Candidate Backs Change For Animal Agriculture

Aug. 5, 2019 Editor, The News-Gazette:

Industrial animal agriculture is the leading cause of climate change. We have talked about this, here in Rock-bridge County, for the better part of four years. Most of our warnings have been “but a cry in the wilderness,” but on Wednesday, July 30, we received the manna from Heaven this subject deserves: Tim Ryan, U.S. senator from the big farm state of Ohio, speaking at the Democrat debates …

“… But you cannot get there on climate unless you talk about agriculture. We need to convert our industrial system over to a sustainable and regenerative agriculture system that actually sequesters carbon into the soil … and we can start getting good food into our schools and into our communities that’s going to drive health care costs down …”

Hmmm … Senator Ryan’s words are getting us a lot closer to a remedy of the problem. Those of us who know the science already know that animal agriculture and fossil fuels are the two leading causes of climate change, but we also know that eliminating just fossil fuels will not fix the climate problem. Rather than thrash around in the dark, why don’t we just go after the solution that stares us in the face?

We have also pointed out that according to the Center for Disease Control, 30 percent of Americans are diabetic or pre-diabetic, 71 percent are on a prescription pharmaceutical and 25 percent have heart disease or a dangerous heart ailment leading to diagnosed heart disease. Obesity? It’s a scandal. These problems are caused by poor lifestyle choices and diet. Fifteen percent of Americans are on an illegal drug, which emerging studies show is the result of several factors, including diet!

Here, in Rockbridge County, we have embarked upon a project to eliminate livestock’s contribution to water pollution, so it should be clear that agriculture, especially animal agriculture, can no longer fly below the radar in America. The cat’s out of the bag … it’s time for action.

DONALD A. HENKE

Goshen

The News-Gazette

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