Sadly, we’ve become accustomed to gross misconduct by corporate executives from Enron and Exxon to MCI-WorldCom and Monsanto. There is nothing corporate criminals can do wrong that surprises us anymore.
Whether repeatedly getting caught beating up animals for fun, physically and emotionally assaulting their employees and cheating them out of overtime pay, or destroying the environment, Tyson Foods executives and many of their employees are immoral, violent, and cruel to their core. If there was a Corporate Hall of Shame, Tyson Foods would be its first inductee.
Just how bad is Tyson Foods? They pleaded guilty to 20 felonies and paid $7.5 million in fines for violating federal Clean Water Act laws. They are required to treat their excrement and chemical-filled wastewater before releasing it into waterways. They ignored laws regulating such disposal and dumped it untreated.
Even after Tyson Foods got caught violating the Clean Water Act multiple times over a five-year period after stating they had rectified the problem, received warnings, administrative orders, state court injunctions, and a federal search warrant of their facility, they continued to dump hundreds of millions of gallons of improperly treated wastewater every day into our waterways for years. Researchers project they killed hundreds of thousands–possibly millions–of fishes and caused immeasurable damage to people’s health.
For a company that makes billions of dollars, the $7.5 million fine is a pittance. It’s analogous to a parking ticket for the average person. With paltry fines and no prosecutions of the executives responsible for knowingly and repeatedly breaking the law, it will continue to pay for Tyson Foods to pollute our water, decimate marine life, and put the public’s health at risk.
Of the thousands of companies in the United States, including oil companies, Tyson Foods ranks as the second worst water polluter in the nation. If we account for the untreated water they dump illegally, Tyson Foods would likely be the country’s worst water polluter.
Tyson Foods shouldn’t be boycotted–they should be put out of business or forced to change their business model and held personally responsible by the legal system with prison sentences and massive fines that deter repeat offenses. They should be exposed in the media and citizens should demand their elected leaders refuse to accept campaign contributions from these killers.
The American people obviously can’t rely on the government to solve this problem. Consumers must identify and brand companies like Tyson Foods and refuse to buy the tortured remains of the animals they sell.
In a few weeks, I’m launching a new campaign to hold our elected legislators accountable for representing our interests instead of serving as tools for crooked and merciless corporations. Tyson Foods has wreaked havoc long enough. It’s time to confront America’s worst company with an unprecedented and relentless campaign to achieve historic results for animals, people’s health, and our planet.