United Poultry Concerns April 9, 2003

United Poultry Concerns News Advisories:
Cockfighting Bill in New Mexico
Goose-killing Episode in North Carolina

A bill that would have made participation in cockfighting a felony in New Mexico passed the state House but was killed in the Senate on March 28. It was the farthest a bill to ban cockfighting had ever traveled in the New Mexico Legislature. Cockfighting pits are located mainly throughout rural southern New Mexico. Though NM cockfighters are mainly Hispanic, many Hispanics have spoken out against cockfighting and said they resent the fact that cockfighting is being made a cultural and racial issue in the state. A 2001 Research and Polling Inc. survey indicated that 71 percent of registered Hispanic voters support making cockfighting illegal. “This isn’t a case of city people telling rural people what to do,” said Mae Jeanne Rescineto de Garcia of Albuquerque. “Cockfighting has always been wrong.” 77 percent of New Mexicans consider cockfighting a barbaric blood sport that celebrates violence. State legislator Ron Godbey, who introduced the bill to make cockfighting a felony, said he will sponsor the bill again in 2 years at the next regular session, if he’s still in office. If not, he said, someone else will. (From The Boston Globe, 4/6/03.).

In February 2003, seven members of the Kappa Sigma Chapter at Davidson College in North Carolina lured a white goose with breadcrumbs, then beat her to death with a golf club as part of a fraternity initiation. Authorities charged the men with felony cruelty to animals and conspiracy to commit cruelty to animals. Davidson College suspended the fraternity’s activities while it investigated the cruelty. Because these men were first offenders on an animal cruelty charge, they couldn’t be imprisoned. Instead, Mecklenburg prosecutors chose a deferred prosecution agreement in which the students agreed to acknowledge their wrongdoing and apologize for it, submit to substance abuse and psychological evaluations plus counseling, if necessary, and perform 100 hours of community service. If they abide by the agreement and stay out of trouble with the law for a year, they won’t be prosecuted for the crime. The men said none of them “felt right” about killing the goose. (From The Charlotte Observer, 3/20/03)

The Supreme Executive Committee of Kappa Sigma fraternity’s 5-member international governing board voted unanimously to revoke the Davidson College chapter’s charter “for conduct unbecoming a chapter of our fraternity,” said Mitchell Wilson, executive director of the fraternity. (From The Charlotte Observer, 3/30/03)

United Poultry Concerns thanks everyone who responded to our 3/5/03 request for letters to Mitchell Wilson, Executive Director of Kappa Sigma fraternity.


United Poultry Concerns is a nonprofit organization that promotes the compassionate and respectful treatment of domestic fowl. http://www.upc-online.org


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Machipongo, VA 23405-0150
FAX: 757-678-5070

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