Minnesota Rep. Rod Hamilton, who in 2011 introduced an “ag gag” bill that would criminalize undercover reporting, is in charge of human resources at Christensen Farms, a factory farm operation in Luverne, Minnesota. So it should come as no surprise that Christensen is now being investigated for alleged animal cruelty following an undercover video, the exact type of video that Hamilton tried to make illegal through his bill.
Last Chance for Animals documented employees slapping, kicking and stabbing sows, dragging pigs by their snouts and ears, forcing injured pigs to walk or drag themselves before being shot to death, and leaving pigs with “debilitating illness and injuries” to suffer for prolonged periods, many unable to access food or water. How this was going on without the knowledge of Christensen Farms is hard to fathom, but it is clear Christensen Farms wouldn’t have found out about this on its own.
However, Hamilton claimed it is wrong to gain employment or go on someone’s property under false pretenses such as undercover investigations. His concern is obviously not to promote animal welfare, but to avoid being fined.
The company’s CEO Glenn Stolt stated, “There is no place in this industry for individuals who mistreat animals.” To its credit Christensen fired the employees involved in the abuse, but had It not been for the undercover investigation, which one of its own employees fought to prevent, the abuse could have continued indefinitely.
Despite continued exposure of animal abuse on factory farms the situation has not improved and it is unlikely it will. Every one of us contributes to this cruelty when we buy food products raised on factory farms so we can’t just point the finger at Hamilton or Christensen Farms, we should turn it around to point at us.
You have a choice to vote with your fork. Help lessen the suffering of millions of animals. Don’t eat animal products or, if for some reason you must, only but from certified humane producers.