In the July issue of WESTCHESTER PARENT:
I am writing to applause Westchester Parent for
printing the article "Teach Your Children," by Nancy Bevilaqua (April). In a
world of ever-increasing violence it is imperative that parents use every
opportunity to instill the values of compassion, kindness and respect in
their children towards all forms of life, including animals.
Animal abuse cases, especially those committed by
children, should not be taken lightly. There is a strong connection between
animal abuse and violence against humans, and many of the most outrageous
acts of violence have been committed by offenders with a documented history
of animal abuse, such as the Columbine shooters. Animal abuse is one of the
four indicators used by the FBI for detection of potential violence against
humans and approximately 40 states have now upgraded animal cruelty laws to
felony status for this very reason.
We are fortunate that New York has laws that require
that humane education (i.e. teaching kindness to animals, the environment
and each other) be taught in the classroom. As parents, we must emphasize
this message at home and encourage teachers to do so in the classroom as
Lydia S. Antoncic, Esq.
Director of Projects, Animal Welfare Trust, Mamaroneck
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