Spring 1997 Poultry Press
Planting Seeds Better Than Killing Emus

"'A spiritual life has to evolve out of realizing the importance of all types of life, not just humans,'" said Karen Davis, President of United Poultry Concerns." The Associated Press.

When Pastor Michie Proctor of the First Baptist Church of South Broward in Hollywood, Florida announced his plan to send 250 emus to Central America for slaughter by poor people, activists rose up. United Poultry Concerns, Animal Rights Foundation of Florida, and Food Not Bombs said the plan was both cruel and unecological. (See PoultryPress Fall 1996 for Action Alert.)

Animal Rights Foundation of Florida "served up an emu effigy brunch on Sunday [Sept. 29] to register their disgust with the church's plans to ship the big birds overseas as edible missionaries. Its blood-red painted body was crafted in plaster of Paris. Its long, drooping neck was made of floppy foam."

Susan McCullum, the protest's organizer "called Proctor's plan an 'abomination.' The two pounds of wheat and corn mix each bird consumes daily could better be used as crop seed for Proctor's poor families, she said." --from the Sun-Sentinel.

Vegetarian teenagers from a charitable group called Food Not Bombs, who collect food and money each week to feed the homeless, confronted Proctor with the result that he gave them a plot of land on his farm "to grow veggies to feed the hungry without having to slaughter the gentle, flightless birds."

Members of Food Not Bombs "have since tilled and turned their 50-foot by 100-foot plot. . . . The kids claim the world can be fed with agriculture, not meat. Broward County agricultural extension agent Joe Garofalo agrees. 'It's definitely more efficient to get your food directly from the first organism that captures the energy, namely vegetables," Garofalo said. 'A squash is more efficient than a hamburger.'" --from the Sun-Sentinel, Nov. 20, 1996.

For an update contact Susan McCullom, Animal Rights Foundation of Florida (ph: 954-968-7622; fax: 954-979-6415).

What Can I DO?
  • Educate the public.

  • The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) has produced a powerful 10-minute video, Ratite Slaughter. It shows an emu being gassed and hammered to death in a U.S. slaughterhouse. To order Ratite Slaughter, contact Dave Kuemmerle, HSUS, 700 Professional Drive, Gaithersburg, MD 20879 (ph: 301-258-3113; fax: 3081).

  • United Poultry Concerns brought the ostrich-emu issue to light in the U.S. with Karen Davis' article "Nowhere To Hide" (PoultryPress Fall-Winter 1993). For a copy send $5 to United Poultry Concerns. Brochures: 20 for $4.
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