Defending the Freedom to Own Pets

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The Future of Dogs in an Animal Rights America

by Walt Hutchens

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What to do #6: Do not compromise or negotiate

The only answer to a bad animal law is to kill the whole thing. There are several reasons.

If you get into any discussions at all, then you will forever hear ARs talking to lawmakers saying "This was discussed with (your name)" implying that you approved -- even though all you said was "This is totally unacceptable."

Trying to negotiate will lead to splintering our side, as different players see different compromises as better for them.

Our side will almost always have weaker control of the lawmaking process than the ARs. They can 'fine tune' a bill, we will nearly always get rolled when we try to do the same. Exception: if you have a good lobbyist working for a strong (and well supported) federation you may have the choice of tuning ... but there's still the question of whether you should.

It is simply easier for citizens without lawmaking insider status to kill a bill than it is for us to control what is in it. ARs will make a deal with you today and change that deal when it suits them at the last minute. If you don't like everything in the bill, then go for the kill so they don't have a Christmas tree on which to hang their ugly ornaments.

Some of the players on the other side are actually trying to do the right thing. There's no better way to send the message that our side needs to be involved in animal law discussions right from the start than by completely dumping bills we weren't asked about.

You don't get respect by talking the school bully out of beating you up, and agreeing that he can have half your lunch, you get respect when you leave him sobbing and dribbling blood from his nose. And these are bullies we're dealing with.

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