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This week Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., filed an amendment (SA 1057) to the Farm bill that will lead to major improvements in the treatment of 285 million hens involved in U.S. egg production. Feinstein’s amendment is identical to S. 820 and its House companion, H.R. 1731, the Egg Products Inspection Act Amendments of 2013. This legislation will phase in significantly more space, plus environmental enrichments for these birds so they can nest and perch. Additionally, it would prohibit starving the birds to manipulate their laying cycle and ban excess ammonia levels that cause respiratory problems, as well as give consumers more information about farming methods right on the egg carton (e.g., labeling “eggs from caged hens” and “eggs from cage-free hens”).
This isn’t an end solution, but it is a better one. I know it’s cool to say that ‘we don’t want bigger furniture for animals, we want liberation’. Sadly, in the state of advanced agriculture we are in, the animals can’t wait the years it will take to turn this around. They need relief now, as small as it may be.
To have egg labels says they these animals are from cages hens, would be amazing and probably yield a good result for animals. Please send a quick email. Please. Online activism is easy.
Cody Carlson had no way of preparing for this moment. He was a Manhattan kid, days removed from working as an analyst for a business-intelligence firm, where he scrutinized corporations and their executives. Now he was
Friend Cody doing some amazing stuff.
It’s about the most sensory-deprived life you can possibly imagine,” says Carlson. “Pigs are incredibly smart animals. They’re said to be smarter than dogs. Pigs go so insane from these conditions that they bang their heads back and forth against the cage. It looks like a scene from The Matrix.”
“No.. wait..don’t…ugh … … okay.”
Ugh I’ve slowly lost a bit of weight from eating more fruit, but did my shorts stretch or wut
God is so good. Prayer was great this morning
There is a point when Christian fundamentalists can become Christian heretics.
I am speaking of those that claim to believe and practice the two greatest commandments, which are to “Love God and to love your neighbor as you love yourself” (Matthew 22:37-40), yet incite in others only hateful feelings by their condemning, protesting, shaming, and disregard for their neighbors. Far too often we have witnessed those that claim Christianity — fundamentalists, some proudly call themselves — use similar religious tactics the Pharisees in the Gospels employed that Jesus preached against. Why has the religion of grace produced such a grace-less community?
In a natural disaster aftermath, whether caused by hurricane or earthquake or tsunami, the right impulse is to rush in with appropriate relief. For people of faith, too often this same “rush in” model is
In a disaster aftermath, whether caused by hurricane or earthquake or tsunami, the right impulse is to rush in with appropriate relief. For people of faith, too often this same “rush in” model is applied to making excuses for God.
This comes to mind today — now — after conversations both with friends in Haiti and my sister in Manhattan in Sandy’s wake. After Haiti’s earthquake, I wrote about avoiding these kinds of statements in this excerpt:
We grope at straws trying to make sense of the suffering. To fill the silence, we say things that are sincere but sometimes silly. We find slivers of Scripture that prop up our defense, but do we want the kind of God that the logic of our straw-patched statements creates?
“What a miracle how that girl was pulled from the rubble!”
The straw God spoken into being by this statement is one whose power and compassion are disturbingly out of whack. If God could orchestrate the rescue of the one, then why wouldn’t God have protected the many in the first place?
Also by Kent Annan: Kony 2012 and the Golden Rule: How Do ‘We’ Tell ‘Their’ Story?
Friends in Port-au-Prince told me about an 8-year-old girl who survived when the building she was in collapsed — but her mom and sister died in front of her, and her father had died some years ago. She wandered the streets in shock. Days later someone found her and got her back to her village. At that point, do you say, “What a miracle of God that she survived and was brought back to her village”? Isn’t that like a babysitter taking your three children out for a canoe ride, returning with only one — because the other two drowned — and then expecting to be congratulated for bringing back one of the three alive?
“Well, people down there have always been really poor, right?” Or “They believe in Voodoo, right?”
Most people avoid saying these types of statements (one prominent TV personality aside) because when said aloud the monstrous logic is so clear. But I have heard them spoken in conversations, and they often seem to linger in the background as a way to find some order. The logic implied is that God’s rain falls on the just and unjust, but God’s judgment is highly selective and tends to fall especially hard on those who are poor (and whose skin isn’t white). But what about my friend Emmanual? He is a pastor and a motorcycle taxi driver. When the earthquake struck, he was out working on his motorcycle. Hundreds of people in his church (including two of his sisters and a brother) were together at a prayer service in the name of Christ. They were all killed. God, then, must not judge only harshly — at least that would be consistent — but also capriciously and disproportionately. The victims are to blame for the crime.
“At least they’re in a better place now.”
Even if we believe eternal life is true, which I do, that doesn’t reduce present suffering, does it? And it’s not a fair dismissal of suffering, because God put such value on this life. Nobody, not believer or atheist or anyone in between, is certain about whether there is a next life. Conceivably any suffering on earth could be eclipsed by the goodness of what is to come, but meanwhile a statement like this simply creates a monstrous God for whom the ends (even if they torture people) justify the means.
“Isn’t it amazing that we … happened to be there at just the right time to help?”
This self-help God provides suffering to some as an opportunity for others to express compassion or work on self-improvement. This wouldn’t be an all-bad God if everyone made it through. Suffering can be positive for both the helpers and those being helped. But it’s far from positive for everyone. Some die. Some suffer too much to ever recover. Others fail the opportunity for self-improvement and live lives of disappointment (often taken out on their own children).
And doesn’t this create a God who is a buffoon of a logistician — who can coordinate getting one group into the perfect place, but for some incompetence couldn’t get the young mother off the porch before the concrete blocks collapsed on her?
“We might not understand, but it’s all part of God’s plan.” Or “It was meant to be.”
Wouldn’t any plan this flawed be sent back for major revisions before it could be put into place? The architect says, “Here’s the building design, but occasionally the elevator will malfunction and a dozen or so people will plummet to death. The water piped in for the daycare is occasionally radioactive and will cause slow, painful deaths for some of the children. Oh, and the entire building will collapse in the middle of the business day every few years, but we’ll rebuild.” Um, back to the drawing board please. This platitude about God’s plan is often said citing the verse in Romans 8:28 that “all things work together for good,” but surely the assertion of faith is that “in all things God works for the good of those who love God,” that God eventually overcomes evil with good, not that all this madness is part of a detailed plan.
But without these simplifications, what can we say to fill the heavy silence? The simple answers are all unsatisfying as attempts to settle the aftershocks of suffering. Hopefully, in faith and doubt, part of faithfulness is to keep asking, listening and asking again.
Kent Annan is author of the new book After Shock: Searching for Honest Faith When Your World is Shaken. He is co-director of Haiti Partners and also author of Following Jesus through the Eye of the Needle. (100% of the author proceeds from both books go to education in Haiti.)