One country at a time, the world will hopefully be a better place for animals soon.
On Monday, November 25, President Trump signed the Preventing Animal Cruelty and Torture (PACT) Act, a bipartisan bill that bans the maltreatment or violent handling of animals . The bill specifically prohibits animal crushing, which means “actual conduct in which one or more living non-human mammals, birds, reptiles, or amphibians is purposely crushed, burned, drowned, suffocated, impaled, or otherwise subjected to serious bodily injury.”
The PACT Act is an amendment of the Animal Crush Video Prohibition Act which passed Congress and was endorsed by President Obama in 2010. It prohibits the creation, importation and/or distribution of animal crushing videos in the United States. The new bill now prevents the actual harming of the animals, which is far more realistic than solely placing a ban on recordings.
Anyone found guilty of violating or aiding the violation of the PACT Act could be sentenced to seven years in prison, penalized with a fine, or serve both punishments. It’s a crime now, a felony, no longer just a mere immoral act to hurt an animal within the U.S.
“I am pleased to sign the Preventing Animal Cruelty and Torture Act into law,” Trump said as he signed the bill on Monday. “It is important that we combat these heinous and sadistic acts of cruelty, which are totally unacceptable in a civilized society.”
Unanimous support in the House
The bill was proposed earlier this year in January by Congressman Ted Deutch, D- Florida and Rep. Vern Buchanan, R-Florida. The House of Representatives endorsed the bill in October and it passed the Senate soon after. On Monday, President Trump completed the enactment of an Act that would hopefully protect innocent animals across the country.
The bill was signed by Trump the same day he welcomed Conan, the “ultimate dog” to the White House. Last month, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, an ISIS leader was brought down by the U.S military in Syria with the help of the heroic canine . The Belgian Malinois was sent into a tunnel to attack the terrorist, prompting him to detonate a suicide vest. He died along with his three children in the explosion, while Conan was injured.
Conan saved the lives of the military officials involved in the operation as no one else was hurt. He was honored at the White House the same day the bill that would protect his species and all other non-human vertebrae from abuse was signed into law.
“This bill is particularly important to us as the only humane law enforcement agency in D.C.,” said Chris Schindler, vice president of field services at the Humane Rescue Alliance. “Our officers investigate thousands of animal cruelty cases each year, but have been unable to truly bring justice for the animals in instances when the cruelty occurs across multiple jurisdictions.”
There’s always room for improvements
While millions of Americans are impressed with the President and legislators for making the long-awaited dream come true, many others are convinced that more could still be done.
Although the bill is an amendment to the rather porous animal crushing video act, there’s still a lot of loopholes left in this one as it doesn’t include the protection of animals from several veterinary procedures, unorthodox scientific experiments research, predator and pest control mechanisms, hunting, fishing, slaughtering, and ill-treatment in the agricultural sector.
While we hope for subsequent sections to be added to the bill to extend its horizons, there will hopefully be a reduction in the rate of animal maltreatment and abuse across the country.
- Trump signs bill making animal cruelty a felony https://www.cbsnews.com/news/animal-cruelty-felony-president-trump-signs-animal-cruelty-pact-act-bill-making-it-a-federal-felony-2019-11-25/
- Tufts University. CSI: Animal Abuse https://now.tufts.edu/articles/csi-animal-abuse
- The Humane Society. Animal Cruelty Facts and Stats https://www.humanesociety.org/resources/animal-cruelty-facts-and-stats
- Stefan Becket. Trump tweets “declassified” photo of heroic dog wounded in al-Baghdadi raid. CBS News. https://www.cbsnews.com/news/belgian-malinois-photo-of-hero-dog-wounded-in-isis-leader-raid-tweeted-by-trump-today/. Retrieved 27-11-19
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