Letter to the Editor - Gazette Advertiser
Page A8 of the Thursday April 19 edition shows large photos of smiling
children holding fish that they caught. This contest, you state, has been
happening for 49 years.
Why does our society, which abhors cruelty to companion animals and is
becoming more aware of the cruelty of factory farming still think that killing a
fish with a metal hook is a "sport" suitable for young children? The age range
is 3 to 16.
Fish have a nervous system and do feel pain. How can this be a "contest" when
only the humans are aware of it? The fish reach out for what they think is food,
they have no way of knowing they will soon be in great pain and will be pulled
to their death.
The young people who registered for the event are learning that killing is
not only fun but very much sanctioned by the adults in the community. The
children find this enjoyable because they have been taught by adults that it is.
A contest in which children kill chickens, goats or calves certainly would not
What if all this effort, money, organizational skill and family togetherness
were channeled by the Landsman Kill Association into activities that teach
reverence for life and ways to have fun together that harm no living thing. I
know that "kill" means stream in Dutch, but this contest promotes the English
meaning of the word.
The underlying premise that needs reexamination, I believe.
Mid-Hudson Vegetarian Society