I was having a really interesting conversation on Twitter today about betta fish fighting for gambling/recreation purposes. It’s no secret that Nippyfish does not tolerate animal fighting for sport and I am happy to say most of world doesn’t tolerate it either. When we talk about fighting bettas it is usually in reference to deep-seeded traditions ingrained in far-away countries or to naive high school/college age boys here in the US.
I was interested to hear today that betta fighting in Indonesia, one of the countries where wild bettas originated, is a high-stakes underground business where wagers can get pretty intense. I was pleased to hear; however, that the law in Indonesia does not take animal fighting or gambling lightly. Both offenses are punishable with jail time. When I heard that I couldn’t help but feel satisfied. Perhaps because I have never once heard of anyone being punished for fish fighting here in the US. Even dog fighting, which is as heinous as it is violent, rarely ever ends with any meaningful punishment. Maybe a few months in prison at best and a fine. We have so far to go in protecting our animals in this country. We could stand to take a page from the book of our eastern neighbors.
This leads me to ask, has anyone ever heard of someone getting busted for fish fighting? Have any of our readers ever been busted? I suspect nobody has ever done hard time but what about school suspension, expulsion or loss of some privilege? If the law doesn’t take it seriously, does our school systems? Our teachers? Our parents?
Thanks to Fajar Jasmin who shared his knowledge of betta fighting in Indonesia with me over Twitter. Please take a moment to check out his incredibly poignant blog about his life –Unquote – it is sure to pull at your heartstrings and is my new favorite blog.
Since we have readers from all over the world, we would love to hear about betta fighting in your country and what is or isn’t done to prevent it. Be sure to let us know what country you are from.
caption: The photo above is of a betta fish fighting ring in Thailand