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Lawyers File Emergency Order to Shut Down Chicken Swinging (New Video)

October 1, 2014 by Leave a Comment

The News

Lawyers for the Alliance to End Chickens as Kaporos filed an emergency order with the City of New York arguing that the swinging and slaughtering of tens of thousands of chickens in the street should be shut down because the ritual causes immediate, irreversible damage to public health and violates animal cruelty and sanitation laws. A judge is expected to issue a decision on Wednesday.

Following is a one minute video of the ritual taken on Tuesday, the first of three days of chicken swinging that lead up to Yom Kippur, the Jewish day of atonement.

On Tuesday night, a few dozen activists clashed with hundreds of Orthodox Jews who were “transferring their sins” to live chickens while swinging them around their heads. The activists were contained in a pen and were surrounded by Kaporos practitioners who are always eager to debate.

Protesters & chicken swingers square off

Protesters & chicken swingers square off

This barbaric scene that takes place year after year is heart-breaking for activists, but the community has hope. Karen Davis, the founder of United Poultry Concerns and who traveled from Virginia to participate, says: “As more and more animal rights activists get involved, and with legal challenges in the works, many Orthodox rabbis are publicly condemning Kaporos on grounds of animal cruelty and sacrilege.”


Thousands of chickens will be held in crates for several day with no food or water

Animal rescuers, including Jenny Brown from the Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary, were on hand to save as many chickens as possible and transport them to sanctuaries to live out their natural lives in the company of with hundreds of other farm animals who escaped from slaughter.

Woodstock tends to injured chicken rescued from Kaporos

Woodstock tends to injured chicken rescued from Kaporos

Your Turn

Please sign the petition urging NYC to enforce the laws being broken by Kaporos practitioners.

Comments via Facebook Comments

  1. LINDA BOYCE says:


  2. ulla pade says:

    please stop these ancient rituals, it is cruel and makes us feel bad about jews,
    which was not the case bebore i heard about this

  3. astrid hilfer says:

    Is there no end to human beings finding more and more ways of torturing animals? Please stop this inhumane ritual, it’s so barbaric — this isn’t the Dark Ages — or is it? Please help stop this if you can.

  4. Lillian Gatti says:

    This supersticious ritual is ridiculous. Animals being tortured and tormented to atone for the sins of these religious zealots….how about if they throw money into the crowd to atone for their sins instead. How about community service to atone for their sins, what about doing good to atone for their sins. They are their sins…animals are blameless and sinless. What they are doing is a sin. No religion should be allowed to sacrifice any animal. We are supposed to be civilized…I thought animal sacrifice was something only the ignorant do. Guess I did not realize how many ignorant people are out there. STOP THIS PRACTICE NOW!!!

  5. Sandi Adams says:

    Animal sacrifice sanctioned by religion is a blatant excuse to harm animals to satisfy a sadistic craving. All animal cruelty coming from religious traditions is wrong. Halal (Muslim)and kosher (Jewish) slaughter should be banned in the US. When will animal rights come before religious freedom rights? Pig wrestling in Wisconsin or Montana by a Catholic Church fits into this category of harming animals and should be stopped. Gang of “so called” Christians wrestling pigs in mud and killing them the next day.

  6. Dianne Rochenski says:

    This is an abomination against God. God Never wanted animal sacrifice. He gives us his beautiful animals to love and cherish and what do humans do. Eat, wear, torture, mutilate, abuse and kill them horrifically. God is looking down at these people and judging them, not in a good way. I’m a vegan because I love ALL animals. These Jewish people need to read the bible. This is NOT what God wants. A great book is God’s Covenant with Animals.

  7. Is there a petition going around to put pressure on the city? I will gladly sign.

    1. Donny Moss says:

      The petition is at the end of the article. Thank you for your thoughtful remarks.

      1. You’re welcome! 🙂

  8. Kate says:

    I didn’t see any swinging or hurting of the chickens. One man gently waved a chicken in a circle, over his children. Maybe getting facts together before condemning would be in order? I don’t practice Judaism, nor am I Jewish but I grew up in the heart of the most Orthodox Jews and have never witnessed cruelty. In fact, they go through great lengths in the kosher way of slaughtering their animals as so not to cause suffering. I would prefer buying kosher meats for their cleanslines & concerns on the way animals need not suffer when slaughtered for food. Now don’t all jump down my throat just say in’.

    1. Wow, Kate... says:

      Your comment really belies your ignorance.. A quick youtube search for “kosher slaughter” will tell you all you need to know about how INhumane the practice is. This needless killing of chickens for superstitious reasons is no more justifiable.

      I too was taught that kosher slaughter was humane. The way it is carried out is intentionally horrible.

    2. Christina Gdisis says:

      Kate, unfortunately there is no compassionate or less cruel way of slaughtering an animal. At the end of the day these sentient lives are gone. A life is taken. Now, being culturally competent of religion and the Jewish traditions, there is a rabbi who has attested to the fact that this ritual is unnecessary. In fact instead of using chickens to “rid” their “sins” they could use coins instead.

      Read more here:

      In addition, I understand you being able to advocate for what kinds of people they are (after all we’re all people). I too grew up around an Orthodox Jewish neighborhood in Brooklyn and found many of them to be lovely. BUT, the bottom line is that this practice is INHUMANE. I attended one of the demonstrations last year and bared witness to chickens being stacked up on top of each other for days, urinating and defecating on each other. I watched as they sprayed water from on top, barely reaching each chicken (even though this is not how chickens consume water), so they were never properly hydrated.

      I’d also like to add that at some point Jewish men came out with chickens in their hands (alive) and proceeded with slaughtering them in front of the activists/demonstrators. So, even though you did not bare witness to cruelty, doesn’t mean it’s not happening.

      Having said all that, thank you for your input. I hope you take this as a conversation and not as an attack. I just would like for everyone to understand how cruel this practice is and to know that there are alternatives to slaughter.

    3. Kelly says:

      Kate, How does one GENTLY wave a chicken in a circle, over their children? Would you allow a person to do the exact same thing to your dog or cat? Good Grief. Misguided Sheep. This is beyond barbaric and they should all be jailed.

  9. wendy perry says:

    Criminals shut them down and charge them

  10. patty sprinker says:

    There seems to be no end to the senseless acts of cruelty that humans inflict on defenseless animals!!!! STOP THIS SHAMEFUL CRUELTY!!!!

  11. Carrie says:

    We have to put pressure on NYC to get this to end. It should not continue on each year and is ridiculous. If people started swinging new born babies and said that was for a religious reason would it be allowed? I think not!

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