Texas Shooting Shows Once again That Animal Cruelty and Human Cruelty Are Strongly Linked
Martha Rosenberg - CounterPunch
15 Nov 2017 – What do Ted Bundy, John Wayne Gacy, Jeffrey Dahmer, Devin Kelley the Texas church killer and a host of other killers have in common? They tortured animals and delighted in the pain they inflicted.
Dahmer, who murdered 17 men and boys between 1978 and 1991 tortured frogs and cats and decapitated dogs. He mounted their heads on sticks including his own puppy. Mass murderer Ted Bundy watched as his father tortured animals and then did the same.
“The “Boston Strangler” Albert DeSalvo trapped dogs and cats in wooden crates and shot them with a bow and arrow, reports the New York Post. “John Wayne Gacy, who murdered 33 men and boys in his suburban Chicago home, tortured turkeys by throwing balloons filled with gasoline and then igniting the birds.”
Anders Breivik, who killed 77 people in Norway in 2011, kept pet rats and tortured them.
Criminologists and law enforcement officials now recognize that animal cruelty is a clear predictor of human violence and crime. Anthropologist Margaret Mead said, “One of the most dangerous things that can happen to a child is to kill or torture an animal and get away with it.”
A study of women in one domestic violence center found a shocking 71 percent of women with pets reported their partner threatened, hurt or even killed their pet. Surveys indicate that between 18 percent and 48 percent of battered women have delayed their decision to leave a batterer or returned to the batterer out of fear for the welfare of their pets or livestock.
Now comes news that Devin Kelley, who killed 26 in a Texas church this month, enjoyed killing animals. He actually bought dogs online and used them as target practice the New York Times revealed this week. His Facebook conversations became so full of gleeful descriptions of killing animals, people unfriended and feared him. In Colorado Springs he was charged with cruelty to animals after beating his malnourished husky.
Abused Animals Show Their Wounds
People who work in animal shelters see the deeds of animal abusers, many who will go on to harm humans, every day. Here are some of the things shelter workers see.
Physical Signs of Abuse
- emaciation from intentional starvation
- bruising and hemorrhage
- burns (from open flame, cigarettes, chemicals)
- scars from old injuries, including but not confined to gunshot wounds
- broken bones
- injury to the ano-genital region from zoophilia or firecrackers
- missing limbs, tail, ears, eyes from wounds or such causes as frostbite
Mental Symptoms of Abuse
- increased fear of humans
- increased fear of other animals
- increased aggression toward humans or other animals
- increase in attention-seeking behavior
- excessive barking and excitability
- odd or repetitive behaviors
Some animal shelters and sanctuaries maintain skilled animal behaviorists who use behavioristic techniques to help animals recover. Others rely on positive reward therapy that builds love and trust. Clearly, not all animals recover.
In 2015, the Federal Bureau of Investigation announced it was elevating animal cruelty to a Group A felony, a charge as serious as homicide, arson and assault and the National Sheriff’s Association quickly hailed the upgrade. Sadly, Devin Kelley was not stopped from legally purchasing guns despite his appalling animal abuse history.
Martha Rosenberg is an investigative health reporter. She is the author of Born with a Junk Food Deficiency: How Flaks, Quacks and Hacks Pimp the Public Health (Prometheus).
DISCLAIMER: In accordance with title 17 U.S.C. section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. TMS has no affiliation whatsoever with the originator of this article nor is TMS endorsed or sponsored by the originator. “GO TO ORIGINAL” links are provided as a convenience to our readers and allow for verification of authenticity. However, as originating pages are often updated by their originating host sites, the versions posted may not match the versions our readers view when clicking the “GO TO ORIGINAL” links. This site contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use’, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.
Join the discussion!
We welcome debate and dissent, but personal — ad hominem — attacks (on authors, other users or any individual), abuse and defamatory language will not be tolerated. Nor will we tolerate attempts to deliberately disrupt discussions. We aim to maintain an inviting space to focus on intelligent interactions and debates.
Click here to go to the current weekly digest or pick another article:
- Now Mattis Admits There Was No Evidence Assad Used Poison Gas on His People
- U.S. Escalates Syrian War
- Political Insanity and the Nuclear Posture Review: Washington Threatens America and the World
ANIMAL RIGHTS - VEGETARIANISM: