February 28, 2015

Cattle Grazing Should Not Mean CAFO Operations.

Last week there was a really interesting audio clip on a ranch research station utilizing the old Spanish Criollo cattle as a means to fight drought in an arid climate such asthat in New Mexico. The Jornada Ranch introduced these cattle in efforts to improve rangeland and create an environment that would ideally resemble that of what the Spanish would've seen when they came over the Atlantic over 500 years ago. The advantage of using these cattle is that they are hardier and smaller than the "conventional" cattle raised in America being mostly Angus and Hereford commercial bred and cross-bred with mix of other breeds. They're also the foundation stock for the development of the well-known American breeds Texas Longhorn, Corriente, Florida Cracker and others.

The reasons I was attracted to the page with the audio clip though, was more than just that. Disqus is a conversation engine where millions of people can engage in conversations, discussions and even arguments (I think the Disqus team would like to make that into a more euphemism-phrase of "lively conversation" moreso than "argument"), and it’s through there that I got involved in some "lively conversations" on that very page with a vegan touting the anti-meat, cattle-grazing-is-destructive campaign.

I got from such conversations with this vegan that those who are vehemently opposed to anything and everything involved with animal agriculture and eating meat just don't have a clue what they're talking about. (Oh they know what they're opposing, but how they understand it and what they understand is something else all together.) Because if it's all about meat production, someone's gotta be screaming calamities about it. Case in point: Everything this woman started ranting on about was "factory farming." Factory farming! Not cattle grazing, Factory Farming. Raising poultry, pigs and dairy cows in confined, indoor areas for eggs, meat and milk in that order. As a farm girl and someone who has gotten experienced in dealing with these kind of people, nothing should surprise me, and admittedly it didn't surprise me, but it didn't fail to astonish me either.

Now I don't want to go into details about the whole discussions that I and some other like-minded friends had with this old gal, but I do want to make note of the fact that when a discussion about cows and grazing comes up, it does not equate to confined animal feeding operations that contain their animals in artificial environments and stores manure in liquid manure storage facilities. No doubt it's a person's prerogative to state their opinions, but they have no right to distort facts and bring up a topic that is irrelevant to what was first initiated. 

What ARAs envision when they
hear the words "cows" and "grazing" 
Just because an article or audio clip mentions "cows" and "grazing" it should not automatically equate to a knee-jerk reaction of critiquing CAFO operations. Animal rights activists, we get it that you hate CAFOs, but might I suggest you stop reacting and become more proactive if you want to actually get involved in civilized conversations and not be shown you're a lot dumber than you think of yourself. 

I've also noticed almost all vegans and animal rights start touting the Cowspiracy film like it's gospel every time something like a topic on cattle ranching or cattle grazing comes up. While I have never seen the film (yet), from the many reviews I've been reading on it as well as the posts on the Cowspiracy Facebook page, I can tell  I'm going to hate it when I see it. It really sounds like a film that is just as bad as a vegan propaganda piece as Earthlings. I've no idea when I will do some blog posts on this film, but when I do I can assure you they'll be some real doozies that will make the film nothing more than a worthless piece of hype based on pseudo-science and fear-mongering. 

Cowspiracy has been shown to put Allan Savory's methods as nothing more than BS, yet continually I see people who downplay Savory's conservation methods or think them as impractical solutions to ecologically preserve grasslands fundamentally fail to understand the core basis of what Savory has been trying to achieve. I'm not going to mention or go through the comments I've seen on the page, but I'll say most of them are just down right stupid and always fail to prove that Cowspiracy's followers truly understand how cattle grazing is much more beneficial to the environment than any kind of ecological method that a vegan would come up with as a "good" solution. 

Not even the vegan on the Disqus comments could offer any better ecological methods than using cattle as a means to improve rangeland health. All I saw were the same old sentiments of "taking out the middle man" with crop production, and even implying ploughing under grasslands for more crop production. Yes, such sentiments do make me cringe. 

I've yet to see a vegan finally see the light at the end of the tunnel and realize that all they've been told or have believed is wrong. Then again, when they do finally realize it, they can't be vegan anymore. Examples: Nicole Hahn Niman, Jude Capper, and others I can't think of off hand whom I've grown quite fond of through books and social media. My hat's off to ladies like these two. 
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