Wegmans Cruelty: An Unofficial Blog

This is an unofficial blog and informational archive related to the WEGMANSCRUELTY film and resulting campaign.

Please see that page for more information.

Friday, November 11, 2005

"WEGMANS NEEDS to FOCUS on ANIMAL WELFARE AS WELL"
Letter to the Editor, Finger Lakes Times (Geneva NY), 11/7/05

Adam Durand, Melanie Ippolito and Megan Cosgrove were recently indicted by a Wayne County grand jury for burglary, larceny and trespass in connection with their unauthorized visits to Wegman's Egg Farm last year.

After the Compassionate Consumers members were unsuccessful in their efforts to hold Wegmans accountable, they released a graphic video of conditions at the 700,000 hen facility. The video depicts chickens crowded into filthy wire cages. Many birds were found dead in their cages. Live birds were discovered trapped in manure piles.

Compassionate Consumers also publicly accused Wegmans of using bird starvation strategies (induced molting) to shock the hens into laying more eggs, and of subjecting birds to painful beak trimming.

The trio took several injured hens and found homes for them. They recorded everything they saw and did, and gave this evidence to law enforcement officials. This is not what one would expect from "real" burglars.

I have tried unsuccessfully to persuade Wegmans to feed their lobsters, to always provide them space in which to move around, to never cook lobsters alive, and to provide customers with information on more humane slaughter methods.

Wegmans, which has done a lot of good for human welfare, needs to broaden its circle of compassion to include other species.The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. wrote: "Cowardice asks the question, 'Is it safe?' Expediency asks the question, 'Is it polite?' Vanity asks the question, 'Is it all right?' And there comes a point when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor polite, nor popular, but one must take it because his conscience tells him it is right."

I thought about this while America honored the memory of Rosa Parks, whose disobedience of racial segregation laws in Montgomery, Alabama, played a key role in advancing the cause of civil right for black Americans.I also thought about the words of Dr. King when I learned that Compassionate Consumers members were arrested for their efforts to help victimized hens.

Durand, Ippolito and Cosgrove are heroes who, like Parks and King, were willing to take great risks in order to fight against cruelty and injustice.

For further information, visit www.CompassionateConsumers.org. The DVD on Wegmans egg farm is at www.WegmansCruelty.com.

JOEL FREEDMAN
Canandaigua NY

Joel Freedman is Chair of the Public Education Committee and Director on the Board of Animal Rights Advocates of Upstate New York.

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