There are no legitimate arguments against the passage of Proposition 2, “The Prevention of Farm Animal Cruelty Act” (“Whither the Factory Farm,” Oct. 9). It’s the right thing to do for the animals and for the environment. Further, as the Arcata farm owner you interviewed intimated, higher prices for meat and eggs can have beneficial consequences for both individuals and society as a whole. If people ate less meat and fewer eggs, they would be healthier and less of a drain on our health system.
For example, higher prices for eggs would be a blessing for the senior citizens you mention since the agency which provides them with eggs would most likely be forced to find them healthier sources of protein or cut down on their egg allotment. Their chances would thus be reduced of ingesting pesticides, growth hormones and diseases as well as having heart problems. (A chicken’s egg yolk is 80 percent fat, most of it saturated. Indeed, an egg contains the most concentrated source of cholesterol in the human diet. As a result, studies like that of the University of Minnesota have proven that eating one and a half eggs a day raises the risk of a heart attack by 32 percent!)
Please vote for more humane treatment for California’s pigs, calves, and chickens. It will not only benefit those animals but we human animals as well.
— Nancy and Bob Breslin, Trinidad
As a physician who has spent the last 20 years serving low-income patients in community settings, I feel compelled to respond to your article about California’s Proposition 2.
One of the reasons that I support Prop. 2 is that as a healthcare professional I am deeply concerned about the growing trend in our society to value “cheapness” over quality, especially when it comes to something as important as the very food which we put into our bodies. In general, cutting costs in food production results in a product which is high in calories but low in nutritional content. Hens that spend their entire existence immobilized in overcrowded battery cages are far from healthy creatures. When people eat eggs produced by these animals, they are ingesting low-quality food, which is more likely to be contaminated with salmonella than other eggs. It may seem like a bargain on the surface, but the medical consequences can be quite costly.
Many economists are now predicting that Prop. 2 will reduce the cost of cage-free eggs, as supply rises to meet demand. This will be good news for my patients, who currently have limited options when it comes to buying higher-quality food that is also within their budget.
The benefits of passing this measure far outweigh the costs. We will have eggs that may cost slightly more on average, but they will also be more healthful for all of us. I will definitely be voting Yes on Prop 2.
— Sujatha Ramakrishna, M.D., Eureka