As you may have heard, Richard Berman, spearhead of the Harvest Project, who has for financial gain run campaigns against MADD and HSUS, is airing a Super Bowl commercial blasting HSUS. If you are a fellow animal advocate/rescuer, you may be upset by this, or you may think so what. If you are among the latter group, you are not alone.
Our organization KVFA has not agreed with HSUS’s stance on every issue. Berman’s attacks on them generally are, in effect, that they do not give their money to individual animal shelters and that they are extremists akin to PETA. He couches his organization as being concerned with the rights of consumers, pet owners, hunters and farmers.
Why then, you may ask yourself, does he attack HSUS rather than PETA, whose mission is far more extreme? Follow the money. HSUS is the largest national organization that pushes for stronger animal welfare laws in each state. Berman knows this, which is why they are his main target. But why would anyone unjustly target groups that try to help animals or drunk driving victims? Who stands to gain from damage to these groups? Who would pay Berman to run his smear campaigns? The NRA and alcoholic beverage companies come to mind.
Ky, ranked last in the nation for animal laws by ALDF for the 10th year in a row despite the welcome passage of the dogfighting bill last year, certainly needs to improve animal laws, and we need all the help we can get from groups like HSUS and ASPCA. Yet groups like Berman’s, the Kentucky Houndsmen Association, Big Ag and legislators like Robin Webb who regurgitate their nonsense, are determined to prevent better laws for animals. They claim their main concern is hunting/farming rights. However, those rights are already protected in our animal welfare laws. So why would they continue to undermine work and fight better laws, such as a law against bestiality? Again follow the money. A search of their donors could prove very interesting.
We on the ground who call, email and visit our legislators for better animal laws every year, and rescue one animal after another from pitiful conditions, would be wise to band together in these uncertain times with other grass-roots groups, as well as take advantage of resources of groups like HSUS and ASPCA . In an era of alternative facts, we have to question the motives of those who try to divide and conquer us. Just a little something to mull over as you’re watching the big game…<a <a