State officials are asking O'ahu residents to turn down their lights at night for the next few weeks to help native seabirds find their way out to sea for the winter.
Environment & Sustainability
On December 1, 2009 the Honolulu Advertiser provided an update on the case of the woman accused of brutally bashing a peacock with a baseball bat back in May 2009. You may recall that after bashing it she left it to die while it piteously cried for over an hour. She explained that the bashing occurred because she couldn’t take its noise anymore. Her attorney is now seeking to have the animal cruelty charges against her dismissed on the basis that peacocks “are detrimental to human life."
In an update about the Leeward Coast animal shelter which was accused of animal hoarding and cruelty to animals, the owner has filed a lawsuit against the Hawaiian Humane Society and several other local and national animal welfare societies. The following is from the Honolulu Advertiser story on the lawsuit: The surviving owner of the Leeward Coast animal shelter where more than 400 dogs, cats and birds were housed in a no-kill sanctuary has filed a lawsuit against several local and national animal welfare organizations, including the Hawaiian Humane Society.
The following if from Natural Foods Merchandiser's blog: Store-bought vegetables are not as good for you as they were 40-50 years ago. According to the USDA, fruits and vegetables were packed with far more nutrients back then than they are now. Experts attribute the nutritional drop to hybrid breeding of crops, designed more for size and color and ability to survive transport, than nutritional value.
In a rather gruesome incident twelve Muslims have been charged in Malaysia with illegal assembly and six of them have been charged with sedition, which is defined as an act that may engender "feelings of ill-will and hostility between different races", after parading a severed cow's head in a protest against the planned relocation of a Hindu temple to their neighborhood.
A LA Times article on September 4, 2009 was about a Korean vegetarian's efforts to garner signatures for a petition to stop the eating of dog meat in Korea. In the past westerner's have criticized the eating of dogs as inhumane, but Koreans have tended to disregard that as being merely hypocritical opinion. One government official who eats dog meat stated "Westerners eat one type of animal and tell the world they can't eat another. I say, if you eat animals, you eat animals."
Following on from my blog post about the "murder" at the Nanakuli animal shelter, here is an account from Wikipedia of the mass murder process at a slaughterhouse (this is not for the faint of heart):
The slaughterhouse process differs by species and region and may be controlled by civil law as well as religious laws such as Kosher and Halal laws. A typical procedure follows:
Cattle (mostly steers and heifers, some cows, and even fewer bulls) are received by truck or rail from a ranch, farm, or feedlot.
Cattle are herded into holding pens.
A number of Down to Earth team members have taken advantage of our offer to pay for their ticket to go and see "Food, Inc." showing at Kahala Mall. One leaves the movie feeling a little sick, and not feeling good about the food supply, especially about how the animals are treated. This type of food production is relatively new, having occurred over the past 50 or so years. The long term health and societal effects are yet to be realized. I encourage everyone to see the movie, especially Down to Earth team members.
Congress passed the Food Safety Enhancement Act today. This bill creates big administrative and cost burdens and new problems for small farmers and in particular organic farmers. Everyone is in favor of food safety, who isn't. But the real culprit is the big agribusiness factory farms (which create the environment for E coli to flourish), not the small organic producers, yet this bill imposes onerous requirements on small family organic farmers which won't lead to any increase in food safety, just more costs, and more bureaucracy.
Food, Inc., the movie that shows how the food industry really works starts at Kahala Mall this Friday, July 31, 2009.