United Poultry Concerns Cockfighting
Campaigns Against Cockfighting Update
May 2002

"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. http://www.kansas.com/mld/eagle/3257168.htm

  • 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 felony-level penalties.

  • 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. http://www.hsus.org/14087

United Poultry Concerns, Inc.
PO Box 150
Machipongo, VA 23405-0150
FAX: 757-678-5070

(Cockfighting: May 2002: Campaigns Against Cockfighting Update )

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