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First They Came For The Cows: An Activist's Story Paperback – January 27, 2009

4.8 out of 5 stars 21 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Sharon Zecchinelli wrote the first draft of First They Came for the Cows during National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) 2007. Fifty thousand words later, a winner, a novel was born. Mrs. Zecchinelli lives in northwestern Vermont with her husband, a variety of laying hens, a horse, and two dogs.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (January 27, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1440454434
  • ISBN-13: 978-1440454431
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,778,515 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By R. L. Tritt on June 17, 2009
Format: Paperback
Reading Ms. Zecchinelli's fictional story of Maddie was like reading a history book, with real life accounting of the USDA's coercive methods, penalties with huge fines and threats of going to prison in order to get this NAIS mandate imposed upon everyone. The National Animal Identification System (NAIS) is so insidious that you actually lose your property rights!

I'm a homesteader NOT a "producer" as the USDA prefers to call me. My home is not a "premise" where you lose your ownership to contractural law for international business! I bought and paid for my home and the land it sets upon. I bought all my animals and paid for every seed growing in my garden. I am a home owner not some CEO of a corporate conglomerate selling food in an international market.

I do not sell so much as a single apple or a bag of beans to a middleman, so he can in turn sell it to corporations, who in turn sells it or processes it into frozen, canned or jarred foods, to then be sold in local grocery stores. Neither do I sell so much as a single chicken, goat or cow so it can then be slaughtered and sold as packaged meat for international sales in some other country's grocery store. I simply grow and raise my own food.

It is my hope that everyone will read this book and see just how the USDA is using their ability to mandate laws and institute their procedures in order to by-pass Congress, our Constitution and subsequently, destroy our Bill of Rights for the sake of the almighty buck!
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Format: Paperback
First They Came for the Cows

Having a close encounter with deception can awaken a desire to know the truth, which in the lives of many activists leads to awakening to so many unexpected truths that their lives seem rearranged and reoriented. They often compare life before this event to sleep walking and speak of "waking up" and having a desire to "wake others up." For those who believe we are also spiritual beings, redrawing the map of life with such revelations can lead to reflections on spiritual accountability. Such a journey is described in First They Came for the Cows, a fictional account of the author's journey as an activist against one of the federal government's greatest deceptions, the National Animal Identification System (NAIS).

The protagonist Maddie Gillman turns activist when she and her husband, the new owners of a homestead, come face to face with NAIS, a well-funded USDA program that is said to be voluntary but is enrolling farms in a massive database. Sometimes farms are enrolled unbeknownst to the farm owners, at other times through lying to the owners and saying that the law requires them to register. Maddie and the other activists are concerned with the deceptiveness of the program and the close ties between those in government and the corporate beneficiaries of the program. They worry, too, about NAIS's intrusiveness and the way the word `premises' has been substituted for `property.'

Writer Marti Oakley has written,

"property is the term used to indicate private ownership of a thing such as land or animals and is protected by rights in the Constitution. It does signify legal ownership, and who is the legal owner and allows you access to a Civil Court and protection under the Constitution.
Read more ›
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Format: Paperback
I'm a small farmer too, and Sharon's story made very real the story of the path of NAIS (it is obviously based on her own). It may be fiction, but I know from my own research that her story is an accurate depiction of the methods and the threats of the USDA and their program. I hope that people will read the book and get an understanding of the reality of what is planned against the tradional farm. My only comment other than praise for her work is that her ending is most likely much more positive than what will likely happen! Thanks for putting it out there for all to see, Sharon!
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Format: Kindle Edition
The author Sharon Z. has been intimately involved in the fight against the USDA's proposed National Animal Identification System (NAIS) which would favor Big Ag while placing enormous burdens on small farmer and homesteaders for tagging, tracking and reporting all animal activities. "First They Came for the Cows" chronicles the compelling story of the resistance by small farmers, homesteaders and consumers to block the USDA's power grab. It is a powerful history of how social media, the web and the Internet can be used as tools to stop corporate greed and needless government regulations. A must read for all activists, animal owners and consumers!
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book is a quick easy read. It is also very educational in revealing how the government has its own agenda and will use deceit and trickery to push through their programs. I wish everybody would read this book and stop letting the government catch us unawares.
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Format: Paperback
Ms Zecchinelli's book is the Red Pill for anyone attempting to produce their own healthy food and vegetables, and for everyone attempting to live free in a country that has forgotten the meaning and cost of freedom.

Before NAIS and my introduction to activists like Zecchinelli, I was content to believe that the government, while overreaching and occasionally intrusive, would never try to keep the American farmer down, let alone destroy this country for the bottom line of major corporations.

My illusion of independence and freedom was demolished once I read this book, and I cannot go back to the naive belief that all will be well.

First They Came For the Cows is historic fiction at its best. Ms Zecchinelli provides details and insight into "how things work" in our country, and clearly spells out how brave people banding together can make a difference.

Get the book. Read it. Then ask yourself, "What can I do to restore sanity to our country?" And then, TAKE ACTION!
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