Saturday, February 23, 2008

There's no excuse...

If you have the stomach for it, put down your hamburger and check out
the disturbing videos at
You know what I’m talking about. Unless you’ve been living under a
rock this week, you’ve had to have seen either portions of the videos
or still photography of the wretched abuse at a California
Certainly you’ve seen those poor decrepit dairy cows being tortured
and abused by slaughterhouse workers, just so that a few more bucks --
and hamburgers -- could be made.
Go ahead and call me an animal-loving liberal.
I don’t care. Anyone who knows me even a little bit knows that I have
a soft spot for animals -- and not just cats.
I despise seeing animals abandoned or abused, even those that are
part of the food chain.
And I’m not naive enough to think that everything runs according to
law everywhere, every time, when it comes to slaughterhouses.
Having grown up on a farm, I do, however, know that not every animal is
a pet; I know that many are raised to supply food for people.
That does not mean that they have to be mistreated, tortured, beaten --
you name it -- as was so hideously revealed this week in the footage
shot by an undercover Humane Society worker.
Publicizing this information led to the largest beef recall in U.S.
The recall part doesn’t affect me directly, since I haven’t eaten
meat for at least 15 years, probably longer.
And I don’t have any children in schools -- yes, our local schools
were affected -- where a great deal of the meat had been delivered.
After all, this meat was being processed by the largest supplier of ground
meat to the national school lunch program.
As we learned this week, some of the meat was coming from “downer”
dairy cows -- cows that are no longer of value to a dairy farmer
because they aren’t producing enough milk, but also are too sick, too old
or too disabled to walk.
They are supposed to be humanely euthanized if found to be in this
state, not run over by forklifts, stabbed in the eyes with electric prods
or otherwise savagely tortured in an effort to get them to stand so that
they can be slaughtered.
See, there are laws that downer cows can’t be slaughtered for meat.
It only makes sense if you think about it.
But can you even fathom the horrible pain these animals suffered for
hours on end, some of them dragged through manure, pulled with chains
hooked to their legs?
Just try to imagine, if you can.
There is no excuse for this, none at all. And how people working at
these facilities could be at the “performing” end of these atrocities
is beyond me.
I realize that past-their-prime dairy cows are a prime source of
hamburger; grind up the old ladies and there you go. That shouldn’t come as
a surprise to anyone.
But even a used-up cow deserves a humane end to her life.
Will this expose actually make a difference? Will it cause the
government to take a stronger role? Will it suddenly instill ethics into those
running some of these slaughterhouses?
What do you think?
Pardon me if I’m a bit cynical when it comes to answering those
If you haven’t seen these videos yet, try to watch at least part of
But perhaps you’ll want do to so without a hamburger in your hand.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Eating meat?

OK, I'm a vegetarian and I love animals.
But you don't have to be either to be appalled by the videos showing how those cows were being treated -- and now the huge meat recall.
Unfortunately, it doesn't surprise me one bit. I know too much, I fear, of how little some people think of animals; even those headed to slaughter.
I hope all of you will take the time to look at those videos and do a bit more research on how these poor animals are treated, up to the bitter end.
I'm not asking you to become a vegetarian.
Just become a person who thinks about these matters -- and maybe even tries to do something about it in some fashion.

Saturday, February 16, 2008


Don't you just love all the time and (our) money that Congress is wasting on these baseball steroid hearings?
If I had my way ... and I've said this for years and years and years ... there would be no pro sports. At least not the way they have evolved.
These players -- yes, they PLAY GAMES -- do not deserve millions of dollars to pursue a sport.
How about people who SHOULD get paid like that -- teachers, scientists, doctors...
But because they can catch a ball or throw a ball or hit a ball .. well, you get the idea ... they somehow "deserve" to be multimillionaires.
But these hearings are totally pointless.
I'm sorry that kids look up to these people as heroes... what a waste.
And if these players want to destroy their lives with these drugs... well, so be it.
How about spending some time on health care, the economy, the environment, the war...
the list goes on, Congress.
But pro sports??? Give me a BREAK!

Saturday, February 9, 2008

It's snowing

Wow... I'm sitting here on Saturday morning, waiting to go out to eat for breakfast -- a treat -- and lo and behold, it's snowing!
In February -- snow!
Can you believe it?
I know, it's not supposed to be "accumulating" snow, but with the warm weather we've been having, any "snow event," as the weather map pointers call it, is somewhat of a treat.
Yes, I was hoping for a similar event on Christmas Eve and didn't get it, but with Punx Phil just having predicted six more weeks of winter, it's nice to see that every now and then some flakes still fly.
Enjoy it while it lasts!

Friday, February 8, 2008

Poor Britney

Yes, I said "poor britney."
And I mean it. I've been fed up with her and her ilk in the past, but I was sorry to see that she was allowed to leave the psych place where she might have actually gotten some help.
Instead, out she goes, right back to the madding crowd of photographers who are feeding on her troubles.
This young woman needs a REAL family -- a mom and dad who cared about her enough to get her somewhere out of this limelight and into a secluded, secure facility that could give her the mental health help she needs.
And then she needs to get the heck out of Dodge, so to speak.
She obviously cannot handle the surreal life of fame, and should work to get her kids back and head back to her roots.
Just be a mom. Get healthy. Stay away from the sick and famous.
I fear that one day we'll be reading about her in the same way we did about Anna Nicole.
Some of these stars are checking themselves into facilities right and left, especially since Heath Ledger's death.
It's a sad commentary on what they obviously had been perceiving as life.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

What a month

So Phil saw his shadow, we have an extra day in February and today is Super Tuesday... and everyone is acting as if it's the November election.
This will be it; we'll know who the candidates are, everyone else can cancel their primaries -- and that includes good old PA, who never has caught up with the times.
Heck, let's just call off this whole presidential silliness now, in the shortest month, and forget about all of the ads, debates, mind-boggling spending and general nastiness that define the race for president.
Just flip a coin between the two top vote-getters on Tuesday and that will be the new president.
With the Electoral College, you don't really get to elect the president anyway, so what's the difference?
Can you tell I'm sick of this whole mess already?