Unnatural Disaster: Shelter Killing in America
April 24, 2010
I love our country. And the people in it. When faced with a crisis, there’s no one I’d rather have in my corner. We step up to help when we see our neighbors in need – whether they are our next door neighbors in Yazoo City, MS or our brothers and sisters in Haiti. We open our hearts, our homes and our wallets – we do whatever we can to help.
That’s why I wish we could spread the word that there is a crisis in America happening right now – not a natural disaster but a most unnatural one: The needless killing of friendly pets in animal shelters.
I say needless because when you look at the math, it’s indisputable – there ARE enough homes for the all the pets in shelters in this country. All we have to do is get them there. And I honestly believe that if the cable news shows reported this as breaking news, giving it the same sensational treatment afforded to Tiger Woods’ sex life, Americans would answer the call to help shelter pets.
Nobody would have to organize us and tell us what to do, everyone would just know to do the right thing. Because we’re Americans and we know about doing what’s right. We already know that killing healthy/treatable pets in shelters is wrong but we turn away from it. We turn away by rationalizing it as a “necessity” due to so-called overpopulation or an irresponsible society. But with a little education, everyone can learn the truth – that there is no pet overpopulation problem in this country, there is a shelter killing problem; that there is an irresponsible segment of our society but they are the minority. And with the slightest amount of soul searching, everyone would realize that they’ve known all along it’s wrong to kill friendly pets in shelters.
It’s downright un-American. We are a strong people who want to use our privilege and blessings to help – not kill. We do not stand idly by while our neighbors suffer – we reach out, we offer a hand up. And our communities’ pets are our neighbors and this is all they need – a hand up to save them from death.
Not everyone can adopt. But everyone can do something. Whether that means educating the public, volunteering at your local shelter, or donating some cash to your local shelter. Maybe you want to adopt but can’t right now – could you offer to pay the adoption fee for someone else who’d like to adopt but can’t afford to do so? Could you spend an hour at your local shelter petting cats or walking dogs who are hungry for human affection? Could you look up information for your co-worker who needs to get a pet neutered but doesn’t know how to find a low cost clinic in your area?
Imagine if everyone who cared did something toward ending the needless killing of shelter pets all on the same day. Imagine that. Now imagine if everyone did a little something every day. Could we dramatically reduce the shelter pet population in this country? Could we transform our communities into no kill communities? I believe we could.
When Americans demand change, there is no stopping us. We are a country built on revolution. There is a no kill revolution happening in this country and if you aren’t going to help, at least get out of the way. But if you would like to stand with us, if you’d like to be on the side that chooses to end the killing, please join us.
America is better than a country that needlessly kills its pets – much, much better. We are a humane society. Let’s right this wrong. This is the moment. Change is at hand.