We’ve all heard or read the horror stories about nightmare legislation -- bills in the N.C. General Assembly or Congress that are thousands of pages long, containing more earmarks than anyone could ever imagine. The scariest prospect of such bills is they often pass, despite the fact that hardly any of the lawmakers have actually read the legislation they’re voting on.
So let’s talk about a refreshing exception -- a simple, two-page bill that would require dog breeders to properly feed and water their animals. They also would have to provide decent-sized cages for dogs. The measure has the support of Gov. Pat McCrory and North Carolina’s first lady. It has been passed by the N.C. House of Representatives.
So it’s a no-brainer, right? Who could possibly object to clear-cut legislation that says, “Be kind to your dogs?”
The N.C. Senate, apparently.
The bill, which is designed to prevent so-called puppy mills from breeding dogs with little attention to their welfare, has been sitting in a Senate committee since last year.
The Senate’s stated reason for keeping the bill in limbo is, such rules could create a slippery slope that could lead to unnecessary regulations on the state’s agriculture industry.
It’s a ridiculous fear, one that underscores again just how out of touch some legislators in Raleigh are with common sense. First Lady Ann McCrory put it best: “Even our dog Moe knows the difference between a hog and a dog.”
The General Assembly made national news time and again in 2013 for ill-considered bills it was determined to pass. Now, it’s drawing headlines for abandoning proposals that are anchored in safety and reason.
Surely, the state can do better than this.