How do cockfighting work? Is it lawful?

How do cockfighting work? Is it lawful?

On Monday, a guy from Marion County who frequently hosted cockfighting in his barn was handed probation but also had to pay a $3,000 fine.
Steven Allen, 52, appeared before Sandy Mattice, a federal judge. The sentence was between 10 and 16 months.
His lawyer, Anthony Martinez, said that several of his cousins are still active in cockfighting, which is permitted in his native Puerto Rico. He said that notable Americans who have participated in chicken fights include George Washington and Abraham Lincoln.
Although cockfighting is prohibited in all 50 states, it is a misdemeanour in Tennessee, he pointed out.
In a legal retort, prosecutor Perry Piper stated, “The defendant makes much of the history of cockfighting and the societal acceptability of it in his very well-written memorandum. Of course, the defendant’s claim is somewhat undermined by the fact that he acknowledges that cockfighting is currently prohibited in all fifty states. We as a society have evolving or changing rules on proper conduct. “Blood sport” is defined as “any sport that involves animals being killed or injured to help the people watching or participating experience the excitement” by the Cambridge Dictionary Online. Bear baiting, dog fighting, and fox penning are three more popular forms of blood sport in addition to cockfighting (wherein foxes are penned inside an enclosure and are set upon by dogs). The majority of these practises are now prohibited. The Tennessee law has designated cockfighting as a misdemeanour while classifying all other types of blood sport as crimes, as the defendant has pointed out. Government counsel doesn’t want to come out as hypocritical; counsel likes eating chicken and is aware that a chicken is giving up its life for counsel’s sustenance and enjoyment at the table. Some people might distinguish between murdering a chicken for sport and for food, while others might not. Regardless of one’s moral stance on blood sport and the defendant’s participation in it, the behaviours that the defendant encouraged are categorically prohibited by the law.
According to the prosecutor, Allen looked to be earning around $18,000 every “fighting season” by collecting a $20 entry fee and drawing an average of 75 spectators.
If what is happening over here at Pilgrim’s Pride is crueller, Judge Mattice questioned. The battling cocks at least have a chance.
Both are going through unnecessary agony, said prosecutor James Brooks, who was filling in for prosecutor Piper. There are a few ethical ramifications.
He suggested a sentence severe enough for the defendant to make a public statement.
There was just one cockfighting case presented while Judge Mattice was a U.S. attorney, and “I was kind of embarrassed about it,” he recalled. However, he said that because Cocke County officials were endorsing the fights, the case was filed as one involving public corruption.
It appears that Tennessee residents love their dogs a lot more than they love their chickens, the judge stated in reference to the fact that dog fighting is a felony while chicken fighting is a misdemeanour.
The cockfighting on Mr. Allen’s farm began elsewhere, according to attorney Martinez. Chicken fights broke out amongst neighbourhood youngsters at the property across the street from Mr. Allen’s. Like their dads and grandfathers before them, the children’s fathers eventually got involved. People started to arrive in greater numbers. Participants asked Mr. Allen if they might use his barn to shelter from the weather when it started to pour. The frequency of the cockfighting increased on Mr. Allen’s land. As the crowd gathered, Mr. Allen started charging individuals to enter the area at the gate.
A core group of “cockers”—those with birds, those in “matches,” referees, equipment vendors, and concession vendors—started to show up. There was a rumour going about that Mr. Allen’s farm conducted rounds of cockfighting, or “derbies,” every other Saturday night.
An individual, known as a “cocker,” would bring his bird(s) and pay money into a “pot” for each bird he desired to enter in order to participate in the battles. The “matcher” and the referees each received 10% of the pot. The referees oversaw the combat, as the name implies. Each bird’s data was entered into a computer programme by a “matcher,” and then a band was provided for the bird to wear. The order of the battles and the birds that would engage in them were then determined by the computer software. These computer applications are available from cockfighting-related publications like Gamecock Magazine and websites like gamerooster.com. Whichevercocker had the most victories at the conclusion of the matches would take home the remaining 90% of the money. Neither Mr. Allen had any computer matching programmes nor did he get any money from these pots.
Individual betting amongst spectators also took place. These wagers were managed by the participants themselves. Mr. Allen did not keep the bets, record the bets, pay out the winners, or receive any money from these bets, and his only involvement in the wagering was knowing that it occurred.

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