Monday, November 27, 2006

News: President Bush Signs the "Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act"

Today President Bush signed into law S. 3880, the "Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act," which, according to the press release from the White House, "expands criminal prohibitions against the use of force, violence, and threats involving animal enterprises and increases penalties for violations of these prohibitions." This legislation largely slipped under the proverbial radar, unfortunately. For the text of this act, which strengthens the (already effective) 1992 Animal Enterprise Protection Act, click here. Suffice to say that there was and is a lot of opposition to the overly broad reach of this bill, which would subject activists to fines and/or imprisonment for merely "disrupting" an animal enterprise. A cogent analysis of the possible effects of the AETA can be found on the blog Green is the New Red. Industries that utilize non-human animals are, unsurprisingly, excited about the law. See, for example, the response of the National Pork Producers Council, which, like all supporters of the act, claim that it won't be used to curb legitimate protest. Given the redefinition of activists as "terrorists" here I'm not so sure...


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