One would've thought that the conviction and subsequent imprisonment of Michael Vick for his role in promoting dog fighting would discourage people -- I'd say humans, but there is nothing human-like about this group -- from participating in this cruel and horrifying practice. If not, then one would think that those who still engage in these activities must simply be stupid, criminal-like or so lacking in humanity and compassion that they don't see anything wrong with dog fighting. However, it appears that there are no boundaries for this reprehensible behavior.
I was reading the New York Time this morning and came across an article, "Dogfighting Subculture, Illegal and Secretive, Is Taking Hold in Texas". Law enforcement officials broke up a dog fighting ring resulting in the rescue of 187 Pit Bulls and the indictment of 55 people. While most of them did indeed fall into what I would personally call the stupid category and what law enforcement would call the criminal-like category (and they all clearly fall into the lacking humanity category), I was mortified that the list of those arrested included some very unusual suspects. For example, among those indicted were a high school English teacher, a land purchaser for a large oil company, and the manager of a Jack in the Box restaurant. I have to ask myself, "what are these people thinking and why on earth would they be involved in something this horrifying?"
The article also talked about the distance that many participants traveled to attend these events, coming from as far as the Czech Republic. Most of the fights were arranged over the phone and the matches were accompanied by pot smoking, pill-popping, side drug deals and offered big rewards to the winners. Fortunately for these animals, this ring of horror has been broken, but one has to wonder how many other such dog-fighting rings exist in this country. We're grateful to many governming bodies who have, as a result of Michael Vick's conviction (the only good thing that came from his arrogrant and inhumane actions), made dog-fighting a felony rather than a misdemeanor. I personally believe those who participate in dog-fighting should suffer a fate even worse than what those poor animals are subjected to.
What I read on those pages was disturbing and heart-wrenching (I honestly couldn't read the entire story as it literally made me feel physically ill) and causes me to question why so many people simply lack the humanity gene. There is nothing more loving and loyal in this universe than a dog, so why can't we all treat them with the same respect with which they treat us?
If the state you live in has not yet submitted legislation that makes dog-fighting a felonioius act, please contact your local representatives and encourage them to do so! While it won't make all these horrible people come to their senses, if it saves one dog's life, it's a step in the right direction.