Mandatory Spaying And Neutering Is Good Public Policy
Remember how you cried at the end of "Old Yeller?" And you got misty in "Turner and Hooch." Don't deny it. It just means you're human.
Every single year, cities in California kill 500,000 dogs and cats. Five hundred thousand dogs and cats that could be someone's best friend. I want you to imagine a pile of 500,000 dead dogs and cats the next time someone tells you that mandatory spaying and neutering is a bad idea.
Unless you have a small stone where your heart should be, that is a disturbing statistic. It is heart-breaking to put one perfectly adoptable animal to death. It is unspeakable and shameful to kill 500,000 per year.
Mandatory spaying and neutering can reduce that number to nearly zero. By preventing the birth of unwanted pets, we can avoid having to kill those pets -- those innocent victims of the negligence, carelessness, laziness or stupidity of the people who failed to prevent their birth and failed to find homes for them.
You say this is "socialism," or "nanny state?" Tough. Unless you're going to find homes for all those dogs and cats, you haven't made the case for this routine, inhumane, shameful killing of pets.
The American Kennel Club has "threatened" to hold one of its big shows in another state if we pass this law. Is that supposed to matter to us more than preventing these deaths? Is that how crass they think we are? Hey, fellahs, take your poodle contest to Pocatello if you want. I, for one, would rather be on the side of saving lives.
Breeders likewise have "threatened" to take their business elsewhere. Fine. It's not like letting dogs mate in your back yard is exactly the cornerstone of our economy, you know. And the money we spend rounding up, caging, killing and disposing of animals -- not to mention the cruelty involved -- just isn't worth whatever jobs or tax revenues you generate. The pet supply stores can still sell dog food and cat toys to those of us who prefer shelter mutts and alley cats to inbred, disease-prone backyard breeder "purebreds."
Mandatory spaying and neutering of pets is good public policy. If and when we ever stop killing pets en masse in this state, we can revisit the issue later. In the meantime, to stop the killing, you need to stop the unwanted births. Dogs and cats won't wear condoms, and irresponsible owners won't "fix" their pets voluntarily, so we need to use the power of the government to do the humane thing -- and save tax dollars while we're at it.
My platform has always included mandatory (and free) spaying and neutering for dogs and cats in the City of Los Angeles. (You can see my platform at MooreIsBetter.com.) If we can do it state-wide now, however, so much the better.
Now go adopt a dog or cat at the shelter, would you? Do it for Yeller.