NEWS AND COMMENT: A row has erupted between the Sex and the City actor, Jason Lewis, and his neighbour Opel Barnes. Can someone tell me where they live? It doesn’t really matter. They live pretty well next to each other and it is reported that a previous resident of the neighbourhood sadly died last September and the cats were left behind. Opel Barnes says that she is doing her best to gain the trust of the cats so she can rehome them.
Jason, 49, doesn’t like the cats around and he says that he was shooting rice into the dirt to spook the cats with the noise to drive them away. Opel Barnes appears to be saying that he was shooting the rice balls at the cats. The video on this page sums up the dispute.
There is a devil living in Culver City and his name is Jason Lewis. He likes to fill his rifle with rice and shoot at the cats left behind when their owner died last September. The same cats I feed daily. Why? Because he doesn’t want them to 💩 in his yard
Jason Lewis says that he loves animals. He also said that he’s been trying for months to work with a person to try and relocate the cats because he says that they are “filling the yards with fleas and waste” in his statement to TMZ. He admits that he might have made the wrong choice in shooting rice into the dirt but not towards the cats to spook them away. He’s apologised to fellow animal lovers.
In the video you can hear Opel remonstrating with Jason. Jason defends himself by saying that he was shooting grains of rice in the general direction. In response Opel says that grains of rice can hurt the cats. And, in any case, she says that it’s going to make it much more difficult for her to gain their trust and rehome them.
Jason asks Opel to stop “cussing at me” because it is not going to get him on her side. In response Opel said, “You might wanna reconsider yours, ’cause that’s illegal'”. She appears in making the point that Jason may be committing a crime. Opel says that the cats are not even in his yard whereas Jason says that he is “doing what I need to do in my space”.
Comment: This is a classic neighbour dispute over feral or abandoned domestic cats and how to deal with them. On the one hand, the man (it is usually a male of the species) wants to shoot at them or take a more aggressive stance towards them and on the other hand, the woman, (it is usually women who are sympathetic towards the plight of feral cats) who wants to care for them, make sure they are okay and rehome them if possible.
It is also, therefore, a mini-war between men and women. The battle is fought on the territory of feral cats. This one has gone public but it does illustrate an ongoing war although that might be a slight exaggeration. Perhaps it’s not an exaggeration because sometimes guns are used even if they shoot rice balls. By the way, I have no idea how that works. Can someone tell me?