Best States to be an Animal Abuser React to ALDF’s New ReportPosted by April Nockleby, ALDF's Online Content Manager on December 19, 2008
On Tuesday, the Animal Legal Defense Fund released its annual report ranking the animal protection laws of every state based on their relative strength and general comprehensiveness. Arkansas and Mississippi ranked among the “best states to be an animal abuser” due to their poor laws protecting animals. Watch these two news reports discussing the states’ inadequate laws and the steps each are taking to improve them.
|Arkansas Ranks Poorly in Animal Protection Laws
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|Mississippi Ranks Low on Animal Protection
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Also ranked among the worst states for its animal protection laws was Idaho. In the Times-News article, “Idaho among worst 5 states in animal cruelty,” Representative Jim Patrick, R-Twin Falls, says the following:
"We don’t want a black eye but yet we have groups always pressuring us, saying we’re the worst state," he said. "And if you look at the numbers we’re the worst state in a lot of things. But we’re also the best in a lot of things, too, if you look at the numbers differently. It’s kind of an emotional issue. If you throw a cat off a bridge, you’re gonna get in trouble either way."
Why are these states in the dog house when it comes to getting tough on animal abusers? The legislative weaknesses seen in the states at the bottom of the animal protection barrel include severely restricted or absent felony animal cruelty provisions, inadequate animal fighting provisions, and lack of restrictions on the future ownership of animals for those convicted of cruelty to animals.
Many state laws have improved since ALDF’s last state rankings report was released in 2007; since then, Alaska and Utah have seen progressive enough change to be bumped out of the bottom 10 percent by Idaho and Mississippi.
How does your state rank? Check out the full report here.