This morning on Minnesota Public Radio I heard a story about a local cockfighting operation that was busted in St. Paul. This amazes me. I mean, I know this kind of stuff goes on, I guess, but you don’t think it could be happening at your neighbor’s house or somewhere so close.
According to the Humane Society of the United States website:
Cockfighting is a centuries-old blood sport in which two or more specially bred birds, known as gamecocks, are placed in an enclosure to fight, for the primary purposes of gambling and entertainment. A cockfight usually results in the death of one of the birds; sometimes it ends in the death of both. A typical cockfight can last anywhere from several minutes to more than half an hour. The birds, even those who do not die, suffer in cockfights. The birds cannot escape from the fight, regardless of how exhausted or injured they become. Common injuries include punctured lungs, broken bones, and pierced eyes. Such severe injuries occur because the birds’ legs are usually fitted with razor-sharp steel blades or with gaffs, which resemble three-inch-long, curved ice picks. These artificial spurs are designed to puncture and mutilate.
What is the appeal of cockfighting? I honestly don’t get it. Who gets off on watching a couple of roosters peck each other to death? I suppose there is money involved, but it still kind of floors me that a bunch of grown men would sit around and watch this and actually enjoy it. What ever happened to good, old-fashioned video game obsessions??
Minnesota’s law allows for those participating in cockfighting or those in possession of birds used for cockfighting to be charged with a felony and sentenced to at least 1 year and 1 day in jail. Spectators are charged with a misdemeanor and charged up to $1,000 and/or 90 days in jail. In this case only 2 men were arrested for cockfighting, and spectators were issued misdemeanors.
A big shout out to the person who called 911 when s/he saw a bunch of people carrying chickens into a house!