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redhen

Watching dog fights still legal in Montana

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"Just last week, legislators on the House Agriculture committee tabled (killed) House Bill 279, which would have closed a loophole in state statute by making spectating at dogfights a misdemeanor. That’s right, dogfighting. It’s a felony in all 50 states, but Montana is the ONLY one where spectating is still legal–placing it dead last in a ranking of state dogfighting laws."

http://animalblawg.w...013/02/20/5665/

Those who opposed this modest compassionate bill used the slippery slope argument. "“While I don’t support dogfighting, or any animal fighting that way, one question I had here…we heard a lot about dogs…and this pertains to all animals, I want your legal opinion…if in a rodeo a Brahma bull decides to take on one of the pick-up men’s horses and that becomes an animal fight, what is gonna happen to the rodeo spectators and the rodeo event?”"

And that brilliant logic killed the bill. So if you want to legally watch dogs fight to the death, Montana is the place to go.

Why am I posting this in the Philosophy forum?

"Animal rights are no more a matter of opinion than is any other moral matter"

- Gary L. Francione

p.s. any UM readers live in Montana? If so, what are your thoughts about your legislators in this regard?

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The evil in the world is sad, but no longer shocking. Which is also sad.

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While it is not illegal to watch one it is illegal to have one...

The wording of the bill may have been vauge enough that if you happen upon two dogs fighting on their own (with no outside prompting) you could be liable for charges.... At least that is what I get from it... Still they should have reworded the bill if this is the case...

it is still a felony in Montana to stage a dog fight...

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While it is not illegal to watch one it is illegal to have one...

Yes this sounds inconsistent no? It's because there is a gap in the law, which this bill would have filled.

The wording of the bill may have been vauge enough that if you happen upon two dogs fighting on their own (with no outside prompting) you could be liable for charges.... At least that is what I get from it... Still they should have reworded the bill if this is the case...

Not so. The wording of this one page bill is very clear, it applies to people

"WHO KNOWINGLY ATTENDS ANY EXHIBITION IN WHICH ANIMALS ARE FIGHTING FOR THE PURPOSE OF SPORT, AMUSEMENT, OR GAIN"

So if you walk down the street and see two dogs scrapping, you wouldn't be arrested.

it is still a felony in Montana to stage a dog fight...

Yes for the owners. But all those who watch this spectacle are within the existing law. This is very inconsistent.

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Yes this sounds inconsistent no? It's because there is a gap in the law, which this bill would have filled.

Not so. The wording of this one page bill is very clear, it applies to people

"WHO KNOWINGLY ATTENDS ANY EXHIBITION IN WHICH ANIMALS ARE FIGHTING FOR THE PURPOSE OF SPORT, AMUSEMENT, OR GAIN"

So if you walk down the street and see two dogs scrapping, you wouldn't be arrested.

Yes for the owners. But all those who watch this spectacle are within the existing law. This is very inconsistent.

Mehhhhhh if you watch an illegal stage fight of humans, you don't get in trouble. I don't see how they would enforce such a thing on a populace. Not that I agree it should be happening, but there is a slippery slope. Illegal drag races, cage fights, kickboxing fights etc..etc... True the participants have a choice to compete or not, but arresting everyone is simply not practical and would cost a prosecuting body a tremendouse amount of money fighting everyone in court. Get the b******* that put on the show.

Edited by Seeker79

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Spectators aren't hurting the dogs. We shouldn't be arresting people simply for what they view. And certainly allowing up to six months in prison is cruel and unusual. If it were restricted to only a moderate fine and no possibility of imprisonment, that would probably be much more palatable.

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Spectators aren't hurting the dogs.

Do you think the owners would hold dog fights if there were no spectators? Most dog fights are held to make money, i.e. gambling. No spectators, no dog fights.

There are some people who will do absolutely anything to make money and dog fights are a source of income. The immorality of these fights is not universal. In Mongolia for example it is big business, but when Western companies like Heineken are used as sponsors they quickly distance themselves.

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That is just shocking to me. It shows the politicians in Montana have know empathy at all. I would hate to be even a human in that state. I have no clue how anyone could watch something like that. Illegal drugs are illegal whether you are selling it or using it. So it doesn't matter whether you are hosting it or watching it.

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