Target: USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack
Goal: Investigate the U.S. Meat Animal Research Center for unethical experimentation and mistreatment of animals.
Currently, taxpayer money is going to support research at the U.S. Meat Animal Research Center, a center dedicated to helping the meat industry make more money. While some of the center’s research has helped eradicate disease and other beneficial causes, much of the research done today is dedicated to improving the quantity and quality of meat, not easing the suffering of animals. The organization wants to make larger, leaner, higher-producing, and more profitable livestock, leading to increased profits for the meat industry as consumption of meat increases, at the expense of the animals’ well being.
Experiments the center conducts include making pigs so lean that their ability to reproduce is compromised, and lack of routine care has led to the starvation of 6,500 animals since 1985. The center claims that it follows federal rules on animal welfare, but the prevalence of easily treatable diseases like mastitis and unethical experiments like increasing the number of twins born to cows means that either the rules need to be changed or the center needs to be investigated. Some research that has been beneficial to animals does not outweigh the harm being done, and increasing numbers of consumers prefer animals raised under ethical conditions.
The conditions at the U.S. Meat Animal Research Center can not be allowed to continue. Taxpayer money is being used for these unethical experiments and there is solid evidence to show that concerns about how these animals are treated are warranted. Ask the U.S. Department of Agriculture to address the concerns about this research center before more animal lives are lost to neglect and unnecessary experimentation.
Dear Secretary Vilsack,
The U.S. Meat Animal Research Center may have begun as a place to improve profits for the meat industry, but experimentation and focus on profits over animal welfare has led to a ridiculous number of deaths in recent years. Since 1985, over 6,500 animals have died from starvation alone at the facility. Because the researchers are so focused on improving the yield and quality of meat, the welfare of the animals falls by the wayside.
The research center claims that it follows federal rules on animal welfare, but the number of deaths and unethical experiments says otherwise. Because the U.S. Meat Animal Research Center is funded by taxpayers, we deserve to know that our money isn’t going to unethical research. Increasing numbers of consumers are interested in purchasing ethically sourced meat, and our tax dollars should support that interest.
Please investigate this facility for animal welfare violations. If no animal welfare violations are found, it’s time to reconsider our guidelines for what these violations are. If American taxes are going to be used for animal research, we deserve to know that that research is as ethically sound as possible.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Oudeís via Wikimedia Commons