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WI dairy farmers react to Joaquin Phoenix comments

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MADISON, Wis. (CBS 58) – Wisconsin dairy farmers took issue with part of actor Joaquin Phoenix’s acceptance speech at the Academy Awards on Sunday, Feb. 9.

Phoenix, who won in the Best Actor category for his work in the film ‘Joker,’ spent part of the speech criticizing artificial insemination and other breeding practices in the dairy industry.

“I think that we’ve become disconnected from the natural world,” Phoenix said. “We feel entitled to artificially inseminate a cow and when she gives birth we steal her baby, even though her cries of anguish are unmistakable and we take her milk that’s intended for her calf and put it in our coffee and our cereal.”

Phoenix was named the 2019 Person of the Year by PETA – or People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals – and has been part of advertising campaigns for the organization.

The Academy Award winner’s comments come at a critical moment for Wisconsin’s struggling dairy industry. Last year, the state faced about two dairy farm closures a day.

Last month, Governor Tony Evers called on the Legislature to meet in Special Session to take up a package of bills aimed at helping the industry. Republicans have introduced their own package aimed at doing the same.

Dairy farmers disagree with Phoenix’s comments.

“He has such a huge platform that he is using in such a devastating way,” said Tina Hinchley, a dairy farmer in Cambridge. “He simply doesn’t understand.”

Hinchley told CBS 58 that she invites and welcomes Phoenix to come visit her farm and see up close how she treats her herd.

“We need to educate him about the humanity of the dairy cattle industry.”

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4 Comments

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Last 11 days ago
A liberal POS who doesn't know reality? Shocking.
Zoeykluge 12 days ago
What is so true? Do you think that an animal psychologist would say that a cow wants to be immobilized for her whole life? Or wants to have her horns burned off with no anesthetic? Or that she wants to have her udders and stomach burned to ensure that none of her hair ends up in her milk? That she wants to be forcibly impregnated? Or that she would want to have all her babies taken from her? That she wants to go to the slaughterhouse when she collapses or is deemed unprofitable anymore? People have romanticized notions about animal agriculture- in large part because the animal industries thave lobbied to make it illegal to film what goes on and show consumers the actual stardard processes that are used. I would check out Dominion or Dairy is Scary or do some research on these industries before you defend them. Joaquin has and that is why he is choosing to speak out
cynthia 12 days ago
This is so true. It is always important to understand both sides of the situation, prior to making a statement that can impact so many people.
Luke 13 days ago
Trying to teach Joaquin Phoenix about animal psychology is like trying to teach a squirrel about astrophysics.
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