Judge Patrick J. Fiedler of Wisconsin stated in a recent clarification of his decision about the sale and distribution of raw milk that, “This court is unwilling to declare that there is a fundamental right to consume the food of one’s choice without first being presented with significantly more developed arguments on both sides of the issue.”
Well then, let me present you with some “more developed arguments” on my side of the issue–the side that says, “I have the right to own the livestock of my choice and reap the benefits thereof.”
Judge Patrick J. Fiedler
Because the Plaintiffs’ constitutional claims are “underdeveloped,” Fiedler states:
(1) no, Plaintiffs do not have a fundamental right to own and use a dairy cow or a dairy herd;
(2) no, Plaintiffs do not have a fundamental right to consume the milk from their own cow;
(3) no, Plaintiffs do not have a fundamental right to board their cow at the farm of a farmer;
(5) no, Plaintiffs do not have a fundamental right to produce and consume the foods of their choice;
(There are more, but we’ll just stick to these.)
Hmm, maybe you can rationalize that about cows and raw milk, but let’s do some copy/paste work and see if these arguments still make sense.
(1) no, Plaintiffs do not have a fundamental right to own and use a [horse] or a [herd of horses];
(2) no, Plaintiffs do not have a fundamental right to [ride] their own [horse];
(3) no, Plaintiffs do not have a fundamental right to board their [horse] at the farm of a farmer;
(5) no, Plaintiffs do not have a fundamental right to [buy] and [ride] the [horse or herd of horses] of their choice;
There are a lot of horse owners who might take issue with that. I have friends who board their horses and can go ride them whenever they like. Why can’t I do that with a cow?
“But horses don’t produce dangerous foodstuffs!” An opponent says.
Well, mares actually do produce milk that has been used in Asia for years in foods like kumis. However, horses are dangerous in other ways, just ask Christopher Reeves. Maybe Judge Fiedler will ban them next.
Photo Credit: Christian Cable
Let’s do another one. This time we’ll use food:
(1) no, Plaintiffs do not have a fundamental right to own and use a [snack cake] or a [box of snack cakes];
(2) no, Plaintiffs do not have a fundamental right to consume the [snack cakes which they bought];
(3) no, Plaintiffs do not have a fundamental right to board their [snack cakes] at the [pantry] of a [pantry owner];
(5) no, Plaintiffs do not have a fundamental right to produce [or buy] and consume the [snack cakes] of their choice;
Now you can’t buy Twinkies, eat Twinkies, make Twinkies, or leave Twinkies in your friend’s pantry for when you come visit.
“Yeah, okay, maybe the ‘no fundamental right to own statement’ was a little over the top, but it’s not that big of a deal.”
Really? Do you want the government to come up with an approved foods list? You only have a fundamental right to own dog breeds that meet Federal standards of safety? How about if the government removes your children from your custody because you gave them the best food you could think of, only it wasn’t “approved?”
Where in the Constitution does it say, “The government shall regulate all victuals and livestock to ensure micro-managed safety of the general populace?”
Article the twelfth [Amendment X], Bill of Rights: “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”
Article the seventh [Amendment V] Bill of Rights:
“No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, [...] nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.”
Article the seventh seems to say that if they take away the cows from the farmers and/or owners, that’s eminent domain, and therefore the cows are for public use. Open-source dairy, anyone?
The government has no right (outside of eminent domain) to remove property from any person. Cows aren’t illegal. Let’s keep it that way.
The Complete Patient
Bill of Rights