Monday, November 2, 2009

Farmers care.

I remember the first time I walked through the cow barn with Greg. Prior to this day, the only time I'd been around 175 cows at once was at the county fair. Unlike the cows at the fair, I was sure that these cows would just be numbers in the book without faces or stories behind them. I couldn't have been more wrong.

As we trekked through the barn, Greg pointed out this cow and that. He called them by their names and scratched them behind their ears. He told me when they had entered the family's herd and the shows that they had competed in. He explained their production records and lineage. They were more than just "milking machines." It was evident that Greg wanted the animals to be comfortable and productive, not because they had rights, but instead, because he had a responsibility to care for them.

Given the opportunity, farmers will do the right thing. Unfortunately, there are bad apples here and there that take actions that are absolutely not condonable, but they are the exception not the rule. Farmers every day make choices based upon science and more importantly, ethics. They choose to care for their animals, because the creatures have been entrusted to them. Greg and his family are like farmers all across this country. They love what they do, and they take good care of their animals.

Ohio Issue 2 sets up the Ohio Livestock Care Standards Board, a group of farmers, veterinarians, local humane society officials, and others that will form policy to oversee Ohio agriculture. I trust that the Livestock Care Standards Board will make the right decisions about animal care, not because of politics, but because it's the right thing to do, and farmers want to do what's right. Please join us in voting yes.

Cows top to bottom: Bree, Morgan, and Erin. They receive excellent care every day, because farmers want to treat them humanely.