Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Ohio Pet Antifreeze Poisoning Bill (H.B. 96) - Require Antifreeze Manufacturers to Increase Bitterness in Taste of Products to Prevent Poisoning Dogs

Great idea. Here is a page that allows you to voice support for it. Please check it out and let those in OH that you know understand this bill. This is very common sense legislation that hopefully will be enacted in OH, but in other states that follow.


Calico Dragon Bags: New Handbag Line With Bold Messages All About Animals and Their Rights, or Lack of Rights Rather

Received this email the other day about this great product. I’m always willing to pass on the word about good animal-rights-related products.

A “…new handbag line with bold messages all about animals and their rights, or lack of rights rather. Changes must be made and without spreading the word, humans will go on living in the dark or in denial. I like to put the message out there for everyone to see.”

View the entire line at: www.CalicoDragonBags.com

NPR: Early Animal Rights Poem: “A Mouse’s Plea”: A Touching Story of an Early Animal Rights Pioneer

I won’t spoil the story. Just check out the following link. Very inspirational in that even as far back as the 18th century, some attempted to raise awareness of the inherent cruelty of animal testing or vivisection.


United States Supreme Court Rejects Ban on Videos of Animal Cruelty: Sickos Given the Legal Green Light to Film their Sick Abusive Torture Practices

Nothing more I can add. Another sad decision from the ultimate decider. No way to go after they decide. Sad and sick and a clear indicator of the sickness of our society. I bet Michael Vick is happy. Should the NFL finally decide to ban felons and/or should he spend his 5.5 million salary this year, he can now make money off of his videos taken of his torture and killing of dogs.

Article:

Justices Reject Ban on Videos of Animal Cruelty


By ADAM LIPTAK

Published: April 20, 2010

WASHINGTON — In a major First Amendment ruling, the Supreme Court on Tuesday struck down a federal law that made it a crime to create or sell dogfight videos and other depictions of animal cruelty.

Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr., writing for the majority in the 8-to-1 decision, said that the law had created “a criminal prohibition of alarming breadth” and that the government’s aggressive defense of the law was “startling and dangerous.”

The decision left open the possibility that Congress could enact a narrower law that would pass constitutional muster. But the existing law, Chief Justice Roberts wrote, covered too much speech protected by the First Amendment.

It has been more than a quarter-century since the Supreme Court placed a category of speech outside the protection of the First Amendment. Tuesday’s resounding and lopsided rejection of a request that it do so, along with its decision in Citizens United in January — concluding that corporations may spend freely in candidate elections — suggest that the Roberts Court is prepared to adopt a robustly libertarian view of the constitutional protection of free speech.

And in the next couple of months, the court is set to decide several other important First Amendment cases about anonymous speech, the right of free association and a federal law that limits speech supporting terrorist organizations.

Tuesday’s decision arose from the prosecution of Robert J. Stevens, an author and small-time film producer who presented himself as an authority on pit bulls. He did not participate in dogfights, but he did compile and sell videotapes showing the fights, and he received a 37-month sentence under a 1999 federal law that banned trafficking in “depictions of animal cruelty.”

Dogfighting and other forms of animal cruelty have long been illegal in all 50 states. The 1999 law addressed not the underlying activity but rather trafficking in recordings of “conduct in which a living animal is intentionally maimed, mutilated, tortured, wounded or killed.”

It did not matter whether the conduct was legal when and where it occurred so long as it would have been illegal where the recording was sold. Some of Mr. Stevens’s videos, for instance, showed dogfighting in Japan, where the practice is legal.

The government argued that depictions showing harm to animals were of such minimal social worth that they should receive no First Amendment protection at all. Chief Justice Roberts roundly rejected that assertion. “The First Amendment means that government has no power to restrict expression because of its message, its ideas, its subject matter or its content,” he wrote.

The chief justice acknowledged that some kinds of speech — including obscenity, defamation, fraud, incitement and speech integral to criminal conduct — have historically been granted no constitutional protection. But he said the Supreme Court had no “freewheeling authority to declare new categories of speech outside the scope of the First Amendment.”

Chief Justice Roberts rejected the government’s analogy to a more recent category of unprotected speech, child pornography, which the court in 1982 said deserved no First Amendment protection. Child pornography, the chief justice said, is “a special case” because the market for it is “intrinsically related to the underlying abuse.”

Having concluded that the First Amendment had a role to play in the analysis, Chief Justice Roberts next considered whether the 1999 law swept too broadly.

The law was enacted mainly to address what a House report called “a very specific sexual fetish” — so-called crush videos.

“Much of the material featured women inflicting the torture with their bare feet or while wearing high-heeled shoes,” according to the report. “In some video depictions, the woman’s voice can be heard talking to the animals in a kind of dominatrix patter.”

When President Bill Clinton signed the bill, he expressed reservations, prompted by the First Amendment, and instructed the Justice Department to limit prosecutions to “wanton cruelty to animals designed to appeal to a prurient interest in sex.”

The law, said Wayne Pacelle, the president of the Humane Society of the United States, “almost immediately dried up the crush video industry.”

But prosecutions under the law appear to have been pursued only against people accused of trafficking in dogfighting videos.
The federal appeals court in Philadelphia struck down the law in 2008 in Mr. Stevens’s case, overturning his conviction. Tuesday’s decision in United States v. Stevens, No. 08-769, affirmed the appeals court’s ruling.
In it, Chief Justice Roberts said the law was written too broadly. Since all hunting is illegal in the District of Columbia, for instance, he said, the law makes the sale of magazines or videos showing hunting a crime here.

“The demand for hunting depictions exceeds the estimated demand for crush videos or animal fighting depictions by several orders of magnitude,” he wrote.

The law contains an exception for materials with “serious religious, political, scientific, educational, journalistic, historical or artistic value.” Those exceptions were insufficient to save the statute, the chief justice wrote.

“Most hunting videos, for example, are not obviously instructional in nature,” he said, “except in the sense that all life is a lesson.”

Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr. dissented, saying the majority’s analysis was built on “fanciful hypotheticals” and would serve to protect “depraved entertainment.” He said it was implausible to suggest that Congress meant to ban depictions of hunting or that the practice amounted to animal cruelty.

Chief Justice Roberts replied that Justice Alito “contends that hunting depictions must have serious value because hunting has serious value, in a way that dogfights presumably do not. “But, he went on, the 1999 law “addresses the value of the depictions, not of the underlying activity.”

The exchange was unusual, as Chief Justice Roberts and Justice Alito are almost always on the same side. In the last term, the two justices, both appointed by President George W. Bush, agreed 92 percent of the time, more than any other pair of justices.

Justice Alito said the analogy to child pornography was a strong one. The activity underlying both kinds of depictions are crimes, he wrote. Those crimes are difficult to combat without drying up the marketplace for depictions of them and both kinds of depictions contribute at most minimally to public discourse, he added.

A number of news organizations, including The New York Times Company, filed a brief urging the court to rule in favor of Mr. Stevens.

Chief Justice Roberts concluded his majority opinion by suggesting that a more focused law “limited to crush videos and other depictions of extreme animal cruelty” might survive First Amendment scrutiny.

Mr. Pacelle, of the Humane Society, called for a legislative response to Tuesday’s ruling. “Congress should within a week introduce narrowly crafted legislation,” he said, “to deal with animal crush videos and illegal animal fighting activities.”

Website on World Animal Day – 4 October Every Year



Please visit the following website to learn more: http://www.worldanimalday.org.uk/index.asp

“Participation in World Animal Day continues to grow. At least 80 countries got involved in 2009 and the number of events more than doubled!”

Monday, April 12, 2010

Due to Evidence of Abuse, Group Seeks to Revoke the Renewal of the Animal Exhibitor License To Feld Entertainment, Owner of Ringling Bros. Circus

As if the photo used in this story (see link to story below) isn’t enough to prove the unnatural nature and cruelty of the circus in relation to the use of live animals, then perhaps the evidence brought out in this incredible move will do so.

My hats off to making an attempt to make the end of Ringling Bros. circus legal. There is no doubt, given what has come forth, both from undercover videos and even prior Ringling Bros. employees, that the circus MUST use force and torture to make animals do very unnatural acts.

As stated below, “PETA says it has amassed 700 pages of documents, videos and photos alleging a history of abuse at the circus ranging from "breaking" baby elephants with electric prods and sharp metal hooks to whipping a tiger until it collapsed and lost control of its bowels….’The only way you can get a several-ton elephant to stand on his head is from fear of pain…’

“PETA also alleges a pattern of coverups, including lying to inspectors after animal injuries and hastily installing just the visible parts of a cage cooling system after a lion named Clyde died of heat stroke in a train crossing the sweltering Mojave desert in 2004.”

In terms of proof from inside Ringling Bros. as to the reality of its animal torture:
“Frank Hagan, a veteran Ringling Bros. lion handler who had asked the circus to stop the train and was later fired, told PETA he was threatened by circus lawyers to keep quiet about the big cat's death, PETA told The News.”

I’ve posted the story below. We can only hope for a successful result.
This video was part of the article I’ve posted below. Please take the time to view.






Article:

PETA to ask feds to shut Ringling Bros., claiming circus is guilty of elephant torture, coverups


BY HELEN KENNEDY
DAILY NEWS STAFFER WRITER

Sunday, April 11th 2010, 10:04 PM

Shutting down Ringling Bros.

PETA's war against Ringling Bros. escalates Monday when the animal rights group asks the feds to shut the popular circus, accusing it of elephant torture and brazen coverups.

"They've lied, they've tampered with evidence and they've thwarted the inspectors," said Jeff Kerr, general counsel for the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals.

In a letter to be delivered Monday, PETA asks the Department of Agriculture to revoke or block the April 28 renewal of the animal exhibitor license issued to Feld Entertainment, which owns Ringling Bros.

"Abusive and violent treatment of animals ... is part and parcel of Ringling's traveling circus, which requires powerful animals, many of whom were once wild, to learn and perform tricks that are alien to their nature," writes PETA president Ingrid Newkirk.

Circus officials could not be reached for comment Sunday, but they have always insisted their animals are well cared for.

Past attempts to prosecute the circus for the same or similar claims have been unsuccessful.

A lawsuit brought against Ringling Bros. by a former trainer alleging rampant elephant abuse was dismissed in December by a judge who ruled the trainer had no standing to sue the circus.

PETA has filed a series of abuse complaints in the past to little effect, but the group hopes to get a more favorable hearing from the Obama administration than its predecessor.

"This is the first time we've taken all the evidence and put it together to show that this is not just one bad trainer, having one bad day, with one bad elephant," said Debbie Leahy, PETA's director of captive animal rescue. "This is chronic and systemic."

PETA says it has amassed 700 pages of documents, videos and photos alleging a history of abuse at the circus ranging from "breaking" baby elephants with electric prods and sharp metal hooks to whipping a tiger until it collapsed and lost control of its bowels.

"The only way you can get a several-ton elephant to stand on his head is from fear of pain," Kerr said. Last year, the Daily News was first to report on the group's undercover video showing elephants being beaten backstage at the Greatest Show on Earth.

PETA also alleges a pattern of coverups, including lying to inspectors after animal injuries and hastily installing just the visible parts of a cage cooling system after a lion named Clyde died of heat stroke in a train crossing the sweltering Mojave desert in 2004.

Frank Hagan, a veteran Ringling Bros. lion handler who had asked the circus to stop the train and was later fired, told PETA he was threatened by circus lawyers to keep quiet about the big cat's death, PETA told The News.

Last week, a circus elephant named Dumbo stomped its handler to death in Pennsylvania - a coincidence of timing that PETA says underscores their argument that animals shouldn't be forced to perform tricks.

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