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By Gary Bogue
Monday, June 11th, 2007 at 8:33 am in Animal Laws.

Many state animal protection laws we work so hard to enforce are under attack in Congress.
I just received this letter (below) from Mike Markarian, executive vice president, of The Humane Society of the United States. Please take a moment to read it carefully.

Once again, special interest groups are rearing their ugly heads. What Mike has to say applies to us all … and all the things we care about. /Gary

Dear Gary,
Some of our most important victories for animals have been state laws barring cruel practices — such as horse slaughter, confining young calves and breeding pigs in crates so small they can’t even turn around, and force-feeding of ducks and geese to make foie gras. Should Congress be able to block all such laws? Tell your federal legislators NO!

The federal government shouldn’t be able to trump the will of the states when it comes to animal welfare. Yet that’s exactly what legislation now making its way through Congress would do. A small provision — Section 123 — tucked into the pending Farm Bill would prohibit states and localities from banning activities they deem to be contrary to public health, safety, or morals. It’s an outrageous power grab that would undermine the democratic process and deny citizens the right to pass state or local laws on issues of humane treatment or food safety.

If passed, this provision would nullify bans on horse slaughter in states including Illinois, Texas and California, bans on gestation crates in Florida and both gestation and veal crates in Arizona, and bans on foie gras in California and Chicago. Tell Congress not to mess with state and local animal protection laws!

Please take a moment to make brief, polite phone calls to your federal legislators about this issue:

** Representative Ellen Tauscher at 202-225-1880

** Senator Barbara Boxer at 202-224-3553

** Senator Dianne Feinstein at 202-224-3841

Making a phone call is easy. You will speak to a staff person who can take your message and pass it along to your legislator. You can say:

“Hello, my name is (your name) and I’m a constituent from (your town and state). I’m calling to urge (your legislator’s name) to oppose any effort to preempt state and local laws through the Farm Bill. I’m very alarmed about Section 123 of the pending House Farm Bill, which would prevent states and localities from passing laws to protect animals from inhumane treatment and to protect food safety. When citizens decide a practice is too cruel or dangerous to allow in their state, Congress has no business forcing them to allow it. Thank you.”

After you make your calls, please send a follow-up e-mail to further encourage your legislators to keep this dangerous provision out of the Farm Bill.

Finally, please tell your friends and family about this important issue and ask them to help. We need lots of calls and letters flooding Congress right away to stop this awful legislation.

Thank you for all that you do for animals!
Mike Markarian, executive vice president, The Humane Society of the United States

You can find out more about The Humane Society of the United States and its many programs to help animals at

Thanks for caring. /Gary

** While you’re here, you might like to read an update about the City of Martinez beavers on CCT political editor Lisa Vorderbrueggen’s political blog at:

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