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Iowa Mink Release Fails to Rescue

By Immydog
As I write this blog, an FBI helicopter is humming above our small town.  Many will lose sleep to that surprisingly loud flutter tonight if it persists into the wee hours of the morning.  Our small town has fallen victim to domestic terrorism.  The federal and local police are searching for the terrorists.
A local mink farm was broken into and 1200-1500 mink were released from their cages a few days ago in an attempt to "rescue" them.
The culprits apparently tried to repeat the act tonight, as the law lay in wait for them.  We will see what the news has to say tomorrow about this evening's incident.  Meanwhile, the helicopter hovers above us, viewing our town in infrared and night vision scopes, and the residents text each other to lock doors and vehicles as the terrorists try to find a place to hide.
While I will never wear a mink coat, or admire anyone who does, I believe the people who attempted this rescue did so with very little knowledge about the repercussions of their actions.  They have not saved a single life tonight.
Releasing mink who have spent their entire lives in cages into the wild in the middle of the night is an immature and unsuccessful attempt at making a statement.  These mink are raised with water and food allotments handed to them.  Few of them will survive and fewer will thrive following sudden abandonment just weeks before an Iowa winter rears its ugly head. 
Many of the released mink were trapped by the farmer and volunteers following their release, and are now residing in cages with unfamiliar cage mates.  Those mink who were housed together are now separated and housed with those whom they have not yet established a hierarchy.  This is the equivalent of placing unfamiliar, scared, and aggressive dogs into a small cage (or ring, sound familiar?).  The result is fighting and often death of one or more of the cage mates. 
The actions of these people are equivalent to putting a band-aid on a slit throat.  It is not pretty, will not help the victims, and will not win you any praise.  If you want to make change, support the legislators trying to make that change.  Educate the public.  Decrease the demand, and the profit will decrease.  All of these take time, but it is the only way to protect animals.
Acting out illegally, and causing the amount of stress you caused in these animals is not going to gain you any praise from me or from most in the animal welfare circuit.  While we may or may not agree with your views about mink farming, your weapons should be words, not acts of cruelty.  Acts like these cause a loss of respect for animal welfare and animal rights supporters by the general public.  We come off being viewed as criminals, too uneducated to recognize the difference between saving one vs. protecting many.  We are viewed as unstable morons racing around screaming, "Let the pretty mink free"! 
Rather than save a small group of animals, our actions should provide a blanket that protects all of them. It is equivalent to buying a puppy from a store because you feel bad that it came from a puppy mill.  If you feel bad for puppies sold in stores, then you should try to get the store to discontinue selling puppies, not support the store by purchasing the puppy to "rescue" it.  Pick up your pens, grab a dictionary and a thesaurus, and make a real difference by writing to your legislators and educating your friends, family, and the local public. 
Why mink release is considered an act of domestic terrorism, I am unsure.  I suspect it is because it is considered an attack on the agricultural industry and lies in the same realm as an attack on our food source, IE cattle or hogs, as may happen in an act of war. 
If this is the interpretation, and is the reason why the federal agencies seem to be involved in catching "mink liberators", I think the government would be better off spending this time and money rewriting the laws that make up the animal welfare act, and better defining the animal industries and protecting the animals in their care.  Hogs are not mink are not dogs.  They all deserve their own set of rules and regulations as their husbandry and produce is not similar.
Releasing a pathogen as an act of war in order to deplete our nations food source is an act of terrorism whose ramifications would be felt nationwide.   That, I do understand.   Releasing mink from a farm, mink who are intended for the backs of the filthy rich is difficult for me to view as an act of terrorism.  Their production is meant to support egos and vanity, while cattle and hogs support the nourishment of families.  One is cosmetic and superficial, the other is a mainstay of life (unless your a vegetarian but the truth is that the majority of our nation is not).  Mink release does not threaten our survival...
Although I would hate to hear that thousands of Iowans froze to death this winter due to an unfortunate delay in mink coat production.
If you really think about it,
Iowa Mink Release Fails to Rescue
Iowa Mink Release Fails to Rescue
Iowa Mink Release Fails to Rescue
Iowa Mink Release Fails to Rescue
Don't we look just as ridiculous wearing theirs???
"Cruelty is one fashion statement we can all do without."
~Rue McClanahan

"Behind every beautiful fur, there is a story. It is a bloody, barbaric story." 
~Mary Tyler Moore
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***Special thanks to those of you who provided words of support and encouragement in reference to my preceding blog.  I truly appreciate it, even though there were too many emails to respond to personally.  Thank you. :-)

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