Animal Rights Activists Endanger Chickens in Massive ‘Rescue’

Animal rights activists forcibly broke into a farm supplying Whole Foods with eggs and stole chickens in broad daylight last week. Local farmers worry that in their zeal to save chickens the activists actually endangered them.

The Direct Action Everywhere “rescue,” which involved hundreds of activists transported to Petaluma, California, on seven buses on May 29, comes as the latest action targeting Whole Foods or businesses connected with the supermarket giant.

“They were bused in,” Toni Brooks, a neighbor of the targeted Sunrise Farms property, told The American Spectator of the estimated 300 to 400 activists descending on the city about an hour north of San Francisco. “They marched up the street with signs saying, ‘Funeral Procession.’”

Brooks’s husband Phil, also a local farmer, found the rhetoric confusing given that the poultry on the targeted farm produce eggs and not meat.

“All of them are for eggs,” Brooks told The American Spectator. “There are no meat birds here. They were yelling at us that we were ‘baby eaters’ because we eat eggs.”

The protesters came from Animal Liberation Conference 2018, an event hosted by the Save Movement and Direct Action Everywhere at the University of California, Berkeley. Wayne Hsiung, the cofounder of Direct Action Everywhere, laid out the group’s purpose to activists immediately before the event, cryptically labeled “Action #4” on the conference schedule. He told them that they traveled to Petaluma to rescue sick birds before leading a march up a road. The action resulted in 40 arrests.

“They got down into the chickens before the police got there,” Phil Brooks, who confronted the activists, explained to The American Spectator. “They pried the door open using crowbars. This is a steel building — brand new, million-dollar building. The employees inside tried to hold the doors closed.

“They barged their way in and there were women who were employees — they were grabbing the women and throwing them down, out of the way. The women tried to hold them back but they just kept pushing the women out of the way and they went right on in.”

In another building, the activists absconded with a dozen to several dozen chickens. They draped white cloths around the chickens they labeled sick or injured and black cloths around dead ones.

The farm houses several hundred thousand chickens. By entering the farm without a foot bath or other standard precautions, the activists, critics say, threatened with sickness the very birds they claimed to save from sickness.

“All farms in today’s world are very high biosecurity,” fifth-generation farmer Trent Loos explains to The American Spectator. “You cannot afford to let anybody to come on your farm. People can put the entire population of chickens in jeopardy.”

As they ignored farm-specific customs to protect animals, the activists dismissed civilizational ones to protect people, as well.

“The women and the guys were going in between these vans and using it as a bathroom,” Phil Brooks explains of the makeshift, open-air bathroom on the farmer’s property. “Oh, yeah. One guy, I yelled at him. I said, ‘Hey, what are you wiping yourself with?’ It was totally unsanitary and uncalled for. There was garbage all over, plastic bottles from water, and whatever they were eating.”

Brooks concedes that, after prodding from him and other locals, the protesters thoroughly policed their trash. But they drew a line, and flashed a “peace” sign, when asked to remove their excrement.

Apart from livestreaming the event, the protesters invited the local media and dispatched drones to document from the skies. But farmers say that, despite the extensive preparations to chronicle the action, the demonstrators never bothered to educate themselves on the proper hygienic protocols for close encounters with farm animals.

“In the United States and in California, cows, hogs, and chickens have received viruses from immigrants, where the people passed a virus to the animals,” Loos points out. “H1N1, for instance, was passed from the people to the animals.”

Local farmers find out in the coming weeks that if an action taken to save animals results instead in widespread animal deaths.

The post Animal Rights Activists Endanger Chickens in Massive ‘Rescue’ appeared first on The American Spectator.

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South Korean President Moon Jae-in Congratulates BTS on First No. 1 Album

South Korean President Moon Jae-in took a few minutes out of his very busy schedule to congratulate K-pop phenomenon BTS on the group’s first No. 1 album on the Billboard 200. On Monday (May 28), about two days after meeting with North Korean leader Kim …

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Is The Death Penalty Cruel And Unusual Punishment For The Santa Fe Killer?

This Past Friday morning, 17-year-old Dimitrios Pagourtzis opened fire at Santa Fe High School in Santa Fe, Texas murdering ten people, physically wounding 13 others, traumatizing the school full of children, and scaring the moral fabric of America.

The cruel and unusual style this man used to execute his victims was breath taking and barbaric. Before writing this column I had to once again overcome the anguish and grief I feel as these type of tragedies become more prevalent in a culture that I raise my children in. Not even animals commit these kinds of atrocities’ on non-aggressive defenseless victims.

There is nothing that can make up for this tragedy or perfectly reconcile victims with crimes on this earth. The only thing that can bring closure to a victim is swift and unequivocal justice for the deplorable criminal. This, is both biblical and constitutional.

Founding Father James Wilson implored his fellow countrymen to understand this timeless principle stating, “To prevent crimes, is the noblest end and aim of criminal jurisprudence. To punish them, is one of the means necessary for the accomplishment of this noble end and aim.”

Extracting their wisdom from biblical Law: “Thou shalt not murder” and “he that murders any man shall surely be put to death for in the image of God made he man,” the founders believed in and practiced capital punishment for capital crimes against humanity.

However, the tragedy for the victims and families of this recent crime is the state of Texas may acquiesce to the supreme court who ruled in Roper v. Simmons that imposing the death penalty on persons younger than 18 years old is a violation of the U.S. Constitution’s Eighth Amendment, which outlaws “cruel and unusual punishment.”

In 2012 the court also determined it is unconstitutional to sentence juvenile offenders to life in prison without the possibility of parole no matter how serious the crime, Justice Elena Kagan writing the majority opinion.

This means the suspected Santa Fe killer could be eligible for parole in 40 years when he is 57 years old!

But not according to the Constitution which is the highest authority of law in the land.

The eighth amendment to the US Constitution states: “Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.”

This term cruel and unusual punishment was used by our Framers to prohibit unreasonable torture; disemboweling, mutilation, and things prevalent in Europe and England where kings and governments would use these tactics to make examples of political enemies or coerce men and women into confessions that often times were not true.

The Framers would not have considered capital punishment cruel and unusual based on the subsequent Fifth Amendment that states a person’s life may be deprived them if due process finds them guilty of a capital crime.

So, in this case Dimitrios Pagourtzis has been charged with capital murder and upon conviction he should speedily lose his right to life in this world.

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Amphibious Vehicles Are the Military’s Latest Tax Dollar Sinkhole

One of the worst symptoms of the paralysis in Washington and at the Pentagon has been the inability to correctly match weapon systems with current enemy threat capabilities. Hence the United States Marine Corps is set to announce the final winner between defense contractors BAE Systems and SAIC to build and field their new Amphibious Combat Vehicle, or ACV.

Or should we say the old Amphibious Combat Vehicle? Because after 46 years and tens of billions of dollars, the Marines are right back where they started with this technology, which leaves no one—except maybe the contractors feeding off this farcical routine—feeling very satisfied.

So how did we get here?

The naval campaigns in the Pacific theater of World War II were successful due to the capability of the Marine Corps to conduct amphibious assaults against Japanese-held islands. Following the war this capability was written into law via the National Security Act of 1947, which stipulated that the Marine Corps was responsible for the seizure of advanced naval bases.

In order to move from Navy ships to enemy-held territory, the Marines must be transported across a distance of water and rely on what is generally called a connector. Both the Navy and Marine Corps operate various connectors from ship to shore, while the job of the Marines is to fight their way into enemy territory. Marine connectors only carry one weapon: Marines. Step one is to take the beach.

During World War II, the Navy ships could move to within a few miles of the Japanese-held islands before loading Marines into connectors. But with the advent of ballistic missile technology during the Cold War, a new weapon made its debut: the anti-ship missile.

The idea is simple. If Navy ships are within range of an anti-ship missile, they risk being severely damaged or even sunk. The solution is standoff. The Navy ships must stay outside the effective range of the missiles or use defensive measures to shoot the missiles down. This forces the ships further out to sea and increases the distance the connectors must travel over the open ocean to transport the Marines.

The connector vehicle the Marines adopted in 1972 was the Amphibious Assault Vehicle or AAV. AAVs are stored in hollow lower sections of naval ships known as well decks, which can be flooded so the AAV can exit the aft end of the ship into the ocean. The vehicle moves through the water using two traditional water propellers and also has tracks similar to a tank in order to drive on land. The AAV can carry around 20 Marines, swim through the water at seven knots (nautical miles per hour; seven knots is eight mph for comparison), and has an advertised water range of approximately 20 nautical miles, which in reality is closer to five nautical miles.

But anti-ship missile technology advanced in the 1980s, and proved deadly in the 1982 Falklands War between Great Britain and Argentina as the British lost two ships* to French-built Exocet missiles. So the Marine Corps and Navy rewrote their doctrine to move their ships over the horizon to approximately 12 nautical miles.

This strategy necessitated a new connector vehicle. Marine amphibious doctrine requires a “swift introduction of sufficient combat power ashore.” If the AAV can only swim at seven knots and the ships are 12 nautical miles away, you are looking at close to a two-hour ride to the beach. Time equals distance divided by speed. For the Marines stacked like sardines in full combat gear in the sweltering troop compartment of the AAV, this bumpy two hours becomes a rather nauseating and incapacitating experience.

So work began in earnest on the Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle, or EFV, in the 1980s. It was designed with a powerful jet propulsion system that allowed it to plane above the water like a speedboat and achieve 25 knots, three times as fast as the AAV with a water range of approximately 65 nautical miles. Over the course of 20 years, more than $3 billion was invested in the program. Operational EFVs were due to be in service by 2015, completely replacing the aging AAVs.

But potential adversaries didn’t stagnate. They developed a defensive Anti-Access/Area Denial (A2/AD) strategy. Waters around potential landing sites would be mined, and the range, speed, and lethality of anti-ship missiles enhanced significantly.

The increasing complexity of the operating environment did not go unnoticed. During the Obama administration’s first term, Undersecretary of the Navy Robert O. Work envisioned an either/or type of scenario for the future of amphibious conflict. Either Marines would land essentially unopposed as in Grenada in 1983 or the A2/AD posture of our enemies would be so preventative as to require a massive bombardment using long-range stand-off weapons like Tomahawk missiles and bombers to clear out anti-ship missiles and other defenses. Neither situation necessitated the use of a high-speed, heavily armored connector like the EFV.

Secretary of Defense Robert Gates canceled the EFV program in 2011. Immediately afterwards, the Commandant of the Marine Corps, General Amos, decided to pursue the next iteration of troop connector named the Amphibious Combat Vehicle, or ACV. High speed on water remained a top priority as late as 2013.

After some research proposals were explored, General Amos decided in January 2014 that the ACV would be developed in a phased approach with a decreased need for speed on water. The ACV 1.1 was to be an off-the-shelf, armored, wheeled vehicle that met requirements for armor protection on land but would rely on connectors like the Navy’s Landing Craft Air Cushion (LCAC, aka Hovercraft) to move it swiftly from over the horizon at 40 knots to a few miles from its objectives, where it would then swim the last few miles. The LCAC has a large deck area that can accommodate several ACVs. Traditionally the LCAC would bring in heavy equipment like tanks or trucks after Marines secured a beach since the LCAC lacks armor protection.

The phased acquisitions approach was a tacit admission that you can’t have your cake and eat it too. The Marine Corps asked industry for a vehicle that offered protection first and then speed on the water at some point in the future.

The ACV 1.1 would not be able to self-deploy and swim from a ship like the AAV or EFV. The Marine Corps would buy a smaller number of the ACV 1.1, upgrade older AAVs and keep them in service until 2030, and research and develop ACV 1.2, a high-speed, fully amphibious vehicle.

But this solution appears to have been smoke and mirrors. In March 2015, Marine Commandant Joseph Dunford testified before the Senate Armed Services Committee concerning the program. He said industry might merge the ACV 1.1 and ACV 1.2 requirements together.

BAE Systems and SAIC were awarded $100 million each in December of 2015 to develop 16 test vehicles for ACV 1.1. And lo and behold, abracadabra, both company’s test vehicles could self-deploy and swim from a ship at, wait for it, seven knots—as fast as, you guessed it, the 1972 version.

Since the introduction of the AAV, almost 50 years have passed and many billions have been spent in research and development. And now the taxpayer will be footing the bill for a connector that holds fewer Marines than in 1972 (13 versus 20), swims at the same speed, and is more expensive.

The Marine Corps and industry are touting the fact that the ACV is under cost and ahead of schedule. The program is projected to cost $1.2 billion with 204 vehicles operational by 2020.

In October 2017, deputy Marine commandant Lieutenant General Beaudreault stated that “we have to find a solution to getting Marines to shore, from over the horizon, at something greater than seven knots. We’ve got to have high-speed connectors.”

It appears the deputy commandant didn’t get the memo. As the F-35 and USS Gerald Ford programs have shown, whenever the system wins, the warfighter and taxpayer lose.

*Story has been changed to reflect the British loss of one destroyer and one container ship during the Falklands War in 1982.

Jeff Groom is a former Marine officer. He is the author of American Cobra Pilot: A Marine Remembers a Dog and Pony Show (2018).

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When Teachers Saw What Their Daughter Wore To School, They Immediately Dialed 911

Being a teacher comes with a lot of responsibilities. Not only are these educators responsible for getting through lesson plans on a tight schedule but they also have to deal with the individual personalities and backgrounds of each student. And every now and then a student presents even bigger challenges that they have to deal with at home.

When a 7-year-old student showed up to school in high heels and blood-stained knickers, her teacher was obviously alarmed and she would later find out that the situation was far worse than she imagined. She had often showed up to school wearing clothes that were so dirty, her teacher couldn’t even tell what color they were. This same teacher offered her clean clothes and gave her the chance to nap on a cot if she was too tired during class.

The bloodstained knickers were discovered when the teacher told the girl to clean herself up. Unfortunately, the police refused to use the knickers as evidence, stating that they weren’t secured properly. They ended up throwing them in the dumpster which angered the teacher beyond belief.

“I was really, really angry. I was going to get into the dumpster and get them out, because that’s not OK,” she said.”The system was failing her. I know it was. Because I called and I called. And I did everything that I was supposed to do through my training. I called CYFD [Children, Youth and Families Department] because she was starving, because she was dirty, because she needed physical care. Then I called the police officers any time and every time she said that she was breaking the law.”

The teacher made sure to share the officer’s lack of duty and she blasted the following on social media…

“He [the police officer] took them out and threw them in the dumpster.”

Two weeks later, the school nurse told police officers that the girl had been sexually assaulted, which launched them into an investigation, arresting Stewart and Sanches.

According to court documents, the girl once turned up to class saying: “Mom made me hustle last night,” and she told investigators that she was made to panhandle and steal people’s wallets.

It was soon discovered that the young girl was being prostituted for drugs and cash by her parents James Stewart and Teri Sanchez.

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90-Minute Free Street Parking Survives as Santa Monica City Council Considers Raising Parking Fees

April 20, 2018 After community push back, parking in City-owned Parking Structures in Santa Monica remains free for the first 90 minutes, although long-term parking in crowded downtown City parking structures zooms as much as 70 percent in a Citywide fee adjustment meant, ultimately, to discourage cars and more congestion. The newest version of a new parking rate schedule for City streets and City-owned parking structures goes to the City Council for a vote at Tuesday’s regular meeting.

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Babis: EU should give Balkan countries their EU accession date

The Czech Republic and other Visegrad Four countries are critical of Brussels not giving a time schedule for the Balkan countries’ EU accession, Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babis told reporters at the summit of the European Union and the Western Balkans on Thursday. Babis added that the EU accession of the whole Balkan region is the path to enlarge the Schengen Area to cover the whole Europe, which would make its border protection more efficient.

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