Vote yes for farm animal welfare reform

Letters to the Editor

To the editor:

Citizens of Massachusetts have an opportunity to cast a ballot for kindness and compassion on Nov. 8.

A yes vote on Question 3 would prohibit gestation crates for pregnant pigs, “battery cages” for egg-laying hens and veal crates for baby calves — cruel confinements that keep these caged animals nearly immobilized, preventing them from simply extending their limbs. This initiative would also prohibit the import and sale of products derived from animals raised in these cruel confinements out of state.

Aside from mitigating the extreme suffering endured by farm animals, a yes vote on Question 3 would help decrease health risks to consumers. Food-borne illnesses, including salmonella, are often associated with animals raised in the cruel confinements that Question 3 seeks to ban.

Question 3 has received endorsements from the MSPCA, the ASPCA, The Humane Society of the United States, the Union of Concerned Scientists, Massachusetts elected officials, veterinarians, and farmers, along with more than 170,000 citizens from across Massachusetts who gave their signature to ensure that voters get to act on this modest farm animal welfare reform.

Opponents of Question 3, led by the hastily formed and disingenuously named Citizens Against Food Tax Injustice with help from a billionaire industrial factory farming advocate, are hoping to instill undue fear and hysteria in consumers by perpetuating falsehoods related to this humane initiative.

Massachusetts voters have the opportunity to perpetuate kindness and compassion, instead, by voting yes on Question 3.

Kathleen Downey