Justices Void Law Banning Videos of Animal Cruelty

Yesterday was a sad day for those of us who care about the life and well-being of animals. The Supreme Court on Tuesday struck down a federal law that made it a crime to create or sell dogfight videos and other depictions of animal cruelty.

You can read the full article here http://www.nytimes.com/2010/04/21/us/21scotus.html but the long and short of it is this…The Supreme Court of the United States said that the law had created “a criminal prohibition of alarming breadth” and that the government’s aggressive defense of the law was “startling and dangerous. The existing law, Chief Justice Roberts wrote, covered too much speech protected by the First Amendment.

And if that wasn’t bad enough “the government argued that depictions showing harm to animals were of such minimal social worth that they should receive no First Amendment protection at all.” And a number of news organizations, including The New York Times Company, filed a brief urging the court to rule in favor of Mr. Stevens.

I cannot believe that in 2010 the government would still not recognize the need for animals to be protected by our constitution, but more importantly that they would make the assumption that showing harm to animals was of such minimal social worth to our society! I can assure you that animals are of extreme social worth to me and the thousands of others embedded in animal welfare…especially bully breed rescue.

Chief Justice Roberts rejected the government’s analogy to a more recent category of unprotected speech, child pornography, which the court in 1982 said deserved no First Amendment protection. Child pornography, the chief justice said, is “a special case” because the market for it is “intrinsically related to the underlying abuse.”

WHAT?! And the market for dog fighting isn’t “intrinsically related to underlying abuse?”

Often times I am ashamed to hear such ignorance from our nations government but this takes the cake.