Ethan A. Huff
July 30, 2010
The U.S. government gestapo is at it again in its crusade against raw milk. Recently, the jackboots swarmed a Pennsylvania Amish man’s private dairy farm for the second time, falsely accusing him of violating the ridiculous prohibition on selling raw milk across state lines.
Farmer Dan Allgyer’s farm was raided by the same agents who paid him a visit back in February, telling him both times that they were there for an “inspection”. Just like last time, the agents drove flagrantly past “No Trespassing” and “Private Property”, this time arriving around 4:30 a.m. when Allgyer’s family was still asleep and as he was preparing to milk his cows.
The group began to interrogate Allgyer, and served him a warrant claiming they had “credible evidence” that he was involved in interstate commerce involving raw milk. According to Allgyer’s personal account, upon being questioned as to why the agents were at the farm so early when the warrant clearly stated that it was valid only at “reasonable times during ordinary business hours”, one of them retorted that “ordinary business hours for agriculture start at 5 a.m.”
After scouring farm equipment and taking a bunch of pictures, the agents eventually left. But the next morning, Allgyer received an overnight, urgent letter from officials about “regulatory action” that would be taken if he failed to take “corrective action”.
Some people might not know this, but according to the precedent set by the Wickard v. Filburn case, practically everything can now be considered to affect “interstate commerce” and thus fall under federal jurisdiction. In the little-known case, then President Franklin Roosevelt coerced the Supreme Court into supporting certain New Deal proposals that revolutionized the definition of “interstate commerce”.
Wickard v. Filburn had to do with a farmer who was growing too much wheat during a time when there were wheat quotas. To make a long story short, the courts established that even growing your own wheat and feeding it to your cattle falls under the banner of “interstate commerce” because there is the potential to affect interstate commerce.
It is under this faulty premise that federal and state agents are challenging Farmer Allgyer and others who may be selling raw milk products directly to consumers. Though Allgyer is running a private farm, federal agents are operating on illegitimate precedent by accusing him of being involved in interstate commerce.
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This article was posted: Friday, July 30, 2010 at 5:02 pm