Saturday, October 22, 2005

Ban Criminals, Not Dogs

Convicted felons would be barred from owning aggressive dogs or those weighing more than 20 pounds under legislation Contra Costa County supervisors will consider Tuesday.

This is the way to deal with the dangerous dog problems around the world. Go after the criminals, not the dogs.

By banning criminals from owning large dogs, the police will have new tools to go after drug dealers, dog fighting/ gambling operations, and a variety of animal abusers. Breed bans punish dogs for the crimes of people. The better way is to ban bad people from owning dogs.

All around the world, gutless and ignorant politicians have been passing pit bull/ Rottweiler/ Doberman bans. Denver passed a pit bull banning law, and has sent the police to people’s homes, seizing innocent dogs from innocent owners, and put the dogs to death. This is outrageous and inhumane. Even worse, once these bans are enacted, the politicians just keep adding breeds to the list. In Italy, they have banned over 92 dog breeds.

This is why I oppose pet licensing. Denver used their pet licensing information to locate and round these dogs up. Did they even consider that the people that took the time and paid the cost to license their dogs were probably NOT the kinds of people that would let their dogs harm innocent people? Do you think that criminals license their dogs before they deploy them to protect their drug operations, or before they put them in pits to fight, or before they get in a drunken rage and beat their dogs?

This is why some people call breed bans a kind of Dog Holocaust. There are many parallels to what was done in Nazi Germany in the 1930’s.

I worked with several pro-dog organizations several years ago, and proposed banning certain types of felons from owning big dogs. The politicians liked the idea, but the groups didn’t pursue it… and the idea never went anywhere. So, I’m glad to see that someone has come up with the same concept and is trying to implement it.

I don’t necessarily support all provisions of this new law in Contra Costa County, but these folks are on the right track. Sometimes in politics, in order to get your main objectives, you have to accept that politicians will tack on other provisions that you wouldn’t really want in an ideal world. That’s life. For the most part, this sounds like a pretty good start.

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