Ted Williams and the National Audubon Society Issue a Call for Cats to be Poisoned with Tylenol® and Then Try to Lie Out of It
|Cat Poisoning Advocate Ted Williams|
"There are two effective, humane alternatives to the cathell (sic) of TNR. One is Tylenol® (the human pain medication) -- a completely selective feral-cat (sic) poison. But the TNR lobby has blocked its registration for this use. The other is trap and euthanize (TE). TE is practiced by state and federal wildlife managers; but municipal TE needs to happen if the annihilation of native wildlife is to be significantly slowed."
-- Ted Williams of the National Audubon Society
Of the multitude of methods that ornithologists and wildlife biologists have racked their diseased gourds in order to come up with to kill cats poisoning them is by far the most insidious. That is because their totally innocent victims are left with no alternative other than to crawl off somewhere all by themselves in order to die prolonged and excruciatingly painful deaths.
Their corpses, twisted in pain, are rarely discovered and even when they are, whether it be by either their owners or rescue groups, necropsies are seldom performed and their untimely deaths thus remain unexplained mysteries. Almost as abhorrent, absolutely no one ever bothers to take these cold-blooded, premeditated murders seriously and as a consequence the masterminds behind them seldom, if ever, are arrested and brought to justice.
In spite of being cowardly, illegal, and patently immoral, poisoning cats is an exceedingly attractive, low-risk endeavor as far as ornithologists and wildlife proponents are concerned. To put the matter succinctly, it constitutes the perfect crime.
It also tickles pink their already grossly overinflated egos and enhances their sense of their own cleverness and superiority. There is, after all, not only tremendous pleasure to be derived from doing evil but even greater delights accrue to those individuals and groups who are allowed to get away unscathed with their diabolical crimes.
It therefore hardly came as any surprise when Ted Williams of the National Audubon Society (NAS), a longtime and well-known defamer and hater of cats, recently issued a public call for his like-minded supporters to embark upon an en masse feline poisoning campaign using acetaminophen. Being the enterprising and scheming provocateur that he is, Williams knew exactly which scurrilous newspaper to inveigle into helping him to disseminate his message of hatred and lawlessness.
"There are two effective, humane alternatives to the cathell (sic) of TNR. One is Tylenol® (the human pain medication) -- a completely selective feral-cat (sic) poison. But the TNR lobby has blocked its registration for this use," he wrote in an op-ed column for The Orlando Sentinel on March 14th. (See "Trap, Neuter, Return Programs Make Feral-Cat (sic) Problems Worse.") "The other is trap and euthanize (TE). TE is practiced by state and federal wildlife managers; but municipal TE needs to happen if the annihilation of native wildlife is to be significantly slowed."
In the firestorm that ensued, The Orlando Sentinel belatedly deleted not only Williams' comments regarding Tylenol® but also his assertion that he was speaking for the NAS. Consequently, those comments are not found in the redacted version of his anti-feline rant that lives on in cyberspace; the remainder of his pack of lies has not been edited.
By the time that The Orlando Sentinel finally came to its senses it was too late because Williams' and the NAS's call for individuals and groups to take the law into their own hands already had been received loud and clear by their supporters. It was, all in all, quite a coup for both him and NAS and vividly demonstrates once again the eagerness of the thoroughly unprincipled capitalist media to throw their considerable weight behind almost any illegality and immorality.
In the days and weeks that followed, the public was treated to a second round of meticulously choreographed lies, double-talk, and face-saving public relations' stunts courtesy of both Williams and the NAS. To be perfectly honest, their conniving actually was quite entertaining and it surely must have brought a broad grim to the ugly map of whatever devil that they serve.
The NAS got the ball rolling on March 16th when it temporarily suspended Williams and removed his name and title, editor at large, from the masthead of its in-house propaganda rag, Audubon Magazine. "Ted Williams is a freelance writer who published a personal opinion piece in The Orlando Sentinel," the NAS confided to its bosom buddies and oftentimes partners in crime at National Geographic on March 20th. (See "Writer's Call to Kill Feral Cats Sparks Outcry.") "We regret any misimpression that Mr. Williams was speaking for us in any way. He wasn't." (See Cat Defender posts of April 15, 2005 and April 13, 2007 entitled, respectively, "National Geographic Trying to Exterminate Cats" and "Killing and Torturing Wild and Domestic Cats in Order to Create Toygers Is Not Going to Save Sumatran Tigers.")
David Ringer, director of media relations for the NAS, added a few carefully chosen words of his own. "Cats do a great deal of damage to birds and other wildlife, and it needs to be addressed, but Audubon absolutely rejects the idea of individuals harming or poisoning cats," he told National Geographic.
At this juncture it is important to point out that his disavowal, even if against all odds it should be even remotely sincere, is strictly limited to action undertaken by private individuals. At no time has either he or the NAS repudiated Williams' demand that local, state, and federal authorities poison cats with acetaminophen.
On March 21st, Williams once again took stylo in hand and added a revealing postscript to his earlier diatribe. "In my recent op-ed I reported that a common over-the-counter drug, an effective and selective poison for feral cats, had not been registered for this purpose because of pressure from feral-cat (sic) advocacy groups. While that statement was not inaccurate, it was unwise because readers might construe it as a suggestion to go out and start poisoning cats," he opined. "What's more, the statement could be, indeed was, manipulated by feral-cat (sic) advocates into something I didn't write or intend."
In other words, it is permissible for him and the NAS to advocate that cats be poisoned but strictly verboten for anyone to point out that such behavior is illegal in all fifty states. It therefore is perfectly clear that Williams and the NAS believe that they not only are above the law but all criticism as well.
That would have been bad enough in itself if Slick Willie had stopped there but he had one more vitally important disclosure to make. "I should have used the generic, lesser-known name," he added, presumably, with a straight face.
C'est-à-dire, poisoning cats with acetaminophen is perfectly all right as opposed to killing them with Tylenol.® That statement in itself reveals writ large the utter contempt that he and NAS harbor in their malignant bosoms for the intellectual acumen of the reading public. It accordingly is anything but surprising that they arrogantly believe that they can get away with poisoning cats.
He did backtrack a little by joining Ringer and declaring that acetaminophen should be used only by federal and state wildlife biologists in order to poison cats. "I urge people not to take the law into their own hands. They should leave it to the professionals," he added.
|Williams' and the NAS's Cat Poison of Choice|
Even in saying that much he is being only partially truthful because the explicit objective of his March 14th posting was to encourage municipal, as well as state and federal, authorities to use acetaminophen in order to poison cats. Furthermore, there can be little doubt that both he and the NAS, despite their denials, would be overjoyed if individuals took matters into their own hands and thus did their dirty and illegal deeds for them.
That is precisely what Nico Dauphiné was up to in both Athens while she was studying at the University of Georgia and later in Washington while she was working at the ailurophobic Smithsonian Institution. "The defendant has advocated for the elimination of feral cat populations through euthanasia," prosecuting attorneys Kevin Chambers and Clare Pozos wrote in pleadings at her 2011 trial. "The government is concerned that by attempting to poison cats, the defendant intended to effectuate the message her public works and advocacy were unable to achieve." (See CNN, December 15, 2011, "Ex-National Zoo Employee Sentenced in Attempted Feral Cat Poisoning.")
The full extent of Williams' mendacity and total lack of anything even faintly resembling a moral compass was brought into sharper focus a few days later. "I regret that in The Orlando Sentinel op-ed, I used the brand name of a common over-the-counter painkiller and described it as a humane way to euthanize feral cats," he wrote in Audubon Magazine on March 26th. (See "An Apology from Ted Williams.") "Using the name of the painkiller was irresponsible, and characterizing it as humane was inaccurate, according to veterinarians and scientists."
It is important to note that Williams himself does not state that there is anything either immoral, inhumane, or even illegal about poisoning cats with acetaminophen. Rather, he merely pays token lip service to the opinions of veterinarians and scientists.
Even so much as a cursory examination of the detrimental effects that the drug has on cats makes it crystal clear that both Williams and the NAS not only want them dead at any cost but to inflict as much suffering as possible in the process. For instance, the outwardly observable symptoms of feline acetaminophen poisoning include, inter alia, depression, weakness, labored breathing, swollen faces, necks, and limbs, hypothermia, vomiting, brownish-gray gums and tongues, and jaundice due to liver damage. Cats then lapse into comas and die.
Since they, unlike most other animals, lack the enzymes necessary in order to metabolize the drug, it quickly destroys their red blood cells and thus their ability to transport oxygen to their vital organs. That is precisely what Williams was obliquely referring to when he correctly characterized acetaminophen as a "selective" cat poison.
Like all poisons, however, acetaminophen does not discriminate between cats' socio-economic status and that makes its application anything but selective. Much more importantly, poisoning cats is both morally and legally indefensible regardless of whether or not they have owners and it should not make any difference whatsoever whether the perpetrators of such despicable crimes are either private citizens or public employees.
Acetaminophen additionally has the advantage of being both readily available and virtually untraceable. It also is a real bargain in that it only takes one tablet in order to kill a cat.
"Our data show that if an average-sized cat ingests as little as one extra-strength acetaminophen pain-reliever caplet and is not treated in time, it can suffer fatal consequences," Steve Hansen of the ASPCA's Animal Poison Control Center in Urbana, Illinois, told the Cat Channel on June 8, 2007. (See "Acetaminophen in Cat Food Discovered.")
That makes it even cheaper than the eight ounces of sodium pentobarbital that PETA is all the time championing as being more than sufficient in order to do away with eighty-three cats. (See Wheeling News-Register, December 16, 2010, "PETA Peeved at Hancock County's Feral Cat Problem.")
Given that acetaminophen is so cheap, untraceable, deadly, and inflicts so much pain and suffering, it strains credulity that both Williams and the NAS have not used it in the past in order to kill cats. Even if they should lack firsthand knowledge of the matter, they most assuredly are acquainted with others, possibly state and federal wildlife biologists, who have engaged in such illegal killings.
Although just about everybody on the planet in guilty of taking literary license with the term euthanasia, Williams is the first blighter known to equate it with poisoning cats. In that light, it would be interesting to know just how far he and the NAS would be willing to extend that analogy. Most likely they are so dishonest and morally bankrupt that they would be more than willing to apply it to the systematic eradication of almost any animal that they hate or group of individuals that stand in the way of their designs.
In the Audubon Magazine article cited supra, Williams does grudgingly concede that he lied through his rotten teeth when he categorically stated on March 14th that TNR, which has been sanctioned by no less than three-hundred-thirty municipal governments across the country, was illegal. He stubbornly refuses, however,to disavow any of the multitude of additional lies that he passed off on that occasion as the unvarnished truth.
In particular, he declared that between sixty-two and eighty per cent of cats carry toxoplasmosis and that they are the most common vectors of rabies. If there were so much as a scintilla of truth to either of those allegations, both diseases surely would be a epidemic levels.
Furthermore, the only evidence that Williams puts forward in order to bolster those allegations is the unsupported, anecdotal claim that some individuals in Florida have been attacked by rabid cats. Even if that were the case, it does seem rather odd that rabid cats apparently are found only in the Sunshine State.
He further alleges that they infect lynxes, bobcats, and Florida Panthers with leukemia, distemper, and the Feline Immunodeficiency Virus. That, too, is odd in that it is highly unlikely that any domestic cats that ventured onto the turfs of those large predators would survive for very long.
Totally full of it and really starting to feel his birdseed by this time, Slick Willie next tosses out the old familiar lie that cats hunt for pleasure as opposed to sustenance. That argument, as any halfway intelligent person understands, only has validity when it is turned around and applied to Williams and his fellow Home sapiens.
He additionally blames cats for single-handedly killing off thirty-three avian species and praises to high heaven a totally fraudulent and discredited study by the Smithsonian Institution that ludicrously claims that cats kill up to an astounding twenty-one billion wild animals each year. Finally, he caps off his recital of tall tales by reiterating the same blatant lies about managed colonies at the University of Hawaii in Honolulu that he told in the September-October 2009 edition of Audubon Magazine. (See "Feline Fatales.")
In that earlier rant, Williams not only called for the prosecution of those who feed homeless cats but lauded an inhumane practice in Wisconsin that allows for them to be shot and drowned on private property. He even went to far as to call for animal control officers to shoot them in the head with rifles.
"This approach is certainly kinder to the cats than stressing them with traps, transport, and eventually and almost inevitably lethal injections at shelters," he wrote. Even morally warped PETA has balked at stooping to that level of hypocrisy and abject cruelty.
The utter contempt that Williams harbors in his black soul for the species is perhaps nowhere better exhibited than in a July 2, 2009 column that he wrote for Fly Rod and Reel wherein he takes special delight in coyote predation of cats. (See "Let Them Eat Cat. Best Use of Free-Roaming Cats I've Heard Yet.")
Williams' agenda for liquidating cats, whether it be by poisoning, shooting, drowning, or feeding them to the coyotes, is plastered all over the Internet in black and white. Even more damning, since his endorsement of shooting and drowning cats appeared in Audubon Magazine there can be little doubt that the NAS supports such measures. That additionally casts considerable doubt on its narrowly circumscribed criticism of his proposal to poison them with Tylenol.®
Anyone even remotely familiar with the writings and public pronouncements of ornithologists and wildlife proponents knows only too well that they are exceedingly clever chaps. Their columns and speeches do not contain any mistakes; every buzzword and lie are painstakingly selected in order to advance their agenda of defaming and killing cats.
It accordingly came as quite a hoot to read that Slick Willie had chalked up his March 14th column to, of all things, slovenliness. "I wrote the op-ed in haste, without the care and precision my editors and readers expect. The result was that I called Audubon's reputation into question," he wrote in Audubon Magazine on March 26th. "I got benched and earned the suspension; it was bad journalism and bad judgment. I apologize and will work to rebuild your (NAS's) trust."
As if that were not enough malarkey for one article, Williams could not resist the overpowering temptation to lay it on ever thicker. "Like you (NAS), I am passionate about protecting birds," he added. "In my recent op-ed in The Orlando Sentinel, I let my passion get the best of me, calling into question the scientific credibility of Audubon and squandering some of my own."
First of all, inveterate liars and criminals such as Williams, the NAS, and their supporters do not have so much as a shred of credibility. Besides, the only thing that he and NAS are ashamed of is being forced to publicly atone for their words and deeds.
They got a little bit too big for their breeches and their public chastisement has punctured a tiny hole in their massive egos but that is the extent of the damage. None of them have amended either their thinking or behavior one iota and au fond they are still the same old low-life scumbags.
Furthermore, if Williams' mea culpa sounds familiar it because it is taken chapter and verse from the one that Dauphiné issued after her conviction in a Washington courtroom. "I plan to go back to the community (of like-minded cat-haters and poisoners) and work to repair all the damage that has been done," she stated on that historic occasion. I am "very ashamed" for disappointing supporters and I know I have an "enormous task ahead" in regaining their esteem. (See Cat Defender post of January 6, 2012 entitled "Nico Dauphiné Is Let Off with an Insultingly Lenient $100 Fine in a Show Trial That Was Fixed from the Very Beginning.")
Amateur ornithologist James Munn Stevenson, who boasted to gunning down more than two-hundred cats, likewise never has so much as uttered a syllable of contrition. Rather, he has parlayed his criminality into financial success and today is regarded as a hero by birders and wildlife biologists. (See Cat Defender posts of November 22, 2006, November 20, 2007, and August 7, 2008 entitled, respectively, "Evil Galveston Bird Lover Is Finally Arrested After Having Gunned Down Hundreds of Cats," "Bird Lovers All Over the World Rejoice as Serial Killer James M. Stevenson Is Rewarded by Galveston Court for Gunning Down Hundreds of Cats," and "Crime Pays! Having Made Fools Out of Galveston Prosecutors, Serial Cat Killer James Munn Stevenson Is Now a Hero and Laughing All the Way to the Bank.")
Similarly at his 2011 trial in München for torturing Rocco to death, Ernst Bernhard K. was forced to cover his face with his hands in order to conceal his mirth as prosecutors detailed his sadistic cruelty. (See Cat Defender posts of January 19, 2011, August 8, 2011, and August 17, 2011 entitled, respectively, "Bird Lover in München Illegally Traps Rocco and Then Methodically Tortures Him to Death with Water and Pepper Spray over an Eleven-Day Period," "Ernst K.'s Trial for Kidnapping, Torturing, and Murdering Rocco Nears Its Climax in a München Courtroom," and "Ernst K. Walks Away Smelling Like a Rose as Both the Prosecutor and Judge Turn His Trial for Killing Rocco into a Lovefest for a Sadistic Cat Killer.")
Even more telling, not a single bird or wildlife advocacy groups ever has condemned the criminal conduct of Stevenson, Ernst K., Dauphiné or, as far as it is known, any cat killer. Au contraire, they always have closed ranks around the defamers and killers.
For its part, the NAS's support for Williams has been unwavering and that was demonstrated by his reinstatement as an editor at large on March 26th. "We accept Ted's apology. We've always thought that Audubon Magazine is better when Ted Williams' work is in it," the organization stated on that date. (See "Audubon and Ted Williams.") "That's been true for thirty-three years...We're satisfied that there's no larger pattern of missteps that would warrant further disciplinary action."
In doing so the NAS followed Williams' lead by cavalierly dismissing his remarks about Tylenol® as simply a miscue. "Everyone makes mistakes in their jobs. Usually, a handful of co-workers, a classroom full of kids or some other collection of colleagues sees our mistakes," it continued in the same article. "Not journalists. We publish our mistakes for everyone to see."
When viewed against the backdrop of all the other inhumane and illegal methods of liquidating cats that the NAS has lent its support to over the years, its labeling of Williams' comments as simply a mistake constitutes just one more of its blatant fabrications. Equally important, it is guilty of providing both the environment and succor for moral deviants like him not only to work in but to flourish as well.
The organization also chose this occasion to indulge in more of its patented double-talk. "We absolutely reject the notion of individuals poisoning cats or treating cats in any inhumane way," it declared. "We urge communities around the country to adopt effective measures to counter problems suffered and caused by cats and to vigorously enforce existing rules and procedures."
Stripped of its nuances and translated into shirtsleeve English, the NAS is advocating, at the very least, that local authorities round up and kill cats. Moreover, based upon its publication of Williams' 2009 article it obviously does not consider drowning and shooting them to be inhumane and most assuredly would wholeheartedly support poisoning them with acetaminophen and other drugs if it thought for one minute that it could get away with doing so.
For example, back in 2007 its Connecticut chapter issued a clarion call for the complete eradication of cats and a host of other animals as well. (See Cat Defender post of March 15, 2007 entitled "Connecticut Audubon Society Shows Its True Colors by Calling for the Slaughter of Feral Cats, Mute Swans, Mallards, Canada Geese, and Deer.")
As recently as 2010 when Aaron M. Hildreth, Stephen M. Vantassel, and Scott E. Hygnstrom of the University of Nebraska at Lincoln published a paper entitled "Feral Cats and Their Management" wherein they proposed that the species be liquidated through gunshots to the head, chemical injections, carbon dioxide asphyxiation, and body-gripper traps, the NAS's sister agency, the American Bird Conservancy (ABC), was beside itself with unbridled joy. "This report is a must read for any community or government official thinking about what to do about feral cats," the organization's Darin Schroeder told the Huffington Post on December 2, 2010. (See "Feral Cats Should Be Killed with a 'Gunshot to the Head' to Control Population -- UNL Undergraduate Report.") "It encapsulates the extensive research on this subject and draws conclusions based on that data. Not surprisingly, the report validates everything the American Bird Conservancy has been saying about the feral cat issue for many years, namely TNR does not work in controlling feral cat populations."
In many respects Williams' March 14th spiel is both a deliberate plagiarization as well as a continuation of an anti-feline diatribe delivered a few weeks earlier by ABC President George Fenwick. "The only sure way to protect wildlife, cats and people is for domestic cats to be permanently removed from the outdoor environment. Trap-Neuter-Release programs that perpetuate the slaughter of wildlife and encourage the dumping of unwanted cats is a failed strategy being implemented across the United States without any consideration for environment, human health, or animal welfare effects," he thundered in an angry op-ed piece for The Baltimore Sun on February 26th. (See "The Destructive Invasive Species Purring on Your Lap.") "It can no longer be tolerated."
After typically making cats the scapegoats for all that is wrong with wildlife and the environment, Fenwick's remedy was equally contrived. "Local governments need to act swiftly and decisively to gather the thirty to eighty million unowned cats, aggressively seek adoptions and establish sanctuaries for or euthanize those cats that are not adoptable," he demanded. Since Fenwick knows as well as everyone else that it would be impossible to secure homes and sanctuaries for that many cats, he actually is advocating that all of them be slaughtered. He simply is too dishonest to come out and say it.
Fenwick did not limit his attack to homeless cats, however, but instead went on to call for the sterilization and imprisonment of all cats indoors. He capped off his tirade by even calling for the prosecution of owners who abandon cats. As he surely must know, any person with so much as a smidgen of conscience is not about to surrender a cat to a death house regardless of the law.
In hindsight, it now seems clear that Fenwick laid the groundwork for Williams' proposal about Tylenol.® The entire affair either could have been scripted from the start by Fenwick, Williams, and the NAS or it simply could have been a case of synchronicity, that is, three evil and warped minds erupting independently of each other much like spontaneous combustions in a bloated sewer.
Once their fiendish plot had been hatched, all that they required was an obliging conduit in order to disseminate it and they certainly found that and considerably more in the editors of The Orlando Sentinel. "It's true you can find bomb-building plans on the Internet, but you won't find them on The Orlando Sentinel's web site," the paper's Mike Lafferty wrote March 22nd in an online posting. (See "Column about Feral Cats Deserved a Forum, and More Editing.") "Neither should you find specific information on which drugs make effective feral cat poisons, especially considering the risk that could pose to common house cats."
It did not take long, however, before he lapsed into Williams' tactic of blaming his critics. "While some of the rhetoric from cat advocates was overblown, the criticism of our decision-making had validity," he added.
Not only that but both Lafferty and The Orlando Sentinel need to locate not only their moral compasses, that is if they have any, but to acquaint themselves with the law. For instance, if it could be substantiated that either some individual or group had poisoned cats upon the advice of an article that had appeared in the paper, Lafferty and his overlords could be held liable in court.
After much palaver and dancing all around the truth, Lafferty eventually came clean and admitted that he is a regular imbiber of the Kool-Aid® served up by Williams and the NAS. "And considering the scale of destruction that feral cats are inflicting on wildlife, Ted Williams' views on the matter deserved publication," he wrote. "At the same time, the public deserved more discretion -- and editing from us."
That is as close as he ever has come to issuing an apology and at no time has he come out and stated unequivocally that it is both morally repugnant and illegal to poison cats. As a veteran newspaperman, he surely must realize that there are at least two sides to every story and yet his only concern throughout this entire sordid affair has been to furnish Williams and the NAS with a platform from which to spew forth their hatred and to advance their agenda.
For better or worse, there are not any restrictions on what newspapers either can or cannot print. That did not used to be quite as big of a dilemma as it is today following the monopolization of the industry and the fragmentation of interests. Anyone even remotely familiar with this topic surely must be struck by the contrast between the diversity of society on the one hand and the homogenization of the mass media on the other hand; consequently, in an age that cries out for more hard news stories and a greater diversity of viewpoints there actually are fewer of both.
Needless to say, ornithologists, wildlife biologists, and other inveterate cat haters quickly have learned to manipulate the press in order to advance their perverted agenda. The most common venue afforded them is the "Letters to the Editor" section of daily newspapers.
Linda Cherkassky, an apprentice (for about twenty years no less) wildlife rehabilitator from Voorhees, New Jersey, and PETA somehow manage to get their hate-filled missives directed against cats into some obliging newspaper practically every day of the week. Both of them, and others like them, spew out the lies as fast as their pens can move across the page. Compounding matters further, apparently no newspaper editor ever has had either the objectivity or fairness of mind to ask them to substantiate any of their outrageous allegations.
Quite obviously, newspapers do not publish all the letters that they receive and even some of those that they do use are pared down to the bone. No one outside the business knows exactly who decides which letters are published but given the success rate of ornithologists and wildlife biologists in getting out their message it would appear that most editorial staffs hate cats with a vengeance.
Op-ed pieces, such as the anti-cat screeds published by Williams and Fenwick, are an altogether different matter. Not only are they considerably lengthier but usually their authors are either well-known or have contacts within a newspaper. Despite Lafferty's assertions to the contrary, op-ed pieces are not doled out to just anybody and their content most assuredly receives a level of scrutiny that far exceeds that given to letters.
Williams very well could reside in Orlando and thus have contacts at the paper. In any event, considering Loews Hotels' eviction of its cats last year as well as the city's brutal treatment of its homeless population, Williams sans doute believes that the city is fertile ground from which to launch his en masse feline poisoning campaign. (See Webwire press release of April 4, 2012, "Loews Orlando Hotels Begin Cruel Trapping of Their Harmless Outdoor Cats" and The Orlando Sentinel, July 25, 2006, "Eola (Park) Homeless Meals Banned.")
In spite of playing host to Disney World and being blessed with schönste Wetter, Orlando has been regarded for years as one of the meanest twenty cities in America by the National Coalition for the Homeless. That is not surprising in that abuse of the down-and-out and animal cruelty go together like peanut butter and jelly. (See The Orlando Sentinel, July 30, 2006, "Orlando Heads Back to List of Meanest Cities.")
The only known journalist with enough morality and integrity to even take Williams to task has been Joe Mason. "But to suggest the best way to solve the problem of homeless cats is to poison them might be the dumbest and most irresponsible thing I've seen written in paper," he wrote in the Burlington County Times of Willingboro, New Jersey, on March 16th. (See "Killing Cats Is a Problem Not a Solution.") "It's outrageous, stupid, dumb, and every other word you can use for idiotic."
He also had a few choice words for Lafferty and the other prevaricating moral retards at The Orlando Sentinel. "I work at a paper and we're held to standards...," he added. "So when a paper allows someone to suggest poisoning cats as a solution to a problem, it really makes me angry."
Quite obviously, The Orlando Sentinel does not have any standards worth mentioning but it is far from being alone in that regard. For example, The New York Times has shown itself over the years to be a persistently strident and underhanded defamer of cats. (See Cat Defender posts of December 8, 2007 and June 15, 2009 entitled, respectively, "All the Lies That Fit: Scheming New York Times Hires a Bird Lover to Render His 'Unbiased' Support for James M. Stevenson" and "American Bird Conservancy, The New York Times, and the Humane Society Unite to Form an Achse des Bösen Against Cats.")
The Houston Chronicle likewise went to the mat a few years back in order to defend Stevenson. (See Cat Defender post of May 1, 2007 entitled "Houston Chronicle Launches a Propaganda Offensive on Behalf of Serial Cat Killer Jim Stevenson.")
The same is true of the Ventura County Star of Camarillo, California, which gleefully led the cheering section for the assassins of the United States Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) as they mercilessly gunned down up to one-hundred-fifty cats on San Nicolas. (See Cat Defender post of July 10, 2008 entitled "The Ventura County Star Races to the Defense of the Cat-Killers on San Nicolas Island.")
It is John Yeld of the Cape Argus of Cape Town, however, who can justifiably lay claim to the prestigious title of being the world's most dishonest and unscrupulous journalist. He has earned that high praise for acting not only as a toady for Les Underhill of the University of Cape Town during his eradication of the cats on Robben Island but also as the number one stooge for Marthan Bester of the University of Pretoria throughout his relentless slaughter of up to four-thousand cats on Marion Island. (See Cat Defender posts of March 23, 2007, April 27, 2006, and March 23, 2006 entitled, respectively, "Bird Lovers in South Africa Break Out the Champagne to Celebrate the Merciless Gunning Down of the Last of Robben Island's Cats," "Cat-Hating Monster Les Underhill and Moneygrubbing Robben Island Museum Resume Slaughtering Cats in South Africa," and "South Africans, Supported by Ailurophobic PETA, Are Slaughtering More Cats on Robben Island.")
Much like The Orlando Sentinel, the movers and shakers in Atlantic City always can count on The Press whenever they want to go after either cats or the homeless. (See Cat Defender post of July 5, 2007 entitled "Bird and Wildlife Proponents, Ably Assisted by The Press of Atlantic City, Launch Malicious Libel Campaign Against Feral Cats.")
Sometimes sitting on the sidelines and merely pimping and whoring for cat killers gets a little boring and that in turn prompts journalists to take matters into their own hands. That is precisely what Ted Greenberg of NBC Philadelphia did last year when his lust for innocent feline blood got the better of him and he responded by calling in a private exterminator in order to snuff out the lives of six kittens at an apartment complex just north of Atlantic City. (See Cat Defender post of July 7, 2012 entitled "NBC Philadelphia Conspires with a Virulent Cat-Hater and an Exterminator in Order to Have Six Newborn and Totally Innocent Kittens Killed in Southern New Jersey.")
There is not any way of denying the obvious: the capitalist media have been directly complicit in the killing of thousands of cats. In addition to that, they have greased the skids for the elimination of millions more of them by relentlessly demonizing the species.
No news organizations could get away with persistently defaming minorities, let alone calling for their extermination, and that same standard of morality should be applied to cats and all other animals. Cats have an unqualified right not only to live but also to be free regardless of what Williams, the NAS, ABC, or The Orlando Sentinel postulate to the contrary.
Despite Williams' audacity and the far reaching implications of his outrageous proposal, it has been greeted with only tacit opposition from cat advocacy groups. For instance, although Alley Cat Allies (ACA) initially got off on the right foot by giving Williams and the NAS the dressing down that they so richly deserved, it soon lost its impetus.
"Ted Williams' Sentinel column is full of hate and devoid of facts, but far worse, it represents the latest in a string of outrageous attacks and encouragement of cruelty aimed at cats," the organization's Becky Robinson said in a March 15th press release. (See "Alley Cat Allies Slams Audubon Editor for Encouraging Cat Poisoning.") "Williams should be fired for these blatantly irresponsible comments."
ACA and its supporters then followed up by sending thirty-one-thousand e-mail letters to the NAS but the only thing that they received in return for their trouble was a deceitful, false-hearted pledge to suspend Williams. Like sheep to the slaughter, ACA fell hook, line, and sinker for that ploy.
"We are satisfied with this outcome, but we will continue to remain vigilant in challenging any support for cruelty or for policies that would lead to more cats being killed in pounds and shelters," Robinson caroled in a March 18th press release. (See "Alley Cat Allies Expresses Satisfaction after Audubon Removes At-Large Editor from Masthead.") "Killing cats will not protect birds or any other species."
Quite obviously, it does not take much to satisfy Robinson and ACA. Moreover, Williams and the NAS must rest awfully easy at night knowing that the worst that they have to fear from ACA and its supporters are a few angry e-mail letters.
When Williams' suspension was lifted a few days later ACA was left with egg all over its face. "Alley Cat Allies is stunned," Robinson gulped to The New York Times on March 26th. (See "Writer, and Bird Lover, at Center of Dispute About Cats Is Reinstated.") "By reinstating him so soon after this incident, it is clear that the National Audubon Society is not understanding and grasping the gravity of the issue."
With that final salvo, ACA washed its hands of the entire affair and has not uttered so much as another syllable concerning it. In addition to furnishing Williams and the NAS with a million hearty chuckles, ACA's behavior has been nothing short of an embarrassment not only to itself but cat lovers everywhere. Worst of all, such an anemic, weak-kneed response is destined to only embolden Williams, the NAS, and other cat-haters into committing even greater atrocities against the species.
|Theodore Anthony Nugent|
The total absurdity of ACA's response is so obvious that just to point it out is tantamount to belaboring the point. Most obviously, both Williams and the NAS are incorrigible and therefore could care less what ACA thinks.
Therefore, attempting to appeal to their better natures is reminiscent of George Harrison's chanting of Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna in the face of Michael Abram as the latter carved him up like a Christmas ham during a break-in at Friar Park on Henley-on-Thames back on December 30, 1999. In other words, ACA is wasting both its time and resources begging Williams and the NAS to be good little boys.
Whether or not cats continue to survive and under what circumstances will be decided by others, not Williams and the NAS, and it is precisely to those individuals, groups, and political powerbrokers that anyone even halfway serious about protecting them must make their appeal. ACA's public posturing may keep the shekels rolling in but it contributes precious little toward the welfare of cats.
The same is true concerning e-mail letters and petitions. For example, in the past the USFWS has dismissed ACA's e-mail campaigns as "Internet-generated letters with standard comments" and gone right ahead and liquidated cats on both San Nicolas and in the Florida Keys. (See Cat Defender posts of June 27, 2008 and June 23, 2011 entitled, respectively, "United States Fish and Wildlife Service and the Navy Hatch a Diabolical Plan to Gun Down Two-Hundred Cats on San Nicolas" and "Wallowing in Welfare Dollars, Lies, and Prejudice, the Bloodthirsty United States Fish and Wildlife Service Is Again Killing Cats in the Florida Keys.")
The only missives that politicians and bureaucrats so much as glance at are those that are handwritten on expensive stationery and bear tony return addresses, such as either Beverly Hills or Sutton Place. Even then it is only the irresistible smell of money that they exude that makes them so appealing to policymakers. This is, after all, America and not Shangrila.
In spite of all of that, ACA stubbornly persists with its petitions and on May 1st delivered another one to the Smithsonian in a futile attempt to convince those inveterate liars and welfare bums to straighten up and fly right. "Americans don't want an institution that receives taxpayer money to fund a study that essentially declares war on the nation's most beloved companion animal," Robinson declared in a press release of the same date. (See "Alley Cat Allies Delivers Fifty-Five-Thousand Signatures to Smithsonian to Protest Flawed Study on Cats and Birds.") "We are calling on the Smithsonian to disavow this research and stop funding junk science with immediate effect."
To its credit, the organization was able to convince Gregory J. Matthews of the University of Massachusetts to review the Smithsonian's most recent anti-feline screed and he not only gave it a failing grade but also deemed it unfit for publication. Notwithstanding that, ACA needs to take a more proactive stance when it comes to protecting cats.
For example, at the very least it should be filing lawsuits under the Freedom of Information Act so as to force the secretive USFWS into disclosing exactly how many cats that it has slaughtered on San Nicolas and in the Florida Keys. The former are long gone but the liquidation in southern Florida continues to this very day. (See Cat Defender post of February 24, 2012 entitled "United States Fish and Wildlife Service and the Humane Society Hoist a Glass in Celebration of Their Extermination of the Cats on San Nicolas Island" and The Keynoter of Key West, January 30, 2013, "Refuges' Management Plan Targets Feral Cats.")
The gravity of the situation requires a multidimensional strategy if the machinations of ornithologists and wildlife biologists are to be checkmated. Such an approach, quite obviously, is going to require the raising of a tremendous amount of money as well as considerable time in order to be implemented.
In the meantime, cats are destined to continue to die unless preventive measures are not immediately undertaken. First of all, feline advocacy groups need to compile lists of individuals and groups who publicly have vowed to harm the species and then begin to monitor their activities as well.
These lists need to include not only anyone even remotely connected to the NAS, ABC, USFWS, and Smithsonian, but also those affiliated with universities and governmental laboratories that either experiment on cats or use them as guinea pigs in order to collect data on their alleged predatory behavior. (See Cat Defender post of July 18, 2011 entitled "Evil Professors Have Transformed College Campuses into Hotbeds of Hatred Where Cats Routinely Are Vilified, Horribly Abused, and Systematically Killed.")
The local police and those groups charged with enforcing the anti-cruelty statutes should be supplied with these lists along with the offending statements. Perhaps that alone will be sufficient in order to, at least occasionally, entice some of the authorities into regarding those named individuals and groups as the number one suspects whenever a cat either dies under unexplained circumstances or simply disappears.
If the intransigence of the authorities cannot be overcome, cat protection groups eventually are going to be forced into hiring their own animal cruelty investigators. Owners and individuals of conscience also can be a big help by not only looking out for all cats but reporting abuse in a timely fashion.
None of this would be necessary if the authorities would do their jobs. For example, although the Washington Humane Society did investigate and subsequently arrest Dauphiné, it now seems clear in hindsight that it in all likelihood would not have done even that much if it had known beforehand that she was a big shot at the Smithsonian. That conclusion is borne out by its steadfast refusal to look into the wholesale abuses that the organization doles out to the cats that it shanghais into becoming research guinea pigs. (See Cat Defender post of November 18, 2011 entitled "Nico Dauphiné, Ph.D., Is Convicted of Attempting to Poison a Colony of Homeless Cats but Questions Remain Concerning the Smithsonian's Role.")
Likewise, humane officials have refused to investigate Williams' soul mate, disgraced rocker Theodore Anthony Nugent, despite his persistent bragging about shooting cats on the grounds of the canned hunting ranch that he operates near Jackson, Michigan. "Always has been, always will be on the Nugent farm, where I have instructed my family, friends, hunting buddies and casual passer-by to blast every cat they see," he wrote in an op-ed column for The Washington Times on December 3, 2010. (See "Nugent: The Time for Kitty Killing Has Come.")
Wherever there is smoke there usually also is fire and far too many cats either perish or disappear every day of the week under unexplained circumstances for all of them to be the victims of randomized violence. Any halfway serious inquiry into this matter is therefore almost guaranteed to uncover a level of criminality on the part of both ornithologists and wildlife proponents that extends far beyond the words and deeds of Williams, Dauphiné, Stevenson, and Ernst K. and their confederates.
The only palliative is to identify and monitor these individuals and groups as a prelude to investigating, arresting, and incarcerating them whenever they harm cats. Zebra stripes are, after all, the most appropriate plumage for these dirty birds.
Photos: The New York Times (Williams), People's Pharmacy (Tylenol®), Bird Conservation Alliance (Fenwick), The Orlando Sentinel (Lafferty), Burlington County Times (Mason), and Lenny Francioni of the United States Navy and Wikipedia (Nugent).