Tuesday, 6 September 2011

Rule of Law- Of Cats, "Injustice" & the mob

Tearful cat lovers bay for blood over hell ‘hotel’

September 05, 2011
A woman cries during the press conference over the Petknode pet hotel, at the Armada Hotel in Petaling Jaya, September 5, 2011.—Picture by Jack Ooi
PETALING JAYA, Sept 5 — Pet lovers here rallied behind owners of over 150 cats that were left starving, dehydrated and covered in their own waste for up to nine days over the Hari Raya break, calling for “real punishment” for the operators of a “pet hotel” service that also left up to 16 cats dead.

Choking back tears, Bazilah also clarified that it was a group of 20 to 30 pet owners, who arrived soon after, which collectively decided to break into the premise and not the police as reported earlier today.

“.... We took the risk to break into the premise and not the police as reported
... Cat owners in the city had left their pets with Petknode ahead of the “balik kampong” exodus for a promotional price of just RM3.95 a night.

by Malaysian Dogs Deserve Better
on Tuesday, 06 September 2011 at 13:09

ATTENTION PLEASE: The Damansara Damai police station has called two of the KTAJ rescuers to go there immediately. They have asked for the fosterer's list and want to send the cats to DVS. This would be sure death for some of the cats. We have also been told that the police wants to charge the group that had broken into the premises. Are they crazy? .......


Okay now ... hold your horses/cats/dogs & chill for a minute, mate!
It's very touching to see these pet-owners shedding tears for their pets- but I wouldn't go near a RM3.95 per day pet hotel even if you paid me to....

Anyways- this is my take on the whole matter .... What I say here, in no way meant to suggest the justification of the cruelty to the animals.
  • In an ideal situation, there should be written/unwritten "rules & terms of engagement" as agreed to by lawmakers/culture/traditions.
  • Those who flout these "rules & terms" (even for valid reasons) should be prepared to face the consequences, and pay the price.
  • Fight for what you believe in, but don't complain when you "kantoi" .... or have to face the repercussions- just "run for your life or die"!!
It is the stuff idealism and noble causes are made of. That's life.
  • Those who committed the crime should definitely face the music.
  • To the brave rescuers- well done for "taking the risk" they very well knew was in store for them in breaking-in to the premises. It also means that they were willing to face the music to stand up for justice and face the consequences of their action.

Is PDRM being "crazy" here? I'm no fan of PDRM, but I don't think so ....
Just because they allowed the UMNO-aligned NGO mobs to create a ruckus in the past- it doesn't mean they should allow others to take the law in their own hands in all cases. (Some allege that it helps if you had connections with the underworld though ...)

They (PDRM) are just enforcers of law, which the perpetrators of the "crime" knowingly risked flouting- actions which I'm sure the brave rescuers were prepared to defend in a court of law.
(It'll be good if these rescuers can be counted on to raid the Majlis Perbandaran Selayang dog pound in Rawang future- should they abuse or starve the dogs held there- maybe these rescuers can come break-in, burn it down and then demand that those responsible be jailed too).
Having said that- allow me to make it clear that I do not endorse break-ins or such acts of violence, okay.

Let the Police do their job- so far they only called these guys for questioning. Even if arrested and charged, I presume it would be a bailable offense. Furthermore, it is actually up to the AGC to decide whether the rescuers are to be charged/prosecuted.
MDDB says- "These girls and volunteers should not be prosecuted for saving the lives of the many cats that were trapped there" and I agree. However, as I said- that would depend on the AGC- and should they be prosecuted, and in any case, I'm sure they have a good defense.

Wiki says:- The principles contained in good Samaritan laws more typically operate in countries in which the foundation of the legal system is English Common Law. Good Samaritan laws are laws or acts protecting those who choose to serve and tend to others who are injured or ill. They are intended to reduce bystanders' hesitation to assist, for fear of being sued or prosecuted for unintentional injury or wrongful death.

In fact a judgement in their favour would probably set a good precedent.
Those who plan to picket- I wouldn't encourage it, although they could do it as a publicity stunt to raise awareness on Animal Cruelty. Should the duo be charged- I'd suggest that they get "pro-bono" legal representation and picket at the trial .... that may help cause better by bringing about a posotive judgment in favour of Animal welfare!
Already, The Star has reported some positive outcome through DVS from this incident ... HERE & HERE (yes- this "rating" exercise by DVS, is for stupid pet-owners who cannot see for themselves ... maybe they'll need rating for private hospitals next).

I wonder what is so wrong about the cats being handed over to the DVS- they will be doing whatever is necessary under their purview to determine the best outcome. Those animals which may pose a health hazard, will be euthanized for sure- rather than prolonging their suffering through feigned care. If kind souls like, I'm sure the DVS would oblige in allowing for adoption- any animal loving NGO could adopt them en masse if they're game for it.

Speaking of cruelty ...
- what would you say about a person who settles for a RM3.95/day care for his/her pet? Doesn't the price ring alarm bells?
"You pay peanuts, you get monkeys" - so goes the saying.
They must be very "wise" to expect 5-star treatment for "Rumah Tumpangan" price ...

So, pertinent questions which may be asked in this case are:-
  1. Why doesn't DVS charge the "pet-hotel" for animal cruelty?
  2. Are the rescuers liable for the break-in?
  3. Are the Police liable for the allowing the "crime" by saying ‘if you want to break, just break.’
  4. What exactly were the terms of the "promotional price" offered by the "pet-hotel"?
  5. Are the pet owners also liable for irresponsibly accepting a "Rumah Tumpangan" offer?

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