OpEd: Trying to be nice about politics, but….
June 19, 2013 – OpEd by Jerry Finch
Things go on inside the House of Representatives late at night that would make your skin crawl. Deals, pats on the back, money changing hands – these are the folks that are supposedly representing US, as in the people of the U.S. I guess that was a myth that died a long time ago. Now they represent themselves in trade for promised financial backing, for votes, for the betterment of their friends and neighbors and for those lobbyists that hang around the hallways with money and promises.
Such as it was last night for those darling members of the House Rules Committee. As a result, when the Farm Bill, five years in the making, goes to the floor for a vote, there will be NO debate on any animal welfare amendments. Remember that horse soring amendment? Finished. Done. The good old boys from Tennessee backslapped that into the trash. Pete Sessions, R-TX put an end to that. He heads the Rules Committee. But that’s not all…
Puppy mills, shark finning, even a proposal to stop horse slaughter, all wadded up and heaved into the trash, no doubt to the sound of a lot of laughter and cheering. Food safety amendments, child labor amendments? Gone. That’s because the Rules Committee will keep the King Amendment.
“If the King Amendment survives, and is included in the 2013 Farm Bill, it will wipe out more than 150 state laws governing agriculture, food and food safety,” said Ronnie Cummins, National Director of the OCA. “The biotech industry knows that it’s only a matter of time before Washington State, Vermont, Maine, Connecticut and other states pass GMO labeling laws. Rather than fight this battle in every state, Monsanto is trying to manipulate Congress to pass a Farm Bill that will wipe out citizens’ rights to state laws intended to protect their health and safety.”
You really should read about Steve King, R-IOWA, and his twisted destruction of every thing related to animal welfare. Do a Google search on “king amendment farm bill,” While you’re reading, think about the recent AG decision on tainted horsemeat in NM. Hummmm.
This isn’t about politics. There are some really great people in the House, Representatives that try hard to battle the stone wall. What we do doesn’t have anything to do with politics, it’s about animals, about humane treatment, about life. How letting a mother pig stand up and see her babies became a political issue is beyond me. What kind of world do we live in that turns a hens’ ability to spread her wings during her short life into a debate on the House floor? Is the right to a humane life and death really a platform for any political party?
At Habitat for Horses, our main concern is horses. Makes sense. But even if we stick our head in the sand, as has been suggested by some, and let the “Big Boys” deal with DC, we can’t help but stare at the makers of the laws and shake our heads in shame and disgust. “They know what they are doing.” Seriously? Would someone explain that to the 350 horses that passed the borders today on their way to the slaughterhouse? We would appreciate your help, because we simply don’t get it.
It just seems, to my small minded way of thinking, that no matter how much money we individually make, we’re all going to end up in the same place. Maybe those powerful politicians, those Corporate Executives, those Great Leaders of the BLM and their kin have a different guidebook that says when the ship of death finally leaves, those that have at least $5 million safely stashed away will all get an outside cabin.
All my guidebook says is, “Do no harm.”
As negative as it all sounds, we cannot and will not give up.
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