Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Caught between a rock and a hard place

Sometimes you find yourself at a true crossroads in life and the decision you make NOW will have a profound effect on future events.  You won’t be able to travel back in time to this moment and undo any mistakes.  Life is not a computer game with a “reset” button.   Future success and failure is often “baked in the cake” due to events in the past.

This ramble is a follow up to a few of my other essays:  “Trouble in Paradise”, “Overton”, “Hoist with your own Petard”, etc…

I am glad that my essays are well taken by dog owners.  I wasn’t sure if they would be or not.  Again, I believe that many dog and other pet owners maintain high standards of control and care.  However, there is a sub-population within that group that is either corrupt or inept.  The corrupt and inept folks get to “skate” on bad behavior due to the current cultural and legal climate that essentially dictates that they should be allowed to do so. 

I particularly appreciate “Sweetie Pie’s” comments.  If all dog owners were half as good as “Sweetie Pie”, there would not be an issue here. 

To get back to the topic of this essay, the more responsible dog owners have two forces working against them. 

The rock.  Malicious and inept dog owners within their own ranks.   Pit bull owners are the fringe within THIS group, but it includes owners of ankle-biters and yard barkers as well.  Some people might say “who cares about barking”?  LISTEN:  If you had to listen to someone else’s dogs bark nearly non-stop for 4 months damaging all of your interests in the process, you wouldn’t be saying that.  I NEVER thought I’d be an anti-barking activist, but here I am.  

Dog owners have 2 problems with this sub-population:  1) It is creating a true PR disaster, and 2) The extreme members of this group are literally ripping you to pieces. 

As per my “hoist” essay, the high status awarded dog owners actually benefits NO ONE, not even dog owners.  The situation as it exists violates our individual rights and is fundamentally unfair.  Anything that is fundamentally unfair is going to agitate and enrage people.  This situation is turning the indifferent into activists and activists into radicals.

The hard place.  Dog haters.  These individuals are generally provoked into existence and further inflamed and enraged by “The Rock”.  These people would ban dogs entirely, or at least create a legal climate where doing so would be nearly impossible (consider the Overton scale).   Consider that the dog hater is made, not born, and while their position is not entirely rational, neither is the cultural climate that demands that we give all dogs and all dog owners some sort of divine deference.  This is the “Yin” to the “Yang”. 

Understand that I am definitely NOT part of this group.  However, I admit that I do have some sympathy for them.  These are folks that have had their interests nearly destroyed by the bad behavior of dogs and their owners, abused by authorities, degraded by apologistas, and generally trampled by the dog owning entitlement class.    They more they suffer, and the longer they are not heard, the angrier and more motivated they become.   Moreover, these people have a right to their opinions.  Quite frankly, they don’t need to like dogs any more than they need to like snakes or spiders (and people keep those creatures as pets, too).   As the offenses committed by “The Rock” continue and increase in intensity, the ranks of dog haters will likewise continue to increase.   “The Rock” actually has a symbiotic relationship with “The hard place”.

Unlike proverbial “pit nutters”, and other pro-dog advocacy groups, this “group” (I have been using the term very loosely here) is not organized.  Yet.  I tell you, you do NOT want these people organizing against you.  You certainly don’t want a war with them.  Its worth considering that once a group like this organizes, its exceedingly rare for them to “dis-organize”.  Once that threshold is crossed, there will be no going back.

Consider that dog owners ARE a minority and legally speaking, harboring a dog in a human city is not a “core” human right.   If the “haters” get control, or at least gain influence, you won’t have much to fall back on.   Again, you don’t want a war with them as you bring very few weapons to that proverbial fight.

So, the proverbial “Rock” is corrupt and inept individuals within your own ranks, and the “hard place” are dog haters.

In past essays I have hinted at creating sort of a “uniform animal control code” that includes *owner licensing*.   Again, no policy change is perfect but it is probable that such a thing, implemented correctly, will accomplish a couple of things:

1)       Crush the “rock” because it will give us some useful tools in dealing with inept and corrupt dog owners.  This will benefit EVERYONE.
2)      Diffuse and disperse the dog hater movement before it starts, as you are more or less giving them what they want:  A peaceful life without intrusion from your pets.

And, that segues into the next post….


  1. Excellent article and I personally can identify with those that don't hate the dog but pretty much hate the owners. I would love criminal charges on the owners. I am not satisfied with the fine aspect that to me is way too lenient for what the jerks have put their neighbors through.
    I have had years of a barking in my neighborhood, and as I own my house I have no intention of leaving but will continue to do my utmost to change the laws where I live and would love to get a group organized so we can pursue the owners by way of legal action and demonstrations that are video taped in front of their residence and later posted to Utube so their friends, relatives and employers can see what type of people these are. Your basic narcissistic sociopaths that have no concern but for themselves and their beasts.

    As stated in the article above it is just a matter of time. The biggest complaints in most cities for noise is dog barking, so eventually the leniency that is afforded the miscreants will change and it will go full circle where I hope that ownership will cost people by way of large licensing fees, home insurance costs and required training by the owner so no excuses are than acceptable anymore.

  2. Thanks John. I agree. Some folks say barking is no big deal, but I'm sure none of them would like me standing across the street from them, reading my blog posts through a bullhorn at 2am. Noise pollution is highly disruptive and toxic and its past time everyone just stood up and said NO. We aren't allowed to honk our car horns endlessly for no reason, we aren't allowed to drive our cars without mufflers, and its WAY past time dog owners were held to the same standards. Just as you said: No more excuses.

  3. Thanks for the mention. I wasn't sure whether I was just annoying you with my comments or what.