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Posted by Larry D. Fishel on May 09, 2003 at 23:59:30:
In Reply to: Other (pro) Side of the Venomoid Story (kinda long) posted by AdamUrbanczyk on May 09, 2003 at 20:49:38:
I don't remember if I've chimed in on this subject here or not, so I'll try to give an equally calm reply from a mildly anti-venomoid point of view.
I agree that Frank Molt's rant is a bit over the edge even though I mostly agree with his points.
When he says voinomoids are the most dangerous, I assume he means "most dangerous to our hobby," and I think he has more of a point than you realize. Yes, an escaped hot snake is more dangerous than an escaped venomoid, but since I've never heard of a known case of someone being bitten by an escaped hot, that's not much of a difference in the big picture. However, to 99.9% of the poeple outside this group, a cobra is a cobra and an escaped venomoid will bring the wrath of the legislators down just as hard on those of us that have put a lot of time, effort and money into getting our permits. Also note that an esablished breeding population of escaped or released venomoid will be quite capable of popping out dozens of little HOT snakes. (Note the amazing population of burmese pythons in the everglades before you say how unlikely that is.)
:Other funny quotes of Frank?s:
:-?People who obtain venomoid snakes are often tempted to keep them in a state or jurisdiction which prohibits venomous snakes by species.? Hah how does he know what people are often tempted to do? Little generalizing aren?t we?
I think that's an ACCURARE generalization, but since plenty of people keep hots illegally also, I'm not sure it's meaningful. And for your side, the guy who gets agged by his illegal HOT cobra will reflect badly on us while the illegal venomoid keeper who gets bitten will probably go unnoticed.
:-?It would be pretty tempting for some 18 year old punk, wanting to up stage his buddy who took his Albino Python to the Mall, to take his "venomoid" 5 foot Albino Cobra to the park, mall, school or a party to impress his friends.? Again, taking some huge liberties. There?s no doubt someone like this exists, however this person would be the same kid that takes a gun to school - not representative of the population whatsoever and therefore not material to make judgment on, much less a generalization.
So, your saying it's OK to give school children guns because very few of them will take them to school. At least we agree on something. :)
:-?And for what? A venomoid snake is no longer venomous. Why the attraction? It is just a snake and a pretty pathetic one at that.? So is he saying that the only attraction to a venomous snake is because it has venom? Because it?s dangerous? This sounds much, much more macho-motivated than keeping any venomoid snake. Snakes are beautiful! Can?t that be an attraction?
Sure, beauty can be the only attraction and some of the most beautiful snakes in the world are already harmless without requiring surgery. The venom is not the only thing that attracts me to venmous snakes, but it's the main thing that differentiats them from harmless snakes and you're going to take it away from them? I just don't get it...
:The majority of people who do have an interest in venomoids simply want a snake that they can look at and take care of without worrying about someone dying.
THESE ALREADY EXIST! YOU DON'T HAVE TO MAKE THEM!!!! (Sorry...)
:PEOPLE! We are not keeping elephants, tigers, sharks, or giraffes in cages in our houses! How can you possibly compare such acts to rendering a snake non-lethal? Venomous snakes are not and never will be domesticated animals. Cats and dogs are. Mambas are not. Anti-venomoid arguers go on and on about how inhumane and unnatural such a procedure is? But what is unnatural? Keeping a magnificent snake in a newspaper lined plywood box in your basement with a 60watt bulb or heat rock to keep it company? That doesn?t sound like a mangrove swamp, desert scrub, or rainforest environment to me. The conscious decision to remove these animals from their environment (and it doesn?t matter if they?re captive bred, they deserve to be in the natural environment just as much as they wild-caught counterparts) compromises their well being at every level. If people really cared about their snakes, they would let them go, or not keep them at all. They are not domesticated animals.
First off, people DO keep such animals as pets. The difference is that there are NOT nearly identical HARMLESS animals that they could get instead. I'm not a big fan of declawing bit cats for instance, but it's just not possible to work with them safely otherwise. If lions didn't have claws I'd not look favorably on someone who bought a tiger and had it declawed rather than just buying a lion...
:I personally would have no problem purchasing a venomoid snake that was altered by a veterinarian. I am not in support of so-called garage surgeons that use the newspaper and playdoh that budman so deafeningly rambles on about. To me no amount of training with metal sticks accounts for the massive liability of owning a lethal animal. And such an argument against this, from what most of the very anti-venomoid people on this forum maintain, appears to be one stemming from not only an elitist attitude towards the herp-hobby but also some convoluted sense of self-righteousness. They have no problem keeping a stunning 12ft orange-headed king cobra in a box with a window and some mulch, but when asked to remove the VENOM-GLANDS-THAT-IT-DOESN?T-NEED-BECAUSE-IT-IS-NOT-IN-THE-JUNGLE-ANY-MORE-AND-IT-FEEDS-ON-PRE-KILLED-RATS-OFF-PILSTRUMS (smacks self in forehead) ---no no that is inhumane. Giving the snake its opportunity to kill a person, that?s cool though.
I agree that most snakes don't need thier venom glands in captivity. They don't NEED thier tails or thier eyes for that matter, I don't think that has the tiniest bit of bearing on whether it would be ethical cut thier tails off or have thier eyes surgically removed to make my life easier.
:This argument is not one that will be settled ever, although I find it unfortunate that so many of the anti-venomoid people don?t realize that the demand for these animals exists now and probably always will. So instead of starting some kind of witch hunt, what would be more beneficial to everyone and the snakes that you care so much for would be some official or strictly documented procedures on how to go about the process in the best way possible. The more people like budman (sorry I am exemplifying you- you?ve just been posting a lot recently) and whoever else rant and rave, the more underground such procedures go - something nobody wants.
While I see your point, I can't help but think that the same logic could be used to justify anything from car theft to child molestation... "People are doing it and you can't stop them all, so why not stop complaining?" :) (Note that like a certain republican senator who will probably go down anyway, I am not making a direct comparison, just pointing out a logical problem.)
I better stop, I'm talking myself into being rabidly anti-venomoid...