I am not from Idaho. I moved here in 2005. I learned early on that a lot of the laws here are backwards, sideways, and non-existent. The first year that I could vote in this state, I was shocked to see that we were voting on whether or not we wanted The Ten Commandments, etched on two stone tablets, to be prominently displayed in a city park. Why something like that was deemed important enough to be on a ballot, whereas laws governing animal cruelty are having one hell of a time even getting signatures to BE on our November ballot, is beyond me. I don’t agree with having the 10 Commandments displayed in a city park, but it seemed easy enough to have that referendum as one of the big things we were voting on in 2006. Why then, is it so difficult to gather signatures to even ALLOW the animal cruelty initiative to be placed on the 2012 voting ballot?! Idaho needs a swift kick in the buttocks.
Idaho 1 of 3 is an initiative that would amend the animal cruelty laws in Idaho. Currently, Idaho is only 1 of 3 states that has no felony penalty for repeated cruelty or animal torture. The only other states that have no felony penalty, out of the 50 United States are: South Dakota and North Dakota
The Idaho initiative would add definitions to the already existing codes and raise the fines for any person convicted of animal cruelty:
AN INITIATIVE AMENDING CHAPTER 35 TITLE 25, IDAHO CODE, ANIMAL CARE LAW, ADDING FELONY PENALTIES FOR REPEAT VIOLATIONS AND TORTURE. AN INITIATIVE RELATING TO ANIMAL CARE, AMENDING SECTION 25-3502, IDAHO CODE, TO INCLUDE A DEFINITION FOR “TORTURE”; AMENDING SECTION 25-3504 TO CHANGE REFERENCES FOR PENALTY CLASSIFICATIONS; AMENDING SECTION 25-3520A, IDAHO CODE, TO INCREASE FINES FOR MISDEMEANOR VIOLATIONS; ADDING FELONY PENALTIES FOR THIRD AND SUBSEQUENT VIOLATIONS, AND ANY VIOLATIONS INCLUDING THE INTENTIONAL TORTURE OF AN ANIMAL.
15) “Torture” means every act, omission or commission whereby the willful and malicious infliction of pain or suffering is caused, permitted or allowed to continue when there is a reasonable remedy or relief. Practices described in 25-3514, Idaho Code, are not “torture”.
One of the biggest questions that people in Idaho have is “What will this amendment do to my livestock and my rights as a farmer?” NOTHING!
Our initiative does not speak to or change any legal procedures or activities. The reference to Idaho Code 25-3514 in the definition of torture is a direct reference to the normal, legal procedures and practices of the agricultural sector and other legal procedures. It also does not apply to any other legal procedures such as hunting, rodeos, dog training ,etc. .
Now, this particular amendment isn’t even anywhere near being on our ballot this November. Idaho 1 of 3 has to gather 60,000 signatures by April 30, 2012, just to BE an initiative that we can VOTE on this year. Please, sign the petition to get this initiative on our November ballot. It doesn’t take anything more than a pen to paper. You also have to be a registered voter. I have two petitions, each one has room enough for 20 signatures. Will you help me reach my personal goal of 40 signatures by the end of April? Will you help get this initiative on our ballot in November, so that you can have a say in the state of Idaho about animal cruelty?
Help me help the animals of Idaho. I may not agree with most of the laws in this state, but Idaho certainly has given me two loving kitties who came yelling at my backdoor one cold winter morning. One of those cats is terrified of guns, it makes me wonder what she went through before she came to be my Ashy-Kitty.
For more information on the Idaho 1 of 3 Initiative please visit idaho1of3.org. If you’d like to sign the petition, please either leave me a comment (I will bring the petition to you) or find a place close to you that has petitions to sign by visiting this page. I want to vote for something I believe in this November, I want OUR VOICES TO BE HEARD.