In 2006, scholars Brendan Nyhan and Jason Reifler presented a paper to the American Political Science Association about the “backfire effect” – presenting evidence from a series of studies to show that “when your deepest convictions are challenged by contradictory evidence, your feelings get stronger.” In short, rather than change your views when presented with incontrovertible . . .
In the July-August issue of Foreign Affairs, I wrote a long-form essay, “The Long Road to Animal Welfare,” that tracks our movement’s unmistakable progress in recent years, and attempts to explain how much of it has happened. I’ve written at prior times on this blog that, at this stage in the development of our movement, it’s . . .
It’s been a busy week in the states for animals. Yesterday, a key California Senate committee approved a ban on bullhooks, as the wake from last month’s Ringling Bros. announcement to retire its traveling elephant acts continues to be felt. Also on elephants, the Oregon Senate on Tuesday approved a ban to severely restrict any trade . . .
We all know about the effort by some agribusiness interests to make it a crime for whistleblowers to take photographs or videos that document the suffering of animals on a factory farm, or for an animal advocate to apply for a job at one of these facilities. These “ag-gag” laws have been widely condemned in the . . .
Fortune has just published a pretty extraordinary round-up of our high-impact work with the world’s largest food retail corporations. The piece details the work of Josh Balk, Matt Prescott, and other members of the HSUS Farm Animal Protection team who have worked so expertly with more than 100 of the biggest names in food retail . . .
Last week, we received the extraordinary news that Ringling Bros. plans to retire the elephants from its traveling circus and place them at its elephant care facility in Florida. Given the tremendously favorable response to this action from the public and the press, you might think that legislation to stem the sale of ivory and . . .
King Midas is remembered in Greek mythology for his ability to turn everything he touched to gold. Rick Berman, the public relations operative who’s been hired by corporate interests to perpetuate animal cruelty, coal-fired power plants, and mercury in fish, amongst other ignoble causes, seems to have the opposite effect. Now, more than ever, whatever he touches . . .
Soon, a group composed of many conventional thinkers in the food and agribusiness industries, calling itself the “Coalition for Sustainable Egg Supply,” is expected to release a report on various forms of housing egg-laying hens—including cramming them into barren cages so small they can’t even fully open their wings, confining them in larger cages, and . . .
The Fur, Feathers, and Scales of Justice: Scoring the Highs and Lows of Attorneys General on Animal Protection
Last week, Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring burnished his pro-animal record when he established an Animal Law unit in an attorney general’s office. The unit will serve as a resource for local law enforcement and state agencies on animal fighting and animal cruelty prosecutions, providing the expertise and firepower to bring those responsible for animal . . .
“People always ask me one question all the time: ‘How do I know that I won’t be found out as a supporter of what you’re doing?’ ” That’s Rick Berman, the lobbyist and PR operative who collects money from corporations to try to tear down animal welfare groups, environmentalists, anti-drunk driving advocates and others, talking to . . .