Letter writer cites false HSUS information



Letter writer Keith Campbell gets many things wrong when he recklessly attacks The Humane Society of the United States (‘Acceptable collateral damage,’ Sept. 2, 2010).

The HSUS is the nation’s most important advocate for animals and animal shelters. We provide training, national shelter standards and millions of dollars for spay and neuter programs. The HSUS has worked since our founding in 1954 to celebrate all animals and confront cruelty, whether it’s found in a puppy mill, an animal fighting pit, an industrial factory farm or anywhere else.

The Humane Society of the United States was founded on principles of nonviolence, and the organization has remained faithful to these principles ever since. A published statement of our position is on our website.

Mr. Campbell recklessly ignored facts that don’t agree with his perspective, and indeed cited a false document that has been retracted. No animal protection organization has been more resolute and outspoken about condemning violence and vandalism done in the name of animal protection than HSUS.

The recent agreement among the HSUS, agricultural organizations in Ohio and Gov. Ted Strickland has paved the way for meaningful improvements on a raft of issues, reforming industry practices and improving prospects for adoption of critical legislation in other areas. By coming together, we made great progress, not just in the reforms set in motion, but on the idea of working together to forge commonsense solutions.

The HSUS works to promote food safety and curb the worst factory farming abuses which led us to expose the shocking abuse of sick and injured dairy cows slaughtered for the National School Lunch Program. We campaign vigorously against inhumane slaughter practices and the inhumane confinement of veal calves, breeding sows and laying hens in crates and cages so small the animals can’t even turn around and stretch their limbs — practices that many farmers and HSUS agree are abusive and unacceptable.

We are pleased to have many family farmers as our allies in these anti-cruelty efforts. In addition to our work in Ohio, we have worked collaboratively with agricultural leaders and commodity groups in Colorado, Maine and Michigan to phase out inhumane confinement practices.

Readers can go to humanesociety.org to learn more about our work.

Karen Minton
Hilliard, Ohio

(The author is Ohio’s director for The Humane Society of the United States.)


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  1. Of course HSUS website is going to sound like it is all butterflies and rainbows. But deep down everyone knows they are Animal Haters that set up situations to meet their needs. They must also be Human Haters, trying to make everyone eat GMO soy and corn in lieu of meat, both of which are the cause of many more human diseases than meat could ever be .

  2. THIS letter is filled with deciets and lies-and the author has the audacity to accuse Keith Campbell of lieing…

    -HSUS charges outlandish fees for “helping” local shelters…at the same time, they KILL many of the animals they “save”, esp. Pit Bull dogs (even baby puppies)

    -several of their employees have worked for groups the US government deemed terrorist (and has given these groups money)

    -several lawsuits are pending against HSUS..paying for testimony-fake and unlawful warrants-unlawfully taking animals…

    -the authors statement that family farmers support HSUS is also a COMPLETE lie…98% of all farmers ARE family farmers and I know of NONE that support HSUS-infact, we absolutely DESPISE HSUS. The only very few who have supported them are “wanna-be” farmers (hobby)who rely on outside income to live on.

    -HSUS only is “concerned” about food safety when it benefits them. Even though more vegetables are responsible for sickness, they do not concern theirselves with it until animal products are the source-then they push that it is from modern farm practices(even though it is NOT related at all-like the salmonella that was in feed just recently)

    Their are so many more lies, deciets, and an underlieing secret agenda that the HSUS has, that it would take hours to go through it all. Suffice it to say that the HSUS is NOT the compassionate, caring group that this author pretends it is. Go to HumaneWatch.org to get the TRUTH-everything is verified there.

    One last thing…HSUS and other animal rights groups are completely infringing on our constitutional rights-which should not be tolerated by anyone. People ALREADY have the right to buy whatever kind of food they want. HSUS wants to dictate what food we can eat and how we farmers should grow it…at the same time, they are attacking pet breeders and telling them they cannot breed and what kind of pets people can get. This is nothing short of communism, and should NOT be tolerated in this country.

  3. As Ohio’s top lobbyist, Karen Minton is paid to tow the line and say those things in her letter. Her words are more of the same spin and propaganda from the Washington, DC headquarters of the world’s largest animal-rights organization.

    The mega non-profit HSUS is facing growing legal and public relations challenges. Three lawsuits have been filed against HSUS this year: one for federal racketeering charges and two for illegally seizing private property.

    On the public relations side, the American public–and our lawmakers–are beginning to learn the truth about this deceptive organization. It is my hope that as more Americans come to understand the true nature of this mega animal-rights organization, we will think twice about sending money to such a controversial, private mega non-profit.

    HSUS is all about politics, and not about hands-on animal care.

  4. Thank you, Karen, for setting the record straight. I support the Humane Society of the United States 100%, and I am thankful that this organization works at the national level on behalf of the voiceless, innocent non-human animals unable to speak for themselves.

    Armed with the advanced technology of high-tech spy cameras, undercover investigators today are now shining a bright light on the atrocious abuses going on behind the closed doors of factory farms, slaughterhouses, and dairy barns, rendering those abuses undeniable. When caring and compassionate people become aware of the inhumane torture inflicted on helpless animals, on creatures created by God, they are horrified and demand change.

    Many of them stop supporting the cruelties of the meat production industry and urge their family and acquaintances to do the same. That’s what I did. Thanks to the efforts of the HSUS and other organizations such as Mercy for Animals, I learned the truth about how meat got to my plate and milk to my glass. And many in my immediate and extended family have given up eating meat as well–it was especially easy for those who had already undergone bypass surgeries to unclog their arteries.

    But as more and more people have rejected meat eating, the big meat industry has felt the money pinch, and they know that the Humane Society of the United is the main organization responsible for revealing their dirty secrets to the public.
    To confront the successful campaigns of the HSUS, the meat industry has sought to defame them and besmirch their reputation.

    Most of the negative propaganda against the HSUS has come from the “Center for Consumer Freedom,” led by Richard Berman–he’s the guy who works for big corporations after the public finds out some ugly truth about them–he’s worked for the alcohol industry in defaming M.A.D.D. (Mothers Against Drunk Driving), and he also works for the tobacco industry, among others….now he works for the big meat corporations in an attempt to stem the anti-meat sentiment by darkening the reputation of the HSUS.

    The HSUS has been attacked because the efforts of the HSUS have been successful and effective; and they will continue to be a powerful and successful voice for animals because people like me, my family, and hundreds of thousands of people all over this country support them, not only in theory, but also financially; and attacks against the HSUS have made many actually raise their monthly donations.

    Change is coming; it is in fact already in progress, as can be seen from recent developments in Ohio between the state and the HSUS. Denial of change will not make change go away.

  5. Rachel, your heart is in the right place, but you are supporting the wrong group. You need to focus on your local animal shelters who actually take in and help, injured, homeless and neglected animals and try to rehome them, not HSUS, PETA or any other group connected to HSUS, they do not take in, nurse back to health and rehome animals, generally they take pity pictures of them for commercials then kill them. They are the true animal haters of America.

  6. I could not agree more with everything Rachel wrote. I, too, reject all animal products now that I know how they are produced. It took me almost 60 years to figure it out, to make the connection, to realize that I was complicit in vast animal suffering and brutal death by my consumer choices. NO MORE!

    Rachel’s heart is in the right place and there is no reason she cannot support HSUS, PETA, Mercy For Animals, AND her local animal shelters, who work hand-in-hand with the major animal protection groups to stop all animal suffering and cruelty.

    All of the animal protection groups have their place and each covers a different area of vital need–some do direct work with animals (“take in … injured, homeless and neglected animals and try to rehome them”), others do crucial undercover investigations and document dairy and farm animal cruelties, others work through political means and the legislative process to change or upgrade animal protection laws. All of these areas of animal protection are needed, as well as the growing network of educated, animal-rights advocates on the ground. There’s no reason we cannot support them all. It’s all about ending animal suffering and cruelty by whatever means we can. I support multiple animal protection groups, I write letters, and I join demonstrations to fight animal abuse. We are not limited in what we can do.

  7. I completely agree with everything Rachel said. Rather than slandering and spreading misinformation about the HSUS (which for example provides more direct hands-on animal care than any other organization in the country), big agriculture would do itself a major public relations favor if it turned a critical eye on itself and cleaned up its own house. When your industry defends people like egg baron Jack DeCoster — who it can be argued is a “family farm” — you have sunk so low that the bad has become normal.

    The HSUS does amazing work — it rescues animals from hoarding situations, fighting operations, and puppy mills every week. It works on bahalf of all animals, for example recently exposing a cruel bear baiting scheme in South Carolina and moving a group of endangered prairie dogs off ranching land to a new location.

    And it works to pass better laws to help animals, including sows, hens, and calves caged so tight in intensive farms that they can’t move around or express any natural behaviors. Apparently the farmers who use these practices don’t see how inhumane they are, but the general public does. If you cannot regulate yourselves and accept basic reasonable reforms, then it’s you and not the HSUS who will turn the country vegan. The reason the HSUS has traction is because they are expressing what the majority of people want, and the sooner agriculture deals with that, the better for everyone, including the animals.

  8. If my words are so untrue, why is someone as high up in your organization so worried about it? I’m just one person who owns animals.

  9. What has the HSUS ever done for a local Humane Shelter other than charge them money? If your so into the Humane part of it, why do you not give your time and/or money to the local Humane Shelters who actually do care.

    HSUS does not do the dirty work, they pay out money for lawyers of the eco-terrorists and compliment them publicly for doing the job.

    Karen, what document was retracted that you speak of? I have read the testimony myself. Was it the FBI or ATF that retracted their statements? We all know your organization discredits HumaneWatch.org because it speaks the truth and has the documentation to back it up. I too find it interesting that you would worry about 1 person’s letter to the editor unless he’s speaking the truth.

    What family farmers are you referring to? The Ohioans for Humane Farms? We all know they are the sub-group of HSUS planted in ohio. Anyone can go to the Secretary of State’s campaign contributions website and see how much money this year alone HSUS has given to Ohioans for Humane Farms. All the farmers I know don’t want your organization around. Will you also discredit the fact that your paid signature gathers from Michigan for the ballot initive were lying to voters to get their signatures? Any farmer or animal owner that reads the Bargain Hunter paper knows of that.

    Farmers are not against humane treatment of animals, we’re against people like you coming in and trying to tell us what to do and how to do it. If you want to eat fruits and veggies please go right ahead, but don’t tell me what to eat.

    So tell us all please Karen, what is next on the “Agenda” of the animal rights movement, taking away hunting and fishing? You’re already trying to stop us from “Domesticly Breed”ing our hunting dogs.

  10. Butch, perhaps Karen refers to an incident similar to this one:

    “Consider the case of Atlanta’s WSB-TV. The station ran a segment covering HSUS’ handling of the funds raised for Hurricane Katrina rescue operations, and it relied heavily on misinformation provided by CCF (Centers for Consumer Freedom)(you know, the group ‘led by Richard Berman–the guy who works for big corporations after the public finds out some ugly truth about them’). When the station discovered it had been duped, it immediately pulled the footage of the broadcast and issued a correction.

    CCF continued to willfully promote copies of the broadcast as ‘proof’ of HSUS wrongdoing, without bothering to mention the correction. This prompted WSB-TV to send an angry cease-and-desist letter demanding that CCF stop referencing the broadcast without referencing the correction.

    CCF’s response? They fired off a lame, baseless accusation that the Humane Society forged the letter. When WSB-TV demanded that YouTube pull all copies of the broadcast from its servers, CCF resorted to linking to an illegal copy hosted on a video sharing site in Iran. To this very day, HumaneWatch continues to hold up that invalidated report as ‘proof’ of their arguments — without the correction that tells the rest of the story.

    You see, Butch, your ‘proof’ is not worth chicken scratch. Try doing your own research using reliable sources, not some spin by the CCF.

    As to why this Letter to the Editor might have been posted, I can only say from experience that if my name or organization were falsely besmirched, I would endeavor to set the record straight. No one likes to be lied about or for those lies to stand uncontested. That’s not being “worried,” that’s simply correcting the record so that other gullible people won’t buy the lie. Any person or organization would do the same.

  11. Our thanks go to Farm & Dairy for publishing Karen’s letter. These forums are important, even though the debate can get heated.

    The HSUS has a longstanding statement of policy against violence and illegal tactics, and we’ve offered rewards to assist law enforcement in the capture of people engaged in this type of conduct. Our full position statement can be found at http://www.humanesociety.org/about/policy_statements/statement_against_violence.html.

    @Butch – Here’s a link that may be helpful: http://www.hsus.org/web-files/PDF/dhs-letter.pdf. It’s a letter to the HSUS from the Dept. of Homeland Security/FEMA acknowledging the inaccuracy of allegations related to ecoterrorism.

    It makes little sense for the HSUS to replicate the work of local shelters when there are so many other animal protection issues beyond the scope of these agencies. Karen’s letter mentioned our factory farming campaign, but our organization also works on issues as diverse as lab animal welfare, captive wildlife, dogfighting/cockfighting, and puppy mills.

    If you go to the “About Us” section of our website, you’ll find this statement: “The HSUS seeks a humane and sustainable world for all animals—a world that will also benefit people.” From our perspective, the welfare of humans and animals is interconnected, and animal advocacy occurs within this larger context.

  12. Butch, it takes a little craziness, no a lot of craziness to call anyone an eco-terrorist when all your arguments come from industrial agriculture’s front group (Center for Consumer Freedom/Humanewatch). Industrial agriculture is by far the largest source of pollution to the planet. Those are your eco-terrorists, Butch.
    Anyone can go to the Secretary of State’s campaign contributions website and see how much money outside industrial agricultural interests spent to ensure that no real change occurred in Ohio.
    It doesn’t matter if some farmers don’t want HSUS there. They are staying. They have shined a light into the darkness that has cloaked animal agriculture in America.
    By the way Butch no credible journalists, scientists or researchers will use CCF as a source. Only you people with vested interests in the suffering of fellow creatures, animal ag, puppy mills and that ilk, will cite anything from CCF/Humanewatch as a source.

  13. Hey Hillary, you work for HSUS and can’t even get the name of your own website correct. Your link leads to 404 Error land.

    You are the ones that need a light shined on you, once you destroy all the farms and animal owners in the country, who do you think is gonna supply your veggies? There ain’t enough land in this country to support everyone. Many of us like our steak and eggs. Most of the contamination you speak of comes from the slaughter house, not the farm.

    Hillary is right, the HSUS don’t commit the crimes, they just give the thumbs up to the ones who do.

    I bet you all think I’m a puppy mill because I own 3 dogs. Guess again, all 3 are spayed/neutered.

    We are sick and tired of your AR garbage. Many of us in this state don’t get paid to stand up to you, we do it because we care about our rights, freedoms and our animals.

  14. I would like to point out that Butch did not write the original Letter, I did. Butch and I are not the same person. Every one of you immediately jumped to the conclusion that the information I referred to comes from either CCF or HumaneWatch.org. In fact, my information came from a totally unrelated site.

    I read the DHS letter you refer to and I have to ask what has that got to do with FBI/ATF testimony to congress? Not a hill of beans. FEMA does not oversee the FBI or ATF.

    Hillary said, “It makes little sense for the HSUS to replicate the work of local shelters when there are so many other animal protection issues beyond the scope of these agencies.” Maybe so but why do you not support them? Why do you charge them money to help, most shelters are barely making it as it is. If you are so much about saving the animals, you should donate your time and money, we all know you can sure afford it. I sure don’t get paid to fight for the Animal Owners.

    Suzy said, “Industrial agriculture is by far the largest source of pollution to the planet.” I would say that any large city would way overpower any farm in this country as far as pollution. Have you seen LA through the smog lately? I have never seen a farm with that problem. Your next attack will be the smell of farms, well I got news for you, when someone from the country goes to the city, it stinks!

    Janet said, “I can only say from experience that if my name or organization were falsely besmirched, I would endeavor to set the record straight.” There are hundreds of websites that post information about the HSUS yet you picked this 1 publication’s website to post to?

    No one ever said that farmers or I condone abuse. You say the HSUS does not advocate violence yet after the MFA attacked farmers in this state, who congratulated their effort? The HSUS did. Gary Conklin had to have the sheriff at his farm all weekend to protect him from the Animal Rights mob that was there to tear his farm apart.

    Need I remind all of you that the “agreement” Mr. Pacelle signed stated the HSUS would not back or support any attacks in this state. I have yet to see the public release that the HSUS is not supporting MFA after the latest video hey released.

    And lastly I would ask, if CCF/HumaneWatch are spreading lies about the HSUS, why do you only post to websites that do reference it.

  15. @Butch – My apologies for providing the wrong link; here is the correct one – http://www.humanesociety.org/assets/pdfs/dhs-letter.pdf.

    @LCampbell – You asked about what the HSUS does for shelters. We provide resources like AnimalSheltering.org and Animal Sheltering magazine, and we host an annual conference/trade show called Animal Care Expo. The HSUS also assists shelters with large-scale animal cruelty cases, which often run into the tens of thousands of dollars. This is money that local shelters don’t have to spend.

    The shelter evaluation program has a sliding scale, depending on the scope of the evaluation. In order for the program to be self-sustaining, it must cover its basic costs (e.g. hiring outside consultants when needed, covering expenses related to the team’s on-site review). If you’re interested, you can find more info at http://www.animalsheltering.org/programs_and_services/shelter_evaluation_program/.

  16. Hillary, I have called almost every shelter in Ohio they tell me they get NO MONEY FROM HSUS I can’t find any shelter that did so can you let all of us know what shelter in Ohio got money from HSUS and how much???

  17. Hillary Its been a few days now Can you let the people of Ohio Know what shelters got the money from HSUS that you say they did We can’t find were they did HELP US HILLARY

  18. According to damage control staffer Hillary Twining, HSUS helps shelters with large scale cruelty cases, which can run into tens of thousands of dollars. FACT CHECK: HSUS helps primarily with transport, not with “tens of thousands” or even hundreds of dollars. Your organization also calls on volunteers, including those from other organizations such as United Animal Nations (which are rarely credited in your press releases) to provide quick set-up of temporary shelters and very short-term care. Of course, the whole “HSUS rescue” is videotaped and photographed, the hapless animals again exploited for cash, this time as stars of those excruciating HSUS dog and cat pity infomercials.
    Each animal is also added to both the number of HSUS rescues and “direct care” recipients for that year.
    Large scale cruelty cases = big HSUS profit center.

    The Atlanta TV-expose was accurate and you know it. HSUS threatened to bombard WSB-TV with lawsuit after lawsuit, which would have cost the station an enormous sum of money to fight. WSB-TV would have won the case, but gone bankrupt in the process. Legal thuggery/SLAPP lawsuits, it happens all the time with corrupt companies and organizations. HSUS’s idea of “accounting for” $34.7 million is a press release. The Louisiana Attorney General has a different take. Anyone interested in the facts should contact them regarding their 18 month fraud investigation.

  19. Hillary days have past no answer from you and were your money goes in Ohio The Humane Society of the United States was founded on principles of nonviolence but support Rouge Animal rights groups That think they are above the law and can video tape themselfs beating animals then run to the news Say it isn’t so Right here in Ohio the Union Co. the man doing the taping said he did beat the cows to get the story he is no better than the nut that was beating the cows both should go to jail for years

  20. To Karen Minton and/or Hillary:
    Per your own website, the HSUS “has no tolerance for individuals and groups who resort to intimidation, vandalism, or violence” and “we have spoken out repeatedly against violence in any form”. So why did the HSUS resort to intimidation tactics also known as the Ballot Initiative? We know that Wayne himself was in Ohio numerous times to tell the Gov and Commodity Leaders to either accept his way or pay the price. That is intimidation.
    I also would like to know why the HSUS has yet to release any official statement on the latest attack by MFA on Buckeye Veal Farm. They are using intimidation tactics to pressure the Care Standards Board to adopt policies immediately, MFA’s own CEO stated that in his press release.
    We in Ohio are awaiting Wayne’s press release condemning MFA and acknowledging HSUS does not support MFA. I doubt it will happen.

  21. Google AETA Bob Barker is a link to PETA HSUS there is a Federal law to protect the animal owners the attack on the Buckeye Veal Farm I am going to start asking law inforcment about the harassment on Animal Owners and start Pushing to send the ARS to Jail Karen Maybe you would look good in Orange

  22. How much does HSUS give to Local Shelters??? Seems this shelter had to pay HSUS for something they still haven’t gotten.

    From the Dallas Morning News website:
    “Dallas animal control still waiting on Humane Society report, searching for new manager
    12:14 PM Mon, Nov 08, 2010
    Rudolph Bush/Reporter
    Leaders of Dallas’ troubled animal services department are still waiting for the results of a report from the Humane Society of the United States that could serve as a blueprint for reforming operations at the city’s shelter.
    The report was expected last week but is not yet ready, according to city officials.
    The $25,000 review – paid for by the Metroplex Animal Coalition


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