Friday, September 10, 2010

Property rights

Fellow Iowan, Randy, forwarded a copy of a letter to the editor he wrote about a small town event in Mt. Zion, IA.

The details he shared:
An individual who lived in a tiny unincorporated town had two pet cows he had been keeping for years. They are kept in a rather small pen but well fed and watered. With all the rain we have had he moved the pen to higher ground, onto an old road bed, so the cows would not be knee deep in mud, however it was visible from the road. He had not cleaned out the pen so it was 2-3 feet deep in uneaten hay and manure. There was such an outcry about abuse the sheriff and county attorney threatened animal abuse charges if something was not done. Thus I put this letter in our county papers.
His letter:
If someone purchases a cow and TV and places them in their front yard in neglect, until each parishes from the elements, who is harmed more than the person that destroyed their own property? But it’s not the same you say. The cow is a living entity which has feelings. Even though it’s existence is little more than sitting on death row awaiting butchering and consumption. But how is anyone who witnesses this to feel? It is inhumane, it is immoral you say. By who’s standards of morality is this judged? The law makers, the bureaucrats, by society/the collective? The very entities we are told are not capable of, or permitted to judge the morality of infidelity, illegitimacy, or homosexuality? By who’s standards of morality are we allowed/permitted to feel good or bad, and voice our position or take action?

I bring this up with regard to the cow pen and poop issue in Mt. Zion. In this country, this state, this community not so long ago, those concerned would have offered assistance. They would have come together to clean out the cow’s holding pen. They would have brought food and made a social event of it, having a positive affect on the neighborhood. But “times have changed” everyone say’s, not really understanding the depth and breadth of those changes. “Times have changed” has become a non-answer to any question much as the term “who’s John Galt” was in Ayn Rands novel Atlas Shrugged. You need not be for animal abuse if you are for property rights. It is not an either or, but when we allow how we feel to invade our understanding of rights specifically outlined in both the federal and state constitutions we have abandoned reason for guilt.

When people revel in forcing their neighbors to comply with the brute force of Government instead of offering assistance, times have indeed changed. This path from “Constitutional Republic” to “Socialist Democracy” is not nearly as fraught with obstacles as it should be. More people must ask “why have times changed” and to what end.
I searched online for his letter to local papers in SE Iowa and couldn't find it or any article regarding the incident. It could be that I didn't have a thorough enough search, though. But I have no doubt of the incident.

Because this happens all the time in towns large and small in this country everyday. The coercive power of the state to force compliance to another's will.

Granted, no one wants the smell of manure close by, but Randy is right. If this gentleman's livestock had to be moved because of circumstance, where were his neighbors to assist?

At least he didn't have the same outcome as this guy:
Bay County officials are investigating an animal control employee who apparently did not follow proper shelter procedures. He reportedly took home a pig that had been surrendered to the facility, butchered it, then ate it. Animal lovers are outraged, while county officials are embarrassed and looking for answers.
From Sailorcurt What's this country coming to?

Which also shows an out of control bureaucrat who thought he could do whatever he wanted.

A good old fashioned tar and feathering would be in order.


Unknown said...

A couple of years ago a certain central Iowa animal shelter ended up with a pig that, if I remember correctly, had fallen out of a truck. In order to adopt this pig you were required to sign a document that you wouldn't take it home and eat it. How crazy is that?!


strandediniowa said...

That is crazy, David. Coming from an ag background, why else would you own a pig? I don't understand owning a pig, cow, chicken, etc for a pet.

I wonder if signing that document would prevent one from fattening the pig up for market? The "I didn't eat it defense?"

Des Moines area or Indianola?

Unknown said...

Des Moines