: If you haven’t heard of it already, that’ll change soon. It’s on the ballot in California this year, and if it passes, it will prohibit the extreme confinement of farm animals: No battery cages for hens or crates for veal and pregnant pigs. No state has ever banned battery cages before, and the proposition’s created an enormous uproar from all parties.

It’s only going to get louder. This week the organization Mercy for Animals released a powerful undercover video that shows hens being horrifically treated at a California battery cage operation. Somewhat comically, a spokesman for the No on Prop. 2 campaign defends the ranch by referring to an inspection during the same time period: “The inspection report notes that the ranch’s proper handling of hens was appropriate, conforms to industry-accepted standards and found the ranch to be in ‘excellent’ standing.” I mean, OK. But isn’t that the whole point?

Here’s the real reason you’ll be hearing about Prop. 2: Oprah just did a show on factory farming—go back and read that again if you need to—and she focused on the debate over Proposition 2. From Eating
Liberally’s account
, it doesn’t sound, well, sympathetic to the industry:

“Investigative reporter Lisa Ling had to don a sanitation suit and cap before leading her camera crew through an industrial egg facility where 87,000 chickens were crammed into criminally close quarters and covered in, well, chicken shit. Words could hardly convey her revulsion at the stench, but the look on Ling’s face said it all; factory farm egg production in America is an abomination.”

Not to mention the cage and crate replicas that Oprah brought on stage. With replicas of farm animals inside.

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