Animal rights activists are using tech to expose the horrors of factory farms

McDonald’s is testing a vegan burger, and after reading this report about the horrors of factory farms from The Intercept, you’re going to want to try it.

The Intercept‘s story looks at the federal piglet-hunt that arose when activists from Direct Action Everywhere (DxE), decided to rescue two piglets they found near death at a Smithfield factory farm–part of the nation’s largest industrial farm corporation–where they were filming. They grabbed the pigs and took them to an animal sanctuary to be nursed back to health. A few weeks later, per the story, FBI agents in bulletproof vests, armed with search warrants, showed up at two animal shelters demanding to DNA test pigs to figure out if they were the stolen property. Normally two sick pigs wouldn’t merit such action, but according to The Intercept, DxE’s filming had drawn attention to Smithfield’s operation thanks to videos they posted to Facebook and YouTube of the farm and the rescue as well as an article in The New York Times that looked at the use of virtual reality that immerses viewers into the horrors in factory farms. That extra attention got Smithfield to act, calling in the help of federal agents. Per The Intercept, it’s all part of a larger plan by factory farms to hide their operations through so-called “ag-gag” laws, which make publishing videos of farm conditions taken as part of undercover operations a felony, punishable by years in prison.

Read the full investigation while watching Netflix’s Okja and hoping McDonald’s vegan experiment succeeds in Finland, where it’s doing its testing, and decides to bring its McVegan soy patty over to the States.


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