Rally organized by Missouri Farmers Care, draws hundreds

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Jefferson City—At 5:00 pm on Wednesday afternoon, the south lawn of the Missouri Capitol teemed with nearly 1,300 pro-agriculture supporters. The rally, organized by Missouri Farmers Care, focused on the joint effort of Governor Jay Nixon, Missouri legislative leaders, agriculture advocates and animal welfare experts to craft a “Missouri Solution” for the problems caused by Proposition B.

“Today, hundreds of Missourians travelled to the Capitol to let their leaders know that Missourians won’t stand idly by as big-money, special interests attack our farm families,” explained Don Nikodim, chair of Missouri Farmers Care. “That’s why Senate Bill 113 and the Missouri Solution are so important. We have to protect agriculture from radical groups like HSUS.”

The highlight of the rally came when Jon Hagler, head of the Missouri Department of Agriculture, announced Governor Nixon’s support for a “Missouri Solution” that will fix Proposition B. The result of an agreement between Missouri’s agriculture community and local animal welfare advocates, the “Missouri Solution” will ensure that dogs and puppies receive the treatment and care they deserve, while preserving Missouri jobs and protecting Missouri farmers.

“We’re proud that Governor Nixon is standing with us against radical outside interests like HSUS,” Nikodim said. “The Missouri Solution is a clear example of what can happen when we all work together. Missouri’s farmers, pet providers and animal welfare experts all support this agreement that eliminates cruelty while protecting our homes, farms and jobs.”

The “Missouri Solution” proposal will complement Senate Bill 113, sponsored by Senator Mike Parson (R-Bolivar), which improves enforcement of current animal cruelty laws, strengthens standards for animal shelters, cracks down on unlicensed breeders and removes controversial provisions hidden in Proposition B that threatened animal agriculture in Missouri.

Also speaking at the event were; House Speaker Steve Tilley (R-Perryville), Senate Pro Tem Rob Mayer (R-Dexter), Senator Mike Parson (R-Bolivar), Senator Brian Munzlinger (R-Williamstown), Veterinarian Dr. Alan Wessler and local farmer Chris Chinn. The event was emceed by Missouri Farmers Care Chair, Don Nikodim.

“It was inspiring to look out and see so many people coming together to fight for our farms and our families,” Nikodim concluded. “We sent a strong message today that Missouri will continue to stand strong against radical outside interests like HSUS that threaten our homes, our jobs and our values.”

For photos of the rally, visit www.facebook.com/MoFarmersCare



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Randy Koehn    
Franklin County  |  April, 21, 2011 at 05:58 PM

What in the world does farm animals have to do with preventing breeders from breeding dogs back-to-back until they die. You are nothing but a special interest group with profit on your minds. YUK

Janet Weeks    
Sacramento, CA  |  April, 22, 2011 at 01:22 AM

This just makes me so tired--so very, very tired. "Missouri Farmers Care" "crafts" a miserable "Missouri Solution," that will perpetuate the ongoing misery of countless female "breeder" dogs and their puppies. Let us take a look at the truth of what Proposition B was designed to do, what the public voted for, and how ‎"Missouri Farmers" have corrupted every last shred of basic decency of animal care and welfare to protect their own selfish profit and gain. May the animals be damned. "∙ Prop B established a limit on the number of breeding dogs at 50, and that provision is gone. There’s not even a requirement that if you have 500 or 1,000 dogs you have to have enough staff on hand to care for the dogs. ∙ Prop B called for breeding females to have a rest every third heat cycle. The new measure allows dogs to be bred every heat cycle for their entire lives. ∙ Prop B required an outdoor exercise area at least twice the size of a dog's indoor enclosure, so that dogs would not spend their whole life crammed in cages. This new measure requires an "outdoor run" but does not mandate any particular size, and allows the state Department of Agriculture to waive this vague mandate in regulations. ∙ Prop B required veterinary care for illness or injury, but the new measure allows such care to be withheld anytime a breeder decides on his or her own that a condition is not "serious." ∙ Prop B called for no stacking of cages, but the new measure allows it, as long as there is an impervious barrier between the cages. Cage stacking is a recipe for the type of overcrowding that defines the worst puppy mills. ∙ Prop B stipulated no wire flooring, but the new provision allows for wire flooring as long as it’s encased. Coated wire flooring still harms dogs' paws and is unacceptable."

Ronda Brooks    
licking  |  April, 22, 2011 at 05:18 AM

I see the HSUS kool aid drinkers have arrived! You all can give up saying Prop B is not after all of animal agriculture. I have learned unfortunately most urbanites do not understand what a domesticated animal is. Fortunately our legislators do and are willing to send the Vegans packing. Franklin county I really do not care what you eat. But understand we here in rural Mo will be danged if you are going to force/trick the 98% of the united states who do not wish to do so into being forced vegetarians/vegans. If you truly knew squat about animal agriculture you would know what you are saying would be dang near impossible. Why don't you quit listening to a vegan ran organization and call a veterinarian. Until you do that sit down and shut up!

Robin Vigfusson    
New Jersey  |  April, 22, 2011 at 09:22 AM

Who in hell do you think you're kidding? The agenda of the HSUS asks that animals be treated decently and with respect. That you consider this stance 'radical' speaks volumes about yours. "Missouri Farmers Care' wants a free hand in exploiting animals, period. I'm also sick of the garbage about 'urbanites' not understanding animals. I grew up in a rural environment. Neighbors of mine never spayed their dogs or cats and dealt with overpopulation by drowning the kittens whenever their cats gave birth. They chopped off chickens' heads in front of us kids, and hunted rabbits with bows and arrows and ate family pets (lambs) despite the heartbreak of the child who had loved it. It was being raised in such an atmosphere that made me realize how much animals need all the legal protection they can get.

Amanda Katz    
Ohio  |  April, 22, 2011 at 11:07 AM

Ten years ago, the HSUS worked to outlaw cockfighting in Oklahoma, which was legal at the time. The cockfighters claimed they were part of agriculture, and the Oklahoma Farm Bureau supported them. This looks like the same thing all over again in Missouri. What on earth do puppy mills have to do with agriculture?? Since when are we going to eat puppies? The argument didn't work with cockfighting, and it has even less relevance to puppy milling. If you can't treat your dogs humanely, you shouldn't be in business. It's that simple.

Sickening    
St. Louis MO  |  April, 23, 2011 at 04:49 PM

There's a special place in hell for the farmers and puppy mill operators of Missouri. The meth dealers will be close by as well...


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