I’m a conservative, and I love my talk radio, but sometimes those guys can drive me nuts. I don’t mean with all of the negativity, or the political rhetoric – that’s why I listen to it. But sometimes these guys go off topic about something that they really know nothing about, and say things that completely contradict their so-called “conservatism”. Case in point – this afternoon local Milwaukee host Mark Belling went off on why pitbulls ought to be banned from the city.
This is an issue that I care about. Although I’m not a pitbull owner, I am a dog owner, and my breed is under attack almost as much as pitbulls. I own a 4 year old 95 lb rottweiler. She’s a lovable dog, has never shown aggression towards myself or anyone else, and yet is considered a dangerous dog because of her size and strength. Rotts and Pits tend to have stronger jaws than most other breeds and because of this people take advantage of the animals. People use these dogs as guard dogs, purposely mistreating them to make them aggressive and vicious.
Recently a man was walking his dog when a pitbull tried to attack his dog. He defended his dog but wound up with bad cuts to his arms and legs. The pitbull that attacked him was eventually shot by a police officer. This is a sad situation, and a horrible thing to happen to anyone, but we shouldn’t jump to conclusions. This man was walking in a ghetto-y part of Milwaukee. Chances are that the pitbull that attacked him was trained for fighting or guarding. The reason this dog attacked was because of the training (or lack of training, really) that it received – NOT because pitbull are inherently vicious.
Belling of course jumped on this incident and concluded that ALL pitbulls are vicious little monsters that cannot be trained. According to Belling, pitbulls should be banned from the city of Milwaukee, and if anyone wants to own one they should move to the country. What a horrible response! Needless to say, I’m really disappointed in the stance that he took. What conservative says that the government should decide what kinds of dogs people can and cannot own?
First, to assume that all pitbulls are bad dogs is the equivalent of assuming that all guns are evil. A dog is what its owner makes it. A great dog can be turned vicious if its owner is a moron, the same way a firearm can be turned into a deadly weapon if someone wants to rob a bank. Banning dogs is the same kind of idea of banning certain kinds of guns, based solely on the people who abuse them. There are many responsible pitbull owners who train their dogs and never have any incidents.
If someone claims that pitbulls should be banned based on the fact that most dog bites are from pitbulls, then I’d respond with statistics that show black people commit most violent crimes in Milwaukee. What kind of conclusion should I draw?? I won’t even say it – it’s insane! You can’t judge a dog by its breed any more than you can judge a person by the color of their skin.
Who is to say that banning these dogs would even solve the problem. The only people who would obey the laws would be people who weren’t the bad owners in the first place. Even if the pitbulls were eliminated from the city, idiots who like to fight dogs would just find a different breed to use – Rottweilers, Dobermans, Boxers, or whatever. Banning pitbulls won’t eliminate idiots from existing, and thats the real problem. What we should do is educate people about dogs, how to train them properly, and how to care for them.
Like so many other problems, this stems from broken homes and poor parenting. Kids don’t grow up in a loving household, and therefore they don’t know how to love and care for animals. The solution isn’t to attack the symptom by pushing good dog owners out of the city, or by euthanizing hundreds of good dogs. The solution is to have good homes, responsible parents, working schools, and strong communities. Government should work to help build strong families, which is the building block of a strong nation. Attacking these dogs is only attacking the victim.