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Published 8:20 am Wednesday, June 18, 2008

By Staff
Animal cruelty deserves firm penalty
The death of a horse in Flomaton recently has brought up many discussions on the penalties associated with animal cruelty.
Currently in Alabama, the act of cruelty to livestock is considered a misdemeanor. We believe, especially in this case, the charges should be more severe.
A misdemeanor charge carries a penalty similar to a slap on the wrist. Torturing, or killing, any living thing certainly should carry a stiffer penalty.
Renee Jones, animal cruelty investigator for the Escambia County Humane Society, was clearly upset by the fact that the owner of a horse allegedly shot the animal and then burned the barn down on top of it to cover up the act of cruelty against the animal.
Jones, along with many other animal rights advocates, are certainly right to seek a stiffer penalty on those who commit such senseless crimes.
We agree with those advocates that stiffer penalties are needed and warranted in many, if not all, of the cases of animal cruelty.
Given an opportunity, every citizen should take the opportunity to voice their opinions on this subject.
By contacting our law makers, the acts of cruelty, including senseless killing, of animals could carry time in prison, fines or both.
We encourage those who have ever had a beloved pet or a horse, cow or pig that has been a part of your family to speak out in defense of those animals who cannot defend themselves against their attackers.

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