Most animal protection campaigns are knee jerk responses to one horror or another. They are driven by immediacy of need or media publicity or emotional shock or public outrage.
We seldom have, or take, the opportunity to plot a course of action solely upon the number of animals that might be saved.
Impacting animal agriculture even modestly will affect the most animals, as the Animal Holocaust conducted by agriculture industries murders upwards of 60 BILLION animals every year in slaughterhouses.
The number is so huge we have difficulty comprehending it. But it works out to over a MILLION animals being murdered every ten minutes, around the clock, 24/7!
1,000,000. Every. Ten. Minutes.
Fifty thousand died while you read this much of this article. One hundred thousand if you like to took your time.
That is more than all the dogs and cats rescued in America in a year.
My personal preference in dealing with Big Agriculture (Big Ag) and the slaughter industry would be to sabotage livestock trucks, burn down slaughterhouses and shoot the owners. But that is a fantasy. No such action is either legal or effective, as others would merely fill the vacuum and I would be in prison.
To have an impact on the number of animals being slaughtered requires driving down consumption and driving up the costs to consumers. As meat, dairy, and egg prices increase, consumption drops.
Most proposals that would raise the cost to consumers are politically impossible to institute. Taxing meat, for example, to offset the public healthcare costs of cardiovascular disease, is only logical and reasonable. However, it would be politically impossible to levy such a tax, as consumers and the industry are too much of a political impediment.
Like most animal activists and environmentalists, I have been active in the fight against GMOs.
GMOs are Genetically Modified Organisms. Chemical giant Monsanto has patented GMO corn, soybeans, and other grains. The purpose of GMOs is to increase the yield per acre of crops, to protect them from insects, to increase their sugar and oil contents, to prolong ripening time to allow for long distance transport and increased shelf life, etc. All of these mean more money to farmers, and Monsanto sells them the seed.
Environmentalists are opposed to the introduction of GMOs into the wild because very little is known of their impact on either flora or fauna. Some GMOs designed to poison insects that feed upon them are now being consumed by insects that have developed an ability to withstand the GMO poisons.
Consumers are opposed to GMOs because there are no requirements that foods containing GMOs be labeled. Big Ag opposes labeling because most consumers are wary of genetically modified “Frankenfoods.” There is little doubt consumers would reject GMO foods if they were told which foods were genetically modified.
If labeling were required, Monsanto would be hit hard by farmers rejecting their GMO seed.
The conventional wisdom has been that even if labeling were to be required, Monsanto would still have a huge market for GMO seed used to grow animal feed.
Escalating the campaign to require labeling of directly consumed GMOs to one that requires indirectly consumed GMOs be disclosed would turn the consumer campaign into one that could save millions of animal lives by derailing GMOs being used for animal feed. If animal growers and feed lots have to buy non-GMO grain, the cost of meat production will increase. Those increased costs will be seen in the marketplace in higher prices per pound of meat, and higher prices for eggs and dairy as well. Higher consumer prices mean less consumer demand, less consumption, and fewer animals slaughtered.
The most effective, and politically feasible, proposal is to require truth in labeling of ALL food. We would require it across the board so that we can put together the broadest possible coalition of consumers, consumer advocates, family farmers, environmentalists, animal activists, children’s and seniors’ advocates, organic farmers and producers, health-conscious shoppers, etc.
Such a requirement would dictate that everything fed to cattle, pigs, chickens, etc, and everything injected or otherwise introduced into their bodies would have to be disclosed. That would mean GMOs, antibiotics, the corpses of other animals, etc.
We would join forces with those fighting against GMOs and those advocating for GMOs to be labeled.
But we go further, in that we want GMOs that are indirectly consumed by humans to be labeled as well as those that are directly consumed.
Most corn, for example, is not consumed directly by people, but by farm animals. Humans only eat about 6% of the corn produced, animals eat over 60%. The rest is consumed indirectly by people in corn syrup, corn starch, etc., or is made into ethanol or used in other industrial applications.
The state of Vermont recently passed a law requiring that foods containing GMOs be labeled. Vermont is perhaps the most politically courageous and enlightened state in the Union.
Vermont is the only state to have withstood the bribery by Monsanto and Big Agriculture. In every other state where liberals have tried to require labeling, a flood of bribes from lobbyists fronting for Monsanto and Big Ag have managed to kill all such proposals.
That Vermont has done so is a major victory. Now, Monsanto is leading a legal assault on the law, and has filed a lawsuit against the state of Vermont. Joining Monsanto is a list of corporate plaintiffs who do not want the people of Vermont to know what is in the food they buy, eat, and feed to their children.
By proposing an even broader attack on Monsanto and Big Agriculture we can forge an even broader coalition, relying heavily on the zeal, tenacity, and dedication of animal activists.
This is a battle we can win. Liberals control the Democratic party at the local level. Which is where this fight will be waged. It will be conducted state-by-state, at the most local level of political trench warfare; in the Democratic county central committees, in local Democratic volunteer organizations, in precinct meetings, union halls, church basements, and on college campuses.
At this level of political involvement, the bribes of Big Business are not an issue. The bribe money doesn’t trickle this far down to influence local Democrats.
This could be the defining issue in liberals re-taking control of the Democratic party from the Wall Street crowd, which currently owns most of the Democratic leadership from the president on down.
And if liberals see this as providing them with such an opportunity, the animals will benefit, the environment will benefit, consumers will control the marketplace, and the corporate state will have been weakened.
Requiring Truth In Labeling will almost certainly force farmers to stop most production of GMO corn, with a resulting increase in animal feed costs, translating into increased meat, dairy, and egg costs to consumers.
Even a few percentage point decline in consumer demand would mean a reduction of millions of slaughtered animals.
A caveat here. Reducing the number of animals slaughtered doesn’t mean they will be set free. It just means their deaths will be delayed.
If enough are delayed, fewer are bred to die.
Every animal in the food system is going to die a violent death. None can be saved. None will be set free. If the whole world became vegan tomorrow, every animal controlled by Big Ag would still be murdered for whatever money they can get, even if it meant turning the animals into fertilizer or rendering them for soap and cosmetics.
The only animals we can save are the ones who won’t be born.
If there are more animals than there is demand for their corpses, breeding is curtailed. The ones born are murdered, the ones not born are the ones we save.
And we must save billions from the horrors of the Animal Holocaust.
The very first step we each must take is to resolve to join the fight against Monsanto and GMOs.
The second step is to demand that mere disclosure of GMOs in our foodstuffs is not enough. We must demand that ALL GMOs, chemicals, medicines, antibiotics, steroids, and hormones, introduced into meat and dairy animals be disclosed as well.
The 2016 elections are nearly underway. Candidates are posturing for position to run for Congress, the Senate, state legislative seats, and governorships.
A reasonable inquiry of a candidate’s priorities and ideology could be determined by asking whether they support Big Ag or the consumer.
A litmus test to determine the truth is whether or not they support Truth In Labeling.
Truth In Labeling as a political issue would fuel the left, force moderates to take a stand, and result in the election of the most liberal candidates.
Most importantly, it would defeat conservatives.
The by-product of elections in which the left has an ideological stake is the recruitment of leftists, the growth of the movement, and, indirectly, the benefit to animals.
Nowhere would the issue demonstrate greater contrast between candidates than in the Democratic primary contests.
Hillary Clinton has been a supporter of Monsanto, and has received legal political bribes from their lobbyists. Bernie Sanders is an unrelenting critic of corporate influence in politics, is a critic of Monsanto, and has been a champion of consumers.
Sanders has already forced Clinton to the left. She has had to modify her positions as a Wall Street Democrat in face of the goundswell of rebellion by progressives in support of Bernie Sanders.
Clinton now opposes the Keystone pipeline, the Trans Pacific Partnership, favors reform of banking practices, addressing student loan debt, and curtailing the excesses of Wall Street.
If progressives and liberals can force the candidates to embrace Truth in Labeling, we could save millions of animals while crippling Big Agriculture.
I fully expect Bernie Sanders to support Truth In Labeling.
Whether Clinton will break with Monsanto is yet to be seen.
• I am unaware of any other blog with the Armory’s mission of radicalizing the animal movement. I certainly hope I am not alone, and that there are similar sentiments being expressed by comrades unknown to me.
If you know of other blogs dedicated to animal rights and the defeat of capitalism, please comment with a link.
• Be sure to follow the Armory and share it with your Facebook friends and email contacts, as well as on Twitter, Google, and all other social media platforms. Our influence and effectiveness is dependent upon you!
• If you are not already subscribed to the Armory, please do so before you leave.
There’s a button to Follow us in the upper right sidebar.
• Be sure to visit Armory of the Revolution’s new commissary and bookstore: The Supply Depot
You will find recommended reading on Animal Rights, revolutionary theory, politics, economics, religion, science, and atheism. There is also a section of supplies for animal liberationists, hunt saboteurs, and social revolutionaries. This is all brand new, and we will be adding lots more merchandise in the near future!
• Feel free to comment. I encourage open discussion and welcome other opinions. I moderate comments because this blog has been attacked by hunters and right wing trolls. I approve comments that are critical as well as those which agree with me. Comments that I will not tolerate are those that are spam, threatening, disrespectful, or which promote animal abuse and cruelty.