The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

Ashley Byrne 757-622-7382

Hog Farming Exhibit 'A Significant Public Health Concern,' Capitol Police Tell PETA

Statement Highlights Danger to Rural Residents as PETA's Bid to Bring Real-Life Hog Farm to U.S. Capitol Is Turned Down


The Capitol Police have stated that they would reject PETA's
application to set up a factory-farm exhibit on the steps of the U.S.
Capitol--complete with live pigs, urine, and manure--by citing the
"significant public health concerns about the possible spread of the
H1N1 virus" associated with such conditions. PETA had hoped to set up
the typical factory farm as a way to illustrate that very point. It had
also hoped to encourage lawmakers and visitors to try a vegan diet by
showing them the cruelty and unsanitary conditions of factory farms.

"Apparently, it's not safe to allow congressmembers and lobbyists to
breathe the noxious fumes emitted by factory farms, but for the
millions of rural Americans whose water and air are poisoned by waste
and pathogens from the meat industry, tough luck," says PETA Executive
Vice President Tracy Reiman. "President Obama just declared swine flu a
national emergency, but the best way to avoid future flu outbreaks is
to stop the demand for pork and chicken, because those farms are where
these illnesses originate."

Animals on factory farms are crammed by the tens of thousands into
cramped, barren concrete crates inside filthy sheds and are slaughtered
on killing floors that are contaminated with feces, vomit, and other
bodily fluids. These conditions result in startlingly high rates of
contamination with E. coli, campylobacter, salmonella,
listeria, and other organisms that originate in the intestinal tracts
and feces of animals. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control
and Prevention, 30 to 50 percent of commercial pigs in the U.S. have
been infected with some strain of swine flu.

For more information, please visit PETA's blog.

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), with more than 2.0 million members and supporters, is the largest animal rights organization in the world. PETA works through public education, cruelty investigations, research, animal rescue, legislation, special events, celebrity involvement, and protest campaigns.