Berkeley City Council: Protect Goldfish and Other Animals Used as Prizes!
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Dear members of the Berkeley City Council:
On Tuesday September 26, you will consider passing an Ordinance Banning the Use of Live Animals as Prizes. We urge you to pass this bill, taking a leadership stance in transitioning our city and others like it to guardians rather than exploiters of animals. Please outlaw this form of animal cruelty. Let's join the ranks of entire US states---Iowa, Massachusetts, South Carolina, and Vermont---who have already done so.
- IA: https://www.animallaw.info/statute/ia-cruelty-injury-animals-other-livestock#s717E_1
- MA: https://malegislature.gov/Laws/GeneralLaws/PartIV/TitleI/Chapter272/Section80F
- SC: http://www.scstatehouse.gov/code/t47c001.php
- VT: http://legislature.vermont.gov/statutes/fullchapter/13/008
Fish, and other animals commonly used as prizes and awards, are routinely treated as expendable commodities. Crammed into plastic bags or coolers, without waste filtration, goldfish and betta fish often die within hours or weeks of being given away. People who win fish are not necessarily motivated to research proper care, and they often receive little or no instruction on fish care. Often, prize fish are discarded after the novelty wears off.
We need to evolve toward a philosophy of guardianship. Animals are not expendable commodities for us to use as resources or for gimmicks. Animals have perspectives, feelings, desires, and emotions. Caring for an animal should be a carefully weighed decision, not a flippant prize.
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