Talk Back: Celebrating Change in California and Ohio
Before sharing your comments today, I’d like to recognize a special anniversary. Fifty years ago this week, a young primatologist first traveled to the jungles bordering Lake Tanganyika in Tanzania, to study wild chimpanzees. Jane Goodall’s tremendous legacy of accomplishment during her half-century of research and advocacy on behalf of chimpanzees, still ongoing, is unequaled, and her support for humane goals more broadly has been decisive in a host of matters concerning animals and their well-being. The HSUS joins with the global community in extending congratulations to Jane, and in thanking her for her exceptional life of service to people and animals alike.
Now though I give you the floor. You’ve had much to say about our recent victories in California and Ohio, celebrating these major advances for animal protection that you helped to make happen by taking action, contacting your elected officials, and dedicating countless hours to the cause.
A sampling of your comments on the California legislation signed into law last week by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, requiring that starting in 2015 all whole eggs sold in the state conform to the provisions of 2008’s Proposition 2, coming from hens who were able to stand up, lie down, turn around, and fully extend their limbs without touching one another or the sides of an enclosure:
As a Californian, today is a good day for me, and I am very grateful to our Governor for signing this legislation into law. It's one more little step toward the compassionate world I want to see. —jmuhj
I am so happy this legislation has passed. I hit the streets and got signatures to pass Prop 2. Now this follow up is certain. Oh Happy Day. —Gerald
Wow! I'm crying tears of joy. I'm so glad I've lived to see these changes coming. —Rose Cook
This is wonderful news. As a resident of California, I am proud to be at the forefront of positive change for our farm animals. —Mercedes
In a world that seems to have no regard for our animal friends, this is news that I would give a standing ovation! Thank you Arnold and California! I hope this is the first step toward a nationwide ban on the cruelty that our country inflicts on innocent animals. —Scott Thompson
Each step forward takes us closer to being a humane society. This is great news! —RLL
I'm THRILLED that the Governor did this and that we helped to make it happen! Thank you, HSUS, for all you do and kudos to all of those who stand up for animals! —Sandi K.
And about the agreement reached in Ohio between The HSUS, Gov. Ted Strickland and state agricultural leaders, which provides a pathway for the enactment of eight landmark reforms on animal agriculture, cockfighting, puppy mills, and the keeping of wild animals as pets. By not filing the petition to address inhumane farm animal confinement practices that we had been circulating to Ohio voters, we were able to come to an agreement between all three parties to advance tangible reforms for animals, while avoiding a costly fall campaign with an uncertain outcome.
Excellent, excellent, excellent! This is a HUGE step towards common sense and humanity. It all can't happen fast enough. Thank you to the people of Ohio who care and rolled up their sleeves on this one. You are changing the world. —Brenda Coulombe
Way to go! Every day we are making progress for the animals. Good for Ohio and let's hope other states will be inspired to follow in their footsteps. I'm not forgetting it started here in California with the passage of Prop. 2. —Sharon Ponsford
I know these were hard-won concessions that will hopefully domino into other states… and that the next round will go even farther, each building upon the previous. That's the way real change happens. So exciting. —Carol N.
Good news to hear. Bless all of you, from one who has held hope for our animals via direct care, sheltering and support for legislation since the 1950s. —Patricia Silva, Selma, Calif.
I hope this compromise agreement has some real teeth on oversight and enforcement. If so, I say well done. If not, I would have liked to have seen the residents of my state able to vote on the initiative I collected signatures for. —Dianne Adkinson
As David Brower famously noted (to paraphrase), there are never any final victories in this work, only holding actions and eternal vigilance. As for Ohio, enforcement will be key. Here's hoping. —Eric Mills, coordinator, Action for Animals, Oakland
It is indeed heartening that Ohio is finally paying attention to animal welfare concerns, and I'm grateful to everyone who worked so hard to get things this far. Since the new initiatives were clearly influenced by agribusiness (15 years until the end of gestation crates?!?) there must be some way that we as consumers can target those who still use these measures, and apply consumer pressure, encouraging those who consume pork to make more humane choices. —JC
It's like turning the Queen Mary, but the everyday and very real abuse endured by farm animals in current Big Ag practices is not going to be tolerated by the majority of people once they've been made aware of it (even by those who will still consume these animals). I have immense hope for planet Earth on days like this! —Denise Wilson