April 16, 2011
Even the most devoted of animal lovers cannot hug a porcupine. So why not shoot a few more of these literally unlovable creatures? "Why not?" seems to be the sum total of the Pennsylvania Game Commission's rationale for legalizing the hunting of porcupines - which, with a top velocity of 2 m.p.h., are only a little more difficult to "hunt" than a bag of hammers. The commission voted this week to inaugurate a seven-month porcupine season, backing down slightly from a proposal to declare year-round "open season" on the pointy, plodding rodents.
August 4, 2010 |
HARRISBURG - An animal-rights activist has chained herself to a doghouse she lugged to the Capitol steps and has vowed to stay there to protest the plight of dogs tethered in backyards throughout Pennsylvania. Tamira Ci Thayne, founder of the Altoona-based group Dogs Deserve Better, says she'll sit there during the day until the General Assembly passes legislation to outlaw round-the-clock dog chaining - or until she thinks she's done all she can do to get such a bill passed. "The bottom line for me is that chaining is wrong.
July 29, 2010 |
Ginger likes me. "She wants to be your friend," Denise Lanzetta says. I'm not so sure; Ginger weighs half a ton and stands 16 hands high. Besides, she's the only quarter horse I've ever met. But this 17-year-old chestnut mare, convalescing at Lanzetta's place in the Atlantic County Pinelands, quickly wins me over with her gentle charms. Which makes it even tougher to believe that not long ago, Ginger was so starved you could count the vertebrae in her noble neck.
October 21, 2009
Siding with the big banks The authors of "Power players" (Sunday) are kidding, right? Public-sector unions are on a par with Goldman Sachs executives, making out well during the Great Recession, and threatening the Madisonian system constraining "factions"? Only writers for the very far right Weekly Standard could make such outrageous claims, especially during the same month in which we have just seen that Goldman and other banks plan to dole out billions in bonuses to their top employees.
September 29, 2009 |
The morning after convicted dogfighter Michael Vick played in his first regular season Eagles' game, the state Attorney General's Office and the Humane Society of the United States announced that they are partnering to offer $5,000 rewards for tips leading to the arrest and conviction of dogfighters. This year alone, more than 400 dogfighting complaints were received statewide, up from 245 in all of 2008, Attorney General Tom Corbett said yesterday. About 40,000 people are believed to be involved in dogfighting across the country, he said.
September 9, 2009 |
There were two reasons the personal Michael Vick moratorium was over before it began. Reason No. 1: Vick made the first of his local anti-dogfighting appearances at Nueva Esperanza Academy in the Hunting Park section of the city yesterday. Because owner Jeffrey Lurie created the "proactive" gold standard for judging the Eagles' signing of Vick, it is important to hold him, the organization, and especially Vick to that standard. Reason No. 2: This might be a little harder to follow, but those of us who have come down heavily against the Vick signing owe it to the man and his new employers to keep our minds as open as possible.
September 9, 2009 |
Maybe 11 weeks away from work has made me soft, but I don't see why everyone is dissecting every word Michael Vick says. Is he sorry, really sorry , he executed those dogs, people want to know, and if he is, why isn't he communicating that better? Why doesn't he just say, "Man, I have nightmares about those little puppies, and I'm so sorry I bludgeoned them to death. " Take yesterday, for example. Vick spoke to about 200 freshmen at a Hunting Park high school in a joint appearance with the head of the Humane Society of the United States.
August 28, 2009 |
Twenty-two dogs rescued from Michael Vick's dogfighting operation were brought to Best Friends Animal Sanctuary last year. They arrived at our Utah facility in various states of trauma. While we've had many breakthroughs with the dogs, some have yet to recover. And some may never recover from the abuse and neglect they suffered in Vick's care. To our knowledge, neither Vick, his handlers, nor the NFL has called to ask how the dogs are doing. And these very real, living victims of the crime are nowhere to be found in the continuing debate about Vick's rehabilitation.
August 16, 2009 |
Michael Vick has a unique opportunity. It's an opportunity that does not involve running or throwing a football for the Eagles, although his abilities with each should only boost his influence. Vick has an opportunity to affect change for the species he once exploited: dogs. In urban areas, Vick's words and presence can help change the inner-city culture of dogfighting, and it might just be that Philadelphia, which has been targeted by the Humane Society as having a higher incidence of the crime, could benefit most.