These actions, of course, were taken in violation of federal law. USDA regulations state that non-ambulatory cows (those that can't walk) should never be used in the human food supply due to the risk of disease (mad cow disease in particular). But given that non-ambulatory cows cause a financial loss for slaughterhouses, there is a strong financial incentive to drag, shove, shock or otherwise kick those cows into the processing line so that their flesh can be transformed into a few more bucks of profit for these beef processing companies (and all the companies downstream that use beef, too, like fast food chains, canned soup manufacturers, providers to school lunch programs and so on).
In reaction to the secret video, the USDA has issued a massive recall of 143 million pounds of frozen beef. That's the largest ever in the history of the United States. Five felony counts of animal cruelty were charged to the pen manager who worked at the plant, and three misdemeanor charges were filed against another employee. The company has not yet been charged with anything. Note that this would have never happened unless the Humane Society video had brought all this to light.
About 37 million pounds of the recalled beef had already been set to school lunch programs at the time of the USDA recall. But here's the real kicker: Most of that beef has already been eaten by schoolchildren! To understand why this is a big deal for human health, keep reading...
By the way, I've also posted a really nice podcast on this subject that was recorded live from a bamboo rainforest in the high Andes of Southern Ecuador. The background sounds are simply amazing, and the discussion is deep. Click here to view all podcasts now.
There's also an important video clip we've just posted on beef and processed meats from the movie All Jacked Up. Click here to see the video.
Non-ambulatory cows and mad cow diseaseYou know why the USDA bans the use of non-ambulatory cows in the human food supply? Because diseased cows often have mad cow disease. This is the strange prion-folding disease that turns nervous system to mush. It literally turns brains and spinal cords into non-functional goo. That's why the cows can't walk: Their nervous systems have deteriorated so much that they can no longer stand on their own four feet.
Mad cow disease is not destroyed by cooking. It's not a bacteria or a virus. It's actually a self-replicating structural anomaly that can pass from cows to humans even if the beef is cooked. All that's necessary for cross-contamination is that a little bit of brain matter or spinal cord matter gets mixed into the beef. Do you think that happens at beef slaughterhouses? Of course it does. Routinely, in fact.
So the primary reason this beef is dangerous to humans is because eating a few bites of contaminated beef can result in the human form of mad cow disease: CJD. (See http://www.naturalnews.com/002338.html) It's worth noting that this is the stuff now being fed to U.S. schoolchildren.
What about cruelty to animals?Beyond the rather disturbing health implications to humans, the treatment of animals in this way is also extremely cruel. Animals are feeling, compassionate beings with consciousness, memories and families. Cows, in particular, are highly aware animals who have far higher consciousness than, say, fish. Cows are mammals, after all, just as we are. They raise their young, protect them, nurse them, and care for them.
The beef industry treats cows with extreme cruelty; both when they are alive and when they are about to be killed for processing. The horrors that cows must endure are atrocities against animals. And these individuals who have engaged in this extremely cruel behavior against cows are guilty of far more than minor violations of regulations regarding animal treatment, in my opinion: They are guilty of torturing living, breathing conscious beings. What these slaughterhouse workers do on a day-to-day basis is nothing less than an organized system of torturing, then murdering mammals for the purpose of earning money by selling their flesh.
This is one reason, by the way, that eating beef makes people angry and violent. The violence is built right into the meat because the cow is killed in a state of extreme fear while experiencing extreme violence. These emotions get imprinted right into the beef, and when that beef is consumed by humans, those emotions are unleashed into their own tissues.
Don't believe me? Google the phenomenon of organ transplant recipients experiencing memories and emotions of the transplant donors. Tissues store emotions. It's a common phenomenon. And when you eat "violent beef," you become more violent yourself. That's why all the pro-war, pro-Bush, pro-military fear-mongers running around this country are mostly steak eaters. That's why Republican politics (the politics of fear, aggression and violence) is so closely tied to cattle ranching and the beef industry. It's also why the military serves beef to all its soldiers: Beef makes soldiers more violent, which makes them "better" soldiers for the Pentagon's campaigns of violence against civilians in countries like Iraq and Afghanistan. (Vegetarians would never shoot another human being. Only meat eaters have enough internal fear, anger and violence to pick up a gun and shoot or torture another living being.)
So now we have a national food supply contaminated with mad cow disease and violent emotions. Is it any wonder our population is so sick, diseased and violent? And this is the stuff we're now feeding to our schoolchildren. It's no wonder, then, that our children grow up so disturbed. Combine slaughterhouse beef with TV violence, video game violence and psychotropic drugs, and you have a recipe for behavioral disaster. We're already seeing the results in society today.
When you eat beef, you support murder, torture and violenceLet me be very clear hear to the nearly one million people who read NaturalNews each month: When you eat beef, you directly support the torture and murder of cows. You support violence, and if you actually swallow beef and digest it, you actually absorb violence. You become more angry, fearful and disturbed with every pound of beef you eat. And if you don't believe me, just find 10 people who eat a lot of red meat and compare them to 10 people who are vegans or vegetarians. You'll notice a huge difference in levels of anger, stress and violence: All the vegetarians are non-violent, but the meat eaters are often extremely violent individuals!
I encourage you to decide right now to stop eating beef for the rest of your life. Your decision will have a hugely positive influence on your own life as well as the lives of others. Say it now: I will no longer eat beef for the rest of my life! Once you say it, you no longer have to worry about mad cow disease, either.
I made that same decision many years ago, and it was an easy one to make. I actually come from a family that was involved in cattle ranching. My grandfather raised cows and sent them to the slaughterhouse. He raised them in open pastures, of course, where they had fresh air, live grass and clean water. They were very healthy cows compared to the factory farm animals raised today in Greeley, Colorado. Nevertheless, they were still slaughtered, and every few months, I remember the freezer in our home was stocked with nearly a hundred pounds of frozen beef.
Oblivious to the health implications and ethical considerations, I ate beef by the pound growing up. I thought it was normal, much like most American consumers do today. I ate pork ribs, beef steak, ham sandwiches, sausage, bacon and all the other traditional meat-eating foods you can think of.
But after learning the truth about the beef industry, I made a conscious decision to avoid eating beef for life. I also decided to avoid eating pork. I still eat fish and seafood from time to time, but I'm sure that's next on my list of things to remove from my diet. Upon shifting to a largely plant-based diet (rich with fresh juices and "Juice Feasting"), my health dramatically improved and my moods became far more stable. I began to understand the futility of war and the horrors of violence committed against people, animals and nature, and that's part of what got me on this path of teaching natural health and humility towards Mother Nature.
What I now know is that individuals who eat meat simply cannot comprehend ideas of compassion, non-violence and respecting nature because they are mentally wrapped up in the destructive vibration of pain, anger and violence. If you examine the history of every major religion, you'll find that virtually all spiritual leaders avoided eating meat. Jesus Christ is included on that list. That's why I always think it's hilarious to see so many false Christians destroying their bodies with processed foods and meat products. There is no such thing as being spiritually aware when you are consuming a diet of greed, anger and violence. All those churches serving beef for lunch should be strongly condemned for their decidedly non-spiritual dietary practices. (But that's a whole different article...) Some interesting reading on the history of religions and vegetarianism can be found here: http://www.ivu.org/history/christian/ch...
The next time you go to a church buffet serving meat, ask the people there why they pray for non-violence everywhere except in their food. Also ask them: Would Jesus eat tortured cow meat? It's not a trick question...
Get tough on animal murderers?Getting back to the present-day crimes against animals committed by slaughterhouse workers, although I do not believe in committing violence against human beings as punishment for their behavior, there's little doubt that these people actually deserve to be severely punished for their actions. However, instead of promoting yet more violence against those responsible, here's my own non-violent plan for what to do with the entire slaughterhouse industry and its workers:
Step 1: Outlaw the use of mammals for human food. That would include cows, pigs and sheep. The practice of factory farming animal flesh for human consumption is not only extremely dangerous for human health, it's also extremely unethical and entirely non-sustainable from an ecological point of view.
Step 2: Offer a program of reeducation for the slaughterhouse workers, giving them opportunities to learn new skills that are not based on violence against living beings. They can even be trained to be organic farmers, thanks to surging demand for organic foods. The banning of mammal meat would also create yet more demand for plant-based food products (which are far more ecologically efficient than meat products anyway, and are actually good for the environment).
Step 3: Giving legal standing to all mammals. Cows should have similar (but not equal) standing to people, meaning that humans do not "own" cows and that humans cannot simply decide to destroy a cow's flesh for purposes of profit. Animals should be considered legal entities with proper guardianship by organizations such as the Humane Society. Anyone committing a crime against an animal would be arrested and face charges just as if they had committed such crimes against another human being. Is shooting a cow the same as shooting a human being? It is if you're the cow!
Step 4: People who wish to eat meat can eat synthetic meat grown in nutrient vats and not associated with living mammals. I am not against people eating meat per se, but rather against the mass slaughter of animals as a way to acquire that meat. If meat can be synthetically grown (and the technology is already available), then I of course support the freedom of consumers to choose to eat that meat. However, a consumer's right to eat meat should never take precedence over an animal's right to an existence without torture and violence.
Concepts beyond meat-eating consciousnessMost meat eaters consider these ideas to be radical, but I believe the idea of using a conscious, aware animal as a meat-growing mechanism is cruel and outmoded. Not only is meat eating simply incompatible with sustainable life on this planet, it's also cruel, unhealthy and destructive to human life.
While perhaps 99% of the people in the world today do not have the awareness to even consider these issues of ethics, the energy "imprinting" of meat, and animals rights, they can at least understand that beef factories as operated today are a risk to human health, and it is on that point alone that the USDA is issuing this recall of 143 million pounds of beef.
You see, the USDA only acts when human lives are at risk, not when animals' lives are compromised. It will apparently take considerably more evolution and maturity in our human civilization for the masses to understand that we are all interconnected: The people, the cows, the dirt, the water, and the entire planet. And we are foolish, indeed, if we expect to treat the living systems around us with extreme cruelty while remaining entirely unaffected ourselves. What we do unto others, as the saying goes, we do unto ourselves. When we treat cows with violence, we become violent, and we will ultimately perish of our own violence.
That is the fate of modern civilization. The way we treat the cows is a reminder of the way in which we are still capable of treating each other. And in a society that does not respect the lives of conscious beings, there is no real respect at all, and the destruction of pivotal living systems is simply a matter of time. It is in this way that Nature becomes the ultimate dispenser of Karma. When we destroy the soils, the crops, the oceans, the rivers, the animals, the food, the air and the seeds, it is only a matter of time before our actions result in our own destruction. For what we are doing to the cows today is merely a reflection of what we do to ourselves and each other.
Learn more:Watch the video on processed meat and beef products: http://www.naturalnews.com/Index-Videos.html
Listen to the MP3 file (podcast) of an in-depth report on these topics, recorded live from the high Andes of Southern Ecuador: http://www.naturalnews.com/Index-Podcasts.html
Visit the Humane Society's website: www.HSUS.org
Read more about mad cow disease: http://www.naturalnews.com/mad_cow_disease.html
See the CounterThink Cartoon: http://www.naturalnews.com/021659.html
Action item: Stop buying or eating beef!