[Congressional Record Volume 164, Number 81 (Thursday, May 17, 2018)]
[Page H4149]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]


  (Ms. PLASKETT asked and was given permission to address the House for 
1 minute and to revise and extend her remarks.)
  Ms. PLASKETT. Mr. Speaker, I rise to strongly oppose the Roskam 
amendment to the Agriculture and Nutrition Act.
  This amendment is deeply unfair to territories in the United States 
and contrary to the original intent of the Animal Welfare Act of 1976. 
That intent was to aid State and local law enforcement in jurisdictions 
where gamefowl events were prohibited from transport from jurisdictions 
which allow it.
  Mr. Speaker, cockfighting, like horse racing, is a longstanding 
recreational activity in the U.S. Virgin Islands with historical and 
cultural significance. It is regulated in the Virgin Islands along with 
Puerto Rico.
  I understand the concerns of those opposed to this sport and believe 
regulatory processes and educational outreach are the best means within 
those jurisdictions to address them.
  Outlawing cockfighting in the U.S. territories will only create 
underground industries, which will prove problematic and create 
criminality, particularly for men of color.
  Mr. Speaker, to pass an amendment that solely affects the territories 
that none of the Delegates from the territories support is pejorative, 
paternalistic, yes, colonialist, and downright wrong. The territories 
have always been treated unfairly under numerous important Federal laws 
and programs, and this amendment, sadly, is yet another example.