There's been lots of chatter on various email lists regarding "animal rights" legislation currently sweeping through CA and many other parts of the country. There's gnashing of teeth, wringing of hands, and emails pondering "what are we going to do?" Some say "we must form an(other) organization" and don't even know they already have one, or several.
For almost 20 years, we've been telling CA dog and cat owners that the sky is falling and few believed us. The majority of them buried their head in the sand and ignored our letters and emails or egos got in the way. Yes, dog and cat owners rallied around the organizations that fought AB1634, but Animal Rights Legislation has been a constant battle in CA since the late 80's. Few care until/unless it affects them personally. However, CFODC and its members and affiliations saw the handwriting on the wall. Our very existence today is due to a lot of hard work, expense (some of it out-of-pocket) and sacrifice by a small number of dedicated individuals and clubs who realized that what had spread from the UK to the USA and anchored itself firmly in CA back in the 70's, would eventually spread to other parts of the country and become even more of a problem in this state.
CFODC organized in 1990, during the first round of "exploratory" AR backed legislation. Breeder Permits, MSN, BSL, and a laundry list of anti-animal legislation was pushed by the AR movement starting in Marin county. Many of the proposed state bills were defeated by our grass roots involvement with CFODC board members spearheading the trips to Sacramento to testify at hearings, and form alliances with other organizations battling the forces of the AR movement. However, it was evident to us that the "Animal Rights" Agenda would never go away….sorta like pesky insects. They multiply and pop up everywhere, spreading their propaganda and outright lies to get legislation passed. Whoever dreamed they'd gain such a foothold in our beloved state and country---where property rights used to exist for all. History from the dawn of time to this day is filled with interaction with, and humane use of, animals in all walks of life; such as agriculture for food, hunting, fishing, the rodeo, the circus, zoos, and most importantly our pets. All of this is in jeopardy today as anyone who uses animals in any way is being called "an animal exploiter" by the extremists.
This is not a "breeder" issue and shouldn't be addressed as such. This is a pet issue and comes during very stressful times when our pets have never meant more to us. If the extremist Animal Rights Movement wins, pet ownership in CA and across the country will be so expensive, few will be able to afford it and eventually it will cease to exist. We know these are hard economic times, but think how much harder it would be if you couldn't have your pets.
You've had an organization fighting for you and holding the line on bad legislation all this time - until recently with LA City, Riverside County, and city of Lancaster, we had fought down dozens of legislative inroads city by city, and county by county as well as at the state level.
The Animal Rights Movement is extremely well organized, well financed and has a cult-like dedication to end all use, breeding, and ownership of animals for any reason. They draw in members who don't even realize their ultimate goal. But we do…and because CFODC continues to expose their radical agenda, we are the object of their deep hatred and attempts to discredit us. CFODC is probably the oldest organized state federation in the country. You're so lucky to have CFODC on your side!
Our state legislature is back in session and we're keeping a close eye on what may develop in Sacramento. We know how to solve animal problems; how to fight anti-pet legislation; what to do; what to say and not say; and we can win this battle. But not without more financial and vocal and grass roots support and a realization that it will take lots of extra effort from all of you. This is a war, not just a single battle over one bill or one ordinance; if that were true, we could've closed up shop long ago!
Santa Barbara County, the ongoing ordinance changes in Kern Co. even though MSN and breeder's permits were defeated there; we lost in Riverside County, but won in Huntington Beach. We lost in LA City and LA County…… but not for lack of trying as we are still working on LA County and trying to help solve some of the AC problems. Gestapo raids by "humane" officers and AC officials have escalated around the country. Some of these "raids" are justified for a hoarding or abuse situation, but many more are not. It's all grist for the AR publicity mill and media frenzies that pull the wool over the eyes of most of JQP. Here in CA, we are particularly challenged by the entertainment industry, most of whose members are solidly behind whatever wild-eyed accusations the AR movement can come up with.
"What have _you_ done for CFODC"? Where have _you_ been all this time? Were _you_ on the front lines with us? We've continued to state that CFODC is YOU, not US! A bulk email and snail mail mailing has gone out to all the contacts we have for CA clubs and individuals. Ask if your club officers received it. Our membership also includes many individuals who realize the threat to the peaceful enjoyment of their animals, from dogs to reptiles to cattle, veterinarians, trainers, groomers, boarding kennels, pet sitters, rescuers, hunters, breeders, and many others involved with animals. CFODC board members take many hours out of their lives to manage the affairs of the organization. Our website has many pieces of information and a membership application that you can print out and send in.
If the radical extremists win in CA, whose fault is it? Certainly not ours! We have an alliance with PetPAC which is chaired by an experienced lobbyist. CFODC can directly donate to PetPAC because we are a 501c3 non-profit organization with a 20% of our total annual income exemption to influence legislation. Individuals can and should donate to PetPAC to help fund their and our efforts on your behalf. Our hands are tied behind our back ALL the time due to a lack of funds while the AR movement is VERY wealthy…..HSUS and PETA alone have around $400 million with which to push their agenda. If you really care about your animals, please join us now and send donations to us or our disaster fund or to PetPAC directly. You can do so through our respective websites: www.cfodconline.org; or send an application or donation to CFODC, PO Box 2341, Lancaster, CA 93539; or go to www.petpac.org and join and donate through their website.
Please be sure we have a viable email contact so that you can receive our alerts and information emails, and please print clearly on your application. I can't tell you how many pieces of snail mail we get that are unreadable.
Judythe Coffman, President
And Board of Directors