Most Animal Rights Groups Don't Actually Care About Animal Abuse
Updated: Jun 15, 2019
By now most of you have probably seen the undercover Fair Oaks Farm video put out by animal rights group Animal Recovory Mission or ARM. This video showed many horrific animal cruelties committed by Fair Oaks Farm employees, but it also condemned basic farming practices. Now I am not going to defend the animal cruelty, but I am going to point out what in the video was not animal cruelty, and that ARM is a dishonest organization who want to push an agenda and narrative to destroy the American Farmer.
First during the montage of employees knocking calves down and they show on sitting on top of a calf forcing it to drink a bottle like it's the same thing. It's not. Having to force feed calves is a very common occurrence, especially with new calves who don't now how to feed yet. When this is the case you have to wrestle the calf to the ground and force it to drink the milk or else it will starve.
Also during this part they show several employees pulling a calf by its head to get it to follow them, this too is not abuse. Now again I am not defending the actual animal abuse like when the calf has fallen down and they're still pulling it but it's head or feet, but when they are pulling it by the head and the calf is running to keep up. This is no different than if you have a puppy on a leash and it's trying to run and play so you pull on the leash to get him to follow you. And then the narrator of the video claims that calves are incredibly fragile, but this is simply not true. New born calves are incredibly durable, they are walking they say they are born, and running, playing and fighting with other calves after 2 or 3 days.
The next let's talk about branding. It has been apart of farming and ranching for centuries as a way to mark your livestock incase of theft or they get out. Does it hurt the calf, almost certainly, but it is hardly the evil torture the video makes it out to be and that the employees to it to be cruel and not mark them as the farms property.
Another basic farming practice that video claims is abuse is the separating calves from the mothers. First off, cattle are not human and on a biological level do not have the same maternal instinct that humans do. On the ranch my family runs on average we have to bottle feed at least one calf a year because the mother abandoned it. This is a practice done by every dairy farmer and on almost every farm the calves are treated just as good if not better than they would be with the mother.
Finally, let's talk about ARM's motivation. It's not to protect the calves, because if it was they would have reported the abuse to management as soon as they saw it like Fair Oaks policy mandates. But they didn't. Why? ARM are a bunch of vegan radicals who want to destroy the American farmer. They claim that they work with law enforcement during they're investigation but Newton County Sheriff's Office, who are conducting the animal cruelty investigation, say ARM failed to report this activity for some time. Again I am not defending Fair Oaks Farm for the animal cruelty, but I'm not condemning them either. ARM claims Fair Oaks Farm has a systematic problem of animal cruelty and that it's not just a few "bad apples" but why should I believe them. By not reporting the abuse to management of law enforcement they have proven themselves to be badly motivated actors who want clicks and to vilify dair farmers instead of actually fixing the problem.