other animals for entertainment. We will you updated.

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Via United Poultry Concerns:

Chickens Sadistically Abused at Kansas State University Basketball Game

On Monday, February 19, 2007, three, possibly four, hens were thrown onto the basketball court from the stands at KSU’s Bramlidge Coliseum at a basketball game. They were alive when they were thrown onto the court over a distance of approximately thirty feet. They were wounded, and they could not get up on their legs. One of the hens appeared to have blood on her shoulder. Another photo shows four hens painted red and blue (the school colors) in a plastic tub, apparently before they were thrown.

The images show that these hens came from a battery-caged hen facility. They landed near the cheerleaders. The following two videos show a bit of what happened:

UPC’s Letter: http://www.upc-online.org/entertainment/22307KSU.html

Media Coverage: http://www.ksufans.com/forums/index.php?topic=8472.0

http://www2.ljworld.com/news/2007/feb/20/keep_streakin/?sports

What Can I Do?

(More below the fold…)

UPC: Urge MORNINGSTAR FARMS to Stop Using Eggs

Thursday, February 22nd, 2007

UPDATE, 2/22/07:

Compassion Over Killing (COK) has more info available at Morningstar-Egg-Facts.com, including a handy-dandy contact form. Also, it’s been a while since I’ve feasted on a Gardenburger – since I made the transition from vegetarian to vegan, actually – but apparently they’ve veganized all but one of their veggie patties. Good stuff.

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Via United Poultry Concerns:

Urge MORNINGSTAR FARMS to Stop Using Eggs

Morningstar Farms, owned by the Kellogg company, uses eggs from battery-caged hens in its products. Battery-caged hens are jammed into tiny wire cages in filthy buildings. Their lives are totally miserable. For information about battery-caged hens, visit http://www.upc-online.org/battery_hens.

United Poultry Concerns is joining Compassion Over Killing and Vegan Outreach in urging our members and all compassionate people to ask Morningstar Farms – a leader in providing delicious vegetarian foods – to remove the eggs from its products. Tell them that many vegan consumers – would-be customers – await this positive change!

Whom Do I Contact & How?

Call the Kellogg customer feedback hotline at 1-800-962-1413.

Write to: Morningstar Farms, c/o Kellogg Consumer Affairs, PO Box CAMB, Battle Creek, MI 49016

Go to the Morningstar Farms website at http://www.seeveggiesdifferently.com and follow the Contact Us instructions. The problem is, you must submit your date-of-birth and name a specific product for your message to be completed and sent. Therefore, United Poultry Concerns will gladly deliver your message to Morningstar Farms via regular mail, if you will please do the following:

Compose an email request to Morningstar Farms asking the company to remove the eggs from all of its products. Include your first & last name and your regular mailing address w/zipcode, as you would in a regular letter. Ask Morningstar Farms for a reply. Be polite. Submit your email, addressed to Morningstar Farms, to Info [at] upc-online.org. We will forward your letter to Morningstar Farms.

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UPC Poultry Press, Winter 2006/2007 edition now online

Tuesday, February 13th, 2007

The Winter 2006/2007 edition of United Poultry Concerns’ Poultry Press is now available online.

The TOC for this issue is as follows:

* Stopping Bird Flu Calls for Compassion and Common Sense

* You are cordially invited to attend United Poultry Concerns’ 7th Annual Conference

* UPC Letter in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association “Provides additional information on poultry slaughter method”

* Virgil Butler, Ex-Tyson Slaughterhouse Voice for Chickens, has Died

* International Respect for Chickens Day May 4, 2007 A Day to Celebrate Chickens Throughout the World

* Government Approves Firefighting Foam to Exterminate Birds

* Jane – one tiny chicken foot. . . .

* Bacteria Exposed in the Jan. 2007 Consumer Reports’ “Dirty Chickens”

* Book Review: Bird Flu: A Virus of Our Own Hatching by Michael Greger, MD

You can view the newsletter online here, or download a PDF version.

Back issues of the Poultry Press are available here.

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UPC: 7th Annual Conference on Inadmissible Comparisons, March 24-25, 2007

Monday, December 4th, 2006

United Poultry Concerns’ 7th Annual Conference is scheduled for March 24 and 25, 2007, at the NYU Law School in New York City. This year’s topic is “Inadmissible Comparisons”.

The details:

Inadmissible Comparisons asks: Can the Holocaust be compared with African American slavery or the Native American genocide? Can any of these experiences be related to those of animals on today’s factory farms? Recently, a number of writers and thinkers have sought to draw parallels between the suffering of one group of individuals and another, and incurred the wrath of those who consider their experience unique. This conference explores why such comparisons are offered and asks whether they should or should not be made. It examines the rhetoric and images of those comparisons and the agendas that might lie behind them, while interrogating the need for comparative thinking in the first place.

(More below the fold…)

UPC Poultry Press, Winter 2006 edition now online

Tuesday, November 14th, 2006

The Winter 2006 edition of United Poultry Concerns’ Poultry Press is now available online.

The TOC for this issue is as follows:

* Turkeys: Who are They?

* United Poultry Concerns’ 7th Annual Conference

* United Poultry Concerns a “Lonely Counterpoint” to the Chicken Industry

* A Story of Eight Chickens

* A Wing and a Prayer: The Kapparot Chicken-Killing Ritual

* Book Review: The Way We Eat: Why Our Food Choices Matter

You can view the newsletter online here, or download a PDF version.

Back issues of the Poultry Press are available here.

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UPC: Urge the United States Postal Service not to Endorse KFC’s Cruelty!

Thursday, November 2nd, 2006

Via United Poultry Concerns:

KFC has recently petitioned the United States Postal Service (USPS) to create a postage stamp commemorating Colonel Sanders. Since the Colonel’s legacy includes breeding and drugging chickens to grow so large that they suffer painful diseases and broken bones, slitting their throats while they’re still conscious and dropping them into tanks of scalding-hot water, please tell the USPS that to commemorate him is to endorse cruelty to animals – something Americans oppose.

Please fill out the USPS’ Customer Service Form to let Postmaster General John Potter know that you do not want to see a stamp commemorating cruel Colonel Sanders. […]

You can also call, write or fax the USPS:

The Honorable John E. Potter
CEO and Postmaster General
United States Postal Service
475 L’Enfant Plaza, SW
Washington, DC 20260

Phone: (800) 275-8777
Fax: (303) 574-9650

Additional talking points are available at KFC Cruelty.

FYI: When I wrote the USPS using the online feedback form, I was advised to address my complaint to the following department:

CITIZENS STAMP ADVISORY COMMITTEE
C/O STAMP DEVELOPMENT
US POSTAL SERVICE
475 L’ENFANT PLAZA SW RM 5670
WASHINGTON DC 20260-2437

No fax/phone number was included. (My cynical side says that this is an obvious attempt for the Postal Service to drum up extra business – why else require printed letters when digital ones would do?)

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