Wednesday, June 28, 2006

An even bigger crime than abuse

I'm very heartened to see so many people outraged about the abuse case relating to David Hooi. I have to say that every time another case gets reported, the response gets louder and more people speak up about why it's wrong.

What I think is a real problem though is that while we sit here and mourn this poor kitten that was killed, we're STILL killing 35 cats on average a day. 35 healthy cats are being sent in and killed generally because there's a complaint.

What sort of message are we sending out as a society? That some forms of killing are acceptable, but others are not? One complainant asked me why he could not kill the cats himself since if he called town council they would kill the cats for him anyway? In a way, it made sense to him I think because he would actually be saving manpower and resources by taking matters into his own hands.

We can't save the kitten that was killed - but we CAN save the 13000 cats to be killed every year. Abuse is terrible, and I take my hats off to the volunteers who stood up bravely and confronted the abuser. What more needs to be done though is to stand up and say that we do not want town councils or management committees to take the easy route anymore and waste money to kill cats.

Let's speak up about an even greater outrage - that we're taking the easy way out and not solving the problem by killing cats when we need to look at a longer term approach like cat management.

11 Comments:

Anonymous chris said...

Sometimes i often wonder if those who abuse those helpless ones are people who WERE abused during their childhood.. venting their anger on e little one.
One animal lover in e community is never enough.. Animal organizations have been creating awareness, e people knows it but they cant be bothered to do ANYTHING about it.

28/6/06 8:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

There are many animal lovers in the community - everyone have to make known their views & speak up for the hundreds&hundreds of animals who cannot express the injustice done unto them.

28/6/06 11:23 PM  
Anonymous yskat said...

I think Dawn made a very good point. People are aware of what Hooi did because of press coverage. He is the subject of a worthy news story because he can easily be packaged as a psycho and criminal who doesn't belong to our society. But has the press given much attention to the 13,000 small animals who are killed every year? Is this information not news worthy because it is just part of our drive to keep singapore clean?

In any case, I applaud non-mainstream news channels like this blog for informing us of events not reported in mainstream media.

29/6/06 9:33 AM  
Blogger Dawn said...

Thanks Yskat :)

29/6/06 2:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

To kill 13,000 cats a year is not going to make Singapore a cleaner city. Actually, it reflects the ugly side of human beings, who have no love, consideration, feeling or kindness for these innocent animals. Just because we pay dog licences, the authorities don't kill them.

If you keep cats, you don't pay licences, and that's why cats are killed and dogs are safe.

It all narrow down to MONEY$$$$$

29/6/06 11:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We kill strays, dogs and cats, because some people and the government label them as "pests"

pest ( P ) Pronunciation Key (pst)
n.
1) An annoying person or thing; 2)a nuisance.
An injurious plant or animal, especially one harmful to humans.
3) A deadly epidemic disease; a pestilence.


Homo-sapiens qualify for 1) and 3).
They are the "epidemic" that is speeding up the destruction of this planet with their never-ending greed of self consumption.

30/6/06 10:32 AM  
Anonymous d said...

how is "cat management" any less of a waste of money than putting them down?

when cats are rounded up and, unless someone comes forward to adopt them, there is no viable alternative other than putting them down.

one cannot expect that valuable taxpayers' money be used to manage and maintain the lives of cats.

is it all about money? maybe, maybe not. personally, i believe it is a case of utilitarianism.

1/7/06 7:15 AM  
Blogger Dawn said...

d - cat management is less of a waste of money because tax payer's money isn't being used! Volunteers pay for everything out of their own pocket.

Also, even IF tax payers money was used, sterilising them means that the population will stabilise and volunteers will take care of problems that arise in the estate. removing the cats means that due to the vacuum effect, new cats move in again. These new cats are unsterilised and the population will continue to grow. Pest control is sent in again - this cycle goes on and on. Every time pest control is sent in, more money is spent. Sterilisation on the other hand is a one time cost.

Trap and Adopt has been found to not be viable - removing the cats means again new cats move in.

How is utilitarianism if they continue rounding the cats up and killing them? Has it solved the problem? Has it maintained the population?

1/7/06 12:42 PM  
Anonymous d said...

dawn: just because taxpayers' money is not used does not make "cat management" anymore of a prudent use of money than putting cats down.

both involve the use of money, regardless of whether it comes from taxpayers (for governmental authorities) or volunteers (for animal welfare societies).

also, how is sterilisation any different than putting them down? the latter involves the taking away of lives. sterilisation involves taking away the ability of cats to make life. ergo, it involves the taking away of life as well, the lives of any potential cats in the future.

how is sterilisation anymore acceptable than killing them? why is it that people do not possess the right to take a cat's life, yet still reserve the one to remove its ability to reproduce, and ensure the survival of its species - which is its sole aim in the first place? neither its life, nor its ability to make it, belongs to human beings, so how is it that we have the right to decide either at all? even worse, we seem to be able to pick and choose about a cat's fate.

is the problem removing the nuisance that cats pose, or is it the maintanence of the population of cats? both are vastly different. besides, how does sterilisation maintain a population? how is it anymore utilitarian than putting cats down? cats lose their inability to reproduce, which effectively reduces that population, and continually does so. eventually, it poses as much of a threat, if not more, than putting them down does.

2/7/06 1:08 AM  
Blogger Dawn said...

D - first of all, it may not seem a prudent use of money to you if caregivers want to spend money to sterilise cats. However, it is their money. It is not public money which is being used every single year to kill cats which a lot of people don't agree with. A lot of people may not be 'prudent' with their money according to others, but it's their money and theirs to do with as they wish. Some people buy cars, others expensive watches, some sterilise cats.

Secondly, cats are sterilised so they will not be killed. Maintaining the population of the cats and preventing nuisance ARE very closely related. Most people don't have a problem with cats - they DO have a problem when the population continues to grow. If the population is controlled, nuisance is also lessened.

I'm not sure why you don't think killing them is not worse than sterilisation. Killing them involves taking away their lives. You mentioned survival of the species - the species WILL certainly survive. we don't sterilise them because we enjoy sterilising. We do it until the population is maintained (herd immunity is estimated to be around 90%). If the population is maintained, all of us would be delighted to stop sterilising.

Rights are never absolute - and even with say children, parents act in what they think is their best interest. For example, if you left it up to many children, they'd rather not go to school and enjoy themselves all day. If we followed your argument, then they should be allowed to do as they wish. I am quite sure cats don't choose to die either - no one asked them if that was okay with them and following your argument about survival of the species, what could be worse then taking away their ability to live?

As for your question about how sterilisation maintains a population, you may want to read up the FAQ on our website and some of the earlier posts on this website. Sterilisation means the cats will not allow new cats in due to the fact that sterilised cats are territorial. The population will stabilise. Eventually when the old cats die, new cats move in and they too are sterilised. The population remains stable.

Trapping and killing on the other hand means the cats are taken away and new cats move in due to the vacuum effect. These cats are unsterilised and the population grows quickly. People complain with the increasing number of cats and cats die as a result.

You might want to read up a bit more about cat behaviour and the effects of sterilisation.

2/7/06 3:59 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, between a population with a high birth rate and high death rate, and a population with a low birth and death rate, which one do you think would have a higher quality of life? I would think birth control is a better option than periodically killing off the surplus population no?

3/7/06 6:42 PM  

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