Gone to hog heaven

A Humane Society press release just landed in my inbox that depressed me quite a bit, especially after meeting that pair of piglets: 150 pigs died in Texas, part of a 26,000-hog cargo being transported from Ohio to Mexico. The trucks stopped in Brownsville, TX, for a few days, parking the pigs in temperatures close to 100 degrees. I don't even want to imagine the confined conditions.

There should be a law against this. Oh wait, there is — a century-old federal one. The Twenty-Eight Hour Law says animals must be offloaded after 28 hours in transit on a "vehicle" to eat, drink and rest for at least 5 hours. (Why 28 hours and not 24, I wonder?) The livestock transporters ignored the law, as they apparently always do, according to the Humane Society, because the U.S. Department of Agriculture doesn't consider trucks "vehicles."

"But the pigs are going to die anyway," you might say. Well, so are you -- would you like your last moments to be locked in a truck in Texas with thousands of other sweating, shit-covered humans?

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