"Individuals who instigate fights between animals or who attend these
pathetic spectacles should have no legal sanctuary anywhere in the
United States. We will be satisfied only when the last cockfighting
pit is closed." -Wayne Pacelle, Senior Vice President, The Humane
Society of the United States.
- May 11, 2002 - By an overwhelming vote, Kansas legislators passed a
law to ban cockfighting in the state that includes criminal penalties
of up to one year in jail and a $1,000 fine. Vote count on the bill
introduced by Kansas representative Peggy Long (R-Madison) was 112-10
in the House and 36-4 in the Senate. Rep. Long pushed the legislation
after learning that not only were roosters killed during cockfights
but many were drugged with amphetamines to make them keep fighting
after being badly wounded by razor blades, box cutters, or other
sharp metal devices attached to the birds' natural spurs. Kansas was
one of only 6 states in the U.S. without a specific criminal law
banning cockfighting, which until the May ban was ineffectually
covered by the state anticruelty law. A Kansas legislator who tried
to stall the bill (Rep. Bill Feuerborn, D-Garnett) ultimately agreed
that cockfighting should be outlawed in Kansas, and voted for the
final version of the bill, which is expected to be signed into law by
Kansas Governor Bill Graves.
Mike Berry, "Lawmakers pass cockfighting ban," The Wichita Eagle, May 14, 2002.
- May 2002 - Both the Senate and the House of Representatives of the
United States 107th Congress signed into law Farm Bill amendments to
ban the interstate shipment of birds for fighting, to ban foreign
exports of birds or other animals intended to be used for fighting,
and to increase penalties for animal fighting. Provisions to make
animal fighting a felony offence were thwarted in the final stage by
the Conference Committee, which reduced the penalty to a misdemeanor
and stipulated that the new law cannot take effect until May 2003.
The Humane Society of the United States has announced its intention
to work with Congressional allies to stiffen the penalties.
Oklahoma - State Question 687 is a ballot initiative to ban
cockfighting in Oklahoma and to make cockfighting in the state a
felony offence. The Question is expected to appear on the November
2002 ballot. If voters support the initiative, Oklahoma will become
the 48th state to ban cockfighting and the 27th state to adopt
- 2002 - Iowa and Indiana strengthened their cockfighting penalties
this year and a ballot initiative is underway in Arkansas to make
cockfighting a felony offence there, along with other malicious acts
of cruelty to animals.
"The Ultimate Fight: Our Battle to Save Anti-Cockfighting
Legislation," The Humane Society of the United States.
United Poultry Concerns, Inc.|
PO Box 150
Machipongo, VA 23405-0150
(Cockfighting: May 2002: Campaigns Against Cockfighting Update )