Thursday, August 02, 2007

My Beef With All The Bad Press About Cows

Cows again, my friends, are in the news. I don't go looking for these items; they find me. Yes, it seems that it is My Destiny to be an advocate for my bovine, sistren, is it? whatever--since they cannot effectively manage their own publicity. Cases in point:

Item: Steer's Owner Ticketed for 'Excessive Mooing'. Incredibly, a Washington County, Ohio resident, who owns a single cow named Wally, was served with a misdemeanor citation for "ongoing nuisance cow mooing." Wally, who lives on a 33-acre farm zoned for 50 head of cattle, "moos maybe once or twice a day," says his owner, Karyl Hylle. Important to note is the fact that when the sheriff and/or his deputies had been called out on each of the 21 complaints by the neighbor, Mark (who asked that his last name not be used), Wally never said a single word. Even when prodded by reporters, Wally never uttered a sound. The citation carries a $1000 fine and/or 90 days in jail. Clearly, Mark just hates cows. Or has no knowledge of them. Cows moo. That is their native tongue. And, it would seem Wally does precious little of that as it is.

Item: Man Admits Sexually Molesting Cows. Lest you think this is a random, one-time thing, this 56-year-old man was charged with the same offense in 2000, but "police decided against bringing a cruelty-to-animals charge against Viens [the offender] after consulting with a veterinarian, who said no harm came to the cows." Did this horrific act occur in some Third World, unenlightened country as part of an occult ritual? No! It occurred in Vermont, U.S.A.! The farm employees caught him in the act, the police were called, and Mr. Viens gave them a sworn confession on the spot. Why not? He will only be charged with trespassing, I'm sure. After all, no harm came to the cows! How do they know?

Item: Global Warming and Stylish Cows. I am grown increasingly fatigued of cows being blamed in part for global warming. First was the FearMongering of Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (mad cow disease--how I even hate to see it in words before me!), and its effect on beef and dairy, and now the insidiousness of the Republicans trying to mitigate the responsibility of big business by pointing the finger at innocent bovine flatulence. Who amongst us has not had a bit of intestinal gas every now and then? If your diet was made up entirely of grains and grass, wouldn't you have a bit of the bubbleguts? But I digress. An OpEd writer from Pennsylvania went to the PennEnvironment press conference to learn more about the devastation that could be wreaked upon Pennsylvania's particular environment by global warming if left unchecked. According to one spokesman, the forecast is dire for the state's dairy cows, whose milk production would drastically reduce due to heat stress. Rather than take this threat seriously, this cavalier writer instead spun it to blame the cows themselves, asking that since "gassy cows produce one quarter of the methane that's causing global warming," wouldn't it be better if the state's cows die, meaning that fewer of them are producing the gas? When the PennEnvironment guy reminded him that the cows wouldn't necessarily die, but produce less milk, this wag of a writer offered this solution: “couldn't we affix large, floppy sun hats to the cows' heads so they can graze in the heat? They would stay comfortable and look stylish.” I cannot even begin to enumerate the problems with this if he doesn't know them already. The least of which is that no one looks good in large, floppy sunhats especially if one is already large. Duh.

The incessant, inexplicably vicious campaign against cows continues. Their one champion besides me would be, perhaps, the Real California Cheese advertising campaign in which the happy cows play Marco Polo, Knock Knock Zoom Zoom, and otherwise frolic and behave in acceptably fun ways while decidedly not wearing clothing. Do your part. Become an advocate for cows today. Appreciate them. Count them when on long car trips. Moo at them when you pass them. Don't buy figurines of them wearing clothing. And never, ever order your beef well done. That's just wrong.
Last Year at The Dept. of Nance: The Alaskan Adventure Part V


  1. Anonymous3:37 PM


    Forget about it, I am NOT mooing at cows from my car anymore!

    Yesterday we were driving past a field full of cows and they all turned and looked at us and said "YADDA,YADDA,YADDA."

  2. I am throwing my sun hat away directly after typing this. As a Wisconsin Girl (transplanted to Michigan) the whole "Happy Cows" campaign bothers if cows aren't happy in "America's Dairyland". Especially the one where the Grandma cow suffers flashbacks over it. Sigh...

  3. Anonymous8:46 PM

    There, there, Nance. Here's some good press about cows. Or at least, not bad press, and, as a "teacher of English" I know you will enjoy it. Particularly the corrections!

  4. Anonymous9:17 PM

    My pet peeve is that "city folk" move to the country and then complain about the farm smells and sounds (and where I live now, they complain about the commercial fishing dock sounds & lights). Sigh.

  5. You know, we were at the county fair today and we pet some cows!

    And I said to myself, "Gosh, if only Nance was here...."

  6. Nancy, this is an outrage! A $1,000 fine is absurd! It seems funny that no one will fine my neighbor for the damned dog barking!!! What the hell?!

    And molesting cows...this is causing me a bit of dry heavage! What is his problem? He couldn't find any women who were willing? And how the hell CAN they assess whether or not there was any harm...I'm sure the cow can suffer mental anguish, right Nance?

  7. Wait . . . the non-mooing cow gets a ticket, and the Perv of the Universe doesn't? Also, don't all ruminants fart a lot? What about the world's enormous population of sheep, goats, etc.? Isn't this a case of species racism?

    Also, I pray that the population doesn't drop--I can't live without large amounts of cheese.

  8. nancy--sigh. it was just a suggestion. and as for those other cows, those were of the Seinfeldian breed.

    mrs. grumpy--you have to admit, the weather in Wisconsin is not all that great. and I've been to Wis.--not much nightlife, either. I'm just sayin'.

    Ortizzle--I find the reference to the "special tablets" very suspicious and sinister. Notice how the rest of that sentence is left ambiguous.

    plain jane--I hear you. If I were Wally's owner, I'd go get the other 49 cattle allotted to me. But I'm snarky like that.

    gina--Did you really??!! I am probably the only female in the entire universe who is flattered when someone tells me, "I saw a cow today and thought of you!"

    tera--I know! Certainly gross bovine sexual imposition should be charged. The fact that the cow could not even SAY no is major, as far as I am concerned. And oh, I am concerned.

    sputnik--Boy, do you get it! The first paragraph of your comment nails it. And regarding the second: You can take my brie and cheddar when you can pry it from my cold, dead hands.

  9. Anonymous12:17 PM

    Eating cows? Yes, lets! Molesting them? That's just wrong.

  10. Anonymous12:36 PM

    Or we could all just stop eating cows... Wouldn't solve the mooing but it would cut down on the number of cows farting our environment to death.

    Cows are friends, not food. :)

  11. wordgirl--As much as I adore cows, I am a fan of all things beef, a fact which many people find odd. I don't.


    You are obviously a victim of the insidious Anti-Bovine marketing campaigns of which I blog. That is one of THEIR axioms. Please. Do not become one of their mindless prey. Cows ARE our friends. And producers of much of our food as well. And fertilizer. Think of all the collateral damage humans alone have caused to our planet. And pigeons. And rampant non-native plant species in your area. Place NOT the blame on cows.


Oh, thank you for joining the fray!

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