Sep 09

“Pet’s Slaying No Surprise in Animal-Cruel Hawaii”

Honolulu Star-Bulletin


Vol 11, Issue 323  —  Sunday, November 19, 2006

By Pamela Davis

Editor’s note:   Police on Nov. 10 charged Joseph B. Calarruda V in the killing of a pet pig named Porky who once was featured in an Island Air commercial.  Porky was cornered by hunting dogs in the carport of his owners, a couple who live on a farm above a Mililani Mauka subdivision, where Calarruda allegedly killed him with a knife.  Calarudda has been on probation since 2002 for a kidnapping conviction, and is scheduled for trial Nov. 27  for possession of a prohibited firearm in another case.

WE LIVE in a world turned upside-down — a world where innocents are killed because of a lie, the most egregious example of which is the war in Iraq. I fear for the future of our children and our nation. With huge problems like this, why should we even be concerned about the recent violence perpetrated on Porky, the pet pig?

There are a number of answers to this question, but I offer the following:

» There is a proven correlation between violence toward animals and violence toward humans. In Porky’s case, it is reported that the suspect has a history of violence against people, including kidnapping his former girlfriend. This is not surprising. Violence breeds violence.

Porky the Pig enjoys a scratch from an unidentified human.

» There also is a direct relationship between what we eat — a pig, for example — and such things as war, disease, world hunger, environmental destruction (think global warming) and other societal problems. It is a complex web that too few people have bothered to explore and try to understand. Essentially, the killing of animals is an accepted aspect of our society, reinforcing our belief that we are superior to all other creatures. This misguided attitude can result in violence perpetrated on animals and humans alike.

We in Hawaii do not have a stellar record of progressive legislation in issues of animal cruelty.  We lag behind other states and other nations.  But it’s not for lack of trying.  Last year, for example, animal advocates tried to have a bill passed by the state Legislature that would have banned the killing of dogs and cats for human consumption.  Despite the overwhelming support of voters, the bill was blocked.  The recent elections clearly show that Americans are sick and tired of self-serving, “good ole boy” politics as usual.  We demand that elected officials represent us — not their special interests.  What has happened to the ideals of democracy and justice “of the people, by the people, and for the people”?

Porky was described by his guardians as a sweet and gentle being.  If you are disgusted by what happened to a pet pig, then you should be equally disgusted by the thought of billions of “farmed animals” kept in deplorable conditions and violently slaughtered.  Demand change from your government.  Educate yourself about the issues.  And realize that the single most important thing you as an individual can do to address the huge problems facing our world is to become a vegan.

Pamela Davis lives in Honolulu.