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A humane Thanksgiving wish: Let’s pardon all turkeys | READER COMMENTARY

"Chocolate" waits in its crate on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, D.C. on Monday, Nov. 21, 2022, before President Joe Biden pardons the National Thanksgiving Turkey. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

As it’s been since Ronald Reagan was in the White House, President Joe Biden pardoned two turkeys before the Thanksgiving holiday. The turkeys will live out their natural life span, while more than 45 million others will meet an untimely holiday death (”Rising costs are nibbling at Thanksgiving budgets this year in Baltimore,” Nov. 21).

These two touted turkeys, celebrities in their own right, are free from the crowded sheds filled with toxic fumes where their ill-fated feathered friends suffer. A life where beaks and toes are clipped to prevent stress-induced aggression, and at 16 weeks, slaughterhouse workers cut their throats and lower them into boiling water to remove their feathers.

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No doubt, these two turkeys won the turkey lottery this year. By contrast in 2021, U.S. consumption of turkey was 5.1 billion pounds and 15.3 pounds per capita. But this turkey tyranny trend can end.

All turkeys can be pardoned.

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Supermarkets carry a wide variety of delicious, healthful, oven-ready plant-based roasts and most of Thanksgiving sides are already vegan. This Thanksgiving, let’s give thanks for our good fortune, health and happiness with a life-affirming, cruelty-free feast finished with a decadent dairy-free dessert.

An internet search on “vegan Thanksgiving’’ offers countless options and recipes for your holiday table.

— Eric C. Lindstrom, Ithaca, New York

The writer is executive director of Farm Animal Rights Movement.

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