This is the time of year that I usually create a funny but accurate shopping list for the ranch wife or the cowboy that may be looking for something special for his sweetheart. Doing a little looking around, I jumped track to a rant that is swelling up in cattle country over a toy livestock hauling truck.

They are cattle trucks where I come from, or “bull wagons.” And yes, sheep and other assorted ranch and farm animals are hauled in them too.

cowgirl sass the toyIt seems that a group of animal rights activists finds nothing amusing about kids playing with a livestock truck sold by Walmart (and other places too, they just went after the most visible big guy).

The online petition started this month by a vegan activist from Toronto refers to it as a “toy slaughter truck” and the petition states, “Normalizing the enslavement and murder of animals to kids is not OK.” Seeking 15,000 signatures and as of this week, there were 12,824 supporters.

The comments under the petition are priceless in both their reality and those I would call “completely gone off the deep end.”

It was pointed out in a response that these trucks are toy models of an industry that moves livestock from one place to another and claimed a 95 percent ratio of location change usage to actually taking animals for slaughter. The toy is labeled “Peterbilt Model 579 with Livestock Trailer.”

The other side of the issue jumped off the ledge with, “The reality is violence. Do not support desensitization of children. This ‘toy’ is no different than a slave train combined with a coroner’s wagon. Auschwitz mentality is immoral & degrading.”

Another said, “Glorifying and normalizing slavery, abuse and slaughter is just disgusting.”

Seriously people? I would bet all that is mine not one child anywhere that found that truck under the Christmas tree would look at it and say, “Oh look, Santa brought me a slaughter truck.”

I have no delusion that my story here will change the mindset of those so embroiled in this leap from the toy shelf to Auschwitz, but it makes me feel better to shed a little more light on the insanity of this world. I am, however, a little concerned that those trucks hauling vegetables from farm country might be next on the list. Will the vegans attack their own?

Desensitizing children? Enslavement and murder of vegetables? Oh boy, it’s a good thing I’ve got a word limit that comes with this missive. My vote would to be to remove most television shows cartoon programs included, and video games. I would also do away with a long list of things people that claim to be free-thinking, free-willed adults do on a daily basis that “desensitizes” us all before taking a toy truck off the shelf. It is a toy. A symbol of a tool used daily in the livestock industry. Period. Ban that, then ban the knives that chop the vegetables.

And, about that doll that magically poops little charms after feeding her water. It comes with the suggestion that the doll owner then make a bracelet out of the charms. Hey, I don’t make this stuff up! What kind of reality is that for a child? I suggest there is possibly psychological damage done by this doll to children who will someday actually have to change a real baby’s diaper… Well, I leave it to you.

So on behalf of the livestock industry, the farming industry and the lucky charm industry, happy holiday shopping. By the way, those livestock hauling trucks are still available for $29.99. Buy two. Make a point.

Julie, who is charmless but has a previously-owned-by-son toy livestock truck, can be reached for comment at