Missouri Rep. Wants to Criminalize Finding Out Where Your Diseased Meat Came From

hanging_beef.jpg
Thomas Bjørkan/Wikimedia
It's none of your business.
A bill has been proposed to the Missouri legislature that would make it illegal for anyone to obtain federal records about diseased cows, pigs, and other animals from all farms and factory meat producers in the state.

According to HB 2094, which was introduced by Rep. Jay Houghton, a Republican from Martinsburg, Freedom of Information Act or Missouri Sunshine requests pertaining to animal health or environmental protection data collected by state agencies under the federal Animal Traceability Program (ATP) would be legally denied.

The ATP was implemented by the USDA to facilitate tracking the origin of diseased animals and control the spread of any communicable threat by mandating state agencies collect a wide range of data, including health and location of movements, on farm animals that move between states for slaughter. This data is then sent to the USDA in hopes that when breakouts do occur, having the data will make it easier to isolate and eliminate threats.

Houghton's bill would make it illegal for non-governmental organizations to obtain the ATP-collected data through FOIA or Sunshine requests. For example, if a disease breaks out in a factory farm, journalists would not be allowed access to data collected before or during the threat to report on how it happened.

See also: Wash. U. Med School Says Memo Warning of "Eco-Terrorism" is a Hoax

Houghton tells Daily RFT that his bill is not an attempt to protect meat producers from bad press in the event that something goes wrong, he just wants to protect their privacy.

"If somebody is doing something wrong, if they're bad actors, they should be put out of business," Houghton says.

"What I'm after is to prevent the release of personal information. To me, it's no different than giving out information about who has concealed-carry permits," he says, referring to recent controversies over media organizations releasing information about individuals who have gun permits.

When asked what could be the potential dangers of releasing information about the health of farm animals being used for meat that humans will eat, Houghton says: "How about environmental terrorists? For example, if someone wanted to take a vial of foot-and-mouth disease to someone's cattle farm."

Click on the next page to read more about Houghton's bill...

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37 comments
Michael Kepler
Michael Kepler

Not shocked considering the always honest and wonderful Monsanto company is HQ'd in St Louis.

Stu Katz
Stu Katz

Typical of the Missouri Legislature, a bunch of thieves and lowlifes.

Deb Woods
Deb Woods

Scott Creedon- you cannot be that clueless about what is really going on. If you are, please don't ever vote. Ever.

Earl Barge
Earl Barge

I'm sure it made sense to them when they just said it in their head. Saying it out load is another story.

Steve Scott
Steve Scott

These so called represenatives only care about money not about our health or enviroment.

Don Lanier
Don Lanier

Imagine if Asbestos had a Protection act......like Monsanto, whose to say in 15 years GMO/GE Foodstocks arent the new Asbestos....

Don Lanier
Don Lanier

I say we criminalize STUPID legislators like this, Instead of giving COVER to offenders it should be easier, not harder, this Legislator needfs to be FIRED....

Zac Miller
Zac Miller

I'm from the planet where a Republican president oversaw the largest expansion of the federal government via the PATRIOT Act, DHS, TSA. The planet where our government constantly expands corporate control via ALEC. The planet where laws like this expand government against the people while giving corporations free reign to engage in unsavory business practices. The planet where Republicans claim to advocate for small government, but do the opposite.

Terry Deschain
Terry Deschain

Planet Republicrat. Parties of, for, and by the corporations.

Scott Creedon
Scott Creedon

Big government Republicans? What planet are you from?

Marc Seleman
Marc Seleman

Once again big business wins out over consumers. Here's an idea....quit eating the beef and hurt them where it matters at their bottom line.

Rob Spicer
Rob Spicer

I honestly just don't give a shit anymorez. We're supposed to be going this way ->, but they taking us that way

Heather Louis
Heather Louis

Am I the only one who feels like America is going to end up in concentration camps?

Doug Tull
Doug Tull

Always remember that Republicans are the enemy of the individual, the consumer and the employee, and you'll be fine. They serve the lobbyist, industry and the corporation.

Laura Dee
Laura Dee

Why do so many businesses that DON'T need protections, get them?? Oh yeah, because money is more important than the health of our citizens. I forgot.

Brian Boyd
Brian Boyd

These "meat farms" have become too big to fail. They contribute so much money to corrupt politicians.

Zac Miller
Zac Miller

Big government Republicans protecting big business.

Phil Marquart
Phil Marquart

Dan Walde, Larry here is a prime example of lobbyists control our lawmakers! Even the wealthy farmers coops try to get laws passed regarding those cows we were talking about!

Shaddow Church
Shaddow Church

the information he claims to want to protect is already a matter of public record (addresses of cattle farms are very readily available)

Carly Pownall
Carly Pownall

Umm I don't think so! What we put into our bodies is our business, and the reports should be public!

jaco1175
jaco1175 topcommenter

Another outstate chicken fucking rube doing everything he can to ensure that the freedom to torture animals remains a right to their fellow rural fuckheads in Missurah. These inbred assfaces have diseased minds.

smdrpepper
smdrpepper

Once again, the GOP want to protect the big money corporations.  What other purpose of this is there?

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