Mark Hawthorne writes:
One of the most exciting results of Proposition 2 — California’s successful campaign to ban battery cages for hens, gestation crates pigs and veal crates for calves — is that it energized activists across the United States, introducing a new generation of animal advocates to the horrors of factory farming. Many of these people had known little, if anything, about agribusiness practices. But they literally took up the Prop 2 banner, getting involved in the fight to end the use of intensive-confinement devices in California.
On January 22, police seized an Indymedia server in Manchester, England. Kent Police had e-mailed UK Indymedia earlier in the day in regards to two comments containing the address of a judge that had been posted to the site. It is believed the search and seizure was connected to postings about a recent Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty (SHAC) trial in the UK. The seizure specifically targeted a server named "Strummer" which functions as a mirror of the UK site and does not actually receive submissions from users. The server was reportedly handed over to police by hosting company UK Grid without a warrant being served.
On December 23rd, four out of five activists on trial at Winchester Crown Court, UK were found guilty of 'Conspiracy to Blackmail' Huntingdon Life Sciences (HLS) after a three and a half month long trial. The trial is part of a larger attack on the animal rights movement. In May this year, Sean Kirtley, an activist involved with Stop Sequani Animal Torture (SSAT), was sentenced to four and a half years in prison for updating a website with news about a legal, nonviolent campaign to close down Sequani laboratories in Ledbury.
From the open publishing newswire:
"That's how the corporate university works. It's because of the licensing of bovine growth hormone (rBGH) by the UC system (human growth hormone is also a UC patent). In the past (before Bayh-Dole in 1980), any company that wanted to use the results of academic research for their business could - but with Bayh-Dole came the exclusive licensing of patents to private industry, for which the UC gets a little cut, as do the professors who created the patent - at taxpayer expense."
A rescue effort by local animal protection groups has saved 650 hens from a California egg farm. The hens were rescued on Friday and Saturday from battery cages and will soon be placed in permanent homes.
Coordinating the effort was Animal Place, a farmed-animal sanctuary and education center in Vacaville, about 45 miles northeast of San Francisco.
On November 4th, 2008, California voters passed Proposition 2 by a 63% to 36% margin. The new "Standards for Confining Farm Animals" statute phases out some of the most restrictive confinement systems used by factory farms — gestation crates for breeding pigs, veal crates for calves, and battery cages for egg laying hens — affecting 20 million farm animals in the state by granting them space to stand up, stretch their limbs, turn around and lie down comfortably.
On October 13th, a protest held outside of UC Berkeley's new animal testing facility drew media and cops. The protest marked National Primate Liberation Week, which featured demonstrations and press conferences across the country. Completion of the laboratory will lead to a seventy percent increase in animal research at the University, which already experiments on approximately 40,000 animals at any given time, including at least 15 primates.