November 14, 2008

Animal activism: What it means to livestock producers

Having met Steve Kopperud at assorted meetings, be assured that he is never shy about sharing his thoughts on issues important to agriculture. One of his main areas of interest over the last few years has been activist assaults on animal agriculture. He tells it like it is - straight up - and doesn't mince words. This is a critically important issue to all agriculture.

Kopperud is senior vice president of Washington, D.C.-based Policy Directions Inc. He also coordinates the Farm Animal Welfare Coalition and is the immediate past president of the Animal Agriculture Alliance, an organization dedicated to telling the American public the reality of modern livestock production.

In a recent Q/A with Cattlenetwork, Kopperud focuses his attention on animal activist groups.

Here's a few lines from the must-read Q/A:

California's Proposition 2 is a classic example. Proponents of that measure had no facts to support their demand that sow gestation stalls, veal stalls or egg layer cages were inhumane on their face because the overwhelming public testimony of vets and animal scientists showed just the opposite to be true. Instead, supporters ran TV ads that included video of downed animals and other emotional images of animal neglect and abuse, fully aware Proposition 2 would do nothing to solve these alleged problems. Why? Because emotion rules the day when it comes to human interaction with animals, no matter what the species or the animal’s ultimate fate. When you’ve got the attention of a politically overwhelmed constituency, you use images and emotion, not rhetoric. What thinking, feeling person condones any form of animal 'abuse?'

Find the full Q/A here. It's worth the few minutes it will take to read.

Here's a link to a video with Kopperud giving a presentation at a cattle meeting. He explains "What Animal Activist Success Means to the Beef Producers." Be warned - he tells a strong story. It's 34 minutes long.

1 comment:

  1. The opponents of ethanol are using emotion in much the same way in claiming that ethanol is creating world hunger. They use the fact that emotional issues have a much lower standard of proof with the average person.