Becky Robinson, the founder and President of Alley Cat Allies is throwing her weight behind the fight against what I would describe as state-sponsored killing of unwanted cats. She’s pushing the idea that governments should move away from their objective to kill feral and stray cats to funding widespread TNR programs. Among many people, I have pushed for this for years. I have complained about the governments of Australia’s states/territories, and the federal government, of state-sponsored illegality and criminality and the widespread killing by any means of feral cats.
In my view what they are doing is a violation of their criminal law. And they totally disregard the pain that their activities create. And they disregard the fact that humans kill far more native species in Australia than cats through new settlements, carbon emissions and commercial acitivities. The Australian government takes a very blinkered view of feral cats. It is an unenlightened view in stark contrast to Becky Robinson who is highly enlightened.
She is calling for Global Cat Day on Saturday, October 16 to be the end of the killing of cats towards the nonlethal neutering and returning of cats (TNR). She’s produced a video in which she discusses TNR as an alternative and humane solution to feral cats compared to killing them, with Emma Hurst who’s a member of the Australian Animal Justice Party and the New South Wales Parliament.
Of course, Becky Robinsonn is referring to the killing of feral cats on a worldwide basis. But it just so happens that she is discussing the killing of cats in Australia which I think is highly pertinent because Australia is a developed and advanced country with an underdeveloped and backward mentality towards feral cats. They are in the dark ages when it comes to how they relate to feral cats.
Both Emma Hurst and Becky Robinson agree that there should be state-sponsored funding of TNR programs to deal with feral and stray cats in Australia as opposed to state-sponsored criminality as I would describe it. They did not say that, but I have. It is state-sponsored cruelty on a mass scale. Australians fund their best scientists and engineers to devise a device which chucks poisonous gel onto the coat of a feral cat when it passs so that when they groom themselves they kill themselves. It’s amazing that they could put all that effort into killing an innocent animal (and other species of animal as collateral damage). Why can’t they put a similar amount of effort into TNR programs?
They would answer that question by saying that TNR doesn’t work and it simply puts feral cats back to where they came from to continue killing animals. Yes, I get that. But if they were enlightened enough to think long-term, TNR works. They’ve been unenlightened enough and dilatory enough to ignore the growing feral cat problem over a hundred years or more so I think they should turn their attention to a 30-year programme of humanely dealing with feral cats on the continent.
Becky Robinson herself has called it government-sanctioned killing of cats and she says that the US Endangered Species Act does not legalise cruelty to cats. But I would argue that all the animal welfare laws in Australia (and they are good animal welfare laws) do not allow the state sanctioned mass killing of feral cats by any means possible including poisoning and shooting. The laws don’t state government is excused from this rule and they can do what they like! If the law said that it would be one law for the citizens but a different law for the government. Laws are meant to apply equally across the board to anybody.
In the video, which I would ask you to watch please, Robinson states than in America they’ve by and large found a way to manage feral cat populations through TNR which is quite widespread. There are many volunteers, tens of thousands of them, across America who willingly and lovingly care for feral cat colonies to gradually reduce their numbers. And shelters in America are gradually learning the no-kill principles and methods to minimise euthanasia of unwanted cats.
Australia would do well to study these principles and read the articles of Nathan Winograd who is the world’s best exponent and expert on how to deal with so-called unwanted cats at shelters in the most humane and decent manner befitting both humankind and the cats.
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