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Good News from China, Bad News from New York

Yes, you read that correctly; the good news is from China (and some of you might not see it as good news, but I don't think you can categorize it as bad news). I'll do the bad news first so I may end on a good note.

This week's wtf? goes to the NYC Council, which Rich informed us yesterday in a comment, tabled Resolution 497, "which called for educators to be notified of a law which requires elementary schools to teach students about the humane treatment of animals," due to "arm-twisting" by Speaker Christine Quinn's office (source of quotes here).

Quinn, by the way, shows up on every e-mail alert I get from any group trying to help animals (welfare or otherwise) and has scored a zero on the League of Humane Voters' annual scorecard. Other than the carriage horse issue, I don't believe there's been any issue before the council that would have banned a certain use of an animal, which makes Quinn's behavior even worse. She even came out against pet stores installing fire sprinklers. Of course, she is against banning carriage horses.

Twisting arms about notifying educators about a law, though? That seems to reach a new level of absurdity. And by the way the vote was 13-3. I'd like to hear from the other 12 about what's so offensive about Resolution 497.

But enough of that, and on to some good news from Chris in China:

A well-organized and smart group of activists in Nanjing, Guangdong, Beijing and a few other cities is setting out to stop the cat meat trade in Guangdong Province.

Guangdong's appetite for cat meat drives a cat-stealing and smuggling industry that is countrywide, which is mainly fueled by either stolen or stray pets and pet trade animals who outgrow their saleable age.

This morning, the anti-cat meat trade activists delivered a petition to the Guangdong Province Representative office in Beijing.

This is the opening salvo of an effort that will probably feature attacks on the trade from all fronts, including legal challenges. Going to get interesting.

While Biden's supporting puppy mills, ordinary Chinese cat friends are kicking butt.

There's a speciesist element to this that's obvious in quotes like this: "These cats, they are like our children," said Cui Qingzhen, a
56-year-old woman who said she has been feeding street cats for six
years. "We can't let these people do this to them."

The skinning and cooking alive of the cats is horrifying because they're cats, and that's a shame. It should be horrifying because it's horrifying.

What do you think?

6 Comments Post a comment
  1. I think the China cat story is just one more example of the disconnect people have with the animals they choose to consume. I'm quite certain that there's an individual somewhere reading this story in horror as they chow down on a bacon muffin, or "chicken" something or other. And never shall the two concepts meet.

    I also think that the U.S. might not be too far from following suit with dog/cat "pet-animal" consumption. Or at least that's what I was recently told by a staunch supporter of omnivorism… During a discussion with this individual, he brought up the subject of pet "over-population". He even knew of the proposals here in the U.S. to classify dogs as "livestock". In his mind, a major first step in "commodification" and marketing. His theory is that billions of dollars could be made/saved if cats/dogs might be included in the "food" chain too. Good source of protein you know… And honestly, what is the difference between a pig and a dog anyway? At least he got that part right…

    What planet was he born on and which country? Earth, USA. He lives in my neighborhood (or in yours). Keep a watchful eye on Kitty – a man's gotta eat you know.

    December 18, 2008
  2. N #

    What do I think?

    I think the average street cat poached and slaughtered for food probably lived a better life than the average pig, chicken, or cow raised for slaughter in China or America.

    I think that the consumption of cat meat or even Korea and other countries where it is more common is still relatively rare.

    I think it's nice that the poor cats are given a reprieve, but I wish people would think of farm animals.

    December 19, 2008
  3. Mary Martin #

    I was waiting for that and the essence is true and important to think about, as you know. What's with hiding behind "N" and a mailinator mailbox, and "letting me eat spam, though?" You'll never be spammed because of me.

    December 19, 2008
  4. More than any of us really wants to know… but here it is anyway:

    December 20, 2008
  5. Mary Martin #

    Gee thanks, Bea.

    December 20, 2008
  6. P.S.

    From the League of Humane Voters in NYC (re: resolutions passing/not passing):

    "On the bright side, the committee passed Resolution 1541, a resolution sponsored by Council Member Robert Jackson. Thanks in large part to our efforts with Reso. 497, Reso. 1541 calls for a citywide assessment of compliance with a variety of education mandates, including humane education, among other important requirements. Unfortunately, this resolution lacks a mechanism to notify schools of existing law, which we've found is the main obstacle to getting humane education into schools. Every member of the Education Committee voted for 1541, except Simcha Felder who voted against it, and Melinda Katz who was absent."

    December 21, 2008

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