It was with complete and utter revulsion that I read your recent article on the most current case of animal abuse in the VI. If this had been the first or an isolated case, my contempt may have been mitigated, but it was not. It seems that, once again, the people responsible for this horrendous act will escape justice to commit similar crimes in the future because the territory's elected officials have lacked the courage to address the issue for what it is – a crime – and the people of the VI lack the courage to demand that their elected officials deal with the matter.
I don't know what I find more reprehensible, the reported act of cruelty, or the Senate's lack of courage to act on the ongoing problem. If Virgin Islanders, and their elected officials, want to continue to tell themselves this is an isolated
incident, they will continue to read about many "isolated" incidents of animal cruelty in the future.
Until Virgin Islanders are brave and PROUD enough to say this is unacceptable, elected officials won't have the courage to make these unspeakable crimes a felony.
The lack of public outcry in regard to the reported incident says a lot about Virgin Islanders and reinforces the view many outsiders have of them — a fact almost denied as much as the animal cruelty problem.
The fact that these types of crime and cruelty happen in the Virgin Islands, and go unpunished, reflect on all Virgin Islanders. There should be a massive public outcry against this type of crime, but there wasn't. That says a lot about Virgin Islanders and the [lack of] courage they have to say what is right and what isn't. To those who say this doesn't reflect the opinion of all Virgin Islanders, I ask what does? Why isn't the majority's opinion reflected in the territory's laws? Why do these types of crimes continue to happen? If a majority of Virgin Islanders were offended by the horrid acts of animal cruelty, why haven't the laws been changed? Those are questions asked by an "outsider." Maybe Virgin Islanders need to ask themselves why they would allow four puppies to have their paws rubber-banded together to the point where the puppies would chew off their own feet to be free. Virgin Islanders should never forget how the arms and feet of their ancestors were bound, why would they allow that to happen again, even to four puppies?
For many reasons Virgin Islanders are the joke of many people. For this reason they are the scorn of even more people. For nothing else than to give the rest of the world one less reason to laugh at and scorn Virgin Islanders, the people should raise up and say enough is enough and demand that the Senate take action to empower the police and courts to punish those who commit such unspeakable acts of animal cruelty. Otherwise the unwanted stereotype of the Virgin Islanders will continue and, probably, rightfully so.
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