Do Animal Rights Activists Want More Crushed Piglets?

The Animal Legal Defense Fund (ADLF), based in California, is essentially a group of lawyers who subscribe to the HSUS/PETA animal liberation worldview and are willing to clog up the court system with silly lawsuits to push this agenda. The group’s latest ploy is attacking the California state fair for its use of pig housing that protects piglets.

The housing, called “farrowing crates,” is a stall that the sow is placed in just before and for a few weeks after giving birth. They include a way for the sow to lie down so that the piglets can nurse. But they also protect the piglets by preventing the sow from rolling over on them and crushing them. Without farrowing stalls, it’s likely that piglet mortality will increase.

“Freedom for sows comes at the cost of death for many piglets,” writes one U.K. farmer. ALDF founder Joyce Tischler said to The New York Times that her commitment “is that I don’t eat my clients.” But in its latest lawsuit, ALDF’s “clients” may face a more gruesome fate, it seems.

How does this tie into the Humane Society of the United States? We’ve written before about HSUS’s attempts to attack individual maternity pens, which sows are placed in during pregnancy, again for their protection and care. (Two major veterinary groups find that these maternity pens provide for animal welfare.) Attacking farrowing crates is the next logical extension of HSUS’s activism. HSUS can’t take “yes” for an answer because it is opposed to all animal agriculture. So if farmers agree to stop using maternity pens—which would create significant costs for farmers—then HSUS can start a new campaign against farrowing stalls.

ALDF’s director of litigation, Carter Dillard, used to be the director of HSUS’s farm-animal litigation. (We’ve written about his strange vision for humanity before.) ALDF and HSUS have worked together on litigation and legislation.

The bigger picture is also interesting. ALDF takes an incremental approach to undermining the legal system as we know it. No longer would animals be—legally—property, which would open the door to animal lawyers suing just about everybody who uses animals, whether a farmer or a zookeeper. “Would even bacteria have rights? There would be nothing left of human society if we treated animals not as property but as independent holders of rights,” says law professor Richard Epstein.

This certainly seems to be a goal widely shared across the animal liberation movement. PETA sued SeaWorld for “enslaving” killer whales. HSUS has printed fundraising literature dreaming of legal “rights” for animals. The Nonhuman Rights Project, managed by a former HSUS employee, is reportedly planning on a lawsuit later this year with a yet-unknown chimpanzee “plaintiff.”

Animal rights activists have argued in court that they’d rather see elephants dead than in a zoo. With this latest lawsuit, it seems they’re saying they’d rather see piglets gruesomely crushed than end up humanely slaughtered for food.

(Image: Wikimedia)

Posted on 07/29/2013 at 4:55 pm by Humane Watch Team.

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  • WORSEKarma

    As far as the AR wackadoos are concerned, crushed piglets is a good first step, but the fact is, what they REALLY want to see is domestic piglets, (along with all other domesticated species, and any non-domesticated species which have had any contact of any kind with humans, ever), annihilated through genocide.

  • Donna West

    People………If you want to stop this control from HSUS and other “animal rights” activist groups than STOP DONATING for anything they have their dirty hands in…….including so called “puppy mills” that are not puppy mills at all but professional breeders of quality pets. They use the media to tell their lies to get your sympathy, make the animal producers sound like criminals and them the heros. Stop this craziness now or our meat supply and purebred pet supply will be destroyed. Think of the future of America and the generations of citizens to come. Stop lining the pockets of rich criminals like PETA and HSUS .

  • denise

    you should let the pigs be out in a yard not stuke in a pin

  • rpgmomma8404

    I think people should stop trying to give animals rights and worry more about their welfare.

  • Catherine Miller Willis

    My comment would be ..what exactly did pigs do before they were captured and held in farms? Were piglets crushed when pigs were out in the open field? With human contribution or a better word might be ownership of animals, everybody is fighting over everything now. I believe the best thing we can do for animals is to allow them to live in their natural environment but since that is not a possibility because they provide food and milk for us we should provide a home-like environment for them!!!!!

    • Maddiesmomma

      Regardless of whether they are kept in the open, or farmed, there are risks and benefits. Just because an animal is “out in the field” doesn’t make them any MORE safe. They have insect and predator concerns. They are now exposed to weather. And they are at risk from each other. Everyone seems to think that all farm animals get long with each other, and they don’t necessarily. And especially when they have young. But almost all farm animals have a pecking order, and smaller, younger, weaker animals are picked on. And usually receive less food and water, if being fed as a group. Now, that’s not to say that we should put all animals in small crates or restrictive quarters for their lives. But sometimes when we see a “tool” that has historically been used for a logical reason, that does not last but for a week or two…we have to be able to keep an open mind, and understand that there is a good reason that this practice was put into place to begin with. Yes, in the case of the above, mom loses some freedom while her piglets are very small…but then again, the piglets ALL stand a chance of survival until such age that they are large enough to not be in danger when their mother is free.

    • JenellYB

      I speak as one that has both had personal experience raising pigs on a small, ‘homesteader’ basis, AND as living in a rural area where there is a significant population of wild hogs, so some familiarity with both matters you question.
      Yes, many piglets are crushed by their own mothers even in the wild. The majority of sows simply don’t have much in the way of ‘mothering’ instincts when it comes to being careful about laying down on their babies. For one thing, hog of mature size has very little to no actual ability to ‘control’ their body fall once they have started to lay down, quite unlike a dog or something. They also seem to be unable to detect, or at least do not respond to, physical sensations of the struggling piglet’s body underneath its own, or ability to realize the piglet’s screams are because she is laying on it. Pigs are smart in many ways, but not these ways! As noted we have a significant wild hog population. Despite wild sows having average litter sizes comparable to domestic hogs, anywhere from 8 to a dozen over even more, it is rare to see more than 2-6 piglets running with a wild sow, and very commonly, only 1 or 2, by the time they are old enough to be out and about. That’s all that survived.
      Raising piglets on a small farmstead has always been a harrowing adventure, being ready to jump and run even in the middle of the night when screaming piglets call for help! commonly someone sleeping in the barn with a sow for the first week or two, to ‘rescue’ piglets until they learn to stay out of her way when she lays down, at east those lucky enough to survive, anyway.

  • teriquajones

    I think we would all be better off learning to live off the land. All of this costs so much money to fight back and forth. We have an over-population of deer and geese all over the country. If people can’t hunt, then they can buy meat from people who do. All of our meat would be healthy and there would be more food for humans. I know plenty of guys who would love to have a job hunting. And nobody would complain about where the animals live, how they are treated. There would be no cruelty; A good marksman can kill an animal with one shot.

    Or we can continue to fight a constant battle that will never end.

  • Jenni Reyes

    Im not one to argue over the crates…. I believe with DOMESTIC hogs which are genetically altered in some way or other there is a definite need for the crates even with crates they still manage to crush a few. I have witnessed this first hand, little flat face, blue lips and all. As far as the pig farms I think the electrical shock is probably the best, but not all hog farms work the same. I also know that they cut their teeth or just pull them in a squeeze chute and at the same time make two fairly large incisions in the scrotum and push the testicles out and cut them off, then release them… with the already been done crowd. and they shake, they go into shock, they are bleeding. I have seen worse atrocities than that on smaller farms… but all in all, I think out of all the animal industry, the Large Hog farms are probably the lesser of the evils… and dont get me wrong I love my meat, especially pork! But its the down right, no denying, black and white animal ABUSE, the unnecessary abuse, that I fight against. So should everyone else.