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Oprah Winfrey Dishes On California’s Proposition 2

 Obviously, this picture has little to do with the piece

Obviously, this picture has little to do with the piece

Regardless of where you stand on the issue; California’s Proposition 2 has ignited a fiery debate within the AR community. Some see it as bereft of substance and ultimately more harmful than it is helpful; others, view it as a necessary step in helping to stop animal cruelty.

What do you think?

Today, media maven, (and former Vegan) Oprah Winfrey dedicated her show to examining Proposition 2. The show featured New York Times Columnist Nicholas Kristof, (whose July 31 piece brought the issue to Oprah’s attention) Wayne Pacelle, president of the Humane Society of the United States, as well as a bevy of those both for and against the initiative.

You can find out more about today’s episode by visiting the Oprah Winfrey show website or by catching a clip via Jezebel.


  1. Comment by


    on #

    Yes! I saw about five minutes of this when I came home tonight and I thought it was great that finally someone this influential is bringing this to light in the media. My mom, who was watching, told me that she didn’t know that chickens, pigs, and calves raised for veal were put in pens that small and I couldn’t believe that she was actually saying those words. That’s what I had been telling her over and over again when I stopped eating meat and she just shut everything out.

  2. Comment by


    on #

    I don’t think it should STOP w/ Prop 2 and it isn’t a huge improvement, but that say a lot doesn’t it? That such SMALL changes are being SO opposed by the farmers!

    I think it is a necessary step, but i think the pressure needs to stay on and people can’t think “ok, now that prop 2 passed the animals are happy” and keep eating animal products. It has to be clear this is a STEP and progress needs to keep being made.

  3. Comment by

    Mark Hawthorne

    on #

    Having Prop 2 on Oprah and, earlier this year, Ellen, shows how veganism and the issue of animal rights are going mainstream. After Howard Lyman’s appearance in the ’90s, I never thought we’d see something like this on Oprah again. Yet here we are. It’s a good sign.

  4. Comment by


    on #

    this was a very balanced report. Wayne Pacelle did an excellent presentation and refuted every fact the other side had. It’s only a matter of time until agriculture becomes humane.
    wish I could say that or the horse racing industry.

  5. Comment by


    on #

    I thought that Oprah was completely biased. If people were agricultural educated they would understand that it is necessary to keep these animals in pens for sanitation and safety reasons. It was not cruelty, it is for their own benefit. Pigs are kept in justation crates for at max 2 days, so when they do give birth to the piglets they will not lay on them and kill them. They are given the proper nutrition and probably more because they do not have to fight off other pigs for their food. once a sow becomes pregnant she has a tendency to become defensive and fight other pigs, being in a justation crate prevents her from fighting and potentially losing her piglets. Chickens are kept in cages for sanitation purposes. If they were free range chickens, there would be a major production loss because you would have to take strenuous measures to make sure the eggs were ready for market and most of them would not be. Veal calves are bull calves that do not produce any products besides meat. Veal calves are kept in a personal barn so it is easier for the farmer to monitor health, behavior, and eating habits. They are tethered so it is easy for the farmer to safely handle the calves. They receive their own food, and individual care from the farmers. They can comfortably lie down in natural positions, stand up and groom themselves. Individual housing has decreased the spread of diseases within the calf population.

    If people better understood and seen for themselves how these animals were treated they would know that it is not animal cruelty. These measures are necessary for the industry. Please take this into consideration, farmers are not committing animal cruelty, they are doing what is best for the animal.

  6. Comment by


    on #

    I made it a point to watch this episode, I even spent the evening at my grandma’s house because I knew she uses her DVR to record the Oprah show everyday. However, I wasn’t very impressed with Oprah’s attempted expose of what really goes on in factory farms. I honestly thought the living conditions and animals didn’t look “too bad” in comparison to the state of some of the rescued animals I’ve dealt with. Living in Colorado, we have a huge meat-packing and cattle ranching industry and sometimes just driving by these towns, the smell is unbearable. It almost felt like they chose the most “tv-friendly” facilities and probably gave them more than enough notice to clean up. It’s hard to imagine that is what the conditions are like in the big grey buildings we pass on highway 85. What scares me is most of the people watching aren’t already aware of the true state of these animals, and seeing this episode may also think, “it’s not too bad.” I think if they really want to get the message out about animal cruelty, they should have shown the kill floor, or when the animals are castrated, or the chicks being debeaked.

  7. Comment by


    on #

    Being an agricultural county should not be synonymous to cruelty to animals, but in Sonoma County it may be. How can we forget 1998 Propositions 4 and 6 and the agricultural voice against these two propositions seeking humane treatment for animals?

    In 2004, Petaluma City Council passed an ordinance drafted by Petaluma Animal Shelter management and park docents banning cats from most areas of the City and prohibiting volunteers from feeding or taking care of these homeless cats. They have been trapping and killing cats by the hundreds each year ever since. Where else but in Sonoma County can this be tolerated?

    Please support Proposition 2 and raise your voice against cruelty to animals.

    “The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way in which its animals are treated.” Mohandas Gandhi

  8. Comment by

    for the animals

    on #

    either way you look at it, its animal cruelty. the fact that someone even tried to justify the way they are crated and treated is unbelievable to me. animals have feelings just like humans do. we would never even think of treating our cats and dogs like this, so why are certian animals prone to sick conditions?