Priorities and perspective

Dave Killion — September 16, 2011

Many of us were horrified to hear about the killing of 100 sled dogs last year, and after a lengthy and expensive investigation the BC SPCA is recommending the man committing the act be charged

“Marcie Moriarty, head of cruelty investigations at the B.C. SPCA, said her organization is recommending that Crown lawyers charge Fawcett with causing unnecessary pain and suffering to an animal.

“Under the criminal code, the maximum penalty this individual could receive is five years in jail,” Moriarty said.

“In addition, [he] can receive a lifetime ban on owning animals and a significant fine.

Moriarty said the investigation was one of the most complex and expensive ever undertaken by the B.C. SPCA.”

Indeed. Not only was $250,000.00 spent on the investigation, but taxpayers also had to foot the bill for a government task force that recommended tougher animal cruelty penalties including fines up to $75,000 and jail sentences up to two years.

None of this is any surprise. The SPCA exists because of animal cruelty and is obviously made up of people more concerned about animal treatment than the public at large. They are likely to find abuse where others would not, and they have a financial incentive to do so.  As to the task force, would anyone expect them to conclude that everything was just dandy and that no increase in state involvement was called for?

None of us likes to see animals suffer, but the world is full of problems and the resources available to solve them are limited. So if you think it’s more important to donate your money to organizations that look to preserve endangered species, or educate third world girls, or end the AIDS epidemic in Africa than to spend your money on animal abuse prosecutions, you might want to think about speaking out against a government that takes that choice away from you.

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