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Animal cruelty encompasses a range of different behaviors harmful to animals,from neglect to malicious, brutal killings. Studies show that animal cruelty may lead tomore serious forms of crime, like heavy drug use, violent outbursts, and most common,cold blooded murder. Many studies in psychology, sociology, and criminology during thelast twenty-five years have demonstrated that violent offenders frequently have childhoodand adolescent histories of serious and repeated animal cruelty. A web page that goes bythe name Animal Alliance says "most cruelty investigated by humane officers, isunintentional neglect, and can be resolved through education." (3) I was slightly shockedwhen I saw this comment. Anyone who puts an animals' life in their hands, has aresponsibility to it. You don't just forget to feed him/her, or forget to show them loveunless it is intentional, it get so much worse, though.
These people aren't just forgettingto feed their pets, or give them attention, they're kicking and beating them, poisoning andbutchering these poor creatures, and what makes me sick to my stomach, is that some ofthese people do it for fun!! I recently ran across a link to a web page that contained aonline petition to put a cat's killers to justice with maximum sentence. This is the article Ifound on this brutal torture of an innocent creature.***WARNING*** (graphic details) "On October 10, 1999, a beautiful female cat came willingly to the four boys whostopped on the side of the road and called to her. Her trust was rewarded by unthinkableterror and cruelty - being used as a tug-of-war toy until the boys heard something 'pop',having her legs broken, being jumped up and down on like a trampoline. Even when herpitiful battered body was mercifully dead, her suffering was not at an end. The boys thenplaced her ravaged body under the wheel of their car, braking over her, as they drove offto find other amusement. Once the Chesapeake Animal Control conducted theirinvestigation and performed a necropsy, criminal charges were filed against 3 of the 4boys involved.
If these charges are found to be accurate, these boys are not only inviolation of the laws of the State of Virginia, but are also in need of immediatepsychiatric intervention." (1)***Another horrific article I ran across was even worse. It was about a dog who to was also avictim of rancid brutality. Here is that story.***WARNING*** (graphic details) "Jose, Marcus, Richard and Lance are accused of obtaining a video camera, pressing the'record' button, luring Scruffy from his home, and then torturing and killing him in anunspeakably monstrous act of cruelty. In the videotape that the police and media have intheir possession, four men are shown torturing and killing Scruffy in lurid detail. Thequality of the tape is very good, and the police have been able to obtain photographs ofthe men in the tape. In this tape, one of the four men is shown to elevate Scruffy off theground by the neck, and then begin this horrific abuse by choking him. This 6 pound littledog did not have a fighting chance against these men.
Scruffy, still alive, was then placedin a trash bag. The four men shown in the tape then doused the trash bag with whatappeared in the video to be lamp oil, took a cigarette lighter, and set Scruffy on fire.Scruffy, at this point in the video, began to run wildly in pain and agony around the treeswhile the four men watched and laughed. When the flames finally went out, Scruffy wasstill alive, but his torture was not over. Next, the men decided to try to decapitate Scruffywith a shovel. After slamming the shovel into Scruffy's neck and not being able to attaintheir goal, they realized that Scruffy was more of a fighter than they had expected. Themen then opened Scruffy's mouth and began to pull his jaws apart, as if trying to rip hisface in two. Using the shovel in place of a club, the men then beat Scruffy until his tinybody gave out, and he died.
Throughout the videotape the four men are all shownlaughing and having a good time as they are carrying out these unspeakable tortures." (1)***After I read these stories I was disgusted, revolted, down right sickened by the realizationthat these men needed to be institutionalized or locked down. It's scare's me to think ofwhat they would and are capable of doing to a human being. The FBI uses reports of animal cruelty in analyzing the threat potential ofsuspected and known violent criminals. Dr. Randall Lockwood, vice president ofTraining Initiatives for The Humane Society of the United States, states that"Researchers, as well as the FBI and other law enforcement agencies nationwide, havelinked animal cruelty to domestic violence, child abuse, serial killings, and to the recentrash of killings by school-age children."(2) I found yet another web page listing somereports from police case files. I was astonished! These are a few excerpts from that page.***WARNING*** (graphic details) 'Russell Weston Jr., tortured and killed 12 cats, by burning, cutting their tails, paws, earsoff, put toxic chemicals in their eyes, blinding them, forcing them to eat poison, hangingthem from trees; the noose loose enough to create a slow and painful death, as thecat/kitten struggles to free itself as the noose gets tighter with each attempt. Later killed 2officers at our Nation's Capitol.' 'Jeffery Dahmer loved to dissect animals (he learned this in school).
Later he dissectedboys, and kept their body parts in the refrigerator. Murdered 17 men.' 'On May 21, 1998 in Springfield, Oregon; 15-year-old Kip Kinkel set a live cat on fireand dragged the innocent creature through the main street of town. He walked into hishigh school cafeteria and opened fire on his classmates. Two classmates were killed and22 others injured, four critically. Later that day, police found his parents shot to death intheir home.' 'Prior to committing multiple murders, Luke Woodham, age 16, wrote in his personaljournal that he and an accomplice beat, burned and tortured his dog, Sparkle, to death.Woodham said it was 'true beauty.' He poured liquid fuel down his dog's throat and setfire to her neck, both inside and outside. On 10/1/1977, Woodham stabbed his mother todeath and then went to his high school where he shot and killed two classmates -- twogirls aged 16 and 17, and injured seven others.
In June 1998, Woodham was found guiltyof three murders and seven counts of aggravated assault. He was sentenced to three lifesentences and an additional 20 years for each assault.' 'The Kobe Killer, an as yet unnamed 15-year-old boy in Japan, beheaded a cat andstrangled several pigeons. Decapitated 11-year-old Jun Hase, and battered to death a10-year-old girl with a hammer, and assaulted three other children in separate attacks.' 'At 9 years old, Eric Smith strangled a neighbor's cat. At 13 years old, he bludgeonedfour-year-old Derrick Robie to death. Smith lured the little boy into the woods, chokedhim, sodomized him with a stick, then beat him to death with a rock.' 'Arthur Shawcross repeatedly threw a kitten into a lake until the kitten drowned fromexhaustion. Killed a young girl. Then, after serving 15-1/2 years in prison, he killed 11more women.' (4) *** Dr. Randall Lockwood stated, "Violence directed at animals by young people is asign that something is terribly wrong, and often acts as a warning of future violence, evenkillings directed against humans." (2) In the in the past 18 months, we have seen sevenschool shootings.
In each one, it was learned that the perpetrators had abuse, tortured, andkilled animals before moving on to their human victims and our nation is wondering whathappened. One of the most dangerous things that can happen to a child is to kill or torturean animal and get away with it. Our child must be taught young that it wrong to poke atpuppy's eyes. We can't afford to ignore what we think of as childish exploration. Ourchildren learn the most important aspects of life young and if they're not aware of what isright and wrong, it could possibly lead to more dangerous attempts. As a society, we cannot tolerate cruelty towards animals. People inclined to inflict pain and torture uponanimals have a predisposition to violence against both animals and humans.
"A 1997study by the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (MSPCA)reports that youngsters convicted of animal abuse are five times more likely to commitviolence against other humans than are their peers, four times more likely to be involvedin acts against property, and three times more likely to be drug offenders." (2) Bibliography1. No More Cruelty- http://www.geocities.com/animalabusealert/index.ht mla) Cat Killersb) Scruffy2. Colorado High School Gunmen Linked To Animal Cruelty (web article)http://www.hsus.org/whatnew/litteton032399 .html a)Lockwood 3. Animal Alliance-http://animalalliance.ca/factsheets/humvi ol.py4. Animal Victims/Human Victims: Reports from Police Case Files-http://members.tripod.com/nocruelty/anicru.h tm#avh.
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