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Cowboy Willie Nelson

Stands Up For Cows

3/26/2008 3:04 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

0326_nelson_cow-1Willie Nelson thinks you should know a thing or two about some cows. The country crooner is joining in on a campaign along with the Animal Legal Defense Fund to raise awareness about cruel-and illegal-living conditions for calves raised to produce milk for dairy products. Moo! Boo!

Specifically, they are targeting Land O'Lakes and Challenge Dairy to get them to stop using milk from calves that come from California's Mendes Calf Ranch - which employs an intensive confinement practice (keeping calves in cramped, filthy crates - sometimes without room to turn around or lie down) and is the subject of a lawsuit brought by the ALDF.

Nelson has written a letter to the companies and is urging others to join the petition, www.FreeBabyMendes.com, that is already 22,000 people strong.

TMZ.com contacted Mendes Calf Ranch who had no comment on the issue.

Mommas, don't let your baby calves grow up to be milk cows at Mendes indeed.

64 COMMENTS

No Avatar
46.

gt2fly 4u    

ps, all new-born calves are normally kept in pens with little "huts" to keep them from getting hurt and to reduce the risk of the spread of disease, as all new born calves are very susceptible to parasites and organisms, and bacteria which are very easily spread among those allowed to mingle as cows are not very sanitary animals.

2340 days ago
47.

dave    

I THINK MR Willie Nelson .HAS HIT 1 TO MANY PIPES ....WHERE WE LIVE WE EAT COWS..DEER...ELK..BEARS ...COUJAR..FISH...LAMB ....TURKEY..DUCKS ....AND THE BEST OF ALL IS RATTLE SNAKE...THAT BEING SAID WHATS THE PROBLEM ITS ALL GODS FOOD ......LMAO AT ALL THE PEOPLE AT THERE THAT HAS TO TRY TO SAVE THE DAMN WORLD.....

2340 days ago
48.

Jan    

Thank you, Willie.....

2340 days ago
49.

Bob2    

Please! Milk em, Kill em, EAT em. I am a member in good standing of PETA - People Eating Tasty Animals.

2340 days ago
50.

lolathecat    

dave, I've got a PHD and run a boutique advertising agency in Los Angeles that caters to organic and vegetarian causes. What can you claim? I have read countless books on the subject of food, animal welfare and farming. I have toured and lectured. If I'm so "fing stupid" then please tell me your credentials so I can find out who thinks I'm stupid. BTW, I eat good food. Not crap. I have not been sick for over 5 years and I look pretty damn hot.

2340 days ago
51.

Mary Saunders    

I cannot imagine anyone still eating veal after seeing how those poor little calves are treated: Taken away from their mothers before they can even stand up without wobbling. I stopped eating veal a long time ago. If more people would do the same, maybe it would have a positive effect on the whole cruel procedure.

2340 days ago
52.

dave    

# 51 well good for u we dont live in ca but we do live in gods counry and no 1 here has being sick from eating cows .deers .elk ducks.turkeys .pigs.coujars.bears...and big horns ...so wats up with all you people tring to save the world just dont get it so i dont care in you have all the damn phd in the world your stupid ......LMAO

2340 days ago
53.

Granny Pants    

Nothing raised in a dark crate is gonna taste good no matter how you cook it up people.

2340 days ago
54.

Meatetarian    

Poor Willie is slipping more and more into dementia everyday.

2340 days ago
55.

Allie    

I grew up on a dairy. I actually know exactly where Mendes calf ranch is and live close to it. You need to investigate for yourselves BEFORE you listen to animal rights' activists - and that goes for anyone championing a cause, including environmentalists! These calves are actually treated wonderfully. They are fed well, taken care of and very healthy. It is better for them to be in their pen then in danger. They are only at Mendes Calf Ranch for a short time and then they are sent back to the dairies where they were born - where they roam free once they are old enough. Cows and calves are always treated fairly. This makes me sick.

2340 days ago
56.

LOL    

IF YOU READ THIS STORY THAT WAS WRITTEN THEY DON'T EVEN HAVE THE COMMON SENSE TO GET THE MATERIAL STRAIGHT, THE PERSON WHO COMMENTED ABOUT YOU CAN'T MILK CALVES IS CORRECT. IT TELLS A STORY THAT HAS IT'S PROPAGANDA WRONG. PEOPLE SEEM TO BELIEVE AN ELDERLY COUNTRY SINGER BECAUSE OF WHAT HE DOES FOR A LIVING RATHER THAN WHAT THE TRUTH IS. PEOPLE WHO ARE IN THE CALVE BUSINESS WANT THE CALVES TO LIVE AND BE HEALTHY, THE FACT IS THAT IS HOW THEY GET PAID. DEAD OR SICK CALVES CAUSE THEM PROBLEMS FROM THERE CLIENTS. WILLIE NEEDS TO STICK TO SMOKING AND COUNTRY MUSIC WHERE HE CAN HAVE AN IMPACT NOT A DETRAMENT.

2340 days ago
57.

tanyakristine    

Yay WILLIE! Speak for those that can't...

2339 days ago
58.

California Gal    

I grew up on a dairy not far from the MCR. The fact is that the calves are raised in crates for their own safety and sanitation. MCR is very focus on the safety and health of the animals that they raise. The article doesn’t mention that the calves are bottle fed 2 times a day. If you have every bottle fed a baby calf then you would know that they are indeed "Happy Cows". If you follow a healthy diet and consume meat and dairy products, where do you think it comes from? Come on people think, the milk doesn't just come from the grocery store! Agriculturalists have the responsibility to produce the best quality, safest, cheapest food while using the best possible environmental and animal husbandry practices. And I think California Farmers do an awesome job! Willie go pay your taxes and leave MCR alone!

2339 days ago
59.

Lilli    

Willie rocks! Love he's taking a stand for mistreated animals (cows and also pits), supports alternative fuel research and still finds times to do new projects and tour the music. He's got a 4 cd, 100 song box set out 4/1/8 too called "One Hell of a Ride" and I bet it has been just that.

2339 days ago
60.

Jessica Nyquist    

Everyone should sign this petition. Cows should not have to be confined in such small areas like that. Good job, Willie.

2339 days ago
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