Saturday, August 4, 2007
HSUS: Simple duplicity or fraudulent fund-raising in Vick case?
The Humane Society of The United States ( HSUS ) seems to have some explaining to do in regards to the Michael Vick alleged dogfighting case. The Center for Consumer Freedom, an effective animal rights watchdog, has uncovered some serious inconsistencies in HSUS's attempt to raise funds in the wake of the Vick allegations. After the Vick story broke, HSUS made the claim in a fund raising pitch on their website that they had been given charge of caring for the dogs confiscated in the Vick case, and they were soliciting funds from the public to facilitate that care. A screen capture of that web page, dated July 18, and which is no longer available available from HSUS, can be viewed here. Their current pitch, which now says nothing about caring for these particular dogs, can be viewed here. However, an article in The New York Times that ran August 1, shows that claim to be false. In that article, HSUS president Wayne Pacelle claims that in fact, the dogs should be euthanized, and that HSUS recommends that fighting dogs should be put down shortly after being seized! Pacelle also also made this statement: "We don't know how well they are being kept.". He doesn't know how well they are being kept? But just two weeks ago, HSUS told us they were "overseeing the care" ( direct quote from HSUS ) of these dogs and they were soliciting funds from the public to do so. Which of your two conflicting stories is true Mr. Pacelle? You can't have it both ways. You are either being duplicitous and intellectually inconsistent or intentionally misleading. If HSUS is not caring for these dogs as advertised, then they are lying and engaging in dishonest, fraudulent fund raising, and they ought to be investigated criminally ( and if found guilty, be fined and lose their tax-exempt charity status, IMHO ), issue a public apology, and should have to return the contributions gained by their false claims. I think CCF's analysis of this is spot on: this is a dishonest attempt by HSUS to exploit Americans' love of dogs to raise funds for radical goals that many of these contributors would not normally support such as their strict anti-meat, anti-research, and anti-hunting agendas. It will be interesting to see what happens here. It would be nice to to see the government hold HSUS's feet to the fire on this, but I'm not holding my breath. Kudos to Center for Consumer Freedom for astutely calling out HSUS on this.