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Patrisha Daley
Writing 2010
Argument Paper Final Draft
Professor Maxwell

We beat for meat. We abuse the animals that we use as a resource. And it should be
unacceptable. The animal abuse in slaughterhouses is still unknown to many, while others just
dont care to pay attention. Where should the line be drawn when it comes to animal cruelty?
What is classified as animal cruelty? The world needs to kill these animals in order for the
population to survive, but the killings dont need to be done in such a cruel and violent way. This
is a worldwide problem that would disturb most people. Among the many campaigns that have
been created, such as the HFA campaign to stop the cruelty, the shock of what is still going on in
slaughterhouses is disgusting and potentially shocking to those who dont know the first thing
that goes on in these houses.
The definition of animal abuse is this: the deliberate abuse or simply the failure to take
care of an animal. Either way, and whether the animal is a pet, a farm animal, or wildlife, the
victim can suffer terribly. When you think of animal cruelty you usually think about the abuse of
house hold pets, like dogs, cats, birds and even fish. But there are other animals that we abuse.
We abuse the animals that we need to survive. Therefore, we kill animals like cows, pigs,
chickens, goats, and sheep. Yet, its not the idea of killing them thats the problem, most of us
need these resources to survive, but its how they are killed. Its a real horror. The use and abuse

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of animals raised for food exceeds, in sheer numbers (Singer: pg. 95). We use the word meat
to hide the reality of what we are actually eating. Also, we use this word so we can come to
terms that we are eating a cow or a bull, pork and not a pig. The word meat itself is deceptive
(Stinger: pg 95). Yet, our image of a farm is a pleasant one. We dont think of it to be a killing
factory, but realistically it is.
Killing Statistics
We as Americans kill over ten billion farm animals just in the states alone, but we kill
about 58 billion farm animals worldwide. 97 percent is the total of animals killed for food
production. For example, there are approximately 65 million pigs, 41,700,000 cows, 4,300,000
sheep, and 7 billion broil chickens are killed each year, along with 452 million layer hens
that are used for their eggs along with several million turkeys. Nevertheless, these number are
expected to rise. Rogers Poultry Co. in California is responsible for a little less than half of the
chicken and hen killings in the United States. The company of Kaplan, the largest slaughterhouse
in Florida, was reported slaughtering about six hundred head of cattle a day (Eisnitz: pg. 19).
Likewise, Carolina Foods, a company in Carolina has been reported to be responsible for killing
140,000 pigs a week (Stinger: pg. 259), competing with Smithfield, the largest pork industry.
The number of killings in the US made a record high in the year 2000. Of course, these numbers
are expected to increase according to the National Agriculture Statistics Survey (NASS). The
main cause of this sudden spike is the demand to eat chicken flesh. This making the total number
of slaughters are to a close 10 billion.
Living Conditions

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The living conditions of the animals used in production are far from a sanctuary. For
most beef industries, the producers take their calves (baby cows) from the auction and take them
straight to a confinement unit. Wherein these units, they are given no bedding or straw. (Singer:
pg. 129) Thus creating much discomfort. These cows only see earth when they are taken out of
their stalls to be slaughtered. It is similar life for the dairy cow. These animals were once known
and seen roaming and chowing on the open hills. But now these cows are held in pins with only
enough room to stand up and lie down. Pigs, are another animal caught up in the process. Pigs
spend most of their lives indoors. Not only does this situation cause crowding, boredom, and
stress, they create several physical problems for the pigs. In addition, most of the units have a
floor that is constructed of either slatted or solid concrete, which damage both the feet and the
legs of the pigs. (Singer: pg. 124) Chickens are held in coops. (Large covered houses) But they
dont get an individual stall, they are stuck in a coop with over 80,000 chickens at a time. Thud
creating no room to move around or grow. These conditions are said to be this way because it is
a more efficient way to keep up with production.
Killing Process
Many of you dont think of the killing process of animals. We just think that it is
providing food. There is a different killing process for each animal brought up in production. For
example, the cows go through a 4 step process. All these steps are referred to as the kill line Step
1. The knocking box. This is how they are transferred to the next step. Step 2. The stun
operator. This is where a house worker has the responsibility to stun or knock out the cow
with a stun gun by shooting a steel bolt straight to the middle of the forehead and then retracting
it. Making a point that these cows are still alive when going through the next steps. Step 3. The

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shackler. This is where a worker chains up the stunned cow by one of its hind legs. The cow is
now hanging upside down and sent on to step 4. Step 4. The sticker. This is the process of the
actual slaughter. The line worker makes a horizontal cut through the cows throat. Many of the
animals are awake during this process making them kick and scream in pain while creating an
unsafe environment for the line worker all while bleeding to death. (20) It takes a few minutes
for a stuck cow to bleed out, I said. Thats what I mean, how long do they have? Thats what
I mean nothing. From the sticker to the legger is maybe ten seconds. Theyre breathing real
hard over there, mooing, theyre falling off the rail because theyre alive. (216) stated a line
worker. This is something that shouldnt have to be endured by any animal.
Secondly, pigs are done in a similar way. But instead of being hung up and having their
throats slit, pigs are thrown into a tub. This tub is filled with boiling water. After being stunned
that is where they go. Now, as stated before some animals are not stunned properly. Meaning
they can still be awake when being thrown in the tub. That hogs not stucked correctly they
should take that hog off, thrown them away, and grind him up, [for rendered product]. But they
dont do that, they let the hog go on through. (267) said a worker that name remains screened.
You can hear them kicking around and when it stops the workers dont know if they drowned or
just burned to death. Both cows and pigs then go on to get their hooves, legs and tails chopped
off by cutters and its hide being cut off and being skinned.
Lastly, chickens and turkeys are the last major piece in the production of meats and
poultry. Chickens are killed in a different way. Chickens are either blended after having their
feathers plucked. (all while conscious) Or, they are plucked, and then put in a tube, head first,
where the only think is sticking out is its head and neck. It is then chopped off. The chickens are
decapitated while alive. All animals fear when theyre going to die, he said. If he dont want

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to go, if he falls down, they beat him with pipes, kick them, hit them with pieces of wood, stick
them with knives, if he still wont move, you wrap the cable around his neck and drag them in
with the hoist. You drag them while theyre still alive. Choke them to death. (138) said a factory
farm worker. These conditions and ways of going about things are brutal and unnecessary.
There is a way to stop this though. Family farms that dont sell their cattle or chickens to
the industries do their process a little differently. We hate to send out cattle to the slaughter
houses. The way they kill and process their meat is gross. Stated Matt Shadle, a proud owner of
a family owned farm. Family farms use alternative ways to kill their livestock. We use vaccines
that put the livestock to sleep, without the pain and sadness. Says the familys personal vet.
They also dont stuff their cows in close wall stalls, they have them in open pastures. The
chickens and pigs also run freely through the grounds. This could be an alternitive way to the
abuse being committed in slaughterhouses.
Safety Within
The process of killing in the slaughterhouses is not only unsafe for the animals but it is
also unsafe and at times fatal to the workers within. With the fast and efficient ways to kill
animals it creates major caution for those on the slaughter line. With the poor conditions and
efficiency within houses, people will get kicked by a hanging cow or even have one dropped on
them. Either severely injuring them or taking their life. I can sadly say that someone is going to
be killed under these conditions I have counted several times where my clocked almost
stopped on the kill floor due to live cows kicking wildly as they were being skinned while still
conscious Walker stated (Stinger: pg. 24 & 25). The process of skinning animals alive is a real
danger to those working on the line. Watson, a worker within the Kaplan factory stated: If a bull
is still alive while you are skinning it can kick of the rail. A bull falls off on you and youre

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dead. Not only is this a problem but safety violations are a huge problem. The sewers will get
backed up to the top with ears, legs, and other body parts that the companies dont use or need.
The blood from the cattle and pigs can also back up making the drains unseen and causing
workers to trip and fall. The fatal unsafe conditions for both the animals and the workers shows
that these companies dont care about the wellbeing of others. Whatever gets the job done and
quickly is the thought of supervisors within these companies. Over the course of my
investigation Id heard about workers being crushed by cattle; burned by chemicals; stabbed;
breaking bones; and suffering miscarriages and fainting from the heat, fast pace, and fumes. But,
according to Public Health Service data, the hidden dangers in meat and poultry packing lay not
in accidents, but rather in repetitive motion disordersAs line speeds have as much as tripled in
the last fifteen years, cumulative trauma disorders have increased nearly 1,000 percent. (273)
Farm animals are capable of feeling most feelings that we and our sweet household
companion animals do. But farm animals are treated by the meat, dairy, and egg industries as
tools for production. You dont dare think about hitting your old dog Charlie because they have
feelings. You love them and couldnt see a world without them. But when it comes to farm
animals it is accepted because those animals provide food. When you abuse your house pet by
neglecting them and hitting them, you are in trouble with the law. But when it comes to farm
animal you dont think twice to knock out or kill the damned things. There shouldnt be any
difference here. Every animal has feelings and abuse is still abuse.
Change, How Can We Help
Change is a huge need for these animals. They need justice. One effective way to make
this problem known is by public awareness and pressure towards the factories. We can also

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spread the word of alternitive ways to killing and living conditions that these animals are going
through. But the main thing we can do is have an opinion and make this problem heard.
The abuse in the houses is almost unhuman. The fight that the animals go through to
survive is sad and cruel. We as humans need these animals to survive but there are alternative
ways to kill other than the cruel acts that are going on. The USDA has proved that they dont
really care about the lives of the animals, and therefore dont care to make a change. Not only do
the animals get treated horribly, the conditions for the houses workers are unlivable. Many have
lost their lives. The conditions and acts within these houses are murderous. Something needs to
change. Next time you eat a burger remember how it got there, it didnt go willingly. All of these
reason fall under the definition of animal abuse. These animals are still alive when they endure
the painful doings of the killing line. You can say your meat is staring at you in the face. Take
action, join the HFAs campaign to stop abuse in slaughter houses.

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Work Cited

Animal Rights: http://animalrights.about.com/od/animalrights101/tp/How-Many-Animals-AreKilled.htm

Animal Liberation : The definitive classic of the animal movement paperback, 2009. Book by
Perter Singer
Animal Liberation Fronts:
California Proposition 2: A Watershed Moment for Animal Law. Animal law [1088-8802]
Lovvorn, Jonathan yr:2009 vol:15 pg:149 -265. Article. Oct. 1, 14
Changes in Store for the Livestock Industry? Canada's Recurring Proposed Animal Cruelty
mendments. Saskatchewan law review [0036-4916] Skibinsky, Christina yr 2005 vol: 68
pg:173 -455. Article Oct. 1, 14
Shaddle family: Family farm. Personal interviews.
Los Angeles Times, USDA clears California slaughterhouse accused of abuse to reopen
August 27, 2012: By Tiffany Hsu. Article
PETA Reveals Extreme Cruelty at Kosher Slaughterhouses. Web.
Slaughterhouse: The Shocking Story of Greed, Neglect, and Inhumane Treatment Inside the U.S.
Meat Industry Paperback November 1, 2006. Book by Gail A. Eisnitz. Book. Oct. 1,
http://www.naturalnews.com/slaughterhouse.html Web. USDA approves horse slaughterhouse to
produce meat for human consumption.
Saturday, June 29, 2013. by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger. Editor of
NaturalNews.com Tags: horse meat, slaughterhouses, USDA approval

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