<$BlogRSDUrl$> The Cyberactivist

Behind the scenes of the fight for the protection of animals and workers and the preservation of the environment - my experiences as a Tyson slaughterhouse hanger/killer turned activist. Exposing the evils of factory farming, by Virgil Butler. If you have arrived here looking for the Tyson stories, view the early archives. Some of them are now featured on the sidebar for easy searching.

Saturday, September 06, 2003

Sugar - a lucky chicken 

In May a poultry farmer did something
unusual. He brought a deformed baby
chicken in to someone's store telling the
man that it was just one example of the
terrible deformities he sees every day.
One of those he is supposed to kill.

The poor little thing's head was backwards
and dangled down on its chest because its
neck was limp. It walked backwards in

Thanks to the wife of the man at the store
and her patience and love, "Sugar"has
gotten better. She is now at a sanctuary
for rescued chickens (UPC) that belongs
to a friend. She has made friends and will
have a better life. The whole story of this
is on UPC's website here.

The Humane Society is holding a contest
for Farm Animal of the Year. You can vote
for Sugar to win here.

It is always a boost to morale for activists
to be able to witness such a happy ending.
It happens to so few chickens. Few farmers
would have cared eough to have saved that
baby chick. Many people are thankful for
his compassion. Dare we to hope that
others may do the same?

In an ideal world they would. But, this
is a rare happy ending, as most people
know. Many people are aware of how bad
the conditions are in factory farm houses
and slaughter plants. But there is another
story not heard as much. The one about
the many deformed babies like Sugar.

Of course, policy dictates that these should
be humanely killed, but that is not always
the case. While I have not personally
witnessed this, I have known several
chicken farmers that confessed to me that,
even though they knew they were not
supposed to, they threw live birds in the
incinerator and turned on the gas, thus
burning the chickens alive. I have no
reason to doubt this. Why would someone
lie about doing this?

I have personally seen members of a catch
crew pull their heads off, stomp them to
death, even grab them by their feet and
bash them against a post or wall.

In the hanging cage we were told by our
supervisor not to hang them, but to kill
them and throw them in a pile behind us.
The most common method of doing this
was to throw them on the floor, stomp
them, then kick them behind us. Although,
I have seen some people grab them by
the feet and slam them on the belt head-
first. I even saw a guy bite the head off
of one once.

Sugar will never know how lucky she is.
I'm glad of that. Vote for Sugar. She
and others like her need all the help they
can get.


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