Animal Farm Revisited?
“All animals are equal,
but some animals are more equal than others”
Blue Dog State wrote an interesting (and frighteningly orwellian) post yesterday about a new cadre of armed animal rights activists volunteers organized by the Schenectady County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. From an article in the Schenectady Daily Gazette:
Peace officers have the legal authority to investigate animal abuse charges and make arrests. They can carry handguns and mace, wear body armor and charge violators with crimes ranging from violations to felonies, some punishable by up to four years in prison. They may only exercise their authority while on duty, though.
Unlike police agencies, the Schenectady SPCA would not be subject to governmental control, Tully said. But its peace officers must still receive training sanctioned by the state Division of Criminal Justice Services, it must file financial reports with the IRS and it must file a charitable charter with the state Attorney General’s Office, he said.
What? Armed civilians roaming the streets with power to ‘enforce’ laws — but operating without government control and the constitutional protections afforded by such control (you know, that silly legislative – executive – judicial thing)? How does local law enforcement feel about this? Well, according to the Schenectady Daily Gazette, Schenectady County sheriff Buffardi said he will assist Tully any way he can.
“I am in favor of any law enforcement effort that supports animal rights and protects animals. Sometimes government does not put animals first, and it stands to reason a group like this would be helpful to us,” he said.
OK, I’m confused. Our government is supposed to put animals first? What happened to human rights? Apparently I skipped school the day that the amendment that provides animals equal rights under the law was covered in my civics class.
I was, however, there the day that they covered the 14th Amendment which states in part:
All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.
Due process of law. Now there’s an interesting concept. Due process of law refers to how and why laws are enforced and it applies to all persons, citizen or alien, as well as to corporations. Due process includes the right to a fair hearing. Since many SPCAs are operated by animal rights proponents, not only are many of their enforcement staff are not impartial, they have an unfortunately tendency to conduct search and seizure operations without a hearing or court order. But then — they see themselves as being more equal under the law than those annoying (and politically uncorrect) pet owners are.
These “officers” don’t have a job, they have an agenda.
“…they had come to a time when no one dared speak his mind, when fierce, growling dogs roamed everywhere, and when you had to watch your comrades torn to pieces after confessing to shocking crimes.”
–George Orwell, Animal Farm