Federal judge completely botches ruling on foie gras

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This one is really disappointing. A federal judge on Wednesday overturned a California ban on foie gras.

For those unfamiliar with this food product, it is an unnecessary delicacy that is manufactured by force-feeding through tubes stuffed down the throat of ducks or geese.

People eat meat. That will go on. But why does the process have to include cruelty to this level or to the level of gestation crates or battery cages? In many cases, animals lived better lives on farms in the 1800s.

But this product – foie gras – is a delicacy. It is completely unnecessary. So one less fancy item will be on some high-handed menu. And while some people won’t get to brag that they ate foie gras, more ducks and geese will be spared inhumane treatment.

I think the diners and chefs can at least give up this item.

ABC News quoted U.S. District Judge Stephen V. Wilson, who overturned the ban, as saying,

“California cannot regulate foie gras products’ ingredients by creatively phrasing its law in terms of the manner in which those ingredients were produced.”


So if the production of an ingredient for a product was shown to put consumers’ health at risk, I guess Judge Wilson would claim the state couldn’t regulate it. I guess he thinks companies should be able to put lead back into the paint on toys and asbestos into homes.

So this judge doesn’t think a state can legislate against animal cruelty? Would he suggest a state could not regulate dog fighting, because the state cannot regulate a gambling operation based on the way the participants are produced?

Of course the states can and should be able to regulate food production, due to the manner in which the products are produced – for the goals of human health, food safety and the protection of animals.

It appears Judge Wilson based his ruling solely on the impact on the profit for high-end restaurants.

Maybe the judge needs to watch a video of who the birds are fed and then attempt to justify his misguided judgement.

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