Earlier this week, members of the Humane Society of the United States and the Farmers Union met in Nebraska. The meeting hailed by some and condemned by others, is an effort to improve dialogue between animal rights activists and farmers.
In particular, the meeting represents an effort to create an acceptable policy regarding the treatment of livestock on Nebraska farms. Several months ago, the Humane Society of the United States began gearing up towards a fight to improve the treatment of livestock in Nebraska. In several other states, such as California, Oregon, and Ohio, animal rights groups have successfully used petition drives to change radically regulations regarding the treatment of livestock.
Although the Humane Society says that they will not use such tactics in Nebraska, many farmers refuse to take them at their word and have formed a pro-agriculture group, called We Support Agriculture, to portray Nebraska farming in a positive light and to gather funds and support to block any animal rights related ballot initiatives.
The Humane Society-Farmers Union alliance was seen by many as a way to bridge divides in the state and increase genuine cooperation. However, many members of the Farmers Union remain skeptical about the Humane Society, with some Farmers Union members insisting that it will take time to establish trust between the two groups.
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Written by: Justin Ellison / Farm Plus Staff Writer