To the Editor: Issue 2 is called a big power grab PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Written by Brenda Long   
Monday, 26 October 2009 08:31
This letter is in regard to Issue 2 on the ballot Nov. 3. Since when did our state Constitution become a document to protect animals? I thought the constitution was established for the people of Ohio. Don't get me wrong, with all due respect, I am concerned and support the well being of God's creatures and want them treated with proper care, shelter and respect.
Issue 2 seems to be a huge power grab from corporate agribusiness interests rather than for livestock treatment and safer food as they claim. There is no need for such an amendment. There is no need to create an appointed board that will have unchecked power over any and all animal agriculture regulations in Ohio. From what I understand they will be judge, jury and executioner of all animal agriculture policies in Ohio.
The director of the department of agriculture can adopt rules to provide for food safety and the health, safety and welfare of livestock. Why wouldn't the Ohio legislators give this department more resources to do what is supposed to be their job rather than propose an amendment to set up another state board? What about the Ohio Farm Animal Care Commission? This supposedly promotes "proper animal husbandry practices" for animals used for food. So why do we need yet another state livestock board?
Ohio Supreme Court Justice Maureen O'Connor said that Issue 2 is an "inappropriate use" of a constitutional amendment. She also said it is a "much bigger document." Decisions like how farm animals should be treated are policy decisions and best left to lawmakers. "Policy needs to evolve as our society changes," states O'Connor. She also stated that proponents of Issue 2, however understand that a successful constitutional amendment will take "an arm and a leg" to overturn. Perhaps that says it all!
The Michigan legislature passed a historic farm animal welfare measure just a couple of weeks ago. This was accomplished with extensive negotiations from stakeholders from all sides, coming together to advance basic animal welfare concerns. I applaud their leadership in bringing the parties together to forge a reasonable compromise and the legislature for keeping the power in check!
Vote no on Issue 2 and tell our legislators not to let special interests take over our Constitution!
Brenda Long
Wayne
Last Updated on Tuesday, 27 October 2009 16:34
 

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