BYH Balot family for providing $2M in scholarships for students to attend John Paul II Catholic High School. Greenville...

Congress must end USDA’s cruel kitten study

Science Says Domesticated Cats

A bipartisan bill would eliminate a U.S. Department of Agriculture research project that conducts controversial testing on kittens.


Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Kittens are intentionally poisoned with parasite-infested meat, studied and then burned alive — and it’s happening on your dime.

Rep. Walter B. Jones Jr. spoke out last week about a controversial U.S. Department of Agriculture research project and signed on to a bipartisan bill that would eliminate the taxpayer-funded form of animal cruelty.

The Farmville Republican was shocked to learn that the USDA’s Agriculture Research Service uses kittens in toxoplasmosis testing. He has two 7-year-old Siamese cats, the News & Observer reported, siblings named Buddha and Sadat.

“As a longtime cat owner, I was alarmed that the federal government has been secretively spending Americans’ tax dollars for archaic experiments on kittens, and then needlessly killing the healthy animals at the end of the project,” Jones said in a news release. “Abusing pets in government labs with taxpayers’ money has to stop and I’ll continue to fight until it does.”

Jones met last week with Animal Planet star Hannah Shaw and representatives from the White Coat Waste Project, an advocacy group working to end taxpayer-funded animal testing, the Raleigh newspaper reported.

Rep. Mike Bishop, a Michigan Republican, introduced the KITTEN Act — an acronym for Kittens in Traumatic Testing Ends Now — on May 11. In a letter to Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, Bishop wrote that the USDA breeds hundreds of kittens, feeds them raw meat infected with Toxoplasma parasites for two to three weeks, collects and studies their feces and then destroys the cats through incineration.

This study, Bishop says, has been ongoing since 1982.

Toxoplasmosis causes around 750 U.S. deaths each year, but it’s not considered a life-threatening disease for otherwise healthy adults. It “may cause flu-like symptoms in some people, but most people affected never develop signs and symptoms,” according to the Mayo Clinic.

It may cause “serious complications” for babies born to infected mothers and people with compromised immune systems, but there already are at least two FDA-approved medications to treat the disease.

We realize animal testing is credited with medical advances that have saved human lives, but after 36 years, what’s left to be gained from torturing and killing America’s most popular pet? (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals estimates there are 85.8 million cats and 78 million dogs in the United States.)

Not only are the USDA’s kittens made to suffer needlessly, but the method by which they’re killed is an outrage. Why incinerate live animals instead of humanely euthanizing them by injection as public animal shelters do?

The manner in which these animals are treated would be upsetting enough if a private lab were responsible. The fact that a government agency is committing these atrocities with taxpayer money is enough to turn our stomachs.

We commend Congressman Jones for adding his name to the KITTEN Act and calling attention to this cruel and inhumane research. The bill currently has 19 Democratic and six Republican sponsors, and it’s a mystery why all 435 U.S. representatives haven’t signed on to the legislation. House rules place no upper limit on the number of members who may co-sponsor a bill.

Science sometimes gets short shrift in politics when lawmakers cherry-pick details of legitimate studies to make them seem wasteful or ridiculous, such as the widely lampooned “shrimp on a treadmill” research that measured the species’ response to changes in water quality. This is not one of those times.

Intentionally poisoning kittens to pad a 36-year study is cruel. Burning them to death is evil. There’s no rationalizing it or explaining it away.

The USDA cannot be allowed to continue this inhumane practice.

The Wilson Times


Humans of Greenville


Local photographer Joe Pellegrino explores Greenville to create a photographic census of its people.


June 18, 2018 - 15 minutes ago

Master impersonators taking on multiple identities to vote as other people. Dead people rising from their graves to haunt your neighborhood polling place. Non-citizens descending by the caravan to vote alongside true Americans.

The mythical beast known as “voter fraud” is as…


June 17, 2018

About a year ago, state Republican leaders vowed to retaliate in response to a painful rebuff from the U.S. Supreme Court, which had just refused to review a lower court ruling striking down the Legislature’s 2013 discriminatory voter ID law.

“All North Carolinians can rest assured that…

June 16, 2018

Supporters of North Carolina’s Opportunity Scholarship Program say a new report by N.C. State University researchers shows that the state voucher program is helping students from low-income families.

That’s far more hype than fact.

What the study makes clear is there’s no way to…

June 15, 2018

Music is healing. Students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas Senior High School put that theory on display Sunday night in New York with their stirring performance at the Tony Awards — beautifully.

The students, all from the school’s drama department, brought the house down singing the…


June 14, 2018

The Singapore summit was, without question, a triumph for Kim Jong Un and his North Korean regime. A dictator who has ordered the murder of his own family members, and who oversees a gulag comparable to those of Hitler and Stalin, was able to parade on the global stage as a legitimate statesman,…

APTOPIX Trump Kim Summit-5

June 13, 2018

Kittens are intentionally poisoned with parasite-infested meat, studied and then burned alive — and it’s happening on your dime.

Rep. Walter B. Jones Jr. spoke out last week about a controversial U.S. Department of Agriculture research project and signed on to a bipartisan bill that…

Science Says Domesticated Cats

June 12, 2018

The party whose leader promised to drain the swamp is now in the business of protecting cesspools.

The N.C. Senate’s Agriculture Committee has approved a bill that would protect the cheap way of handling hog waste: pooling it up in storage lagoons and then spraying it on fields, where it can…

Hog Smells Lawsuits-6

June 11, 2018

Bloomberg View

In its alarming new report on America's fast-rising suicide rate, the Centers for Disease Control cites many pressures that might lead people to take their own lives: problems with relationships or work, substance abuse, money troubles, or housing insecurity. No doubt all such…

June 11, 2018

In a week when many of us observed the one-year anniversary of the arrival of “GenX” in our vocabulary, the General Assembly chose the most cynical possible response. Instead of passing legislation that will protect Cape Fear River Basin residents from the chemical threat, lawmakers…

N.C. Legislative Building

June 09, 2018

Here it is, the beginning of the 2018 hurricane season, and we still haven’t made a reckoning of the real damage that last year’s Hurricane Maria inflicted on Puerto Rico.

Thanks, however, to a Harvard University study we’re getting closer to one. Researchers determined that in…

Puerto Rico Hurricane Deaths-7
108 stories in Editorials. Viewing 1 through 10.
«First Page   «Previous Page        
Page 1 of 11
        Next Page»   Last Page»