That's pets, not people...
Now that I have your attention, here is an issue worthy of discussion. Palm Beach County is sick of its pet overpopulation problem and is talking about the possibility of making it mandatory for pets to be spayed and neutered. Passage of such a law would be significant because there are only 50 other cities in the United States that have a mandatory spay/neuter policy.
According to the Humane Society of the United States, people in Palm Beach County, Florida, keep about 450,000 dogs and cats as pets, but only about half of those have been spayed or neutered. And that doesn't include any feral animals, of which few to none have been sterilized.
You know, by itself, having your pets spayed or neutered might not seem like a big deal. I mean, this is a free country and people should be able to decide whether or not they want their pets sterilized - or, indeed, if they can afford to have them spayed or neutered. Right?
Except that last year, animal control officers put to death 18,248 dogs and cats in Palm Beach County. More than 75,000 animals have met that fate in Palm Beach County since 2002.
Palm Beach County officials said they spend about $10 million a year on animal control operations, no doubt much of it for the cost of the stuff with which unwanted animals are killed.
While mandatory sterilization of pets seems a bit odd at first glance, the numbers scream out their message: Allowing animals to run around not spayed or neutered, breeding at will, just isn't cool. And letting animals die because there's more of them than good homes who want them, well that's downright cold.