by ecorazzicontributor
Categories: Animals
Tags: .
Photo: Andy Neuenschwander

We snagged an exclusive interview with actor James Cromwell, who attended the 2011 Genesis Awards, and got him to open up about his work with animal conservation and the experience of narrating a new eco-film, Farm to Fridge.

Cromwell, who played a farmer in the film Babe, spoke about his participation in Farm to Fridge, which explores the evils of factory farming. “I got involved through HSUS, and the film is about the factory farm system, it has a number of images that just devastated me.” He then explained why he chose to narrate the film, “When you see that kind of savagery you want to tear somebody’s eyes out. But we have to be non-violent, so that’s why I do that, that’s what this is.”

The 71-year-old then discussed another animal rights cause that he is close to: wolf conservation. “I happen to be very fond of wolves,” he said. “And I’m always appalled at the policy of the ex-governor of Alaska, shooting wolves from airplanes.” We are too!

It was also great to ask Cromwell what green tip he’d give to readers who are interested in supporting animal rights, the purpose of the 2011 Genesis event. “Go vegan,” Cromwell smiled. “If you love animals don’t eat them!”

We couldn’t agree more!

  • herwin

    great interview with a great person.

    one remark though, i hear a lot against the aireal hunting of wolves and how bad it is, but it’s nothing new really and we don’t have to go all the way to Alaska for some sickening helicopter hunting, it’s right here in Texas where wild pigs are shot from helicopters. Just Google..

  • Randi

    The wild pigs in Texas and everywhere on the mainland were introduced by Europeans and are invasive. They are destroying what I left of the sensitive natural ecosystem just as they are here in Hawaii. Eliminating feral animal populations has to occur to protect native species. Otherwise, it’s the native species that will die. When pigs eat all the native vegetation and destroy habitat that kills animals by them starving to death, which is a very inhumane way to die. Killing native wolves that are essential to the functioning of an ecosystem just because they are predators is something I strongly disagree with. Killing invasive species to protect native ones is very different than just killing native predators because people are scared of them.

    • Michael Raymer

      Good post Randi. The same thing can be said about wild horses in the American West. They aren’t supposed to be there and they are causing some pretty severe damage.

    • herwin

      that’s a very sensitive story but not the reason why pigs are killed en masse.

      aireal pig shooting is simply a pest control program set up and paid for by farmers.
      These farmers also kill native species when native species are considered a pest and dare to nibble from the farmers crop.

      The people who actually do the shooting from a ‘copter are having the time of their life, as you can see in many Youtube videos and read on hunter websites.
      Keywords “Aireal hunting hogs”

      Wolves in Alaska are also killed because they are considered pests.

      Only few times an invasive spcies runs wild , more often a new species finds it’s own niche and settles in without the ecosystem collapsing.

  • Flaherty

    Don’t talk about predator control before your child comes face to face with one on their way to school or before your dog gets shredded to pieces by one, THEN we can talk about it. Someone like Cromwell who has lived his whole life in places like Los Angeles and Manhattan and not close to wild predator populations frankly does not have much credibility on these issues.

    The fact is that predator populations around human inhabited areas MUST be controlled. It doesn’t mean indiscriminate killing of wolves from airplanes is fine, but planned and controlled culling of wolf populations even if this happens by shooting from airplanes is something that simply must be done in some areas.

    • don miguelo

      Wolf attacks dropped dramatically since people started carrying firearms. Wolves learned and now run from even recent prey kills at the approach of humans. The exception is when, like you said here, small children alone and people walking small dogs in the woods. That is an opportunistic scenario for a predator as you sound like you know as well. Coyotes, alligators, and bears follow this same behavior. Statistically this century, there are way less wolf attacks, and even those tend to be from them being backed into a corner, and nonfatal. A family dog could do much the same thing.

      Blaming wild animal populations for OUR choice to live where they roam, and then killing them too out of fear, is incorrect thinking. Animal control can do non-lethal management for those areas close to those human populations. Knowledge of how to be safe is a more effective way overall to deal with this issue. The whole “kill them 1st” is a fear-based attitude and I am not subscribing.

      And, No, I do not live in LA either.

    • Michael Raymer

      If your child is walking to school, alone, in wolf country, please let me know. I have some phone calls to appropriate government agencies to make.

      As far as shooting from planes, how the hell are you ensuring a clean kill? It’s impossible. And before you even try it, yes I know guns and I know shooting. We’ll never know the suffering that these wounded animals are going through because the idiots in the plane just keep flying on. Not working for me. If you are going to shoot an animal, it is your responsibility to ensure the fastest death possible. You don’t get that from an aircraft.

  • Flaherty

    @Michael Raymer
    You demonstrate the exact reason why people like Cromwell don’t have credibility on these issues. You act like “a child walking to school, alone, in wolf country” is somehow unthinkable. However, it is perfectly normal in many communities all across Canada and Scandinavia for example. Like it or not the best way to make living safe for human beings in those ares is to control the predator populations.

    • Michael Raymer

      The best way to make living safe for children is to take them to school yourself. Scandinavia is a mass of clinical depression and suicide so, keep using them as an example. And if Cromwell doesn’t have credibility, why are you here responding to him?

  • don miguelo

    Ohh man.

    I would just like to advocate for non-lethal control measures to be subsidized instead of lethal ones, that respects the intelligence of both species. I see the point of a greater possibility of a child coming across a pack of hungry wolves, because of the populations being too big, and that is important. We’re both saying it is a lot less likely using control measures, I’m just advocating for non-lethal methods.

    I think it’s also reasonable to assume that not many children are out by themselves near wolves, or near sexual predators in cities, or playing on train tracks, because parents or gaurdians should make the effort to be there to minimize the lethal opportunity situations out there. If the kids are still out there alone, because that’s what the society has dealt them as cards, I feel like ‘that’s life’.

    Do we blame a housecat for killing a baby bird on the ground unprotected?

    • Michael Raymer

      In many cases, I too advocate non-lethal control. But it’s not always practical. This is where the vegan/cruelty-free argument goes off the rails. You’ve trapped, not an animal, but many animals. Now what? Where do you put them? How do they live? Not to mention that (as you say, ” that respects the intelligence of both species”) some species will not be effectively trapped.

      Animals need habitat. Depending on the species, it may be square yardage, it may be square mileage. Where do they go? And how do these relocation efforts address the respect for our animal friends that so many are insistent on? This is what I meant a while back when I posted to either km or herwin (I can’t remember) that veganism carries consequenses of its own.