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HSUS Lawyers Keep Busy Suing Agriculture Groups

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HSUS aims to set new animal welfare precedents by bullying agriculture groups in courts.

The Humane Society of the U.S. (HSUS) is ramping up its efforts and looking to tighten a chokehold on agriculture through its litigation arm. Under the pretext that it is fighting for animal welfare, HSUS employs 25 lawyers and works with 2,000 more on a pro-bono basis. All that legal talent has allowed HSUS to win about three dozen cases in the past seven years – cases that are setting new standards for the way ranchers are able to manage their livestock and produce food in the future.

Yesterday, I urged folks to save their money and not donate to HSUS, an organization that doesn’t want to save dogs and cats, but instead wants to abolish animal agriculture and promote a vegan diet.

Over the past couple of weeks, BEEF magazine has also been following the lawsuits HSUS has imposed upon the beef and pork checkoff programs.

Today, I want to highlight an article by Joe Satran in the Huffington Post, “Humane Society's Litigation Arm Walks Tightrope Between Radicalism, Complaisance.” Talk about putting a fox in charge of the henhouse!

The article summarizes HSUS CEO Wayne Pacelle’s announcement on Tuesday that he is pursuing a seat on Tyson Foods’ corporate board. That same day, HSUS also announced that a group of Iowa pork farmers had teamed up with the anti-ag organization as plaintiffs in its suit against the National Pork Board.

Satran writes, “The ultimate dream for animal rights advocates would be something like the application of the 14th Amendment's equal protection to animals as well as humans. Such a ruling might ban the rearing of domesticated animals for meat altogether. And some major thinkers in the field -- most famously Steve Wise of the Nonhuman Rights Project -- are actively pursuing it.”

Activists already have a precedent with their success in banning horse slaughter in the U.S., and I’m sure HSUS would be very happy to see a ban on cattle, sheep and hog slaughter, as well.

Can you imagine a world without meat? Neither can I, but HSUS can and is using its $130 million annual budget to work toward that goal.

HSUS isn’t PETA. You won’t see these folks standing naked on a street corner holding a lurid sign. No, these boys are much slicker. They are wolves in sheep’s clothing, and it’s difficult to see farmers team up with an organization like this that is just as likely to regulate them out of business as they are to put a dent in or eliminate the national beef and pork checkoff programs.

Many may call me a dramatist for blowing the whistle yet again on HSUS, but this is an issue we can’t ignore. HSUS has the motive, the money and the momentum. What are we going to do to defend ourselves? Or, better yet, what are we going to do to be proactive in protecting and preserving the future of food production?

Discuss this Blog Entry 19

Sam Johnson (not verified)
on Oct 4, 2012

HSUS is not a charity, It is a political lobbying organization, therefore they are not entitled to 501 tax free status. They should be subject to the IRS and lobbyist regulation. We need to take them out at the knees and go after their money sources, from the federal, state and local levels.

JOHN (not verified)
on Oct 4, 2012

unfortunately our elected officals are not about to cut off the hand that feeds them so well.

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 4, 2012

HSUS is a nonprofit 501c3 organization and HSLF, which is not HSUS, works in politics completely legally as they are not a 501c3 corporation. It is perfectly legal for 501c3 organizations to file suit against corporations.

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 4, 2012

HSUS has cost the cattle industry, just in California over 50
BILLION dollars. Let's multiply in every state in all animal industry on which HSUS has had an effort in ending.
When HSUS sues, they also ask for payment to their attorneys, that means every citizen pays for their lawsuits. Many people are fooled into thinking that they want small farms, not large farms but the fact is they want abolition of all animal use, for anything - ever. Beginning to believe that choice in food is a human right and HSUS wants to stop us from taking in a good source of protein. Considering that Vilsack's wife just donated 5,000 dollars to HSUS and the close work of USDA and HSUS, I think first we need a change in goverment. When one looks at the "Presidents log" and sees Wayne Pacelle's name twice in one month, it is time for a change especially when no other heads of "chairties" names listed who visits the president's office. It is time for this lobbying agency, HSUS, to loose their tax selter as an animal rights organization and become the lobbying corporation they are.
Important note: When HSUS sues, they ask for payment for their attorneys which can amount to 500,000 to 1 million dollars and the citizens of the USA pay when they sue government agencies!

on Oct 4, 2012

All interested parties should contact Tyson and express their disapproval. What about looking into possible conflicts of interest of violations of free trade or competition, such as the Sherman act? The Sherman Act is divided into three sections. Section 1 delineates and prohibits specific means of anticompetitive conduct, and Section 2 deals with end results that are anticompetitive in nature. Sections 1 and 2 supplement each other in an effort to outlaw all types of anticompetitive conduct. Congress designed the supplementary relationship to prevent businesses from violating the spirit of the Act, while technically remaining within the letter of the law. Section 3 simply extends the provisions of Section 1 to U.S. territories and the District of Columbia.

on Oct 4, 2012

It should be pointed out also that ASPCA, who does promote the welfare of shelter animals, is a supporter of HSUS and a portion of the monies that are sent to them are sent to HSUS. They also send out mailings asking for support of the HSUS lobbying. This is why I dropped my membership in ASPCA.

john (not verified)
on Oct 4, 2012

Maybe they are just responding to the public's demand to stop treating animals like widgets for profit? evolve already--animal agriculture is so inefficient..

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 15, 2012

Nope. That's the way they get their funding - appealing to animal lovers to 'stop the cruelty' .. but what they are after is an end to *all* animal use by humans. Not just meat eating - also dairy, eggs, and even honey, pets, service animals, hunting, fishing, zoos, circuses, research - all animal use by humans.

Here's what Pacelle had to say around the time he became CEO of HSUS:

"We have no ethical obligation to preserve the different breeds of livestock produced through selective breeding. . One generation and out. We have no problem with the extinction of domestic animals. They are creations of human selective breeding." Wayne Pacelle, CEO of Humane Society of the US, formerly of Friends of Animals and Fund for Animals, Animal People, May, 1993

You read that right ... the *extinction* of domestic animals. No exceptions.

Val (not verified)
on Oct 4, 2012

Perhaps it is time to start growing beans and veggies. If you had not seen Forks Over Knives yet, meat and dairy is the main cause behind heart disease, cancer, diabetes and obesity. Every time someone dies from those diseases, it is on you. You may not care about the animals who can feel pain and fear just like we do, but your hands have blood not only of those innocent beings but countless humans as well. Plus you are destroying the environment. Please wake up from this madness and grow that which is good for people and for our planet.

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 5, 2012

Well said!

Anonymous (not verified)
on Feb 21, 2013

what an idiot you are!!!!!!! I bet you live your life as deceptive as HSUS is. I would have no problem with HSUS ballot inititives IF THEY WOULD TELL THE TRUTH. The deceive people to get what they want, treating humans as those they are stupid. You can only make an educated decision if you have truthful facts.

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 4, 2012

We in our home consume meat BUT til recently have reduced it due to greed and high profits to push even druged meat.. The deal is HSUS ROCKS they are merely setting rules for the AG business that fails to protect consumers and speak in congress for animals that have no voice.. HSUS is what the NRA is to gun holders so if you want to cry about an Organization start with the NRA that fails to comply with safety issues or comply to new laws in congress. We know HSUS is our MOST political voice in congress and irresponsible business want to operate at the expense of consumer awareness.. SHAME ON AG and Pro Boneheads.. Tonight I will make out another CHECK to HSUS...

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 5, 2012

HSUS is a terrorist organization and Pacelle needs to be sent to GITMO! Under federal investigation, of course with the liar we have for AG expect it to go nowhere.....UNTIL THE REPUBLICANS GET BACK IN POWER!!!!

on Oct 5, 2012

John, Val, Anonymous Well Said, and Anonymous We in our home, How on earth can you seem so well educated and yet be so misguided.

Study the "facts" from reputable sources of both modern meat production, and the HSUS tax records. By the end of the day you should be enlightened to the fact that HSUS has been misleading you while fleecing your pocketbook.

Another Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 6, 2012

The HSUS contributes a great deal toward the protection of cats and dogs, through various and numerous training opportunities for the shelter and rescue communities. They also assist law enforcement agencies in rescuing dogs from puppy mills, dogfighting operations and dogs and cats from hoarding situations. They were never organized to be the fund raising arm for the ever growing number of animal shelters and rescue groups. (Oh, how their enemies wish they would undertake such a Herculean and futile task!) As protectors of anmals, they are spot on to concern themselves with the suffering of millions of food animals, whose short lives could be rendered better with less crowding and more attention to reduction of suffering. You may be surprised to know that about 94% of the HSUS members are not vegetarians.

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 8, 2012

From several press releases and news articles I have seen, HSUS contributes handling the press to a rescue and other organizations acrue the costs of the actual rescues.
Social animals are not necessarily happier when less crowded.

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 8, 2012

You are NOT a dramatist! We need to keep talking and talking about what HSUS is really about. Great job!

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 12, 2012

Next time you want to stay at a hotel, please do not support the InterContinental Hotel Group (Candlewood Suites, Staybridge Inns, Holiday Inns, Crowne Plaza, etc.) They are making a $10,000 donation to HSUS, while claiming to be "pet / animal friendly".

Anonymous (not verified)
on Dec 10, 2013

How can you possibly look at a cow or pig suffering and think its ok, just to satisfy your taste buds. Someone please tell me why this is ok? I personally don't eat animals because I like to sleep at night.

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A fifth-generation rancher from Mitchell, SD, Amanda grew up on a purebred Limousin cattle operation in which she and husband Tyler are active. She graduated with a degree in agriculture journalism...

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