Personally, I don't approve of declawing. Let me make that clear, right off the bat. However, I can understand both sides of the argument. It probably WILL be harder to find homes for some cats, if declawing becomes illegal.
There are a lot of apartment complexes that will ONLY allow their tenants to have cats, if they are declawed. Now, I know that most people would argue that if a person can't have a cat, claws and all, then they have no right having a cat in the first place. However, what is to become of all the homeless cats? Are we just supposed to put them all to sleep? Is death preferable to a cat to having no claws? I don't know, as I am not in a cats mind. However, I can tell you, if someone asked me if I would rather have a nice comfortable home and LIVE, or be put to sleep, I would choose life, even if it did mean that I would have to have the top portion of my fingers removed, in order to continue living.
From what I understand there is an over abundance of homeless cats, that end up dying needlessly every year, even with declawing still legal in the USA. I have a feeling the numbers will increase substantially if the declawing law is passed.
Also there are people like one of my sisters, who I have had several tremendous fights with over declawing. She is PRO declaw, and IMO does not even try make things work, leaving her cats fully clawed. With her, if any of her cats scratch on the furniture or the wall, they are taken straight away to get declawed. I have told her everything I've learned here about ways to stop a cat from clawing furniture et et, and she just won't hear it. She simply doesn't care. She argues back to me, that "those people at the cat site, don't know what it's like to live with cats who have claws and destroy everything they own." She says, she simply refuses to live under those conditions. OK, fine and dandy. It's simple, she SHOULD NOT have cats. However, for her part, I will say that she has taken in several homeless strays off of the streets and provided them a home, and aside from the declawing, she has provided them a good and loving home. A few weeks ago, she adopted from the streets, another homeless stray. She said he was and under nourished, scraggly little homeless stray that came to her home every day for food and care. She finally gave in, once again, and took him in. Got him vet checked, and then this weekend took him in and got him neutered and declawed. I of course started to argue with her about the declawing, but she shut me down, and said, "I don't want to hear it!"
So, even though I absolutely don't agree with declawing, I can understand the double sided arguments. I think the BEST thing we can do, is EDUCATE people, but I don't know if we should absolutely ban declawing. Maybe I think it should be a LAST alternative. Meaning, if a cat simply can't get a loving home with claws, or if it means a homeless stray finds a home, which it never would find otherwise, then maybe declawing should be allowed. However, I personally think the majority of people only declaw for their convinience, and I don't think that should be allowed.