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November 17, 2009

Talk Back: Ohio’s Issue 2, Opposition

Today I share your comments on two posts from last week that take our opponents to task for their effort to retard reform.

Ohio has some of the weakest animal protection laws in the country, and that’s one reason why I traveled there recently to drum up support for new, improved policies. The prospect of a ballot initiative to phase out certain extreme confinement practices on factory farms generated anything but a sympathetic response from the Ohio Farm Bureau and many allies in the Legislature—instead, the group launched a pre-emptive measure designed to block our efforts. Voters there recently approved a measure, Issue 2, to create a powerful livestock board to dictate state agriculture policy. But it’s hardly the last word on the subject.

As an Ohioan, I was very disappointed that Issue 2 passed. I am on board with the HSUS in planning a different strategy. I will do what I can to help this process. —Loretta Sacher
Thanks for all you do for animals! I was at the town hall meeting in Cleveland last night—it was so wonderful to hear about the accomplishments of the HSUS and, like you said, it really does give a person hope for the future. I am looking forward to collecting signatures to get that amendment to Issue 2 on the ballot next year and hopefully enact some meaningful change for farm animals here in Ohio. —Maria Turchek
I want to thank Mr. Pacelle for coming to Cleveland and speaking to us last night. I believe that everybody in the room was quite deflated that Issue 2 had passed. He gave an inspiring talk that made me think about how I can further help the plight of suffering animals. It was comforting to know that the Humane Society is not giving up on Ohio and that the organization will help us work toward providing farm animals some basic life needs. I'm energized and ready to help. Thanks again. —Cynthia Wargo
I just wanted to thank you very much for coming to Cincinnati last night. As an animal advocate, shelter volunteer, and rescuer living in one of the states most backward when it comes to humane protections, it was heartening to hear your broad and expansive animal welfare address. Thank you for the ambitious objectives you are pursuing with the HSUS. I could not be more proud to be affiliated with an organization, aside from my work with our local animal loving community. PLEASE make Ohio a core HSUS focus for assisting our small but vigilant animal organizations here with bringing Ohio into the enlightened era, to legislate harsh punishments for abuse of domestic animals, as well as reforms to protect and better the lives of our food-producing animals. —Heather Harkins
Well, it looks like the Buckeye state has spoken. Animal activists need to remember that the farming community knows how to take care of their animals and the consumers showed you that they trust the farmers through their votes last night. This organization had no intentions of compromising with agriculture so we decided that this was the best course of action. I am sure that you will get the necessary signatures but you will not get the votes next November. Ohio has spoken and this organization should just see how the board is going to work before condemning it. —Theresa Howick

Money talks when it comes to Issue 2 in Ohio. Unfortunately, we are stuck by way of constitution with a committee appointed by the governor, etc., loaded with factory farmers, agriculture, etc. Nothing will change as far as confinement guidelines. We desperately need to pass legislation next year to stop this cruelty in Ohio. —Jeanie

We in Ohio were certainly bamboozled with Issue 2 and hardly had time to campaign against it. The ad for the issue looked SOOOOO inviting and like everyone should vote yes. We had no ad to state our case and therefore it looked like there was no opposition to it and it was okay to vote YES! We need to start now to try to fix what went terribly wrong on Nov. 3 in Ohio. Thanks. —Anita

And on my post about the Center for Consumer Freedom, a corporate front group that attacks individuals and organizations working for social good and seems to be a champion of animal cruelty:

GREAT BLOG! Oh, how I hope this charlatan group falls flat on its face and comes under the fire of one of the big news mouthpieces—60 Minutes, Dateline. They need to be exposed for what they really are and it causes me to choke to think that they actually receive support and funding from legitimate (though very ignorant!) businesses. Keep up the good work! —Susan T.
The extremes to which David Martosko, Rick Berman, and the rest of CCF are going are a sign that compassion and logic are winning. The sick minds who consider life a commodity, who value lives no more than any other balance sheet asset, are feeling threatened. The world is slowly evolving and leaving them behind. In the future, compassion, peace, health, and environmental stewardship will be secure foundations in every sentient beings’ life. We live that way now, and one day maybe even CCF members will join us. —KnowThankYou
So happy you responded directly to that joke of an organization. In time, the truth will show who they are and what they represent. Their presence is as limited as smoking in public places and trans fat in New York City. —CN
Have no fear of these bad individuals; you need not defend yourself against them as your work speaks volumes. Exploit them for what they really are—greedy trouble makers who enjoy causing aggravation for profit. Rise above these pathetic creatures and carry on your good work. Do not be distracted by their toxicity. —Louisa
Thanks for this post exposing the hideous nature of CCF. I discovered them only recently and posted about them on my blog also. I can barely fathom how these people can sleep at night knowing they are seriously misleading people through harmful and dishonest “information” and posing as a charity for the sake of money. What a disgrace. —Niki
I receive your blog and pass them on to my friends daily. This one (along with so many others) consumes my heart with sadness for these poor animals we as humans should feel privileged to have here on Earth with us. I decided to Google the Center for Consumer Freedom and found their website to be criticizing you. I became even more angry. I'm not sure if I made the right decision by even giving them any of my time, but I had to voice my disapproval. I just can't believe that compassion is so difficult for some. And even though Albert Einstein spoke about compassion and respect to all living creatures, as well as the benefits of a vegetarian diet for humans, there are so many that actually still disagree. And not only disagree, but are just plain cruel. I praise you for your work and your compassion–you are truly one of my heroes. God Bless you always, as well as all the animals. —Eileen Hillin
Thank you for calling out David Martosko, Rick Berman, and the CCF. Sadly, the voices against animal welfare are always motivated by greed. But we have "right" on our side, and we will never give up the fight for a better world for animals. —Erin Gaines
It takes a lot to get Wayne Pacelle ultra-angry. He's generally cordial even as he argues against all the atrocities hurled at animals. But the Center for Consumer Freedom has got him particularly fired up per his blog today. As a consumer, I stand in solidarity with Wayne as do other animal welfare supporters. There is NO decent human that will try to defend the wanton and rampant cruelty of animals, including farm animals. Many consumers will want to know, as I do, who is behind that group. —Michelle Ognjanovic

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