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spcaLA Protests 'Lobster Claw' Game

The Los Angeles chapter of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals condemns a game that was once popular at Breakwall.

The Los Angeles chapter of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals is condemning a game that was once one of the hallmarks of the now-closed bar on the .

Known as the "Lobster Zone" machine at Breakwall ( ), the game is a crane-like claw machine—only instead of trying to grab stuffed animals, players try to snatch a lobster from the tank. At the Redondo Beach bar, those who manage to catch a crustacean get a free lobster dinner.

"Although the pier is the go-to destination for all types of fishing, this machine takes it to a whole new level," . "When fishing off the pier, you have to deal with the problem of finding something edible in an entire ocean—which I think we can all agree is sizable. When you’re controlling the metal claw, poised precariously above the unsuspecting crustaceans, all you have to do is point and click."

The spcaLA wants the Los Angeles County Fair Association to remove its version of the "Lobster Claw" game from the fairgrounds.

"An exhibit like this conveys a message to adults and children alike that it is OK to torment food animals before they are eaten and, in fact, that it is OK to torment animals for amusement and entertainment," spcaLA president Madeline Bernstein said on Wednesday.

"Tolerating and participating in casual cruelty and behavior that desensitizes us all to the plight of other living things is the fastest way to kill our sense of compassion and empathy."

In 2008, a similar game was removed from a Los Angeles-area restaurant because of public pressure, according spcaLA, which urged fairgoers to shun the game.

Redondo Beach Patch could find no instances of the spcaLA protesting the Lobster Zone machine at Breakwall or Kilkenny's.

—City News Service contributed to this report.

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