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THE #MOOTOO MOVEMENT: The abuse of dairy cows is a feminist issue

The use of the phrase “Moo Too” is not meant to diminish the #MeToo movement, but to emphasize the disturbing fact that exploitation of females crosses species.

PETER LOVENHEIM: ‘One dramatic moment of Super Tuesday was choreographed by anti-dairy protesters, who rushed the stage while Joe Biden was delivering a victory speech in Los Angeles — and his wife blocked them from reaching her husband. Previously, protesters interrupted a Bernie Sanders rally in Nevada to demand he “stop propping up the dairy industry.” Three women paraded across the stage topless with the message “Let Dairy Die” written on their chests. And at this year’s Academy Awards, Joaquin Phoenix chastised the dairy industry for artificially inseminating cows and then “stealing” their babies. What’s going on here? Are we in the midst of a “Moo Too” movement?…

The use of the phrase “Moo Too” is not meant to diminish the #MeToo movement, but to emphasize the disturbing fact that exploitation of females is so systemic it even crosses species… There is nothing inherently wrong in raising cows for milk, but when it’s done on an industrial scale, systemic abuse is built in — nearly 200 supersized U.S. dairy farms have, on average, more than 7,000 cows… Dairy cows are routinely caused pain and distress, made ill, and have their lifespans shortened because of how they are treated… In nature, cows can easily live for 20 years, but dairy cows typically are worn out and sold for beef when they are about 5 years old…

Since a cow gives milk only after a calf is born, she must be made pregnant as often as possible to maximize milk production. On the farm, the artificial inseminator walked through barns selecting cows in heat at the peak of their 21-day fertility cycle. He’d restrain the cow in a standing position, insert into the vagina a 3-foot metal tube known as an “insemination gun” and release a dose of bull semen. Over 25 years, he estimated he had forcibly impregnated nearly 75,000 cows.

In a natural state, the cow-calf bond is strong, with calves being nursed for nearly a year. After one birth on the farm, a mother bent over her calf and vigorously licked it across the eyes, forehead, ears, stomach and back. Licking dries the birth fluids so the calf doesn’t get chilled. Forty minutes after this birth, the farm’s “calf manager” picked up the newborn and drove it to the calf barn. Later, the mother sniffed the straw where her calf had lain and bellowed for much of the day…

Foot damage among dairy cows is so common that the farm had a resting place near the milking machines just for lame animals, so they could walk a shorter distance to be milked. Some lameness can be traced to genetic manipulation aimed at increasing milk yield by producing large, heavy udders that distort a cow’s normal gait. Living on concrete floors and eating too many starchy foods — thought to help increase milk yield — also contribute to lameness.

Mastitis, or infection of the udder, is perhaps the most common ailment among dairy cows… It doesn’t matter if you buy regular or organic milk or whether the carton says “grass fed.” Most female dairy cows struggle with these problems. And that’s to say nothing of other painful procedures or what they face later: de-horning, tail-docking, truck rides to a slaughterhouse and then a stun bolt to the head… A glass of almond, soy or oat milk, anyone?’.  SOURCE…

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