Bans sale and distribution of videos depicting cruelty to animals. (Senate yet to agree)
What brings a deeply divided Congress together? A small act of kindness to animals.
This week, (July 21, 2010) the House voted 416 to 3 to approve H.R. 5566: Prevention of Interstate Commerce in Animal Crush Videos Act of 2010. The new law will ban the sale and distribution of videos depicting animal cruelty. Crush videos commonly show a woman wearing stiletto heels crushing small animals to death.
Earlier this year, the original law, passed in 1999, was struck down by the Supreme Court, 8 to 1. The rationale was that the law was too broad and could be interpreted as banning videos showing people going hunting and other acts of cruelty to animals. The new bill is designed to get around this objection by being narrower in scope. Before it can become law, a similar bill has to be passed by the Senate, which has not yet even drawn one up.
Still, three Congressmen voted No: Tom Graves and Paul Brown of Georgia, and Ron Paul of Texas. All three are members of the Tea Party Caucus. All three said the bill was unconstitutional … i.e. that it denied people their right to freedom of “speech.” According to their take on the constitution, videos of small animals being squished are a form of speech.
Heaven forbid we should risk the nation falling apart on account of people not being able to watch each other jamming their stiletto heels into the heads of hamsters and kittens.