Mahalo, Rep. Mark Takai

Published by Alisa Mullins.

Animals have lost a staunch defender with the passing of Rep. Mark Takai of Hawaii. A military veteran and member of the influential House Armed Services Committee, Rep. Takai was among dozens of Congressional supporters of the Battlefield Excellence through Superior Training (BEST) Practices Act (S. 587/H.R. 1095), a bipartisan bill that would phase out crude and cruel military trauma training exercises on live animals in favor of humane, high-tech human simulators and other effective and efficient non-animal training methods.

(Photo: PETA Director Justin Goodman and actor Edie Falco meet with Rep. Mark Takai to discuss the BEST Practices Act.)

Rep. Takai was also a cosponsor of the Safeguard American Food Exports (SAFE) Act, which would prohibit the transport and export of horses to slaughter for human consumption.

Before being elected to the U.S. Congress, Rep. Takai served for 20 years in the Hawaii State House, where he also worked to help animals. Among other measures, he cosponsored a bill that would ban the sale of ivory in Hawaii, and he battled cruel puppy mills, even helping to organize and lead a protest outside a pet store that was run by a puppy mill owner. “Hawaii is no place for raising animals in substandard conditions,” said Takai. “We are coming together to show our solidarity in ending Hawaii’s unethical breeding practices.”

Rep. Takai accomplished an incalculable amount of good during his decades of public service, and the passage of the BEST Practices Act would be a fitting legacy for this compassionate member of Congress. You can help make that happen by urging your congressional representatives to support this lifesaving legislation.

Note: PETA supports animal rights, opposes all forms of animal exploitation, and educates the public on those issues. It does not directly or indirectly participate or intervene in any political campaign on behalf of or in opposition to any candidate for public office or any political party.

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind