Does HSUS’s Food Policy Director Support Animal-Rights Terrorism?

WPrescott_Becke’ve written before about how the Humane Society of the United States—not affiliated with any local humane societies—employs a number of animal liberation radicals in its leadership. Their history ranges from a chief policy officer who defended tactics of the Animal Liberation Front (whose illegal actions have done millions in damages) to contributors to a terrorist-cheerleading magazine.

We’ve unearthed some new information about Matt Prescott, HSUS’s food policy director. Prescott is well known for developing a campaign while at PETA comparing farms to Nazi concentration camps—by implication calling farmers gas-chamber operators or calling Jews animals. The campaign rightly earned strong condemnation from Jewish leaders and trivialized the suffering of humans, while the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum said that Prescott was “not honest” in how he would be using its images.

It turns out that’s not all Prescott was up to. He also was an active participant in a listserv about Earth First!, a radical environmentalist group. Started in the 1980s, EF! is a “warrior society” that takes a “by any means necessary” approach to “defending mother earth.” EF! crimes include arson, sabotage, and assault. According to the FBI, EF! members in England formed the Earth Liberation Front, which expanded and became considered a top domestic terrorist threat in the U.S. after engaging in arson and other illegal activity along with its sister group, the Animal Liberation Front.

Prescott considered himself an Earth First!er. He signed one email, “matt prescott, NH EF!” It’s unclear how active he was in EF! activities—if at all—but Prescott didn’t seem to have any problem with the EF! attitude of law-breaking.

Prescott was arrested in 2001 in Maine for trespassing in conjunction with a Greenpeace protest. He was arrested in 2003 as part of a PETA protest outside of Vogue offices, along with Patrick Kwan, also now with HSUS. And in one email to the EF! listserv, Prescott stated his broad defense of illegal activities, including arson:

By burning down a vivisection lab, not only does the ALF [Animal Liberation Front] save the lives of innocent LIVING beings, but they take a huge stand against the notion of property being equal to life….While I obviously beleive [sic] STRONGLY in [legal] methods, I also believe in the actions of the ALF and other such groups.

In another email, representing “The GreenFire Collective of New Hampshire” (whatever that was), Prescott wrote, “We actively participate in and endorse protests, direct action, and non-violent civil disobedience.” Direct action is a code phrase for illegal acts designed to cause economic loss or property destruction—like arson.

So Prescott worked for groups like PETA and Farm Sanctuary, but also believed in burning down research labs. And if that wasn’t bad enough, Prescott even campaigned for the release of convicted murderer Leonard Peltier—someone who shot and killed two FBI agents.

And yet, Prescott calls livestock farmers the bad guys. His moral compass is about as backwards as it gets.

The founding of Earth First! was reportedly to create a group more extreme to draw fire away from other environmental groups. “The people that are easily named extreme make the people who were extreme seem suddenly reasonable,” said a former Sierra Club executive director.

That’s what groups like PETA do for HSUS. As Michael Spector wrote in The New Yorker in 2003, “It has been argued many times that in any social movement there has to be somebody radical enough to alienate the mainstream–and to permit more moderate influences to prevail. For every Malcolm X there is a Martin Luther King, Jr., and for every Andrea Dworkin there is a Gloria Steinem. Newkirk and PETA provide a similar dynamic for groups like the Humane Society of the United States.”

Prescott, a veteran of PETA who’s now at HSUS, surely knows this.

We haven’t seen any statements from Prescott disavowing his past support for illegal Animal Liberation Front tactics. Nor have we seen anything from him stating that he doesn’t still believe that farmers are running Nazi concentration camps.

HSUS can create a slick marketing campaign with cat and dogs, but we’ll make sure people know the truth about the people running the organization, from Matt “Farmers are Nazis” Prescott to Wayne “I don’t love animals” Pacelle.

These days, Prescott is a public figure going around sending “Hey, hope you are having a great day” emails on HSUS’s behalf to unsuspecting companies and trying to manipulate them into making anti-farmer statements. The logical thing, then, is to make sure these companies are no longer unsuspecting.

Posted on 12/12/2013 at 2:39 pm by Humane Watch Team.

Topics: Main


  • Picca

    I think you might have pointed out more explicitly that HSUS is aggressively pushing a *vegan* diet, not just for AR supporters, not just the US and Canada, but for the entire globe.

    HSUS gives not a tinker’s dam for any animals – AR just cares obsessively that people would actually eat them. Or take them home and pamper them and share their beds with them. Or go out of their way to maintain viable, sound and healthy genepools.

    Yep, people who keep animals, who farm them, eat them … they are the bad guys all right. Actually, if we, who understand and care for our animals are the bad guys, ‘Vegetarian fed cage free’ egg production is by far the cruellest. Wait, wait … most HUMANE.

    [For those who may be unaware of it, chickens are cannibalistic. Not only are they not in any way natural vegetarian birds, they are very happy to kill and eat each other. Cage free egg production operations know up front that there is no way to control picking in that environment, that they will be facing a reliable 20 – 30% attrition rate due to picking. All you can do with that is go into those barns every day and pull out dead and mutilated birds.

    ‘Cage free’ does NOT mean ‘free range’. Even ‘free range’ generally means CAFO, with ‘porches’ … that a few hens at a time can access, for limited periods of time. ]

    HSUS is *not* about ‘kindness to animals’, not any, not birds nor fish either. Animal Rights is about eliminating all animals from human lives, by any means available. They have successfully turned ‘shelters’ into pet abattoirs, and openly and aggressively oppose no-kill sheltering.

    • Laurie

      I am going back to The House of Representatives and find the page that agree’s with all you have said and more. Did you know Wayne is on the board for tyson foods?

      • Picca

        Yes. They scream about CAFO, but Wayne is on Tyson’s 0board.

        Wayne also embraced Michael Vicks as a ‘great dog owner’.

        They also tell their vegan followers their pets aren’t at risk.

        They scream about ‘puppy mills’, which sane people recognize to be the High Volume Pet Breeders, who produce pets in concrete and SS kennel facilities. Not that that is particulaly ‘inhumane’, but AR isn’t going after those breeders. Instead they have decimated the hobby breeders who breed for soundness, health and temperment and require by contract that any pet they sell be returned to them if the buyer can’t keep it – for any reason whatever.

        Very consistent, eh? Also very misleading. Once they have got rid of the truly knowledgable and humane producers (of pets, food, fiber, whatever), there will be no public resistance to getting rid of CAFO, HVCB, or any of the other producers AR has taught the public to hate. And by then, the situation will be all but unrecoverable, because the diversity of livestock and pet genepools will have been reduced to whatever the commercial/industrial breeders have left us with. So in order to convince you they *aren’t* just trying to destroy your diet and right to use animal products, they pretend to ‘support’ them. You buy the lie, and continue to support their efforts, until the lie becomes obvious … but there is no going back.

        If you want to get rid of CAFO, buy pastured eggs, dairy and meat. If you want to get rid of the ‘puppy mills’ (HVCBs), buy your pet from a hobby breeder, and insure that that pet never has to endure the ‘shelter experience’.

        The worst of the animal abuse is being committed by the AR extremists and the authorities they’ve bought. They’ve turned the ‘shelters’ into pet abbatoirs. They’ve pushed the price of eggs up, without accomplishing anything for the hens OR us, but they’ve successfully misinformed yet another substantial percentage of the population via the controlversy, wherein they scream ‘abuser’ at the producers often enough and loudly enough to con the public into buying ‘cage free vegetarian’ eggs, which production is infinitely more cruel than any caging model.

        When they raid pet breeders and exotics keepers, they invariably kill a few animals, to justify the raid. Often they are the best loved, most deeply pampered *elderly* pets of that breeder, which is egregious cruelty not only to the pets but also to the pet owner. And the evidence is gone. It’s the extremist’s word against the competent, knowledgeable breeder’s.

        Animal rights extremists know nothing about animal husbandry. Why would you go to someone who has never raised an animal, never bred an animal, never even owned an animal, for animals husbandry information? AR extremists – and those who run the organizations ARE extremists, are ideologically OPPOSED to keeping animals. How could they possibly be ‘experts’?

        The only thing they are experts at is lying to animal lovers and legistators. Sunstein was AR. We’re free of him, but we’re stuck with the Vilsacks, who have helpfully given the UDSA and APHIS over to HSUS, lock stock and barrel. Sarah Conant was hired to run the new APHIS enforcement division straight out of the HSUS pool of attorneys. That would seem like an extreme conflict of interest, to anyone who understands what the AR agenda is about.

  • Butch Hash

    In Ohio HSUS was able to have the Ohio Farm Bureau sell out the Farmer in Ohio they will do any thing to push vegan way of life Jack Fisher from the Ohio Farm Bureau are friends on facebook I would think they would be like oil and water but the two mixed pretty well from what we all saw Here in Ohio

    • Picca

      It’s very important to them, that the public not believe they are going for the complete vegan lifestyle. They know they can’t sell that. If they have to get in bed with Michael Vick, Tyson, or any other inhumane industry, they have no problem with that. They have no morals and no ethics; they want the world run their way, and they don’t care what lies they have to tell to get it. Therefore, they pretend it’s about ‘animal abuse’, which NO ONE supports.

      They are using animal lover money to deprive them of their pets, sporting stock and diets.

      HSUS, PeTA and SPCA are all AR groups. The AR agenda is truly global; the Western world is riddled with it, and they are now active in Asia., HSUS operates internationally as HSI [countryname]. we couldn’t make this up – but the amazing thing, really, is they’ve made up ALL the justifications for destroying sound, caring pet and small stock operations, and the public swallows it all whole hog.

      In other words, they’ve invented the pet population crisis, the cruel livestock operations crisis, the cruel lab animal crisis, the cruel hunter/fisherman crisis, the cruel pet breeder crisis … and they’ve successfully sold it to urban populations who are so ignorant that some of them think meat is ‘made in the back of the meat department’ in grocery stores. OK, I can’t vouch for that one personally, but someone did ask me, face to face, ,’what is in milk anyway?’.

      No one who has any true hands-on experience with animal husbandry could buy into the AR movement with a straight face – but by now, it’s impossible to see how these extremist terrorists can be laughed at or written off as ‘crackpots’. They’re worse than that; they’re nihilists. They have bought our legislators, county commissioners and city counselors. Pacelle brags publicly about the ‘thousands’ of laws he’s gotten passed ‘at all levels of government’.

      They don’t have to outlaw anything to make it impossible to do in practical terms. In the very agricultural *County* I live in in Oregon, it is impossible to legally breed even one litter of dogs. Unless, of course, you have applied for the permits and got them approved for a six figure kennel facility which exceeds USDA requirements.It’s legal, of course … just impossible.

      That’s moot, of course, with the new USDA regs just gone in in November. Now it’s illegal to breed ANY pets at all, without a USDA facility and license.

      It’s not something to fear in the future. It’s something to fear NOW. We are fast running out of time.

  • cardnut

    I wish you people wouldn’t blackball me. I have excellent anti-animal rights credentials !