Thought Bubbles

KQED Perspectives Script – The Pig Scramble

Since the pig scramble is still a persisting issue in the community, I’ve decided to continue pursuing it. This time, I want to get the word out to a larger audience than the small towns next to Woodside. I wrote a script for a program called Perspectives on the Bay Area’s National Public Radio Station, KQED. You can send a script about your perspective on a local issue to share with the Bay Area. 

I sent mine in about 3 weeks ago, and the news radio still hasn’t gotten back to me, so I might as well share it here!


– Anna  C

Every 4th of July, just steps away from Silicon Valley, a pig scramble is hosted at the  Woodside Jr. Rodeo. The pig scramble is a cruel and inhumane event, that serves no purpose except for entertainment. Despite numerous requests from the community to ban the pig scramble, it still continues. The more the community protests, the more excuses are given by the hosts.

There are no excuses for animal cruelty, no matter how small in scale.

During the pig scramble small kids chase even smaller pigs around a hot dusty arena and receive a prize for catching one. An announcer instructs the kids that the best way to catch them is to hold them by their legs. Kids try to catch the pigs but inadvertently tackle them, while supervisors dangle and drag the screeching pigs. If the pigs are reluctant to run, they are  tossed out into the arena. In the background, parents cheer, kids yell, and the pigs squeal.

Research shows that crowds, noise, chaotic activity, and forced human interaction causes stress, fear and even  jeopardizes the pigs’ health.

The hosts claim that the scramble showcases western heritage and the pigs enjoy it. I’ve researched these statements. A search of the archives in the National Cowboy Museum yielded no information relating to pig scrambles as a part of western heritage, and veterinarians agree that this event is detrimental to the pigs’ health.

Animal cruelty is indefensible. There are no excuses for dog fighting, shark finning, and the mistreatment of circus animals. There is no justifying the pig scramble no matter how insignificant it may seem. You might say that the pig scramble is only relevant to Woodside.  But, these events educate kids that it is ok to treat animals inhumanely.

I don’t want to be protesting this 4th of July. I want to know that the pig scramble is not happening and then I can feel at peace in Woodside.

With a perspective,

I’m Anna Calia.



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  1. natalie dente June 3, 2017

    Hi Anna, very well done. hope the NPR station gets back to you soon. There is no excuse for animal abuse. love Grandma Natalie

  2. Marco June 5, 2017

    Great work! I totally agree, there is NO excuse for animal abuse (that rhymes haha). I hope they get back to you soon!

  3. donna July 3, 2017

    Hi Anna,

    I love this piece. It’s so concise and well written. Your position is passionate but level headed. I wish NPR had been more responsive to this piece. It’s so well done.

  4. Aunt Debbie July 6, 2017

    Great job Anna! I love that you backed up your concerns with research. Hopefully the people of Woodside will skip the jr. rodeo and the hosts of the event will get the message. Keep up the good work!
    xo Aunt D

  5. emilio July 8, 2017

    piggy justes

  6. emilio July 8, 2017

    just say no

  7. Uncle Angelo July 8, 2017

    Thank you for writing this Anna! Being from Baltimore, i had never heard of a pig scramble. To be honest, I thought it was something you might order at a cutesy breakfast joint. Then when i heard what it really was, i couldn’t believe it! There must be other ways to celebrate Western heritage than having 100s of screaming kids chasing terrified little pigs. How about a nice lasso tournament where you chase the Scramble Organizer, snag and wrestle him down and stomp all over his Western heritage hat? that might be just as fun, though protesting and activism is a better way to go.

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