Proposition 12 – Confinement of Farm Animals

Fiscal Impact:

According to the Legislative Analyst Office (LAO), Proposition 12 would result in a potential decrease in state income tax revenues from farm businesses, likely not more than several million dollars annually.  Proposition 12 would result in state costs of up to $10 million annually to enforce the measure.  In addition, the LAO states that Proposition 12 would likely result in an increase in prices for eggs, pork and veal.

CCC Position:

No position.

Reflections on Church Teaching:

“Then God said: Let us make human beings in our image, after our likeness.  Let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, the birds of the air, the tame animals, all the wild animals, and all creatures that crawl on the earth.”  Genesis 1:26.

“So the Lord God formed out of the ground all the wild animals and all the birds of the air, and he brought them to the man to see what he would call them; whatever the man called each living creature was then its name.  The man gave names to all the tame animals, all the birds of the air, and all the wild animals; but none proved to be a helper suited to the man.”  Genesis 2:19-20.

“Animals are God’s creatures.  He surrounds them with his providential care.  By their mere existence they bless him and give him glory.  Thus men owe them kindness.  We should recall the gentleness with which saints like St. Francis of Assisi or St. Phillip Neri treated animals.”  Catechism of the Catholic Church, no. 2416.

“God entrusted animals to the stewardship or those whom he created in his own image.  Hence it is legitimate to use animals for food and clothing.  They may be domesticated to help man in his work and leisure…It is contrary to human dignity to cause animals to suffer or die needlessly.”  Catechism of the Catholic Church, nos. 2417-8.

“Together with our obligation to use the earth’s goods responsibly, we are called to recognize that other living beings have a value of their own in God’s eyes: ‘by their mere existence they bless him and give him glory’ and indeed, ‘the Lord rejoices in all his works’ (Ps 104:31). By virtue of our unique dignity and our gift of intelligence, we are called to respect creation and its inherent laws, for ‘the Lord by wisdom founded the earth’ (Prov 3:19). In our time, the Church does not simply state that other creatures are completely subordinated to the good of human beings, as if they have no worth in themselves and can be treated as we wish.”  Pope Francis, Encyclical Letter Laudato Si: On Care for Our Common Home, May 2015 (69).

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