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New York’s fight against animal abuse is for the better

New York’s fight against animal abuse is for the better

New York’s fight against animal abuse is for the better
March 28
21:35 2017

As the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals announced on Facebook, March 23 marked a “victory for animals” in Niagara County, New York. The mistreatment of animals has gone on for far too long and, little by little, counties are trying to make living situations better for our furry friends.

On Tuesday, lawmakers in Niagara County voted to close the loophole that has allowed individuals who have been convicted of mistreating animals to avoid being placed on the Niagara County Animal Abuse Registry.

Finally, animal abusers are starting to receive proper justice for their crimes. They can no longer hide from the truth of their wrong doings. From now on, if someone is or has been convicted of mistreating animals, they will be placed onto the Animal Abuse Registry. Even if they make a plea deal with the Niagara County court, their name will still go on the registry.

According to Lockport Journal, this solution “gives judges and the District Attorney the authority to require that animal abusers who plead down to a lesser charge, such as a violation, to register with the animal abuse registry.”

Animal shelters all around the Niagara area are filled with excitement. This gives them the recourse they need to make sure they are sending animals to a good home.

Americans cannot ignore the fact that animal abuse has been a recurring problem. According to the Statistic Brain Research Institute, the average number of reported animal abuse and cruelty cases is 1,920 each year. Seventy-eight percent of that number is dogs and cats alone.

Animal abuse is a hard topic for people to discuss. We can try to avoid the situation and believe someone else will take a stand. We may think there are enough activists and support groups who help the situation, then try to stop it from becoming a problem.

I’ve heard people ask, “Why should we care about animal abuse?” I’ve also heard people explain why they would rather people put harm onto an animal then on a human. But abuse is still abuse. If someone is abusing an animal to deal with their inner emotions, then it may only be a matter of time before their aggression is placed on a person. Human and animal cruelties are still the same.

I couldn’t explain why people should care about the welfare of animals better than the Friends of Captive Animals can. “When we tolerate cruelty to animals, we are tolerating cruelty itself and cruelty has a harmful effect on human society,” FOCA says on its webpage. “Civilization and peace need co-operation to exist and cruelty does not promote co-operation.”

Niagara County’s very own Dennis Virtuoso, a lawman who sponsors the animal legislation, said to Lockport Journal that “the Registry helps defend the animals because animals have no other recourse.”

New York counties such as Niagara, Albany and Rockland have all closed loopholes that allowed animal abuse prior to this time. I can only hope Texas counties are next.

Featured Illustration: Samuel Wiggins

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Bethany Wallace

Bethany Wallace

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