Saying the Quiet Part Out Loud
Over at Quillette, Raising Beef Cattle. I am quite sure I have never heard this side of the story. I was suspicious of the factory-farming stories because of their provenance, but never thought about it much beyond that.
Charolais are something of a boutique breed; I had a neighbor who bred them, as a sideline to being an entomologist. I’m not sure the critique of factory farming is undermined by the exception.
PETA published similar screeds about how dairy cows were maltreated. This was in Wisconsin, where you can find dairy farms on roadsides 15 minutes out of town, if you bother to look at them. I figure PETA has earned the right to be disbelieved.
As a teenager in WNC, we would buy and raise a steer, as well as a couple of hogs every year, for our own consumption. The steer had a couple of acres of pasture to graze. The hogs were maintained in a pen and were fed grain daily, as well as slops from the kitchen. We love our beef and pork. Mmmmm...Bacon.
This is actually how I met that neighbor. He and a friend were trying to catch a cow to take her for breeding. She didn’t want to be caught, and the guys with Ph.D.s in bugs and chemistry were trying to lasso her. She was getting pretty upset, and they didn’t really know how to throw a lasso or soothe a cow. I saw they were having trouble so I borrowed the lasso, walked up to her and put the rope over her head. He said, “I greatly admire your roping technique.”He turned out to be a really nice guy.
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