Cockfighting

I was flipping through channels on the tv the other night, when I came across a show about cockfighting. I knew it was illegal in most states, but I found out it was still legal in at least 2, I think. One was Louisiana and the other I forgot. Anyways, they were showing interviews from both the owner’s of the roosters (in LA), and a representive for an animal rights group (I think it was the Humane Society, my mind’s a bit fuzzy). The owners of the roosters said that they were just doing what they naturally do. Now knowing several people both in my family and the families of my friends who had/have farms, I’ve seen roosters myself go after each other. Not because they were raised to fight, but they do have a natural aggressive nature which I think comes with being a territorial animal.

Still, if the thought of roosters fighting each other to the death disturbs so many people, why is it that many people eat chicken that have an even less fortunate life? Have we just become a country so industrialized to a point we forgot where those mcnuggets come from? The owners showed where they kept the roosters and compared to chickens in plants where they turn cannibalistic on themselves from being confined to such small spaces, those roosters lived like kings. They had 3 times if not more space in their coop, and were very well taken care of; some owners spending thousands of dollars for feeding them.

In the case of arguing against cockfighting because people gamble on the roosters, then why do we still have horse races where the animals are much often abused, neglected, and/or raced to their deaths? Don’t get me wrong, I’m not trying to defend cockfighting. But there are still certain things about it that I just can’t seem to understand why cruelty to one animal is wrong, but to another it isn’t because it just winds up on our dinner plates.

If there wasn’t horse racing, most of the animals would never have been bred in the first place. They are not bred to fight to the death.

Sometimes they fall and unfortunately do have to be put down. Often they are saved for breeding purposes.

Cats are very aggressive towards other cats on their territory. Should we breed them for fighting to the death and tie razor sharp spurs to their feet (paws) to make it even more gory? The spectators would love to see that.

And please don’t even start on bear baiting… :frowning:

Hell yes!

Just kidding :slight_smile: I dislike cats but not that much. This is the same kind of situation where one animal is favoured over another because of our emotional connection them as occurs with all sorts of food. Like dogs and cats compared to cows and pigs. However, making animals fight to the death is cruel. Letting them fight in their natural way isn’t cruel, it’s nature. Nature never made pens to fight and put money on the animals winning.

(How the heck did I end up defending native cultures? I can assure you I am not trolling however.)

When I am in Latin America (or once in The Philippines) I go to cock fights. It is a way for men to get out of the house in the evening, have a few beers, gamble a little. It is simply what men do in some cultures.

The animals do suffer. But then they suffer for a short time, and for most of their lives they live a relatively pampered existence. The same for fighting bulls.

While I do not especially enjoy blood sports, I do enjoy the camaraderie that comes from hunting, fishing, and cock- and bullfighting. It is interesting to see a culture which is maintaining its ancient ways. These sports will die out soon I guess. I also presume meat-eating will die out fairly soon.

There are good and bad parts of that.

(BTW I seem to remember that cockfighting is legal in Louisiana and Oklahoma. I may be wrong on that.)

The lovely Cheri Caffaro’s classic Too Hot to Handle (1977) has a scene with a real cockfight. I was filmed in the Phillipines, though, so it probably wasn’t illegal.

One big distinction between what roosters do naturally and the bloodsport cockfighting is that in cockfighting metal spurs are strapped onto the animals, vastly increasing the damage done, and the two combatants are placed in a situation where they can’t escape. So, by design, a cockfight is to the death. In nature, confrontations between roosters seldome result in serious injury, much less death, because very quickly the less dominant bird runs off and the conflict ends.

So, while fighting between cocks is natural, fighting to the death is not.

And I think it’s that distinction that makes the difference for a lot of people.

What makes you say that?

Definitely not in Oklahoma! A ban passed resoundingly in 2002.

Well, I am not as up-to-date on cockfighting as I should be.

Meat-eating? Well, I suppose that vegetarianism will become easier and cheaper in years to come, and so will become more common.

Why do you assume that? Meat eating will also become easier and cheaper in years to come, why wouldn’t that become more common?

I don’t like (most) vegetables. I’ll keep eating meat. If I can’t buy it, I’ll hunt it.

I’d go to a cock fight, though I’d be willing to compromise with the PETA whackos by removing the metal spurs.

In the perfect future, cock fights will be replaced by PETA member vs ACLU member death matches, spurs allowed and encouraged. :smiley:

-butler

I’d put forth that it’s nobler to die fighting than run away a coward so cock-fighting is better for both.

For some reason, it seems like Rhode Island was the other state that allowed cock fighting.

This could probably be resolved if I wasn’t too lazy to google.

It looks as though it’s still legal to organize cockfights in Louisiana and New Mexico.

To the OP: I think it’s a visceral reaction. Munching on a chicken drumstick from KFC is much different than watching a rooster get disembowelled with a sharp razor claw.

IMHO, all animal fights like cockfighting and bear baiting are cruel, unnecessary, and stupid–but that’s me.

You are, of course, free to live that philosophy if you wish; you don’t have a right to force someone or something into the situation so that you can live (or die) vicariously through them.

Seriously, I have lots of issues with bloodsports. I’d rather people beat the shit out of each other to get their rocks off than pay to see someone or something else abused.

And yes, that’s my major objection to Pokemon as well.

I don’t understand why people that eat chicken would object to cockfighting. The end result is the same - a really dead bird. Cruelty can’t be an argument - have you seen how those “food” chickens live? Or how they are killed?

The way I see it - if you eat meat you accept the fact that animals are just walking refrigerators that keep the food fresh until the humans are ready to eat it. I feel bad when I see an animal suffer, but I know it would be very hypocritical to try and do anything to the people that cause the suffering because I caused about as much just by having breakfast this morning. The way people treat animals should be a personal choice for which we only answer to ourselves, seeing the government waste money on legislation and enforcement of animal cruelty laws makes me want to cheat on my taxes.

Self-Interest is the easiest and best explanation i have. Bloodsports and animal crueltry provide an outlet for, and encourage, human behavior that i don’t find acceptable.

How often is animal abuse accompanied by antisocial behavior? Is it not part of the ‘serial killer trifecta’?

That’s my big issue with it- I don’t like the things it brings out in humans.

Also, I would hope that you see a moral difference in someone killing another person to survive and torturing that person to death for entertainment? Not to equate animals and humans, but your inability to see how someone that thinks that eating meat is okay would still be against cruelty mystifies me.

I’m confused, here. Pokemon? Isn’t that a game with collectible cards that have anime-style drawings of fantastic (in the sense of “unreal”) creatures on them? Is there live animal fighting involved, somehow?

The joke to my “Post your joke punchline here”.

A Louisiana sheriff suspected cockfighting was going on in his county and called in his best cop, Detective Thibideau. The sheriff told him to go to a cockfight and get all the information he can. Thibideau reported back a couple days later with his findings.

"There’s 3 groups involved in the cockfighting, Texans, Cajuns and the Mafia.

The sheriff asked Thibideau how he knew Texans were involved.

“Cuz there was a duck entered in the cockfight.”

The sheriff then asked how he knew Cajuns were involved.

“Cuz everyone bet on the duck to win.”

The sheriff then asked how he knew the Mafia was involved.

“Cuz the duck won the cockfight.”

I don’t want to turn this into a flame fest, so please open a pit thread about how despicable a human being I am.

I went to a LEGAL cockfighting derby last week in New Mexico last weekend. I’ve probably seen at least a thousand fights since first becoming interested in them last year. I had went solely because I wanted to see one before they were outlawed. I ended up really coming to enjoy watching too really game roosters fight.

Some misconceptions on thread is the notion that game roosters (breeds developed solely for fighting) won’t naturally fight to the death. Many will unless they run or give up. That is considered a significant flaw in a game rooster and will result in a loss in a fight. A good one will show fight right up to its death.

There are roosters developed for naked heel (no weapon) like in Spain that will fight to the death. There are roosters bred solely for boxing style matches like the Vietnamese Ganoi where roosters are essentially “head hunters” looking for a knock out blow. There are simply many different styles with many different rules throughout the world. The roosters used can even look dramatically different with the Asian Asil types probably not even recognized by most people as a chicken.

The roosters that wear steel are bred for that weapon. They have to be able to give, take, and avoid steel.

Cockfighting was at one time widely practiced in the US. There were fights at Whitehouse. Honest Abe Lincoln got his nickname as referee of cockfights. Cockfighting is as much a cultural tradition of long time Americans as well as more recent immigrants to America. It’s probably the second largest world sport behind soccer.

Cockfighting doesn’t fall into the abuse of animals connection to violent crime. It’s simply a cultural tradition that has become unpopular.

The chickens that most of us eat live very short life in extremely cramped quarters with no fresh air. Game fowl receive far better treatment in their raising. They are expensive animals and well cared for. In general, they live a longer life with much more fresh air, freedom of movement, and gentle treatment than fowl that you bought at KFC. Many end up dead by doing what comes naturally to them. But they lived a heck of a good life before then.