People often question the validity of animals’ rights. Animals, who can’t communicate through methods as sophisticated as humans or build, cultivate, and advance societies in the same way as humans, must be inferior, right?
I find the notion that one form of life is less valuable than another’s is dangerous, regardless of whether one form of life is less “refined” than another. Take, for example, the case of Lad, a rough collie who was shot in the face earlier this year, lost his lower jaw as a result, and, sadly, died earlier this week. Think about that: an innocent creature was shot in the face and left disfigured and to suffer. There’s nothing humane about that. It’s simply cruel.
The shooter, who’s currently on trial for this heinous act, has chosen to plead “not guilty.” Whether the individual on trial will be found guilty of the crime, only time will tell, but the attack should not be ignored - or belittled - because of the species of the victim.
One could argue that taking the life of an animal - who, admittedly, cannot contribute to society like a human - is not a criminal act. In some cases, that’s true: humans have cultivated and harvested animals for food and other goods and services for centuries; and if a suffering animal is put down to spare it pain, that is humane. However, when a defenseless creature is attacked or murdered in a cruel and brutal fashion, for no discernible reason, as was Lad, it shows a fundamental disdain and disrespect for life - and that is criminal.
Lad is not an isolated incident either. More and more cases of animal cruelty are reported every day. Just this week a great pyrenees named Griff was found in Bowling Green starved and with bullet wounds to his legs, snout, head, and neck, according to The Park City Daily News. Fortunately, Griff has taken the first steps on the road to recovery. Many other animals are not so lucky.
Based on the thousands of supporters who’ve rallied behind the causes of rescuing mistreated animals and bringing their attackers to justice, I know I’m not alone in believing that cruelty to animals should not and must not be tolerated.