11/10/2008 05:12 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Ugly Death for Chickens

Say you have some chickens who have stopped laying eggs. What should you do? Ward Egg Ranch did the logical thing. They tossed their unproductive hens into the wood chipper. The wood chipper. But unlike the dead guy in Fargo, those poor chickens were shredded while still alive. If you've accidentally sliced your finger while chopping tomatoes or something, you know how much it smarts, so imagine the agonizing pain these animals felt as their feet or heads first met the wood chipper blades.


The Ward Egg Ranch was simply following a suggestion by Gregg Cutler, a veterinarian who serves on the board of, get this, the American Veterinary Medical Association's Animal WELFARE Committee. Cutler heartlessly suggested that using a wood chipper would be the best solution to dealing with sick hens. But whether sick or unproductive, not even chickens deserve such dastardly treatment. Cutler was recently paid over $4000 for services rendered to the No on Proposition 2 campaign.

By now you may have heard about Proposition 2, the California Ballot Measure that will stop the inhumane treatment of farm animals. It will ban some of the most cruel practices of factory farming; veal crates, battery cages and pig gestation crates. Prop 2 means no more stuffing 8 or more hens together in a small cage for the rest of their born days, it means not taking a baby calf from his mother, wrapping a heavy chain around his neck and sticking him into an 18" wide box for three months before slaughter, and it means allowing enough space for mother pigs to simply turn around and move a bit as God intended.

Proposition 2 simply asks people to recognize that animals are not just parts we buy in the meat section of our grocery stores, but that the sum of their parts equal a sentient, feeling, noble and harmless creature that stands before us hoping for a modicum of mercy. Let these beings stretch, walk around, strut their stuff and enjoy being alive for just a while. No more confinement and for God's sake, no more wood chippers.

On November 4th, please vote YES on Prop 2.