So Attorney General Iver Stridiron said during a recent radio talk show that he doesn't believe there is any need for stricter animal cruelty laws — that the V.I. law is sufficient. The attorney general is hopelessly in the dark on this issue.
He presides over the jurisdictional body empowered and beholden to prosecute criminals in the territory and thus minimize public danger through criminal acts. The islands have an extraordinarily high rate of criminal activity, a huge portion of which is domestic violence, too often resulting in death.
With all due respect, the good attorney general needs to put away his blinders and become educated to the correlation between violent acts towards animals and violent acts against humans, a connection which has been precisely analyzed and documented for years by prestigious groups and organizations. That information has been widely disseminated for years. He doesn't even have to get out of his chair to do it because the information is readily available on the Internet.
The V.I. laws on animal cruelty remain hopelessly inadequate and ridiculously antiquated. Animal molesters become people molesters, it's as simple as that. Sen. Adlah Donastorg Jr. has been working on revising these laws for a long time and others have worked on similar proposals for many years before. As I recall, the last revision didn't make it through because the cockfighting people lobbied against their "sport" being considered "cruelty" and they prevailed with the Legislature. Sen. Donastorg needs to get his revisions in place without further ado and present them accordingly with sufficient notice that the public (the people that the government serves) can voice their opinions and be heard.
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