It's time to act
State lawmakers often leave abundant unfinished business behind when they flee Harrisburg for most of the summer. But when they get back to their offices this year they finally should act on a matter that they have evaded for decades.
For years the highest-profile such event in the state, the annual Hegins Pigeon Shoot in Schuylkill County, became the national face of animal cruelty. Public pressure ultimately put an end to that slaughter for fun and charity nearly 20 years ago, but the barbaric practice itself still is legal in Pennsylvania. A live pigeon shooting event was conducted just two weeks ago in Berks County.
The Senate Game and Fisheries Committee has voted, 10-4, to send a bill banning pigeon shoots to the full Senate for a vote. There is broad bipartisan support for it in the House.
This isn't a matter of protecting gun rights or hunting. And there are better ways to raise money than cruelly abusing animals. Live pigeon shoots are an embarrassment to Pennsylvania that the Legislature should eliminate.