This is one of the weirdest things I have ever written about. One would think that a governor of a state would know better than to announce his support for the bloodsport of cockfighting, but here we are. Last week, Animal Wellness Action, the Center for a Humane Economy, former Oklahoma Governor Frank Keating, and former state Attorney General Drew Edmondson criticized current Governor Kevin Stitt for sending a video in support of the Oklahoma Gamefowl Commission, saying he “wanted to take a moment to cheer you on from the sidelines” during their annual meeting.
Now, the “Gamefowl Commission” sounds like it might be legit, perhaps an organization that fights for the conservation of birds like quail and pheasants. Nope. It’s a cockfighting advocacy group. Yes, readers, there are actually people who love making roosters fight each other with blades strapped to them, and love the activity to the point of forming a lobbying group.
And Governor Stitt is all, “Cool guys, I love you, keep up the good work.”
If anyone thought that maybe Stitt just didn’t understand what the group was about, note that he also said, “Oklahomans like yourselves remained dedicated to the spirit of competition and camaraderie that runs deep in our communities.”
The Oklahoma Gamefowl Commission has donated over $70,000 to Oklahoma legislators to get them to lower the penalties for cockfighting, including $2,000 to Stitt. The animal abuse gambling activity was made illegal in the state in 2002 and began being enforced in 2004. The bills for which the organization has lobbied would have allowed individual counties decide on the legality of not just cockfighting, but the breeding of fighting animals.
“Cockfighting enthusiasts at the (Oklahoma Gamefowl Commission) are using ill-gotten gains from their ongoing criminal conduct and buying influence at the capitol to attempt to gut a voter-approved law,” said Wayne Pacelle, President of Animal Wellness Action and the Center for a Humane Economy.
“What’s next, lobby groups for dogfighters and drug lords?”
“We need to protect the nearly 5,000 gamefowl farmers across Oklahoma and lift up our rural and municipal economies,” Stitt added. “I can’t wait to see what we accomplish together in the next legislative session.”
Yes, let’s accomplish such great things as animal abuse.
I’m not taking crazy pills, am I? I’m not insane to think that believing that government leaders should not be actively encouraging cockfighting, right? Did Stitt write a letter to Michael Vick praising him for being active in the community after he was caught being involved in dogfighting?