A woman named Anita Kranjc, who eased the suffering of a pig on its way to slaughter by offering the poor, dehydrated animal a drink of water, is starring down the barrel of a ten-year jail sentence for her simple act of compassion and kindness.
The good Samaritan who gave Jesus Christ a drink of water, as the son of God made his way, bloody and broken to the cross, may have escaped the hell an horror of a Roman jail, but it would appear Canadian ladies who try to make a pig’s journey to the slaughterhouse a little less nightmarish and cruel, may not be as fortunate.
The Daily Express reports that animal welfare activist Anita Kranjc, who is the co-founder of animal rights group Toronto Pig Save, has been charged with “criminal mischief” after she and a group of other activists stood waiting at the traffic lights for a passing pig truck on its way to the slaughterhouse.
According to court documents the 48-year-old Kranjc then sprayed “an unknown liquid into the trailer where the hogs were situated.”
Ms Kranjc’s case is becoming known as a global cause célèbre for animal rights activists, who are often arrested and jailed for their acts of protest, but the Canadian legal system may take a different view on the plight of Ms Kranjc.
Canadian laws dictate that pigs are personal property and, somewhat inhumanely, can be transported up to 36 hours without food, water, or rest.
Although many would see Ms Kranjc’s actions as born of compassion and a way of easing the suffering of an animal whose cruel journey ends with the butcher’s hook and the chopping board, under Canadian law she’s guilty of a crime against another person’s property and will be punished thus.
A fellow activist filmed the incident which happened on June 22 of this year, and the lorry driver of the hog filled truck can be clearly heard warning Ms Kranjic to stop quenching the pigs’ thirst.
The driver warned, “You do it again and I’ll slap it out of your hands.”
To which Ms Kranjc replies, “Go ahead, if you want an assault charge, go ahead.”
Deciding discretion is the better part of valor the trucker gets back into his truck and takes the pigs off to their grisly end.
Eric Van Boekel is the pork farmer who owns the pigs in question, and was so disgruntled at Ms Kranjc’s action he filed a complaint with the police about the incident the next day.
The pork farmer grunted that although Ms Kranjc has the right to protest, she does not have the right to put his livestock in jeopardy, even if they are on their way to the slaughterhouse.
“She has the right to protest and make her views known.
“What she does not have the right to do is put my livestock in jeopardy.
“It is happening at a traffic stop light and people are putting their arms in with the livestock.
“The problem is when the light turns green. It is not going to be a matter of if someone gets hurt, but when. I don’t want the responsibility of somebody getting maimed.”
Ms Kranjc told Inside Toronto she was shocked to receive a summons and revealed she’d rather do jail time than pay a fine.
“It was really shocking when I got the summons. I couldn’t believe I was being charged for giving water to thirsty pigs. My defence is that I was being a good Samaritan.
“If I face a fine, I’d rather just do the time in jail. We have a duty to give food to the hungry and water to the thirsty. I won’t accept a fine, I would rather go to prison.”
Fellow farmers have also waded into the plight of Van Boekel’s pigs and argued that Ms Kranjc’s good-will gesture did more harm than good, as the pigs hurt one another in their crazed stampede to reach over to drink from the water bottle.
Although she couldn’t save their bacon, Ms Kranjc will not be alone in saving her own. Animal activists worldwide have pledged to support her ahead of her court date.
(Images Via Twitter)