When a Crime Is More Unethical Than Illegal

“It’s just a dog folks!!! Why not go after people that brutally slaughter cows, chicken and pork. Oh wait, you eat those animals so that justifies killing them. This country’s priority is screwed up. He got what he deserved, fine, buy the couple another dog and perform community service. Now leave him alone.”

This was the reaction of a Washington Post reader to the widespread out rage over the cruel act of David M. Beers, a Marine Corps veteran who expressed his anger with a Maryland couple by taking their 4-pound pet Chihuahua and hurling her off a bridge to her death. A judge has sentenced him to four months in jail, and ordered him to pay a $1,000 fine, perform 300 hours of community service, and pay $318 restitution to Caisha and Timothy Wantz, who had just had a heated dispute with Beers before he took their pet.

The sentence is appropriately stiff, and yet inadequate too. Continue reading