Animal Baiting Scandal Triggers Public Debate About Proposed Trespass Law
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Their Turn
February 2015

Take ACTION to end live baiting: Live Greyhound Baiting is a Real Life Nightmare

Secretly recorded video footage [ABC TV's Four Corners] of racing dogs ripping apart live animals being used as bait has triggered public debate in Australia about a proposed trespass law that would have prevented the incriminating footage from being taken and released in the first place.

live bait
Greyhound trainers tie live animals to automatic lures that the dogs chase during training exercises.

Barnaby Joyce, Australia’s notoriously anti-animal, anti-activist Minister of Agriculture, is using media coverage of the live bait scandal as a platform to push for U.S.-style “ag-gag” laws that would punish those who take the footage: “Why should people be allowed to trespass onto a farm? You cannot decide to take the law into your own hands. Everybody has in their own purview an ethical reason to break into some industry because of what they judge to be correct.”

Barnaby Joyce
Australia’s Minister of Agriculture Barnaby Joyce is advocating for anti-trespass laws to criminalize the footage and protect those who commit the crimes.

If comments posted online about the live bait exposé are any indication, Australians overwhelmingly disagree with Mr. Joyce:

“Only people like Barnaby could look at video of the most barbaric animal cruelty and seek to punish those who exposed it, not those who perpetrate it.”

“If the regulators don’t protect the animals then SOMEONE has too.”

“Baby pigs being ripped apart while tied to a lure doesn’t seem to upset Joyce, but the people who exposed it do?”

“For too long, the so called regulators have been in bed with cruel industries. So who is going to stop cruelty? The people who always have — the public.”

It was in mid-February that Animals Australia and Animal Liberation Queensland shocked the world with the surveillance footage of greyhounds dogs, who are normally docile, being trained by the racing industry to tear apart live rabbits, possums and baby pigs at training facilities.

It isn’t just the dog racing business that Barnaby Joyce is working to protect. Horrific footage from dozens of undercover investigations of Australia’s multi-billion dollar live export industry has demonstratted that transporting millions of cows and sheep to the Middle East and Asia is inherently inhumane. It is this damning footage that Minister Joyce is most eager to suppress.

sheep live export
Each year, millions of sheep are transported to the Middle East and Asia

Australia’s proposed ag-gag law would impose fines up to $10,000 and prison sentences up to 20 years, depending on the amount of economic damage. In the U.S., two states have passed “ag-gag” bills into law: Utah and Iowa.

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