The two animals eye each other intently across the dirt floor of the old barn. One has a bit of foam-spittle dripping out of the corner of its mouth. It makes a small brown puddle on the dirt floor. The two trainers hold their dogs back, choker chains biting into the flesh around the dog’s neck.
Finally, on cue from a burly man in the corner holding a camera, the action begins. The two pit bulls lunge at each other, snarling ferociously. The larger of the two takes control quickly, clamping his massive jaws down around the other dog’s neck and biting down hard.
A spurt of warm blood mixes with the spittle on the floor. The bitten dog wants to yelp out in pain, but his training doesn’t let him. He tries desperately to struggle free from the other dog’s death grip, but the larger dog is just too strong. A pit bull has enough gripping power in his jaws to stay hanging suspended from a rope tied to a tree all day long.
Ah, the horrors of dog fighting. There’s been a lot of debate lately about the cruelty of this “sport”. It is illegal in most states and recently Michael Vicks did time for it and was suspended from the national Football League.
Pretty much everyone agrees that dog fighting is wrong and should be against the law. But what about taping these so-called “sporting” events. Should that be illegal too?
The question is somewhat like that of certain kinds of porn. By outlawing it, does that interfere with our First Amendment rights of free speech?
According to CNN.com, The Supreme Court voiced deep free speech concerns Tuesday about a law designed to stop the sale and marketing of videos showing dog fights and other acts of animal cruelty. The justices heard an hour of lively debate about the scope and intent of the decade-old statute that supporters say has done much to stop the spread of profiting from the torture and abuse of animals.
Some justices remarked that by enforcing the law, it could spill over into other free speech concerns. On justice remarked that if people wanted to see human sacrifices that are acceptable in other parts of the world, they should be able to watch them here in the United States.
The videos aren’t limited just to those depicting dog fighting. Among the products advertised was “Catch Dogs,” featuring pit bulls chasing wild boars on organized hunts and a “gruesome depiction of a pit bull attacking the lower jaw of a domestic farm pig,” according to a Philadelphia, Pennsylvania-based appeals court.