So many of you were horrified at the gunning down of a pregnant dairy cow last year, at the California State Fair. The cow was part of a livestock nursery exhibit in which very pregnant cows, goats and pigs are transported to the fair and are expected to give birth in front of an audience. As you will recall, she was shot several times after she escaped from the nursery. Both she and her unborn calf were killed.
Despite the public outcry, and a wealth of relevant scientific/industry literature decrying the antiquated concept of birthing exhibits that involve stressful travel and confinement of these near term pregnant animals, the Fair's staff is recommending the continuation of the exhibit.
The Cal Expo Board of Directors is meeting this Friday at 12:45 PM (PST) in the Cal Expo Administration Building. It is urgent that we send an email to the Board, firstname.lastname@example.org and ask them to consider alternative ways, like web cam links, videos, virtual simulations and models to demonstrate a birth rather than actually transporting, crating and stressing a frightened, hormonal pregnant animal to perform this feat for an audience. After all- we are the public that attends the fair! What if we didn't?
What are we really teaching our youth with such a display? I can tell you that it is not respect, empathy, or compassion for living things, but rather, that it is okay to bully and exploit those that can't defend themselves.
UPDATE: In response to the testimony, the Cal Expo Board of Directors stunned the crowd by saying that they were not considering whether or not to continue the live birth exhibit, but rather, whether modifications were made to it to protect the crowd from escaping animals, and that the exhibit would continue for now.