ANIMAL FIGHTING PROHIBITION ENFORCEMENT ACT OF 2007
* Mr. KING of Iowa. Mr. Speaker, on February 7, 2007, the House Committee of the Judiciary passed by voice vote H.R. 137, the Animal Fighting Prohibition Enforcement Act of 2007. This is a bad piece of legislation that will greatly devalue human life in the eyes of the law.
* H.R. 137 would make it a federal felony to transport a chicken across state lines for the purpose of exhibiting it in a fight. Currently, 49 states have laws on the books to address this issue. To add a federal law would add another layer of bureaucracy to an already complicated legal code.
* I believe that human life is diminished by our making it a felony to transport animals for fighting, without first making it a felony to take a minor girl across a state line for an abortion. It is a strong conviction of mine to fight for the sanctity of life.
* While I believe that it is important that we act humanely in our treatment of animals, I do not believe that we should put their welfare ahead of unborn babies or minor girls. I call upon the Humane Society to work for humanity to humanity first.
* Until we provide a higher standard of protection for human life, I will oppose making interstate transportation of animals for purposes of animal fighting a felony. In the U.S., we are faced with the alarming practice of people taking a minor girl across state lines for an abortion to avoid their own state's laws that require the minor's parents to be notified. Federal legislation, CIANA, the Child Interstate Abortion Notification Act, would only make this abhorrent activity, which exploits a young woman and kills her child, a misdemeanor. Though this legislation has not yet become law, it is a step forward in the right direction. Many who I know opposed CIANA in the past will vote today for the misdemeanor in current law, transporting a chicken, to become a felony, thereby placing animal welfare over that of a young girl and her unborn baby.
* I believe that we should not place more value on animal life than we do on human life. It makes no sense that killing a person is a misdemeanor offense while transporting animals to a fight is a felony, punishable by three years in a federal penitentiary.
* Mr. Speaker, while on the topic of valuing human life, I would like to talk briefly about bio-medical research, which is opposed by animal rights activists. I would like to mention that there is bio-medical research being done demonstrating, through transgenics, that the immune system from a baboon, or a human for that matter, can be spliced into the DNA of a hog to grow a heart a baboon can use.
* The heart was then harvested from the hog and transplanted to a baboon. The baboon lived another 6 months with a heart that was grown in a pig. This is longer then the first human heart transplant patient.
* But what has been proven now is that humans can transplant through transgenics the human immune system into a hog. In doing so, and we are only 3 years, maybe 4 years away from being able to custom build the human organ. rejection genetics into a pig.
* We will be able to very soon custom raise human organs in hogs. Today we are already transplanting out of hogs and into humans anterior cruciate ligaments and heart valves.
* We can raise in hogs 28 different organs. Not just hearts, but lungs, esophagus, stomach, bladder, but other important organs as well, kidneys, pancreas, liver, even skin for bum patients; name your organ. Except for the brain.
* The reason for bringing up these pigs is that it further illustrates how the animal rights community, through legislation such as H.R. 137, seeks to pass their agenda for animals on the rest of America. They oppose using animals for lifesaving research like I just mentioned.
* My home state of Iowa is an agricultural state. We understand the importance of animal husbandry and good stewardship of our animals. However, we also understand that animals are less important than humans. Animal rights activists seek to place heifers and hogs on the same level as people. I disagree.
* I strongly oppose this legislation because animals should not be elevated above humans. Mr. Speaker, I would urge my colleagues to oppose this legislation.