Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Hmmm... Not Sure On This One

The Supreme Court agreed Monday to take up an unusual free-speech case to decide whether the government can make it a crime to sell or own videos portraying dog fighting or other acts of animal cruelty.

I have a problem with these types of laws. Yes, I know they are used to fight child pornography... But, I'm not too happy with restrictions of free speech. I guess it matters what the courts and legislatures will consider animal cruelty. Is a vet cropping dog ears, tails or dewclaws engaging in animal cruelty? In some countries, the law says 'yes'. Is dog training with a chain or prong collar animal cruelty? In some places, the law says 'yes'. Is putting a dog in an airline crate animal cruelty? Possibly. Some cities are passing laws defining the enclosure sizes for animals. So, a lot of the criteria for 'animal cruelty' is pretty arbitrary, and when we are talking about penalties that might include prison, I'm not happy with these types of laws.

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