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Bob Barker: The Price is Always Right when Saving Animal Lives    
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Hallo, vibrant viewers, and welcome to today’s Animal World: Our Co-Inhabitants, featuring Bob Barker, who hosted “The Price Is Right,” a popular weekday American television game show for 35 years. The winner of 19 Emmy Awards, which recognize excellence in American television production, Mr. Barker does not eat meat or dairy products and is a dedicated animal rights advocate.

Mr. Barker became aware of the need to protect animals over 35 years ago, when his wife refused his gift of a fur coat, explaining to him the cruelty involved in its manufacture. His wife’s words struck a deep chord in his heart. He eventually stopped eating meat and dairy and became actively involved in defending animals’ lives.

In 1994 Bob Barker founded the DJ&T Foundation, named in honor of his wife Dorothy Jo and mother Tilly, which subsidizes spay-neuter clinics and voucher programs. Since then, he has contributed millions of US dollars to animal-protection initiatives.

I have always loved animals, and I've always had animals, ever since I was a tiny child. And I began working on behalf of animals as a kid. I'd pick up strays and I'd help injured animals. But I became active when I became aware of the fact that animal exploitation and mistreatment is so extensive in our country, in all countries in the world. And I just felt compelled to try to do what I could to rectify the situation, and that’s what I’ve been doing.

A man of conviction, Bob Barker has even been willing to sacrifice his career to safeguard animals. After hosting the Miss America Pageant for over 20 years, he stepped down after he asked the pageant producers to stop offering fur coats as prizes and they refused. A model of good health and vitality, Mr. Barker set a record for hosting “The Price Is Right” for 35 consecutive years, finally retiring at the age of 83. He attributes this longevity to his meat-free diet.

Mr. Barker firmly supports non-profit organizations that promote animals’ rights. In March 2010, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) announced that it had received a US$2.5 million donation from Mr. Barker to help establish an office in Los Angeles, California, USA.

I’ve been involved in the animal rights movement for 30, 35 years, and I think PETA is one of the most effective organizations internationally. Here in the United States, Mercy for Animals is doing a splendid job. They do primarily undercover work, and their big focal point is the farm animals. And farm animals have no protection whatsoever. There’s not one single federal law protecting farm animals. And they’re terribly abused and mistreated on farms of all types, dairy farms, regular farms, the ranches. And about the only protection they get is from Mercy for Animals. And so I want to help them all I can.

Mr. Barker has also generously supported the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society in their noble efforts to preserve marine life. In 2010, to help stop the murder of whales by the whaling industry, Bob Barker contributed an incredible US$5 million to this organization.

I bought a ship for Sea Shepherd. It's called the “Bob Barker,” and it went out one season. And it was much faster and much more maneuverable than the ships that they had been using. And with the “Bob Barker” they wreaked damage aplenty on the Japanese whaling fleet; economically, I mean. They didn’t damage the ships, but they damaged them economically. And the next season they came out, and they saw the Sea Shepherd ships out there on the line, and they turned around and went home. And I’m hopeful that they’ll stay home now.

Mr. Barker believes that one of the most effective ways to ensure the well-being of animals is through legislation.

They should have the same type of laws protecting animals on farms that they have for animals in general. On farms, they mistreat them, they kick them, they throw calves down, they jab them with pitchforks. They do things that they’d be arrested for if they did them to their pets on the street. And we need federal legislation. But (above) all, legislation is the answer to most of the animal problems. The laws that we have should be more stringently enforced, and we should have new laws that are much more demanding than the laws that we have.

Bob Barker has made million dollar donations to many law schools in the US to assist in the establishment of animal law programs. He also gifted US$2 million to his alma mater Drury University to help the institution start courses in animal ethics.

He’s made such a huge difference to animal protection, I mean really a historic difference. Without Bob, so much wouldn’t have changed the way it has. As you know, he’s made all the gifts to the law schools, starting with Harvard Law School, Columbia Law School, UCLA Law School and a bunch of other law schools.

On June 4, 2011, the non-profit animal-protection group Mercy For Animals (MFA) held an event at the home of Hollywood actor James Costa called “Honoring Hidden Heroes” to recognize undercover investigators who document animal cruelty in factory farms and other places. During the magical evening, Bob Barker was honored by MFA for his many years of steadfast animal advocacy. Many of the guests were delighted that Mr. Barker was being celebrated for his outstanding work.

Bob has done so much for animals, and he's never tired from it. Bob is just a person who you say, if anytime you feel like, “I don’t want to do this anymore” or “It’s just exhausting,” all you have to do is look at Bob Barker and say, “If he can do it, I can do it; I have nothing to complain about,” and just keep moving and keep saving animals.

I think he’s an extraordinary man. I think he does such extraordinary things for animals and I really, really admire Bob Barker for what he does.

As the highlight of the evening, Executive Director of Mercy for Animals Nathan Runkle presented Bob Barker with MFA’s 2011 Compassionate Leadership Award.

When I was 11 years old, I went to the library and picked up a book on animal rights and Bob Barker was on the cover of it.

It was Bob protesting fur in Beverly Hills (USA).

Bob has been such an outspoken advocate for all animals for over 30 years. Whether they're chickens or whales, no animal is too small or too large for Bob to care about. And he has done more than probably anyone to bring many issues of animal exploitation to the forefront, from encouraging people on "The Price Is Right" to spay and neuter their companions to helping the whales and speaking up on behalf of elephants, to supporting Mercy for Animals' undercover investigations.

He is a real hero and it's such an honor for us to be presenting the Compassionate Leadership Award to Bob tonight to recognize his work on behalf of animals. So please give the biggest round of applause you've ever mustered for Mr. Bob Barker.

We love you, Bob.

Thank you, thank you, thank you.

(We love you.) I sincerely appreciate that warm welcome. And I certainly appreciate your kind words, Nathan, and this beautiful award. I am flattered and pleased to receive it from an organization for which I have so much respect. I also want to thank Mr. Costa I want to thank you for inviting us to your beautiful home. And the food has been delicious.

We have the "Hidden Heroes" here. They have closed slaughterhouses. They've saved (many animals from) much suffering and animal cruelty in pig farms, chicken farms, and dairy farms.

And I salute them. I really do. I think that their undercover work has been responsible for many of the advances that we have made in the animal rights movement.

I could go on and on here about people I admire and who have helped in the animal rights movement. There are thousands of them and they're adding to the ranks every day.

After receiving his award, Bob Barker presented Mercy For Animals with a generous contribution of US$250,000 to help further their benevolent efforts.

I was going to write some inspiring remarks. And then I thought, “You're already inspired or you wouldn't be here tonight. And you would agree that the animal rights movement is not unlike a big snowball, rolling down the mountain. It gets bigger daily and gains speed daily. And that's exactly what’s happening with this movement. And I urge you not to get burned out or to get discouraged. The changes that I have seen in the last 35 years are magnificent. And it just proves to me that we will prevail.

On that happy note, I am going to say good night. But I do want to remind you of one very important thing. Help control the pet population.

Have your pet spayed and neutered. I'm exhausted. I've been here on my feet for so long and talking so much that I'm worn out. And I'll prove it because I forgot the most important thing of all. I'm out here babbling away, and, well, you've heard the old adage, “Money speaks louder than words?” I brought a check for US$250,000 for Mercy for Animals. Here you are, Nathan. That'll help you to continue this splendid work that you do.

Ultimately, the best way to protect animals’ lives is to adopt the noble, compassionate plant-based diet. Bob Barker is looking forward to a bright, vegan future.

Have you ever envisioned an entirely vegan planet?

I’m looking forward to an entirely vegan world, where no one eats animals.

Bob Barker, we thank you for being a real hero and we’re deeply grateful that you devote your time, energy and celebrity status to help ensure the well-being of our animal co-inhabitants. We, too, look forward to a vegan world soon in coming, where animals and humans live together in peace and harmony.

For more details on Bob Barker’s DJ&T Foundation, please visit www.DJTFoundation.org Learn more about Mercy For Animals at www. MercyForAnimals.org or www.Facebook.com/MercyForAnimals

Thank you for your graceful company today on Animal World: Our Co-Inhabitants. May all beings enjoy long lives, filled with everlasting love and contentment.
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