Thursday, August 23, 2007

Political Grandstanding

NFL star Michael Vick's dogfighting scandal has inspired a City Council push for dramatically tougher penalties for owning or harboring a fighting dog or other dangerous dog. Councilman Peter Vallone Jr. (D-Queens) yesterday introduced a bill raising the penalty to between $10,000 and $25,000. It's now $500 to $5,000. "We don't want this heinous activity to gain any foothold here," Vallone said. "If you go to any pet shelter, over half the animals that are abandoned are pit bulls, so clearly there's abuse out there," he said.

These fine increases won't do a thing to stop dog fighting.

What does "other dangerous dog" mean? That is a pretty vague description, and I wouldn't want to be defending myself in court over that kind of wording in the law.

And just because there are a lot of abandoned pit bulls in shelters DOESN'T mean "clearly there's abuse out there". There are a lot of abandoned Labrador Retrievers, too. And there were a lot of abandoned Dalmatians a few years back.

Look, the laws already on the books are sufficient punishment for engaging in dog fighting. Raising the fines is just a way for this politician to grandstand and get some press. These fines will NEVER BE COLLECTED once the person is convicted, and is bankrupt after paying their attorneys.

You can bet this story made it to the press because the staff of this politician sent a press release to this newspaper to generate attention to this politician. No one was asking for a change in the laws. If writing new laws stopped crime, then we'd all be saints by now. The law books are full of intrusive regulations and rules, yet crime still goes on.

For those of you who still don't get the point of what I'm saying, this was all explained about 2000 years ago. Laws don't make men into good people:

Romans 8:3 For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: 8:4 That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. 8:5 For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit. 8:6 For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.

The more laws you pass, the more liberty you give up. But, evil will still persist, and will even get worse. Countries with the most restrictive laws end up being the oppressors. We can either tolerate the fact that we are going to have crime, and we should have a set of basic laws we enforce to deal with those violations. Or, we head down the slippery slope and end up like North Korea, where everything is regulated and punished, and then life is even worse. More and more laws are passed every day, and at some point, the government becomes the criminal. THAT IS WHAT THE DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE SAYS. In fact, it also says that at some point, it is time to break free and start over again.

"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security."

The only way to prevent this kind of overthrow is to fight for limited government. It is a shame that isn't taught in our public schools.

We have enough dog laws on the books. Those laws work as they should. The guilty are found out and punished. But, to keep adding laws, in the hopes that you will stop evil will cause even greater evil in the end.

8:7 Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.

No comments: