Author Archives: Adirondack Animal Rights

Upcoming Book Club Meeting

Two weeks from today is the next meeting of the Capital Region Animal Rights Book Club.  We’ll be discussing Mad Cowboy: Plain Truth from the Cattle Rancher Who Won’t Eat Meat by Howard Lyman.

Sunday, April 10th
2:00PM – 4:00PM
Troy, NY
This event is being held at someone’s residence so those who are attending will be given the address of the location. Please RSVP on Facebook

If you wish to bring any snacks or goodies to the book discussion, they must be 100%


From the Mad Cowboy website:

Howard F. Lyman has brought the issue of the dangers of eating beef to light like never before. A former cattle rancher-turned-vegetarian and food safety activist, in 1996, Lyman revealed, to a national television audience, how the cattle industry potentially exposed Americans to Mad Cow Disease by feeding cows the remains of live animals – including other cows. As a result of his remarks, Lyman was named a co-defendant with Oprah Winfrey in the infamous “veggie libel” case brought by Texas ranchers in Amarillo.

In this shocking and powerful book, Lyman uncovers the dangerous and potentially deadly practices of the cattle and dairy industry. MAD COWBOY is a passionate manifesto for change from an industry insider whose firsthand experiences will alter the way you think about your food, and the people who produce it, forever. “Sure, I used to enjoy my steaks as much as the next guy,” writes Lyman. “But if you knew what I know about what goes into them and what they can do to you, you’d probably be a vegetarian like me.”

A fourth generation dairy farmer and cattle rancher, Lymanbecame enamored of the “bold new age of chemically enhanced agriculture” as a student in agricultural college. Spurning the organic farming methods of his father and grandfather, he became a convert to modern chemical farming techniques: he fed his cows with hormones and antibiotics, and blanketed his farm with pesticides and herbicides. With his mind relentlessly focused on profits, he refused to acknowledge the harmful effects that this steady stream of chemicals might pose for the environment and for consumers who would later ingest these chemicals as meat. Admitting that at the time he “never met a chemical he didn’t like, ” Lyman says that he, like other dairy and cattle farmers, poisoned his animals and polluted his farms.


Cattle ranchers turned cows into cannibals. Until August 1997, cattle were routinely fed the remains of other cows. The Department of Agriculture and the FDA banned the practice, fearing the spread of bovine spongiform encephalopathy, better known as Mad Cow Disease. But it remains legal to feed cows “rendered” — dead and ground up — parts of certain animals, including the blood of other cows, despite the fact that this practice may allow deadly illnesses to enter the food chain. In 1995, five million tons of processed slaughterhouse leftovers were sold for animal feed.

In an effort to prevent disease, Lyman, like other ranchers, fed his cows antibiotics even before they became ill. Soon, Lyman was on an “antibiotic treadmill” constantly changing drugs as the cows became resistant to them, and even using antibiotics after they were banned because of the dangers they posed to human health. Every day, Lyman sprayed his feedlot with insecticides which would then fall into the cattle’s food and water — and eventually become part of someone’s dinner. Ranchers relentlessly used growth hormones, particularly DES, which they stockpiled when it was banned.

To increase their profits, ranchers also routinely fed growth hormones to cattle within two weeks of their slaughter, despite a government ban on the practice. Dairy ranchers continue to use recombinant bovine growth hormone (rBGH) to enhance milk production, despite the fact that this chemical — which has been implicated in causing cancer and other diseases — shows up in milk.

In 1989, the discovery of a rare spinal tumor led Lyman to examine his life. In MAD COWBOY, he tells the moving story of his own personal transformation, and how he became a crusader for organic farming and more conscious eating habits. Lyman describes the devastating effects that modern feed lot operations are having – and will continue to have – on the environment, and also outlines the profound health benefits that switching to a vegetarian diet offers, including reducing the risk of cancer, heart disease, stroke, and diabetes. After adopting a vegetarian diet, Lyman himself lost 130 pounds and lowered his cholesterol by more than 150 points.

“…I felt better knowing that there was one answer to many of the different ills afflicting both ourselves and our environment. Everything revolved around the fork.” (MAD COWBOY, p. 81)

MAD COWBOY is an honestly written, urgent wake-up call to America, a heartfelt plea for all consumers to take a closer look at the food they eat, and how it is grown.


Howard F. Lyman is a fourth-generation family farmer from Montana. After 20 years of operating a feed lot, he sold his ranch and started working for farmers in financial trouble. He was a lobbyist in Washington, and ran for Congress in 1982.

He is the former Director of the “Beyond Beef Campaign” & theHumane Society of the United States‘ “Eating With Conscience” Campaign; past President of both the International Vegetarian Union, and EarthSave International; and is currently President ofVoice for a Viable Future.

Howard travels over 100,000 miles every year as a speaker and lecturer. A Feature Documentary on his life is now in post-production. He lives in Alexandria, Virginia, with his wife Willow Jeane, and his cat, Ceasar.

Glen Merzer, playwright, screenwriter, and vegetarian, lives in Santa Monica, California.

Road Trip and Prisoner Support

A few of us are heading out to Hartford, CT on Wednesday for an exciting event.  Will Potter of and Justin Goodman, 2007

recipient of PETA’s Nanci Alexander Award for activist of the year, will be speaking at the University of Connecticut School of Law.  We highly suggest you attend if you’re able to make it.  From Green is the New Red:

“Approving Animal Abuse & Punishing Protest”

Will Potter and Justin Goodman will discuss the scope of animal experimentation in the United States, the laws that govern it, and how federal terrorism laws are being created and used against the nonviolent activists who are trying to end it.

Date: March 30, 2011
Time: 5:00 PM
Place: Blumberg Hall, University of Connecticut School of Law
65 Elizabeth Street
Hartford, CT 06105-2290

Vegan food from China Pan Restaurant will be provided courtesy of the sponsoring student groups.

Please invite your friends on the Facebook event page.

Closely related to this topic, we’ve added some new links to the website that we’d like you to check out including:

Support Daniel McGowan

Support Walter Bond

Support Marie Mason

Support Steve Murphy

These men and women have sacrificed their freedom to stand up to the destruction our government and corporations are inflicting on animals and our planet.  None of them have injured another human, yet they are often given lengthy prison sentences in comparison with other crimes. (Marie Mason is serving 22 years for charges relating to damaging an office connected to GMO research and destroying a piece of logging equipment.)  Marie’s support site makes a great point when they say that supporting her does not mean agreeing with the actions that she took — but it does mean opposing the fear-mongering tactics of the federal government and the outrageous sentences they have imposed.  How far is this repression going to go?  It’s incredibly scary to think about.

Photo credit: BITE BACK Magazine

For a complete list of current prisoners, please visit BITE BACK Magazine.  Take a moment today to write a quite letter of support to one or all of them.  Thank you!

Catching up.

Our movie night fundraiser was a lot of fun last week!  We had vegan pizza from DeFazio’s Pizzeria and it was amazingly delicious.  Can’t wait to have more!

Tomorrow is our monthly potluck at X’s to O’s: Saturday, 3/26 @ 5:30PM, 97 4th

ADK-AR Potluck at X's to O's. Photo credit: Lin Bingham.

Street, Troy.  As always, please bring a vegan dish to share as well as your own drink and place setting. This is not only a vegan event, but it is also hosted in a vegan facility. If you’re unsure what ingredients are vegan please feel free to ask us.  You can RSVP on Facebook or Meetup.

We’re still raising money for the Northeast Animal Liberation Festival on May 7th.  There is now a Paypal Donate button on the right hand side of our website and you can always buy ADK-AR shirts at all of our events.  We hope to have shirts as well as our chili cookzine up on the website for sale soon.

We’ve stocked X’s to O’s literature section with circus cruelty handouts.  Ringling Bros will be in Albany in May, but it’s important to reach out to people before they purchase their tickets.  Please consider picking up some of the literature and handing it out around your town.  Thank you in advance!

We’re putting the final touches on an exciting event that will be announced in the next few days.  Keep Wednesday evening, April 13th open and check back soon for details!

We’re having a movie night!

We’ve been trying to think of fun ways to raise money for Northeast Animal Liberation Festival.  We have to cover travel expenses for our guest panel speakers.  We are so excited to have Jenny Brown from WFAS and Camille Hankins from Win Animal Rights and No Kill New York coming.  There is someone else we have in mind that we would really like to be there, but we need to raise some cash before we can confirm!  Help us out!

So we’ve planned a movie night fundraiser!  Join us for a fun St. Patty’s Day complete with vegan snacks!  We’ll be watching Leprechaun!

Photo credit:

Thursday, March 17th
X’s to O’s Vegan Bakery
97 4th Street, Troy

Suggested Donation: $10 / $5 for students/low income

Vegan pizza, nachos and popcorn will be provided!  Please bring your own dishes and beverage.