What is the SB38 in Louisiana and how it impacts cockfighting?
Pet Advocacy ExaminerDena Stapleton
UPDATE 5-27-10 – The House approved the bill Wednesday the 26th and now it goes to Gov. Bobby Jindal’s desk for final approval. The House voted in favor of the bill 73-13. This is a great accomplishment towards trying to stop cockfighting.
Cockfighting was a large blood sport in the state of Louisiana. In 2007 the state passed a ban on gambling at cockfight events, although cockfighting was still legal. Then in 2008 the state finally passed the ban on the sport of cockfighting. They were the last state to ban cockfighting. With this ban it made it illegal to have a cockfight and there were now fines and penalties for doing so. Some thought the ban would not be hugely enforced, but many found this to be the wrong idea. The 1st offensive is just a misdemeanor, the 2nd offensive is still a misdemeanor but it also carries a $1000 fine and 15 days community service which cannot be dismissed, and the 3rd and subsequent offensives are considered a felony and up to three years in jail.
Monday the 17th of May the Senate had the SB38 bill come before their committee to be voted on. What actually is the SB38? The Senate Bill 38 is to make it illegal to attend an illegal cockfight, and bet on cockfights or pay admission to be able to view or bet on a cockfight. The original ban of cockfighting is only for the parties involved and not the spectators. This bill only spent a little over ten minutes before being voted unanimously to be approved and is now being sent to the House for approval. Senator Danny Martiny is the man behind this bill and has stated that he received a letter (unanimous of course) stating that if this bill actually passes that it will put over 1,200 people out of work. Now remember cockfighting is illegal and has been since August 2008, but there are 1,200 people that are still profiting from it and would be put out of work. They know of a well known arena in Church Point that has up to 750 seats for people that attend for regular cockfights.
The state is trying to crack down on the major issue of cockfighting. Every year they are doing more, creating stiffer laws, and tracking down the cockfights. They are making arrests and getting the word out there that this blood sport is illegal, although it continues to happen. Sen. Danny Martiny is hopeful that with this new law it will help with busting into cockfighting events and making more arrests. This new bill, if passed, would take effect by mid August and create a penalty of either six months in jail or a maximum of $500 fine.