After all, they are the ones who are supposed to be enforcing the humane slaughter act. I wonder how many slaughterhouses they could shut down (probably all of them) if they actually wanted to. I seriously wonder.
Although, could they really? In the book Slaughterhouse (Amazing book, READ IT....NOT PETA INSPIRED) the author talks to USDA workers about what happens the odd time they enforce the slaughter act. Sometimes they were threatened with guns and told to shutup. Could the USDA REALLY enforce it?
I want to know your opinions on the USDA.
The bigger problem is that the meat industry is so vast it is nearly impossible to police it. Unless there are inspectors at every site everyday there will be rules being purposly broken. That really isn't feasable. The meat industry itself doesn't care as much about how healthy the animal was or how cleanly it was killed as much as they care about their end margins. Worrying about the treatment of the animals hurts their profits.
The reason that slaughter is not humane is the same reason that there is slaughter at all: a belief that non human animals do not possess the basic rights to live and to breath as individuals.
Could the USDA adjust the conditions of slaughter so that they are less violent? I suppose so.
Even if the USDA weren't beholden to the industries it polices, this would be the case.
I suppose they, too, are all about money, which is sad because I would think The US Department of AGRICULTURE would care about animals.
When the USDA is run by former food execs and others that have business interests in the meatpacking industry, it does nothing. How screwed up can an organization be when they try to prevent meatpacking plants from testing every cow for BSE, arguing that random tests are good enough?
Fast Food Nation goes into detail some of the flaws of the current system, including the lack of power the USDA has.
As is slaughterhouse. Which is how it should be. People deserve to know how their food is treated and how disgusting it REALLY is.
-- How many people actually work at USDA? In an interesting development, Vilsack said he cannot find out how many thousands of employees he has at USDA. "They could tell me how many checks are issued, but not how many people work here," he said. "It was the first question I asked the transition staff when the president nominated me for this position. I was interested to know how many people actually work at USDA," Vilsack said. "And I was told that no one knows for sure."
Vilsack said the department's computer system is so outdated they are not sure how many full- and part-time employees are on the payroll. "That together with a number of reports from the Inspector General's office and the (General Accountability Office) concerning the operations and management suggested that what we have here in some aspects and areas is charitably outdated," Vilsack concluded. http://www.agweb.com/Blogs/BlogPost....5-76c1e586117d
The USDA is a political football heavily influenced by corporate special interest groups, professional lobbyists and politicians trying to win votes in rural states.
For example, I worked at a research lab looking into specialist herbicides for big agriculture. Every year, chemical companies would the entire lab facility out for the day for a big BBQ, free beer, 'product demos' and more at a swanky place in town. For most of these USDA lab workers, it was the biggest occasion of the year. Of course the chemical companies would pay for everything and ask for nothing in return....except could perhaps the lab workers take a quick look (and approve) a certain beaker of herbicides they're working on? No pressure of course....
USDA is a mess.
I don't hate them. I think they are well meaning to an extent. It is best to keep in mind that they don't really care about proper treatment for the animal's sake, but for the human's sake. If an animal is properly treated during life and killed in the swiftest, cleanest way possible, then there is less likelyhood of diseases reaching the consumer.
Then why do they allow the animals to be fed hormones and antibiotics which can harm humans?
“May all sentient beings be free of pain and suffering. May all sentient beings experience eternal joy and happiness. gate gate pāragate pārasaṃgate bodhi svāhā.”