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“Live Bait” Scandal Triggers Public Debate About Proposed Ag-Gag Law

February 26, 2015 by Leave a Comment

The News

Secretly recorded video of racing dogs ripping apart live animals, who were being used as bait, has triggered public debate in Australia about a proposed ag-gag law that would have compromised the investigation and possibly prevented the incriminating footage from being taken in the first place.

Greyhound trainers tie live animals to automatic lures that the dogs chase during training exercises.

Greyhound trainers attach live animals to fast-moving lures that the dogs chase while training

Barnaby Joyce, Australia’s notoriously anti-animal, anti-activist Minister of Agriculture, is using media coverage of the live bait scandal as a platform to push for a U.S.-style ag-gag law that would punish those who take the footage: “Why should people be allowed to trespass onto a farm? You cannot decide to take the law into your own hands. Everybody has in their own purview an ethical reason to break into some industry because of what they judge to be correct.” The proposed legislation would also require activists who do acquire footage to quickly turn it over to authorities, which would compromise their investigations.

Australia's Minister of Agriculture Barnaby Joyce is  advocating for anti-trespass laws to criminalize undercover investigations

Australia’s Minister of Agriculture Barnaby Joyce is advocating for ag-gag laws to criminalize undercover investigations that expose animal cruelty and to protect those who commit the abuses

If comments posted online about the live bait exposé are any indication, Australians overwhelmingly disagree with Mr. Joyce:

“Only people like Barnaby could look at video of the most barbaric animal cruelty and seek to punish those who exposed it, not those who perpetrate it.”

“If the regulators don’t protect the animals then SOMEONE has too.”

“Baby pigs being ripped apart while tied to a lure doesn’t seem to upset Joyce, but the people who exposed it do?”

“For too long, the so called regulators have been in bed with cruel industries. So who is going to stop cruelty? The people who always have — the public.”

It was in mid-February that Animals Australia and Animal Liberation Queensland shocked the world with the surveillance footage of greyhounds dogs, who are normally docile, being trained by the racing industry to tear apart live rabbits, possums and baby pigs at training facilities.

It isn’t just the dog racing business that Barnaby Joyce is working to protect. Horrific footage from dozens of undercover investigations of Australia’s multi-billion dollar live export industry has demonstrated that transporting millions of cows and sheep to the Middle East and Asia is inherently inhumane. It is this damning footage that Minister Joyce is most eager to suppress.

live-export-sheep copy

Each year, millions of live sheep and cattle are exported to the Middle East and Asia

Australia’s proposed ag-gag law would impose fines up to $10,000 and prison sentences up to 20 years, depending on the amount of economic damage. In the U.S., seven states have passed “ag-gag” bills into law since the 1990s.

Your Turn

Please visit Animals Australia to learn more about the organization’s extraordinary investigations that are blowing the lid off of some of the world’s cruelest animal industries.

Comments via Facebook Comments

  1. Jean daglish says:

    The AG GAG Law is a very real concern ..we in Australia have people like Barnaby Joyce and a lot of the Redneck friends pushing for this to get in,, we will have to band together all groups if we hope to stop it

  2. Tania Meehan says:

    People that care about the welfare of animals would not trespass onto a farm and take footage of barbaric animal cruelty if Ministers like Barnaby Joyce and the so called regulators did what had to be done to STOP this practice and not PROTECT the ABUSERS!!!!!!!!!

  3. these ATTROCITES have to stop.

  4. Cindy says:

    An eye for an eye….I want to come back specifically to fight eye for an eye do but for the purpose of defending poor helpless animals that cant defend themselves….I pray to whomever my Gods may be……. I hate humans

  5. geetika says:

    If they aren’t doing anything wrong or horrible then why they want to put this bill and if they really wants to do something for poor animals then they should ban this racing and other inhumane practices. Shouldn’t ban the people who are exposing these wrongdoing to the animals.

  6. Elinor Hawke-Szady says:

    I agree with Linda and MCG above – this is DEPLORABLE, but unfortunately not uncommon. The same thing goes on here in Canada. I recently signed a petition demanding a ban on certain pesticides which scientists believe are responsible for the drastic decline in honey bee populations. The letter I received back from the Federal Minister of Health Canada was a bunch of political double-speak that basically said there are safe pesticides (there AREN’T), and bees were fine – nothing to worry about!!!

    Governments don’t care, and I’m sick of it. That’s why I sign over 30 petitions EVERY SINGLE DAY on human and animal rights, and the environment.

  7. linda robbins says:

    This guy really needs to feel what these animals go through and that I mean the physical part of pain . Has anyone oit there have anyway of collecting all our comments and publicly sending them to his local paper?

  8. MCG says:

    Joyce is obviously a slime bag. He has his mouth planted firmly around the “privates” of his BigAg masters. He does not represent the citizens. He is a cheap whore and nothing more. Ag-gag laws should scare the hell out of everyone, whether you care about animal welfare or not. Every politician foisting this filth upon the public should not only get voted out, they should be thrown in jail for unethical free speech suppression and protecting law breakers. Evil son of a bitch. And in the USA, there are more than two states that have passed this vile legislation, there are 8 or 9 now, I think. 11 states tried to sneak it through last year, but they were defeated once the public woke the hell up. If this shit can fester in America, you better watch out in your country. Makes my blood boil.

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