AR-News: (US-ca) Beefing Up - After mad cow,
is the barbecue still on?
info at animalconcerns.org
Thu Feb 19 15:35:40 EST 2004
WE LIVE on a continent with an estimated 60 millionplus head count of
cattle. Ninety thousand cows are slaughtered every 24 hours. Out of the
900 million cattle slaughtered in the last decade, the USDA tested only
roughly 12,000 for bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE, mad cow).
One good thing about the discovery two months ago of the first American
cow infected with mad cow is that it sparked some much-needed curiosity.
Mad cow's human variation--known as the incurable Variant Creutzfeldt
Jakob disease--can take 10 to 30 years before showing symptoms; the
problem is an easy one not to think about.
In the end, mad cow is just another addition to the recent inundation of
global catastrophes--bird flu, swine fever, SARS--that seem to arise out
of practices geared toward mass production. One vegan enthusiast told me,
"These are the modern-day plagues, the wrath of God!" I don't know if I'd
go that far, but I would take Jim Stump's advice: "Stay informed, ask
questions, and support the farmers who are doing it right."
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