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Editorial: DJ deserves punishment

Bubba the Love Sponge Clem will go on trial soon to defend whether he committed an act of animal cruelty for entertainment purposes. The case has nothing to do with free speech or anything other than the fact that a wild animal was tortured and killed on-air for entertainment.

Much evidence indicates Clem did commit a crime, and he should be punished for it in a way that shows the law will not stand for the unnecessary torture of living beings.

Last February, Clem aired a special on his 98 Rock morning show called “Road Kill Barbecue.” During the show, a wild boar that had been captured, was castrated and then killed after its throat was slit. Clem’s lawyers argue that he is on trial because he is famous and that his freedom of speech is being challenged.

However, Clem’s official charge was a third-degree felony of animal cruelty, which has nothing to do with free speech and everything to do with breaking the law.

Many people might argue that animals are killed all the time for food purposes. The difference here though, is that when animals are killed for food, there are laws that must be followed to ensure minimal to no suffering.

Obviously, Clem did not adhere to such a law. The boar was not sedated, and according to the video made of the slaughter, it squealed in pain. This was not a humane killing in order to provide food (though the boar was eventually eaten), its main purpose was for entertainment by way of the animal’s pain.

Clem deserves to be punished, just as 19-year-old Robert B. Pettyjohn who beat two pet llamas with golf clubs in Pinellas County was. Both men broke the law, tortured animals and should be held accountable for their cruel actions.