Excellent follow up by Mark Bittman to his “Opinionator” column of yesterday. This time around, he takes aim at the Florida and Iowa bills that would ban photography at factory farms. I agree with every word he wrote, except for the second half of this sentence:
It should be the state’s responsibility to find and monitor the few farmers that are giving the rest of them a bad name.
I think that as Bittman continues to devote attention to this topic, he’ll conclude that it’s not a matter of a few bad apples spoiling the barrel. Rather, as Mercy For Animals (MFA) founder Nathan Runkle puts it to start this video:
Every time that MFA sends investigators into factory farm or slaughterhouse they emerge with shocking images of blatant animal abuse.
MFA has done ten cruelty investigations since 2007. I just called Runkle and asked him how many of these investigations were initiated because the group had advanced knowledge of ongoing cruelties at a given facility. His response:
None of our investigations have ever been as a result of a tip.
In other words, ten out of ten randomly investigated locations, spanning a wide range of animal use, turned out to be facilities that inflicted extreme animal cruelties. Watch the videos and judge for yourself.