Animal activists need to be more circumspect

I agree with Mr Ong Junkai on the need to moderate the mindsets of radical animal rights activists (Curb radical animal rights activists; Jan 16).

In this light, I would like to highlight the recent stir from an Instagram post by MP Baey Yam Keng, who warned residents about stray dogs in Tampines.

It was an innocuous post for residents to be on the lookout, for their own safety.

However, because of concerns that the authorities would take note of the stray dogs and put them to sleep, there was a backlash by animal lovers and activists, who criticised Mr Baey and called him names online.

They also insulted netizens who approved of Mr Baey's post.

It is ironic that these activists respect animals but do not accord decency to fellow human beings.

These activists adopted an extreme stance towards animal welfare, and did not consider co-existence - striking a balance between their fervour for animals and the safety of people.

It was right of Mr Baey to warn residents about the stray dogs. After all, he has a responsibility as an MP to ensure the residents' safety.

Unless these activists agree to moderate their discourse and settle issues amicably, they ought to be curbed by the authorities before they pose a threat to society's harmony.

Sean Lim

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 18, 2018, with the headline 'Animal activists need to be more circumspect'. Print Edition | Subscribe