In todays Taipei Times article about AIDS and infectious diseases, I noticed the legislature added this Communist China-style amendment that now allows them to kill domestic animals. This has happened a few times in China, where there is an outbreak of some diseases and the government beats to death all of the domestic animals and pets in the region. It’s a sad day for Taiwan when the government takes away the rights of the innocent.
[quote]The Legislature yesterday also passed an amendment to the Infectious Disease Prevention and Control Law (傳染病防治法), enabling the administration to define newly emerging infectious diseases as threats to national security.
The amendment also grants the government the right to cull pets or domestic animals in the event of an outbreak of any communicable disease transmitted by animals.[/quote]
taipeitimes.com/News/taiwan/ … 2003365290
This is a very serious development. I remember during the SARS outbreak, when they raided a neighborhood after a suspected case -an old guy, who was receiving treatment at Hoping Hospital, was found dead- and took all the neighbors out, they also caged -and I am afraid disposed of- the pets. I still have the newspaper cutout somewhere, with the pictures of the cages full of cats and mini-dogs. Ever since, I have been afraid that upon suspicion -without evidence or scientific support- but rather out of fear of contagion, our pets could meet the same fate.
It is not really a “Communist-style” amendment, it is a serious and sensible public health issue that has been adopted by the majority of countries in the WHO as a mandated response mechanism to control avian flu, in particular, but also SARS and other as-yet unkown diseases.
Having pets is a luxury, after all, not a basic human right.
it would be nice of them to offer the option to quarantine the animals, but that’s expensive, and I am sure many peple would hide them. with chickens in Vietnam for example, and in Indonesia too, several recent flu deaths have occured after sick chickens were hidden from inspectors.
Now, the science linking dogs and cats to avian flu is of course lacking (well, it’s not that evidence is just lacking from not looking: there is no link at the moment) so there should be no need for panic yet. But for other diseases like distemper which is similar to flu, there is a definite link between dogs and disease, and if the virus mutates that way (to be more like distemper), then dogs would be a potential reservoir, and the legislation is certainly justified.
I hope they use it sensibly, but this is Taiwan, land of knee-jerk reactions.
Of course they’re going to kill domestic animals. Do you really think wild ones pose a threat? If Avian Flu rears its ugly head, I fully expect the government to do its job and kill all and any contaminated or potentially contaminated fowl that might pose a threat. I know one Forumosan who was involved with the mass killing of pigs during the foot-and-mouth epidemic 10 years back. Yeah, sure the pigs were “innocent”, but the welfare of the people has to come first.
Yeah it is very important that we kill all these animals that “might” have the disease and spead it unknowingly just to save those animals (humans) who develop and spread disease knowingly.
I find it sad every time i hear the importance of humans and the human race and the unimportance of the rest of the animal kingdom. How we can sacrifice all other animals for the sake of the human race, as we are the kings. But i live with the comfort that the day will come where our killing and justifications will wipe us all out.
May be, just maybe if the government and the people took the step to curve the breeding of these domesticated animals we wouldn’t have this problem. Such as less importing, stricter regulations for petstores, inforcing neutering, CNR projects… ahhh but that would be solving the problem and why would we want to do that, because then we would have nothing to blame for the spread of disease except ourselves, oh and of course the fact that many government officials and business men and women have shares and dealings with the pet trade.
Now would a government official’s pet be taken and murdered??? or would they be exempt from disease spreading?
Owning most things is a luxury and not a basic human right, yet we have the right to receive due process of law in matters concerning our property. Pets traditionally have been viewed as property, I believe, in legal matters. Therefore I have the right to be given a fair hearing concerning the fate of my pets.
If it were determined that putting down animals would prevent the spread of a disease then it would be a simple matter to resolve in court. If the powers-that-be don’t have the necessary proof then put the animals in quarantine. With draconian policies of putting pets down it’s no wonder people attempt to hide their pets. Perhaps if the actions weren’t so absolute people might be more cooperative, and they might trust in their government more. And doing that might be more helpful in preventing the spread of disease.
I know if someone comes looking for my pets I will do everything in my (not so awesome) power to ensure their safety. And if that means hiding them because I can’t get a fair hearing well yeah I’ll do that.