The Ghosts In Our Machine

Gene Baur

“Animals suffer the cruel burden of being relegated as tools for industry. They are considered property, despite possessing all the qualities for which we value human life — intelligence, a capacity for pleasure and pain, and the formation of emotional bonds with others around them. After 25 years of working with these wonderful animals, it has been proven to me  again and again that the depth and emotion they have in their relationships with one another is just as significant and meaningful as the relationships between human beings. Those who benefit from exploiting animals seek to hide this fact. They put a veil over what they are doing. THE GHOSTS IN OUR MACHINE  is making steps towards lifting that veil and showing us the full and complex lives that are used as mere cogs in a machine. The brutal treatment and slaughter of billions of animals every year is a symptom of the division that exploitation industries have carved between humans and animals. Nothing is more dangerous to animal industries than for people to see what goes on behind closed doors. This film will show how important the ethical consideration of animals is to our humanity and needs to be seen by everyone.”
Gene Baur
President and Co-Founder, Farm Sanctuary
photo courtesy Derek Goodwin

Gene Baur grew up in Hollywood, California and worked in commercials for McDonald’s and other fast food restaurants. He adopted a vegan lifestyle in 1985, and today, he campaigns to raise awareness about the negative consequences of industrialized factory farming and our cheap food system. He lives in Washington, D.C. and is the co-founder and president of Farm Sanctuary. Gene holds a bachelor’s degree in sociology from California State University Northridge and a master’s degree in agricultural economics from Cornell University. After volunteering and working with various environmental and human rights causes, Gene turned his attention to animal agriculture. He has conducted hundreds of visits to farms, stockyards and slaughterhouses to document conditions, and his photos and videos, exposing factory farming cruelty, have been aired nationally and internationally, educating millions. He has testified in court and before local, state and federal legislative bodies, and has initiated groundbreaking legal enforcement and legislative action to raise awareness and prevent factory farming abuses. He played a significant role in passing the first U.S. laws to prohibit cruel farming systems, including the Florida ban on gestation crates, the Arizona ban on veal and gestation crates, and the California ban on foie gras. His efforts have been covered by leading news organizations, including the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, National Public Radio, ABC, NBC, CBS, and CNN. His book, entitled Farm Sanctuary: Changing Hearts and Minds About Animals and Food, was published by Touchstone (a division of Simon and Schuster) in March 2008 and has become a national best-seller.

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