9 October

At The Open House: Joshua Rockwood

by Jon Katz
At The Open House: Joshua Rockwood
At The Open House: Joshua Rockwood

Joshua Rockwood and his family came to the Open House Sunday, he got a warm ovation when I introduced him, he talked briefly about his arrest on charges of animal cruelty in the winter of 2014. It was great to see Joshua, he is putting his life back together after an awful arrest that I believe was utterly unjust.

It was an arrest that should never have happened, and it nearly ruined Joshua’s life, he is young and ethical and conscientious farmer caught in the coldest winter in modern history. Farmers and animal lovers and people who care about justice raised more than $70,000 to pay for Joshua’s legal expenses, strengthen his farm infrastructure and keep his business – selling nutritious food – intact.

His was a landmark case, one of the few times on record a farmer fought back successfully against an animal rights movement that often seems to care little or nothing for people or truth.

Joshua is special, and he is principled. He could have settled the case early on, but he resolved not to plead guilty to a single thing that he had not done. A few months ago, every one of the 13 charges against him were dropped,  his record expunged.

It was pure joy to see his smiling face and family, all of whom suffered greatly during his ordeal. He has put his life back together. He has kept his business intact and growing. He has kept his balance, values and dignity. I was proud to see him at the farm.

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