Category Archives: Animal Issues

From Preservation Worcester …

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What are your fave Woo haunts? pic: R.T.

Favorite Places Photography Exhibit Opens on Main Street

Preservation Worcester presents Favorite Places, an exhibit of photographs on view from November 21, 2017, through mid-January 2018 in the display window of the United States Post Office, in the Denholms Building, 484 Main St. An opening reception will be held in the lobby of the Denholms Building on Tuesday, November 21, 5 pm – 6:30 pm.

Favorite Places images are the work of Worcester photographer, Randle Stock, who was chosen for this project by a Preservation Worcester juried competition.

The show features a set of photographs of twenty Worcester citizens, who are active in the community, each interacting with his or her favorite Worcester historical building.

Documenting buildings found in a variety of local neighborhoods, these images record the pleasing variety of architectural styles, building materials, and design that characterize Worcester’s built environment.

Accompanying written statements express the range of meaning that the selected buildings hold for the diverse array of citizens who chose them.

Participating in the project are individuals, who, through their personal dedication and activism,have made important contributions to the city and to their city neighborhoods – Green Island, Quinsigamond Village, Main South, Crown Hill and others. Both young and old, they are from a variety of backgrounds, just as their favorite buildings represent a wide range of types and styles. Their chosen buildings, whose ages span more than a century, from 1812 to the 1930s, include City Hall, a diner, a historic tavern, and private houses, a brick three-decker, churches, a former synagogue, Union Station, a factory, schools, a monument, a museum, and Bancroft Tower.

This project is funded in part by a grant from the Worcester Arts Council, a local agency which is supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.

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A sampling. To see photos of the 20 folks and their favorite Worcester places, along with their statements, get thee to the Denholm Building!     – R.T.

Gloria D. Hall and Union Station

Washington Square, 1911

Gloria Hall is Project Manager, Art in the Park

Besides my really liking its architectural splendor, the station reminds me of a train trip that marked my coming of age. It’s the summer of 1969. I am traveling from Savannah to Philadelphia. Newspaper boys are harking news of the Kentucky Derby (Majestic Prince and his jockey, Johnny Lungden, win). Tables in the train’s dining car are set with white tablecloths, cloth napkins and individual five-piece plate settings with silver. African American waiters are bustling about serving the best tasting fried chicken and iced tea while the train is taking me to pepper steak hoagies, delis with pickles in barrels, my first visit to a movie theater, and row houses. In my mind, Union Station is that trip – expanding my cultural exposure and reinforcing who I am.

Lorraine M. Laurie, friend Patty Shugrue LaCross and St. John’s Roman Catholic Church

40 Temple Street, Greek Revival Style

1845, Richard Bond, architect, Boston; 1884 addition, P.W. Ford, Boston

Lorraine Laurie is a neighborhood activist, fondly known as “the Mayor of Green Island”

St. John’s has been my church since July of 2008 when Ascension Church closed. Worcester’s oldest surviving church building, it is the oldest Roman Catholic church west of Boston and the “Mother Church” of both the Springfield and Worcester dioceses. This parish reflects Worcester’s Irish heritage – a reminder of the construction of the Blackstone Canal, which brought here the Irish workmen who led to its founding. St. John’s is not only a building, but the center of the parish community.

Ike McBride and the Worcester Boys Club

Lincoln Square, 1929, Neo-Georgian Style

Frost, Chamberlain & Edwards, architects, Worcester

Ike McBride is Director of Operations, Boys & Girls Club of Worcester

As a Club Kid, I grew up in this building. The Lincoln Square Boys Club meant a great deal to me. It was a place that allowed me to grow safely in a positive environment and has put me on the path to where I am today.

AiVi Nguyen and the Boulevard Diner

155 Shrewsbury Street, 1936, traditional barrel roofed diner

Worcester Lunch Car Company, manufacturer, Worcester, Diner # 730

AiVi Nguyen is a partner at the law firm of Bowditch & Dewey, Worcester, and serves on the City of Worcester’s Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Committee

The Boulevard Diner is iconic Worcester. Everyone recognizes it because it is a great equalizer for the people of Worcester. It doesn’t matter who you are, where you come from, whether you are rich or poor — odds are you have been to the Boulevard. I worked there for two summers when I was in high school and college — overnight shift. I saw all walks of life come into that place — wealthy business people grabbing a meatball sandwich after a night out, young couples on dates, widowers who ate dinner there every night, police officers on break. Everyone was treated the same and everyone had the same expectations. The Boulevard Diner is one of those places you hope will stay the same forever.

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Think about sheep before wearing wool this fall

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Wool??? OH NO!!!! Rose gets educated.

By Paula Moore

With much of the country experiencing above-average temperatures, many people are leaving their wool sweaters in storage this fall. But, in addition to the balmy weather, there’s another reason to shun wool garments, and it might surprise you: Buying wool means supporting an industry that leaves gentle sheep battered and bloody.

PETA and its international affiliates have investigated dozens of sheep farms and shearing sheds on three continents, revealing horrendous abuse at every turn. In Australia — the world’s largest exporter of wool — violent attacks left petrified sheep bleeding from their eyes, noses and mouths. Workers were documented beating a lamb on the head with a hammer, punching and kicking sheep, standing on their necks and slamming their bodies to the floor.

Following PETA’s exposé, officials in Victoria, Australia, charged six shearers with at least 70 counts of cruelty to animals, the first-ever charges anywhere in the world against wool-industry workers for abusing sheep.

In December 2016, the first defendant pleaded guilty and was banned from shearing or being in charge of farmed animals for two years. In February and March of this year, four others pleaded guilty to more than 60 counts of cruelty. The sixth shearer was convicted in May.

The abuses that PETA documented were not the acts of a few “bad apples,” and they are not unique to Australia.

In the U.S., a shearer repeatedly twisted and bent a sheep’s neck until it broke.

In Chile, eyewitnesses found workers slaughtering sheep by driving knives into the fully conscious animals’ necks, hacking off lambs’ tails, leaving sheep bleeding after fast and rough shearing, kicking them and even skinning one animal alive.

In Argentina, PETA Asia obtained highly disturbing video evidence showing that lambs cried out, gasped and kicked even after workers sawed open their throats and snapped their heads backward in a crude attempt to break their necks. Some lambs were still alive and kicking when workers started to skin them.

The wool industry tries to assure consumers that shearing is no worse than a haircut, but that’s true only if your barber is Sweeney Todd.

Another fiction is that sheep “need” to be sheared. They don’t. Without human interference, they would produce just enough wool to protect themselves from temperature extremes. Instead, modern breeding and farming have created a gruesome and deadly profit-driven industry.

In Australia, where 25 percent of the world’s wool originates, merino sheep are bred to have extra folds of skin so that they produce more wool—so much that sheep collapse and die from heat exhaustion during hot months. The extra skin folds also hold moisture, and flies lay eggs in them. In a crude attempt to prevent this, sheep farmers use instruments resembling gardening shears to cut huge chunks of flesh from lambs’ backsides, a barbaric procedure known as “mulesing” that leaves lambs in excruciating pain.

In 2017, when vegan wool — made from bamboo, hemp, modal, rayon, cotton or other materials — is readily available, there’s no excuse for subjecting animals to such suffering in the name of fashion. Unlike wool from sheep, vegan wool is machine-washable, dries quickly, doesn’t shrink or mat and is hypoallergenic, so it’s a practical and compassionate choice. For sheep’s sake, shun wool this fall and stay stylish with animal-friendly options, whatever the weather.

Thursday wrap-up …

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Rose today …

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Like her sign says!

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From the Boys and Girls Club:

Watch the Worcester Police and Fire Departments Battle it Out for Worcester’s Youth!

InCity Charles Football
Charles, a Boys and Girls Club member!

Join the Boys & Girls Club of Worcester, United Way of Central Massachusetts, the Worcester Police Department, and the Worcester Fire Department on Friday, November 17, for the ultimate dodgeball tournament!

Members of the Police and Fire Departments will go head to head in a friendly game of dodgeball to help kick off the United Way campaign, which helps support the 6,000 youth we serve each year at the Boys & Girls Club of Worcester, as well as many other community non-profit organizations.

Our Club kids will get in on the fun too! Our youth will host their own dodgeball battles, where kids of all ages will play against their friends and fellow Club members!

InCity Charles2
Go, Charles, go!!

To show your support for the Boys & Girls Club of Worcester and the United Way of Central Massachusetts, please make sure to purchase a ticket for $5/piece (pay at the door) to watch some of our favorite community members put their own spin on a classic game.

The action will start at 6 p.m. at the Boys & Girls Club of Worcester, located at 65 Tainter St.

Questions? Please contact Louise O’Neill at the United Way of Central Massachusetts at (508) 757-5631 ext. 284 or louise.oneill@unitedwaycm.org. We hope to see you there!

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Highlighting Our Nation’s Veterans

The Wealth of Veterans Report

The U.S. Census Bureau has released a new report “The Wealth of Veterans” that uses data from the 2014 Survey of Income and Program Participation to look at how military service may influence the lifelong financial well-being of veterans.

The report describes differences in the components of wealth between male veteran householders and nonveteran householders 25 years and older.

Additional Products on the Nation’s Veterans

Webinar:
Learn how to access to the most up-to-date demographic, socio-economic, housing and business statistics about veterans from the American Community Survey and the Survey of Business Owners using a variety of data tools available online.

Thursday, Nov. 9, 2017, at 1 p.m. EST

Register now for Veterans by the Numbers.

5-Minute Challenge: Honoring Those Who Served

This new Statistics in Schools warm-up activity guides students through an exercise of identifying states and territories with the largest and smallest percentages of veteran populations. Students are asked to analyze data on a map to find possible trends and to answer other relative questions.

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New recipes from Chef Joey coming your way in the next issue of CECELIA. Hitting the stands tomorrow!
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Endorsements … Next Tuesday, please vote for …

Mayor – Joseph Petty

At-large city councilors – Morris “Moe” Bergman, Kate Toomey, Gary Rosen

District 4 – Sarai Rivera

Worcester School Committee: John Monfredo, Jack Foley, Brian O’Connell

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Reelect Mayor Joseph Petty!

By Rosalie Tirella

Last-minute mayoral candidate and “machine-challenger” Konstantina Lukes FLOPPED as Worcester’s first popularly elected woman mayor several years back. She accomplished nothing in the cool office on the third floor of City Hall, unless you want to count painting it a new color and hanging new pictures on its walls. To sum up: It was a dead zone. Lukes showed no vision for Worcester and, even when she had a few glimmers of inspiration, she had no coalition on the city council to support her – or her ideas – because her colleagues dislike her so intensely. A naysayer from Day #1, Konnie has been Woo’s Wet Blanket, shooting down anything unfamiliar, wagging her finger at anything “outside the box,” saying NO to pretty much everything new that’s come before the city council – sometimes to save tax payers money but more often than not for spite – to poke her elbow into the eyes of the political machine that Konnie perceives as running this city (she IS right on this count). And sometimes Konnie votes NO out of pure cluelessness. (See: Year 1 of Pow Wow Worcester, the year Konnie proclaimed many of the beautiful murals painted on our downtown buildings to be bummers. Could the city council legislate happier public art?? she wondered aloud. … Woo calling Vladimir Putin!!)

On the other side of the aisle, incumbent Mayor Joe Petty loves all the murals, the new, young, artsy things happening (often because of him and cursed political machine) in Worcester. Dog parks? We got ’em. Police officers on beautiful horses? Check. Millennials sipping their fancy coffees in trendy eateries? Yep, Woo’s saddled with them, too.

But we love Joe Petty because of his feelings for a Worcester that’s way closer to our hearts than the coffee snobs. The Worcester that goes deep. The Green Island kids riding their rickety bikes. The Piedmont Latino dads and moms waiting for their kids to end their day at Chandler Elementary School – all proud smiles as they take their kids by their hands to cross a dangerous Chandler Street. Heading into a tough urban environment, with every intention of getting homework done, permission slips signed. Little kids cupping their hands over their ears because the traffic is so LOUD.

The ATVs, the locked down inner-city shrines …

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pics: R.T.

The Worcester that baffles us, frightens us, makes us smile …

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The Worcester we worry about because it has zero political juice, zero dollars, zero support from anybody … especially the Gaffney-Turtle Boy brigade.

Joe Petty’s a regular guy with a soft spot for our city kids, our public school families, immigrant populations, social service providers/heroes. He works to make our city schools great, our inner-city streets safer … Outsiders are welcome in Joe’s world. Every person counts.

As President Donald Trump becomes more and more obnoxious, profane, crude…the modest, soft-spoken Mayor Joe Petty becomes more gentle, more sensitive to the outsider – a tonic to our battered souls. Contrast Petty’s political style to the bombastic crap spewing out of the volcano mouth of City Councilor Michael Gaffney. As Trump and Gaffney become more bogged down in racial animosity and ethnic scape-goating, pulling the country and Worcester away from their dreams and ideals, we must remember our dreams and ideals. Choose light and hope.  We cannot have a mini-Trump as our mayor (Mike Gaffney),  a mini-Steve-Bannon waging war on a new multi-cultural Worcester that does not resemble the Woo of yesteryear (see Mike Gaffney again) or an out-of-touch naysayer who fears the future (see Konstantina Lukes).

The times, they are a changin’ – and we mean in A BIG WAY. Mayor Joe Petty is the guy for the New Woo: Worcester’s artsy, latte-lovin’ crowd and, more important to us, the ‘hood bikers, pit walkers, inner-city ravers – and saviors. The people who make this place we – and half of Worcester – call HOME. So rough around the edges. So misunderstood. Petty reaches out…

REELECT JOE PETTY MAYOR OF WORCESTER!

Solution to the “protein problem”: not crickets!

But first … from the Worcester branch of the NAACP:

Greetings,

The [Worcester] NAACP will be meeting tonight at the YMCA

Part of our agenda will include:

* Councilor at Large Candidate Forum – Wednesday, October 25 @ 6 pm @ the Worcester Youth Center. Focus will be on “Labor.”

Planning for “Kneeling in the NFL and Freedom of Speech” panel discussion, November 21 @ the Worcester Public Library.

“Black Minds Matter” – collaboration with Holy Cross college and community partners. Event scheduled for Spring 2018.

Please come out and join the NAACP!

Thank you,

Pat

Worcester Unit, NAACP
4 East Central St., #484
Worcester, MA 01613
www.worcesternaacp.org

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Did someone say “crickets”? pics: R.T.

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kiss kiss!!

SOLUTION TO THE “PROTEIN PROBLEM”: NOT CRICKETS!

By Ingrid Newkirk

Cricket empanadas. Mealworm arancini. Termite queen with mango. These dishes sound as if they were cooked up in the kitchen of a Halloween house of horrors, but you may soon be able to find them at a local restaurant. That’s because in recent years, foodies — who will eat anything that moves or doesn’t — have latched onto the idea that eating insects will magically solve the problem of how to feed a growing global population on a high-protein diet.

Hogwash. I say, if you’re that desperate for a protein overload, eat the whales.

The authors of the recent book On Eating Insects: Essays, Stories and Recipes apparently agree. They point out that, once you factor in the resources that are needed to feed and slaughter billions of other beings for our dinner tables and then truck their body parts long distances to restaurants and supermarkets, we would indeed be better off eating whales — something that I’ve been saying for years.

Look at it this way: If you pick up a broiler chicken in the supermarket, you may find enough meat on its scrawny, factory-farmed frame to net one meal for a family of four. Run a harpoon through a 40-ton whale and you can keep a community of 2,000 well fed for several weeks. Now imagine the number of insects that would have to be killed to satisfy that many hungry humans. If animals and insects could vote on this, the blubber-eaters would win. In their lifetimes, people who eat whales end far fewer lives than the chicken nugget-nibblers or the cricket-crunchers. And while insects may be small and look strange to us, that doesn’t mean that their lives don’t matter or that they don’t want to enjoy them.

It’s fine to gag at the thought of eating whale meat but better to gag at the thought of eating any meat at all. At least most whales get to live free in the wild before being bled to death. (There is, however, the troubling reality that members of whale families, or “pods,” suffer greatly when one animal, such as a mother or calf, is removed from the group, not to mention the fact that the psychological scars caused by seeing the gruesome death of a loved one are immeasurable.)

Pigs, cows and chickens, through no fault of their own, have it a lot worse than whales, because when it comes to raising and killing animals on an industrial scale, any measure of kindness or decency dries up like the blood on the slaughterer’s knife.

To satisfy the desires of so many people who crave burgers and chicken wings, animals raised for meat are castrated and dehorned, their tails are amputated and parts of their beaks are seared off with a hot wire — all without painkillers.

What’s really odd is that we drink the milk that’s meant for calves, who are separated from their loving mothers soon after birth, and then we eat them, too, as veal.

Animals on factory farms are crowded together like commuters on a Manhattan rush-hour train. Pigs have to breathe in the ammonia from their own waste, which collects in troughs beneath their pens, and they develop a condition known as “black lung disease.” Their limbs become infected with open sores as a result of being forced to lie on hard cement floors.

“Broiler chickens” are bred to be so breast-heavy that the bones in their legs splinter and they spend their last days in chronic pain. In egg factories, chickens are never able to stretch a wing or find enough room to lie down. When their egg-laying output wanes, there’s no retirement party: They are stuffed into crates so violently that they sustain broken wings and legs.

But back to whales: If humans find the taste of animal flesh so irresistible that they simply can’t stop themselves from consuming it, they should understand that eating those big marine mammals is a lot kinder than carting home a pack of chicken breasts from the supermarket.

As for insects, well, cognitive scientists now tell us that their brains, while tiny, perform the same functions as the human midbrain, the ancient neural core that supports our capacity for awareness. In other words, these little beings, like us, are conscious—making the idea of farming them for our food supply ethically problematic.

So where does all this leave us? The answer is not to eat whales, of course, but instead to take a deep dive into an ethical diet and go vegan.

Finally! Join us!

Learn all about why President Donald Trump must be impeached and how we “average Americans” can make it happen at:

NEEDTOIMPEACH.COM

Click here to visit this stellar website!

GO, AMERICA, GO!!!!! – R.T.

THE STEYER LETTER:

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Dear Elected Official,

This is not a time for “patience” — Donald Trump is not fit for office. It is evident that there is zero reason to believe “he can be a good president.”

Whether by the nature of Mr. Trump’s relationship with Vladimir Putin and Russia, his willingness to exploit the office of the Presidency for his personal gain and treat the government like a family enterprise, his conduct during Charlottesville, his decision to pull out of the Paris climate accords, or his seeming determination to take the nation to war, he has violated the Constitution, the office of the Presidency, and the trust of the public. He is a clear and present danger to the United States of America.

Republican Senator Bob Corker, Chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, referred to the Trump White House as a day care center, and observed that this president has put us “on the path to World War III.” This comes following reports that Trump’s own Secretary of State referred to him as a “moron” and that Chief of Staff John Kelly and Secretary of Defense James Mattis have an agreement not to leave Trump home alone for fear of what he could do. And we have seen other Republican Senators, including Senators Sasse and Flake, express their own profound concerns.

If Trump has lost the trust of the members of his own administration and leading members of his own party, surely it is time to act.

An accounting of his record to date leads to the same conclusion. He is turning his back on Lady Liberty by holding immigrant children hostage. He is actively sabotaging the Affordable Care Act — a law he is constitutionally obligated to faithfully execute — while seeking to strip away health care coverage that will leave millions of Americans to choose between life and bankruptcy. He is repealing clean air protections and unleashing polluters, even as increasingly catastrophic natural disasters supercharged by our warming planet ravaged the country throughout the summer — from hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria, to the wildfires that have raged across California, Oregon, Washington, Idaho, and Montana. He has threatened to reduce aid for millions of American citizens in Puerto Rico who are struggling to survive without drinkable water or electricity — a move that would be a total dereliction of his duty. And every day, Americans are left bracing for a Twitter screed that could set off a nuclear war. These actions represent systemic attacks on our nation’s future. They endanger every single one of your constituents. That’s why you have a duty to speak out.

There is no moral reason to remain silent about this. Constitutional experts like Noah Feldman have already laid out clear legal and historical foundations for impeachment. Founding Father Alexander Hamilton, a co-author of the Federalist Papers — and an immigrant himself — argued that “high crimes and misdemeanors” could be defined as “abuse or violation of some public trust.” This president has clearly already exceeded these standards. Congress has impeached past presidents for far less.

While we know that Republicans do not seem prepared to pursue impeachment even as members in their own ranks openly question Trump’s fitness for office, we are all working hard to ensure Democrats will take back the House and Senate in 2018.

Given Trump’s total lack of fitness for office, the question of impeachment becomes a very real issue should we succeed in our midterm goal. That makes it imperative for every Governor of every state, and every mayor of every city, to acknowledge where they stand. This question affects the lives of every single American. They deserve to hear whether or not our party is willing to do what is necessary to protect them and their families. This is not an academic exercise. The very stability of the Republic is at stake.

So, by way of this letter, I am asking you today to make public your position on the impeachment of Donald Trump, and to urge your federal representatives to remove him from office at once. Every day he remains in reach of the nuclear codes is another day for him to menace the citizens you serve and protect. Your constituents deserve to know they are represented by people in every level of government who have the patriotism and political courage to stand up and take action when it is so desperately needed. This is not a time to give in to an establishment that insists on acting the way the establishment always does, with “patience” or “caution.” It is an unprecedented moment, and it calls for extraordinary measures. We cannot remain fixated on what is politically smart. We have to do what is morally right.

Sincerely,

Tom Steyer

Main South: At Clark U – “Race, Memory and Public Space” … and more!

But first …

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Following the KKK rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, and in light of the ongoing debate about the removal of monuments of Confederate generals, we bring you this timely lecture …

Clark U. to host acclaimed cultural historian for lecture, ‘Race, Memory and Public Space’ Nov. 3

Wilson, Mabel
Mabel Wilson

Clark University will host acclaimed architectural and cultural historian Mabel O. Wilson for “Race/Memory/Public Space,” a free, public lecture on the current and historical intersections of race, architecture, and the public realm, on Friday, November 3, at Noon, in the Higgins Lounge, 2nd floor of Dana Commons, 36 Maywood St.

The lecture is part of the Higgins School of Humanities’ dialogue symposium “Common Pursuits/Public Good” which considers how the arts and humanities contribute to the public good.

Wilson is Nancy and George E. Rupp Professor of Architecture at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation (GSAPP). She is author of “Negro Building: Black Americans in the World of Fairs and Museums,” “Begin with the Past: Building the National Museum of African American History and Culture,” and the forthcoming “Building Race and Nation.”

Wilson also co-directs GSAPP’s Global Africa Lab and the Project on Spatial Politics and is founder of Who Builds Your Architecture? an advocacy initiative that examines issues surrounding labor, architecture, and globalization.

This event is part of the African American Intellectual Culture Series. It is co-sponsored by the Higgins School of Humanities, the Office of the Provost, Clark’s concentration in Africana studies, and the Department of Political Science through the Chester Bland Fund.

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Dine in with the 99 Restaurant

It’s not too late to celebrate “Boys & Girls Club Month” at the 99 Restaurant!

In addition to selecting special entrees in honor of the Club, guests are invited to participate in “Dine In” on Tuesday, October 24, from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m., at the three restaurant locations in Worcester (E. Central Street, West Boylston Street, and Southwest Cutoff).

When you present the flyer to your server, the 99 will donate 15% of your check to the Boys & Girls Club of Worcester.

If you’re going to dine out, why not do it for a good cause?

For more information on “Boys & Girls Club Month,” please visit our website, www.bgcworcester.org

Liz, age 12

This October marks the 11th consecutive year 99 Restaurant has hosted “Boys & Girls Club Month,” which has resulted in thousands of dollars and countless hours of dedication.

We are extremely appreciative of their support and feel grateful to have them as community partners.

Boys & Girls Club of Worcester
65 Tainter St.

Alizea age 14

“Pinkwashing” may have hit a new low … and more!

But first …

Why can’t Macron be our prez? Why are we stuck with the horrific Trump??? Hillary Clinton is spot on when she says white working class voters were “snookered”!

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By Michelle Kretzer

Agri-Plastics, I have a question for you: Exactly how stupid do you think women are?

For October, Breast Cancer Awareness Month, the company is hawking pink calf hutches that they’ve dubbed “Hutches for Hope.” My hope is that this is an ill-conceived joke.

Calf hutches are the cramped plastic crates that dairy farms shove baby cows into after they’ve torn them away from their mothers shortly after birth. It happens like this: Cows, like human women, produce milk after they give birth. The milk is specially formulated to meet the needs of their own infants.

But to keep them producing milk continuously, dairy farms force them to endure a constant cycle of cruelty: artificial insemination on a “rape rack,” pregnancy and the birth of a calf, then devastating loss, when their baby is torn away so that humans can consume the milk instead.

The male babies are useless to the dairy industry, so they’re typically sold for veal or fattened up for beef. The females can be used to replace their worn-out mothers, so they’re isolated in these hutches, fed milk replacers and forcibly impregnated much younger than they would naturally reproduce.

Separating mothers from their babies and denying them both their innate desire to suckle: That’s what Agri-Plastics wants people to buy into. For breast cancer awareness, of course.

Um, everyone is already aware of breast cancer. We’re also aware of “pinkwashing” and how to avoid companies that try to use breast cancer marketing to sell products—especially when those products contribute to the disease, not the cure.

According to the American Cancer Society, a full one-third of all cancer deaths in the United States can be attributed to dietary factors.

Numerous studies of diets around the globe have led researchers to conclude that consuming animal fats, especially those found in red meat and high-fat dairy “products,” increases the risk of breast cancer.

Dr. T. Colin Campbell, professor emeritus of nutritional biochemistry at Cornell University and one of the world’s foremost experts on nutrition, may have summed it up best: “[N]o chemical carcinogen is nearly so important in causing human cancer as animal protein.”

So Agri-Plastics is selling products that are used to create one of the world’s most notorious chemical carcinogens—and coloring them pink. For the cure.

Even better (meaning, worse) is when companies guilty of pinkwashing partner with breast cancer charities that continue to waste money on ineffective, antiquated experiments on animals that after decades and billions of dollars have failed to produce a cure.

The former head of the National Cancer Institute (NCI), Richard Klausner, stated, “The history of cancer research has been a history of curing cancer in the mouse. We have cured mice of cancer for decades and it simply didn’t work in humans.” The NCI now uses human cancer cells, taken by biopsy during surgery, to perform first-stage testing for new anti-cancer drugs, sparing the 1 million mice previously used annually by the agency and giving us all a much better shot at combating cancer.

So the “Hutches for Hope” sales strategy probably went something like this: Persuade people to buy pink plastic crates that will be used to kidnap nursing babies from their mothers in order to make products that promote cancer in humans—then we’ll donate money to an organization that kills animals but doesn’t do a damn bit of good toward finding a cure. They’ll do it because the crates are pink!

I’m not sure which is more insulting — the fact that this company is hawking carcinogens and cruelty for Breast Cancer Awareness Month or the fact that it doesn’t think women are smart enough to see past the color pink.