Human Exceptionalism

Hit and Run Injuring Humans or Animals the Same?

The drive to create moral equivalencies between human beings and animals continues. In California, a bill has been introduced that could treat leaving the scene of an accident involving a car and an animal, the same as a hit and run involving a human being. From AB 1224, authored by Assemblyman Mike Eng:

Existing law requires the driver of any vehicle involved in an accident resulting in injury or death to another person to immediately stop the vehicle at the scene of the accident and to fulfill specified requirements. Under existing law, a violation of this provision is either a felony or a misdemeanor.

This bill would declare the Legislature’s intent to enact legislation to include animals, pets, and livestock under the basic “hit and run” statute in order to fine drivers who leave the scene of an accident without trying to contact the owner or local authorities or render aid to the injured animal, pet, or farm animal.

Of course people should notify owners of pets and other animals if they injure them. But trying to render aid to an injured dog could get your hand seriously bitten. And should it be a felony to accidentally kill a cat and move on? Are we going to have to file police reports like we do with humans? Oh well, at least Eng’s bill acknowledges that animals are “owned.”

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