There have been many cases over the last few years where employees of beef, pork, and poultry (especially turkey) operations have been filmed performing illegal and unsanitary acts. Many times the filming has been done by an undercover representative getting a job as an employee and seeing what really goes on in these places and then proceeding to get it on film. Most of the times the company involved denies what is happening and any wrongdoing what so ever and then a film is brought forth proving that they are blatantly lying!
The need for recalls have even been brought to the attention of health officials due to these undercover representatives catching these companies in the act.
Unfortunately the agribusiness farms seem to be in the pockets of the legislature in many states and these states (seven so far) have passed laws prohibiting the filming (video & photography) of any of the operations of the slaughterhouses, etc. Never mind that serious violations of food safety and the humane treatment of the animals laws have been uncovered this way many times!
These laws are passed under the guise of protecting the livestock industry or other agribusiness and Utah is the first state to arrest someone under these type of “Ag-GAG” law and that brings us to the current situation with this lawsuit in Utah.
SALT LAKE CITY — A federal judge is refusing to dismiss a lawsuit that challenges Utah’s controversial “Ag-Gag” law.
The Animal Legal Defense Fund, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, and others sued over Utah’s Agricultural Interference Law, which makes it a misdemeanor crime to go into a farm or other agricultural operation, and take pictures or video without permission…
…Meyer (Amy) was the first person to be charged under Utah’s “Ag-Gag” law. In 2013, she stood on a sidewalk and filmed what she described as a cow being pushed by a bulldozer at a slaughterhouse in Draper. The Utah Attorney General’s Office conceded she was wrongly charged, because she filmed from a public place.
“I think my case demonstrates that these ‘Ag-Gag’ laws can be used to intimidate law-abiding people,” she told FOX 13 outside court. “Really, the only thing to do in a free society is to reject these laws altogether.”
PETA attorney Matthew Struger said the law chills free speech by seeking to block people from exposing abuses within agricultural operations, some of which have led to federal food recalls because of consumer safety concerns.
He also said it specifically targets animal rights activists.
A later hearing will determine the constitutionality of the law. To read more of how the DA defended the lawsuit see the full article (link below.)
What do you think is in the public’s best interest? We certainly feel that when you try and hide activities and make it illegal to report on abuses then that cannot be a good thing. Why is the legislature making it illegal to expose things that can endanger the public health? Something stinks about this like a chicken house & barnyard!
Below we have a few really good videos related to these type laws including the first one below where you can watch a Salt Lake City Fox News report where they show the actual video that is the subject of the Utah lawsuit.
Source (article and video): FOX13NOW.com (Salt Lake City, Utah)
Here is a great video about Idaho and the overall effort of states to pass these type laws…
So are the corporations now able to control legislation that takes away transparency that protect consumers and animals? Is this right? We don’t think so but what do you think? If we want to change things then we all need to spread the word on take a stand, letting our opinions be heard!
The internet is our friend so let’s use it! If you agree then please share with those who might care!