Farm Animal *RIGHTS* Movement (

I’m a political atheist in regards to the “welfarist versus abolitionist/rights” approach to the “animal rights” movement. I’m posting this excerpt from ‘s Fall 2007 newsletter to clear up confusion about this organization’s status.

FARM started off as the animal welfare organization Farm Animal Reform Movement. Its founder, Alex Herschaft has had a change of heart and now considers himself to be an abolitionist. He has changed the name of the organization to FARM – Farm Animal Rights Movement

“The world won’t go vegan in the near future, so let’s reduce the suffering of innocent animals though welfare reforms.”

Few people who care about animals can resist a proposition so enticing. And that included myself, when I founded Farm Animal Reform Movement more than 30 years ago. For half of those years, I vigorously pursued campaigns to ban the veal crate and to fund and enforce the Humane Slaughter Act.

However entincing, this proposition is based on several faulty premises. First, our work is not about the world going vegan at any specific date, but about reducing animals suffering by cutting their consumption, one person and one meal at a time. Each friend, relative, or passerby who ” kicks the meat habit” saves 34 land animals per year (in excess of 2000 in a lifetime), from factory farm and slaughterhouse atorocities, as well as countless aquatic animals.

Second, significant welfare reforms would require a great deal of money, land, energy, manpower, and other resouces, and thus, a fundamental restruturing of the meat and dairy industries. This is much more far-fetched than the likelihood of a significant number of consumers cutting their meat consumption.

But the worst consequence of advocating welfare reforms is the public perception that such advocacy sanctions continued abuse and slaughter of animals for food. Sadly, on the campaign trail, welfare reform advocates are frequently forced to deny their animal liberetion ideology.

The statistics are clear: 93 percent of Americans consumers oppose farmed animal abuse and 97 percent continue eating them. Welfare reforms are a win-win situation for consumers and industry. Only the animals lose. We need to send a clear message that the only way to help animals is to stop eating them.

Did I mention that we are now the Farm Animal Rights Movement?

– Alex Hershaft

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3 thoughts on “Farm Animal *RIGHTS* Movement (”

  1. I think there’s a middle ground for people who want to stop cruelty to farm animals but can’t adopt the vegetarian life style. And that is to set a goal of eating less meat, to cut out one or more meat meals every week. Habits change slowly, and the pressure is always on to eat another burger, another bit of barbecue.

    I’d like to see a concerted campaign to get folks to eat less meat, and it could be tied to global warming.

    So many environmentalists are upset about corn being used for fuel and being grown on sensitive land. But where’s the concern about the use of corn to feed cows so folks can have all those burgers and steaks? Who’s bothering to make that connection, and also pointing out that the methane from the animal wastes is a huge contributor to global warming?

    Let’s all get behind a campaign that combines truth-telling and a goal that most people find reasonable: one meat meal less/week.

    Sounds small, but it would amount to a revolution.

  2. Hi Frances. If you look in other sections of my blog you will see that CNN and some local news affiliates are airing stories about the food < => environment connection.

    I wouldn’t expect much from environmental organizations. I have the impression that they are staying away from the food < => environment issue for fear of offending their donors. is regularly printing up food < => environment educational literature. So, they are trying.

    People who drive monster vehicles ( minivans, SUVs, Hummers etc ) have been doing so for years knowing that oil is running out. I don’t think those people will care that biofuel versions of their vehicles will lead to other people going hungry.

    In that sense, I think high fuel prices are a blessing. Those prices get people to do the beneficial thing where they might not due to apathy or inconvenience.

  3. Hello! I am helping a terribly underfunded horse rescue/shelter, Begin Again Farms, in Ellerslie, Ga, raise money. Would you help us out by sharing our link with your readers?
    The horses and I thank you! 🙂

    BTW- Contact me to put together a free online fundraiser for your favorite shelter!!

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