Berks County attorney Adolph Joseph Antanavage may be a new Court of Common Pleas judge, but to animal protectors he is notorious for shooting thousands of live pigeons launched from boxes and used as living targets. At times Adolph Antanavage has even shot those pigeons with a Confederate Flag as his backdrop.
In the summer of 2012, Antanavage shot pigeons at a private canned hunting club called "Wing Pointe," located in Berks County.
On June 26, 2014, the Pennsylvania State Senate Judiciary Committee not only voted to approve an amendment to a bill that would ban pigeon shoots, but to approve Antanavage to be a judge in the Court of Common Pleas in Berks County, PA. A few days later, Antanavage's judicial appointment was confirmed by the entire State Senate.
"The last time the Confederate flag waved this proudly in PA was in 1863 when it was at the front of an invading army that not only killed Pennsylvanians, but engaged in "slave hunts" where free African Americans were captured by the Confederate army and enslaved," states SHARK President Steve Hindi. "Adolph Antanavage commits horrific acts of animal cruelty at a private club where they proudly fly a giant symbol of bias, prejudice and hatred. How can such an individual be a judge?"
SHARK is informing a few organizations about Judge Antanavage's history, including the Southern Poverty Law Center, the Reading Branch of the NAACP, the ACLU and the Berks County Public Defender's Office.
SHARK is calling for Antanavage to resign. We are also planning for protests outside the Berks County Courthouse to inform the public about this issue.
Adolph Antanavage was nominated to be a judge by Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett. This raises questions about Corbett's judgement, since the video of Adolph Antanavage shooting pigeons in front of the Confederate flag has been on YouTube since March of 2013.
Watch that video here. You can see the Confederate flag at the 1:38 mark. We will be releasing even more footage of Antanavage shooting in front of the flag later this week.
The video of Antanavage was so easy to find that at the Senate committee hearing on June 26, a reporter sitting in the room Googled Antanavage and found the video. Either Governor Corbett's office didn't properly vet Antanavage, or Corbett knew about Adolph Antanavage's history and simply didn't care. Either way, both Corbett and Antanavage need to be held accountable.
"Many of the people who will come before Antanavage recognize that the Confederate flag is a symbol of bigotry and oppression," states Hindi. "A judge cannot hold his office with that much staining him. We are therefore calling on judge Antanavage to immediately resign."