Hello everyone, happy post Election Day! I don’t know about you, but I am so glad that it is over!! The decisions, the signs and the anxiety are enough to drive anyone crazy! I found this ballot to be pretty easy to make my mind up about, except for one proposition that we had here in California, proposition 12.
Proposition 12 “establishes minimum requirements for confining certain farm animals. Prohibits sales of meat and egg products from animals confined in noncomplying manner. Fiscal Impact: Potential decrease in state income tax revenues from farm businesses, likely not more than several million dollars annually. State costs up to $10 million annually to enforce the measure.”
Having read the information you would probably wonder why, as an animal rights activist, I didn’t immediately jump on board with this proposition. Here are my reasons why even today I am quite unsure….
My first thought when the prop came out was who is going to regulate this? Many propositions have passed before and have not been regulated. For example, cage free hens are absolutely not cage free and rarely see the light of day. My worry is that people will think that these animals have a better life and better standards, when nothing has changed. This will only encourage them to eat more meat without feeling guilty over their decisions (I used to do the same thing; I would buy the most expensive, organic, and humane meat thinking that it made a difference. In reality, there is no difference other than the term that the industry uses to make us feel better about our choices).
Here was a CON on the proposition 12 page: “This outrageous sell-out to the egg industry betrays animals and voters. Californians already voted to ban cages by 2015. This cruel measure legalizes cages until at least 2022! And hens get just ONE SQUARE FOOT of space. Vote NO on farm animal cruelty by voting NO on Proposition 12.”
The other reason why I was confused by this proposition, was because so many people from the animal agriculture industry supported it while strong animal rights groups like PETA were against it.
While I completely understand that not everyone is going to stop eating meat and that animals should have a better life while they are here, I am not quite sure that this is the step in the right direction. Are we just misinforming and lying to the public?
Regardless, proposition 12 passed by a landslide!!! And here is the positive side of this entire campaign trail. The commercials opened people’s eyes about how animals are suffering and are being confined. In addition, the “yes” vote shows how compassionate people truly are about animals (I am hoping someday that people realize that if they are so compassionate about animals, then they should stop eating them….). In addition, I have had some amazing conversations with people who are ready to be educated about where their “food” actually comes from and it’s opened their eyes.
Having said all of this, I completely admire and respect everyone who worked so hard to get this proposition passed and to fight for the animals! You are all amazing and we have to do what we can to take steps in the right direction.