HSUS and Missouri Agriculture

Jamie Johansen 14 Comments

The Human Society of the United States (HSUS) has been forming “Ag Councils” around the country, most recently in Missouri, with the stated purpose of fostering “better animal welfare and environmental stewardship.” The councils – which have also been been formed in Colorado, Iowa, Nebraska, North Carolina and Ohio – are made up of farmers, ranchers and conservationists, but some are understandably skeptical.

Wes Shoemyer, former state senator and “sustainable” farmer from Monroe County, MO., is one of the new Missouri Agriculture Council members. “Over the last few decades farmers have been driven off of the land by industrialized agriculture and it has drained our rural economies,” he said. “We need to reinvest in these communities by promoting independent farmers and sustainable agriculture, and I’m happy to work with the HSUS to do that.”

mo-farmersSince Shoemyer has just formed a PAC called “Missouri Food For America” opposing the state’s Farming Rights constitutional amendment that will be on the ballot this fall, the Missouri Farmers Care agriculture coalition is suspicious of his intentions. “HSUS can’t be trusted,” said coalition chairman Don Nikodim. “Even a failed politician like Wes Shoemyer should be ashamed of selling out Missouri farmers.”

“The Missouri Farming Rights Amendment, is a common-sense way to protect Missouri family farmers from those who want to destroy our way of life,” Nikodim continued. “So, it’s no surprise that HSUS, the number one threat to Missouri farmers, would create this Trojan Horse in an attempt to deceive voters and stop this essential effort.”

This week’s ZimmPoll touches on the topic. What are the true intentions of these ag councils? Do the farmers on them really have the best interests of agriculture in mind or are they simply orchestrating the agenda of HSUS? As a member of the agriculture community, I can’t trust anything that has the mark of HSUS. As a Missourian, I fear these front groups could have a serious impact on farming and the livelihood of my family, friends and other fellow agriculturists across the state. Let us know what you think!

Ag Group, Animal Activists, Animal Agriculture, Farming, Government

Comments 14

  1. Karen

    I think farmers and ranchers should work with The Humane Society of the United States. The national group is working to combat factory farming and to put MORE family farmers in business and get MORE animals on the land. We can support animal agriculture, good business and animal welfare AND combat animal suffering that is factory farming.

  2. Chuck

    Thanks Karen (Associate Director, Faith Outreach, The Humane Society of the United States). That is what I would expect you to say. BTW there is no such thing as factory farming.

    1. Karen

      I am sorry to disagree with you Chuck. Factory farming. Factory-farmed animals. Warehoused animals. Call it what youuwill. It is animal suffering, and people can do better, and there are farmers who are doing better. Our State Agriculture Councils are an example of that. I hope you will consider the work they are doing with an open mind.

      1. doug williams

        What would expect an employee of the HSUS to say? if they do not use terms ( which they made up by the way) like “Factory farming” how would they get people to send them millions of dollars?

  3. Mardy Townsend

    HSUS is working to end CAFO’s. This will benefit small farmers like me, who cannot compete with the production costs that CAFO’s are able to externalize, like improper disposal of manure that has serious negative environmental effects. And I can testify that not all HSUS members and staff are vegetarians because many have visited our farm and enjoyed our tasty grass fed, humanely raised beef. HSUS is yet another organization working against CAFO’s, which is the reason Big Ag has vilified them.

    1. Shelia

      If you think that the HSUS is here to help level the playing field for you Mardy, then I strongly urge you to talk with people involved in the Missouri pet industry & horse industry to see just how they have benefitted from HSUS “help”. As far as the HSUS members & staff that you have met being meat eaters, have you ever heard the term “Judas goat”?

    2. Bonnie

      Mardy Townsend: How can you think, after all that has happened, that they are not after you? The vegan extremists are going after CAFOs FIRST, because they are the easiest target to get the uninformed majority of citizens to vote for – all the extremists have to do is lie, and most US citizens will believe them because don’t know enough to recognize the lies. But they are not ONLY against CAFOs: After the CAFOs are down, the vegans will go after small farmers like you and me next, because they make no secret of the fact that they are against ALL farming and ALL owning and use of animals whatsoever, whether farm, research, working animals, or even pets. It is important to keep looking at the whole picture or you will be victimized.

  4. Chuck

    Thanks Mardy. Glad you have a successful small farm. What is your definition of big ag? Almost all farms in the U.S. are family owned. Are you using the word big because you think it has a negative meaning?

    Most farmers today are incorporating extreme conservation measures using new technologies to help preserve and even improve the environment. The Conservation Technology Information Council can point you to many of them in your state.

  5. Ellen Mass

    HSUS is not to be trusted for anything!!! you think they are your ‘friend’ now but I can almost guarantee you that asking them for help is like handing them the knife to cut YOUR throat!

  6. Ellen Mass

    the HSUS is not to be trusted for anything. you may think they are your ‘friend’ now but they will not stay that way for long. Their goal (as all AR groups)is to want the end of all animal usage. period.

  7. Mary Ann

    We all know that the HSUS spends lots of money – every day – deceiving millions of Americans with their “Puppy Mill” commercials. These ads pull at people’s heart strings – so that they will set up accounts to have 20.00 a month donated to the HSUS. Only 10 cents of that 20.00 goes to actually help out a puppy. They use this to fund their lobbyists and other anti-agriculture agendas. No, I do not trust them.

  8. Danny

    Missouri beware !!! HSUS thinks no person should raise any animal. They tiptoe around different topics so not to expose their agenda. They have nothing to do with funding your local humane society. Be careful and do your homework.

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