Animal Defenders of Westchester

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We advocate on all animal protection and exploitation issues, including experimentation, factory farming, rodeos, breeders and traveling animal acts.

Animal Defenders of Westchester
P.O. Box 205
Yonkers, NY 10704

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Stop Animal Fighting

Cockfighting for the Squeamish

NY TIMES
January 28, 2005
EDITORIAL

Now that Oklahoma's citizenry has forced the state to ban cockfighting, a diehard state senator has the gall to try to revive the lurid pastime by equipping roosters with - picture this - tiny boxing gloves and chest protectors. Nothing so far about teeny-weeny shorts and head protectors, or a trained monkey with a wee bow tie who knows the 10-count. But State Senator Frank Shurden seems open to any idea in his obsession to bring cockfights back to Oklahoma, one of the last states to ban them.

Voters had to bypass obstructive legislators like him two years ago with a referendum to outlaw the pits where thousands of birds fought to the death for the blood-spattered delight of illicit gamblers.

This year, having lost in court, the state's defunct fighting cock industry seems intent on abusing chickens via human parody, right down to an electronic scoring system to record combatants' pecks, épée-like, by way of the avian chest protectors.

"Who's going to object to chickens fighting like humans do?" asks Senator Shurden, the choice of the people, if not the roosters, in Henryetta. Voters thought that they took care of Oklahoma's national embarrassment two years ago. But they still have Senator Shurden scratching and clucking about, dropping free-ranging initiatives into the hopper.


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