Don’t Tread on Me HSUS

A little history on the HSUS’s “dogfighting czar” John Goodwin:

Predictably, Goodwin was arrested multiple times in various states, culminating in his being charged as the alleged ringleader of a gang that vandalized fur stores. In April 1993, he and two juveniles pleaded guilty. Sentenced to three years in prison, they spent the next 30 months under house arrest, but the prison term was overturned for six months probation.

Goodwin himself has been arrested and convicted for being the ringleader of a gang that vandalized fur retailers in multiple states during the 1990s. The animal-rights newspaper Animal People News profiled Goodwin in 2000, noting that he “gleefully announced a string of Animal Liberation Front mink releases and arsons against furriers and fur farms” while a “spokesman” for the underground terrorist group.

By August of 2000, Goodwin was trying to clean up his act, or at least his public image. Following the lead of other industry execs before him, he realized that society’s patience with his lawbreaking ways was running thin. “I do not plan to ever do civil disobedience again,” he told Animal People. “I’m convinced that politics is the way to go, and to that end I am taking classes in political campaign management. Targeting bad lawmakers, and helping good lawmakers, is what I feel this movement has failed to do, miserably.”


Goodwin, who has been active in the field of animal protection since 1989, joined The HSUS in 2000, as a staff member in The HSUS’s Government Affairs department.

Can you say “revisionist history”? I knew you could.

Goodwin’s “expert” work with the HSUS in the dogfighting realm:

The Feb. 19 [2008] raids were the culmination of a nearly year-long investigation by The HSUS and the Pima County Sheriff’s Department. Conducted simultaneously at four Tucson-area locations, they resulted in the arrests of six people, including Mahlon “Pat” Patrick, one of the most notorious figures in dogfighting, whose involvement in the blood sport stretches back to 1968.
As a supplier of several major fighting-dog bloodlines, Patrick holds a status among professional dogfighters ranking second perhaps only to the infamous Floyd Boudreaux, who currently awaits trial on felony dogfighting charges after a 2005 raid on his Louisiana property put him out of business.

And since the HSUS page referenced above doesn’t tell you, let me clarify: Pat Patrick was cleared of dogfighting charges by a judge. But by then, all his seized Pitbulls had been killed. Floyd Boudreaux was cleared of dogfighting charges by a judge. But by then, all his seized Pitbulls had been killed.

As always, I want to be 100% clear: I am not in any way, shape or form advocating on behalf of dogfighters. Anyone involved in that horrible and cruel “sport” should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. There is no grey area – if you breed Pitbulls for fighting, attend dogfights or participate in dogfighting in any way, you are dead to me. And if somehow I was ever in a position to help prosecute you, I’d jump at the chance.

But at the same time, I would fight for your status as innocent until proven guilty and further, I would do everything in my power to advocate to save the lives of your dogs and keep them in your legal possession until you had your day in court or voluntarily signed them over. That’s the way the American justice system works. Or is supposed to work. Apparently Goodwin and the HSUS are trying to subvert that. And that’s one thing that I can not stomach. If the HSUS doesn’t like our innocent until proven guilty premise or our Constitutional rights as property owners, they need to take that up with Washington D.C. Instead, they are trying – and succeeding – to infiltrate local law enforcement agencies and sneak into the civil rights of dog owners with ski masks and baseball bats under cover of night. Forget about obtaining evidence for a successful prosecution, forget about the U.S. Constitution – just get in, seize, kill dogs, take photo ops for fundraisers and move on to the next. Bullshit.

Blue Dog State has more on John Goodwin. And even more, if you haven’t had enough already.

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