Availability of Animal Cruelty Videos Increasing After Law Change

Daphne Reid
by Daphne Reid
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Washington, D.C. (Sept 17th, 2009)

An increase in the online availability of videos depicting animal cruelty has resulted from the overturning of the Federal Depiction of Animal Cruelty Law in July, leading to fresh calls for a change in the law.

Availability of Animal Cruelty Videos Increasing After Law Change

The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) believes that the enactment of the Federal Depiction of Animal Cruelty Law in 1999 slowed the proliferation of animal cruelty videos and also videos of dog-fighting operations. However, the law was overturned in July by the 3rd US Circuit Court of Appeals which ruled that these films were protected as free speech. Since this ruling, an investigation by the HSUS has uncovered a resurgence in the sale of "animal crush" videos on the internet, in which small animals are intentionally tortured and crushed.

On one website, 118 videos were for sale, featuring cats, rabbits, hamsters, mice, tortoises, quail, chicken, ducks, frogs and snakes being burned, drowned and even worse. These videos were easy to buy, and were priced from $20 to over $100. Another website offered 12 videos featuring rabbits, and yet another offered videos for sale featuring newborn mice.

"We wouldn't allow people to sell videos of people actually abusing children and raping women, and for good reason. It's vital to protect the community from the violence that flows from those who perpetrate such inexcusable crimes," said Senator Jim Moran. "The same legal principles apply to the malicious acts of cruelty revealed by The HSUS' recent crush video investigation. We do not tolerate illegal animal abuse, and we should not tolerate those who profit from it."

On October 6th, the US Supreme Court is due to reconsider the constitutionality of a federal anti-animal cruelty law, a law which is described as the "only tool available to crack down on this horrific form of extreme animal cruelty" by Wayne Pacelle, president and CEO of the HSUS. However, among the groups apposed to the Federal Depiction of Animal Cruelty Law are artists, who say that animals are already protected by animal cruelty laws, and that the mere depiction of animal cruelty should not be outlawed.

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Texas
autumn1
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Added on Dec 10th, 2009
My family & I think that the news people should report on Animal cruety,but not show it on the tv or put pictures in the newspaper.It's terrible enough that they show what humans do to one another,now people want to see videos of the cruety that mankind does to poor defenseless animals,that depend on us to take care of & love.This news just breaks my heart that someone would want to see these videos.What is the need for these videos? We already know that there our people out there that enjoy torturing mans best friend,& thats what dogs & cats are. Thank you Arlene
Wisconsin
nkpitbulls
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Added on Sept 20th, 2009
I know this may sound horrible, but let them continue to videotape and photograph these acts. All they are doing is providing evidence if they are ever prosecuted for animal cruelity.
Ireland
Sammycat2
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Added on Sept 19th, 2009
There is a reason why we don't allow videos showing humans being "crushed" or abused in any way.... Well, we should also apply this ruling to animals. How dare anyone, artist or other, justify animal cruelty in the name of so-called "ART". This is ridiculus. Abuse or torture of any kind, whether to human or animal, should be outlawed everywhere and in all media.
United Kingdom
TheGuys
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Added on Sept 19th, 2009
I think that this is totally horific! There is little more that I can say which would be suitable for an open site like this.
   
It is obvious that it is completely stupid that this could be classed as legal, but as in most laws there are loop holes, this needs to be tightned up as is the case when most new or altered laws come in to place. The idea that it is preventing freedom of speech is obserd! Freedom of speech is exaclty that, the freedom to express ones self thought law obiding actions. If someone was filmed graffi-ing then that footage would be confiscated to be used to prosecute, and in comparison that is a very minor crime! I would hope that this would be fixed in the very near future, if it hasnt been rectified already.
California
Catlady
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Added on Sept 19th, 2009
I am as disgusted, horrified, sickened, disheartened as all the rest of you. I would have appreciated something in this article telling us what we can do about it. Whether it's petitioning, and to whom, and how...it enough if said outloud from all of us, perhaps, just perhaps, we would have a loud enough voice to be heard. Guardian to furred and feathered friends, Lisa
Canada
mafdet
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Added on Sept 18th, 2009
So much for humans being the "most intelligent" species. How many other creatures derive pleasure from the pain of other animals? Not only does hearing about this make me physically naseous but it also makes my heart ache. I, like most people on this site love almost every type of animal around and I cannot imagine what type of sadists are actually paying for these pictures and videos.
Florida
smokeangel
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Added on Sept 17th, 2009
I am disgusted with our court and legal system. Freedom of Speech is not here to promote the abuse of any creature, and we certainly wouldnt be infringing on those rights by saying that these photos, videos and actions arent allowed. If this is concidered against our Freedom of Speech then arent we also saying that photos, and videos depicting the abuse, torture and rape of women and children must be permitted as well? Wouldnt it also be peoples right to view these? Humans concider themselves the dominant race on the planet, the top of the food chain. When I see things like this I think otherwise, humans are at the bottom because we are the only species of life on the planet that torture, maim and kill for the sheer pleasure of it.
   
I sincerely hope that this decision is reconsidered, I hope that those in charge have the intelligence to see the wrong in these actions.
Illinois
catnip824
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Added on Sept 17th, 2009
OMG, the sadists who want this stuff to be legal & available need to be caught & slowly, painfully tortured/executed the same way they did the defenseless animals they murdered. The HSUS is correct; just as the sadistic depiction of rape or child molestation is not allowed a pass under "free speech" laws, neither should ANY depiction of cruelty, torture or killing of animals by these sickos! Humans should be the guardians of God's creatures, and anyone who hurts them for perverse satisfaction & profit doesn't deserve to live.
Canada
nball
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Added on Sept 17th, 2009
I just received this information from Wayne Pacella's newsletter this morning. I don't have the words to describe how I feel about these types of videos and the people who make them. It's absolutely sickening and frightening at the same time. What type of mind would think about doing this to animals or the minds of those willing to pay? I am disappointed that Freedom of Speech is used an an excuse to continue cruelty to animals, namely crush videos. These people scare me, but in all honesty it would probably surprise all of us to know who is watching. Animals have always been treated and tortured in cruel, unthinkable ways and I hope the judges have the common sense and humanity in them to stop this insanity.
Canada
RadarMum
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Added on Sept 17th, 2009
This is appaling - I am sickened by hearing this. Apart from the fact that abuse of any creature is unforgivable, it is proven that people who abuse animals will likely hurt humans.
New Mexico
browndog
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Added on Sept 17th, 2009
Ok so, they are saying that because we already have laws in place to protect animals, then the video & picture law about animal cruelty doesn't need to be in place. We have laws in place to protect children and women from abuse or exploitation yet, pictures of child porn and videos of it or women being raped are against the law. This is the same type of situation, if they arrest people for having these animal cruelty pictures and video's less people would have them or want them which in my opinion may slow down it happening all together. If there is no market for it, there is no profit in it, then we are just back down to our true sickos hurting animals, not every curious kid buying the crap on line.