This issue I worked on a piece about Drury University's Animal Rights program that we mentioned unfavorably in our Rumor Mill section last issue. This animal rights program came about from a total of $2 million in gifts from Bob Barker, of "The Price is Right." Bob Barker’s daily message on the game show about spaying and neutering your pets was one I always agreed with. My mom said one of the world’s big tragedies is the millions of unwanted, unloved, adorable puppies and kittens in the world. I’m an animal lover with a bleeding heart for the strays and the sick ones. I know I’ll be preaching to the choir here, but I think it is vital to understand this. There is a gigantic difference between not wanting to be cruel to animals, to loving your pets and treating your livestock well, and in raising animals’ status morally or worse, legally, to the same level as people, by considering their “rights.”
I took a course from Dr. Beth Walker at Missouri State that focused on animal welfare. Animal welfarists take care of their animals, and want them to be treated well. As producers, you know the healthier and better-treated your animals are, the more money they’ll bring at the sale barn or in the auction ring.
The point is, we’re worried that Drury University, with Bob Barker’s encouragement, is going to explore animal rights in a way that encourages their students to see animals, “non-human animals” and us, (I guess that makes us the “human animals,”) as all the same. We think there’s a lot to be worried about in bringing an animal rights program, one with the expectation of the benefactor being, “I think some students would become full-fledged animal rights activists,” into a region with six of the top 10 beef counties in the No. 3 beef producing state in America. Will Drury present the side of the livestock producers to its students? I'm not sure the answer to that question.
God Bless,


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