Cats in the Cradle
I’m going to do it again. I’m going to not be funny. I know I promised a slightly humorous take on things, but as soon as I said so, things took a turn for the serious. Today, I have only an observation that leaves me with questions.
Last week, a cat met an unfortunate end. You can read about it here. As it turns out, a wrinkle in Missouri animal abuse laws forecloses any criminal charge against the cat’s owners. Once word of the cat’s demise got out, it spread like wildfire. Facebook lit up. Online petitions acquired over 1200 signatures. Candlelight vigils were held. The switchboard was clogged with concerned citizens. People responded passionately in whatever way they thought best.
During the same week, a man was charged with trafficking for the purpose of sexual exploitation. In the last few weeks, defendants have been charged, pled or been found guilty of rape, statutory rape and child molestation among other things. There is a STILL an unsolved case in which an infant was put in a plastic shopping sack and left on the side of the road. No Facebook posts. No online petition. No candlelight vigil. Why?
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not trying to minimize what was done to this animal. What is legal and what is right are not always the same thing. It seemed to me an interesting contrast though. How is it that the death of a cat elicits a more active, passionate response than the exploitation of our children, or sexual violence?
Show me what a society finds outrageous, and I can tell you what that society values.