Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Prop 2: What Do I Do?

Friends, I'm completely torn. I've read the Fast Food Nation, and all the Michael Pollan, The Food Revolution, Animal Vegetable Miracle, and more. I've pored through countless articles, blog posts, and stories about the sorry state of our food supply and the plague of factory farming. I know the plight of the chickens. It's pretty awful for them, and they pass on the yuck to us: in the form of diseases and the antibiotics they have to take to combat them.

So, there are all sorts of reasons that conceptually, giving chickens, as well as other livestock, adequate room to turn around and spread their limbs and wings is a good, good thing. But then, the LA Times isn't endorsing Proposition 2: They fear that the high costs will drive the egg industry out of California, just exporting the inhumanity, rather than eliminating it, all the while decreasing our options for local eggs.

So, I'm confused. Is this Prop 2 pro-farmer, or against him? Is it too much to ask our state's egg industry? What's more important -- eggs from humanely-raised chickens, or eggs produced locally? Or can we have both? After all, the Proposition's limitations wouldn't kick in until 2015 -- ample time to figure out alternatives to the current system.

I want to hear your opinions. Please share your thoughts in the comments and help me figure this out! How are you going to vote on Proposition 2?

[thanks to chez pim for the photo]


  1. I'm going to vote in favor of the proposition personally. I tend to sympathize with the plight of the chicken versus the farmer, and don't really think it will have much of an impact on eggs (aside from a slight price increase). They have the time to figure this thing out and make the whole process healthier for everyone(chickens included). Oh and by the way, I really like your blog! -Kristal

  2. I too am voting in favor of Prop 2. I spoke to Matt and Kelly who are my resource for all things Green, organic and such. Anyway, propositions like these have already passed in other states (such as Florida) and have proven to be successful with no real impact on the egg. Egg farmers are still farming in Florida and local eggs are still being produced. - Sam

  3. First of all I think that American throw away too much food. Second I think that we eat too much meat. Third I think that we (we being the majority of the consuming America) do not spend wisely. With that said I think that yes it can be done, animals can be raised humanely and disease “free” but first Americans have to be responsible and less glutinous. The only way for us as a whole to do this the price of food (meat) needs to go up to sustain a more humane meat industry and this is just the raising (farm) portion, the butchering industry is another thing entirely, the food preparation industry at that.
    I once worked at McDonald’s and that one location alone threw away at least 3 large garbage bags of food a day. 3 bags at one restaurant in one day now multiply that by every restaurant throughout the country, which is only one example. Personally I have one day a week that is meat free all day, I am working towards two. I heard a show on NPR last year that the majority of Chinese only had meat once a month and that now that there economy is “booming” that has gone up to meat with a meal once every few days, most American have meat, on average, 3 meals a day. In the end if every household would have 1 meat free meal a week the whole industry would evolve and if the meat we did eat was purchased with a little thought into quality and conditions we would have a new agricultural nation and maybe fewer health issues and obesity too. It really is that simple. Ok enough on that for now.

  4. thanks everyone for chiming in. I did in the end vote for prop 2, and am happy that it passed. i mean, the farms have until 2015 to comply! and i kind of feel silly for even questioning it -- room to turn around and spread your wings? this is really a question?

    after the votes came in though, i felt really regretful that i had devoted a post to the chicken proposition and not to prop 8. i'm so deeply sad that it passed -- it exposes such a depressing reality about our state, and i feel like i squandered my little opportunity to create discourse on it right here. food topics are of course very important, but they're not the only thing.