Posts tagged ‘faulty comparison’

“Discriminatory legislation”

In 1980, after Ethel Tiggs and Frankie Scarbrough were nearly killed by pit bulls, the City of Hollywood enacted the country’s first modern day pit bull law, requiring owners to register their dog and carry $25,000 in liability insurance. The Everglades Pit Bull Terrier Club hired Miami attorney David Cerf to fight the ordinance who said to city officials: “You should be more concerned about the increase in rapes in Hollywood instead of penalizing dog owners with discriminatory legislation.” The term later evolved into breed discriminatory legislation and is now used by Ledy VanKavage along with a “BDL” abbreviation.

In 1974, it appears the same David Cerf attempted to have a defendant examined by a “voodoo doctor or exorcist.” Circuit Court Judge Dan Satin denied Cerf’s motion.

Court Bedeviled by Call for Services of Voodoo Doctor.
The defendant, Harvey Lee Outler had been determined competent to stand trial for the murder of his common law wife, but the evaluating doctor said Outler believed he was under a curse. Cerf said Outler, 36, believed that Mable Young, 31, has used roots to put a curse on him. Police say Outler shot Mrs. Young in the face with a piston April 13. “Your honor, a voodo curse is just as deadly as a threat with a gun,” Cerf said.

In 1984, it appears the same David Cerf gets in trouble with the Florida Bar.

CERF v. STATE, 458 So.2d 1071 (Fla. 1984)
No. 64183.
Supreme Court of Florida.
September 6, 1984.
Rehearing Denied December 6, 1984.
This is an appeal from an attorney disciplinary proceeding in circuit court pursuant to Fla.Bar Integr.Rule, art. XI, Rule 11.14. We have jurisdiction. Art. V, § 15, Fla. Const. We approve the disciplinary measure recommended by the circuit judge in his written judgment and report of disciplinary matter.

“Dogs are dogs”

Much like all dogs fight and it was a dog fight, the term “dogs are dogs” is used by pit bull owners after their dog attacks and injures or kills an animal (usually another dog). The term is used to deny the pit bull’s responsibility in the attack and to deny the pit bull’s genetic heritage: Selective breeding for the purpose of killing other dogs (dogfighting). It is true that dogs will be dogs in that dogs may bark, growl and posture when interacting with other dogs. What is untrue is the expectation that all dogs will launch a deadly assault upon another dog. Pit bulls on the other hand, will and do.

They just happened to be in the yard with me all day long, and the dog did go down and fight the other dog, but dogs are dogs. – Collins Tully
This article has already gotten a little longer then I originally wanted, so I’ll try to wrap it up. Dogs are dogs…..any dog that is made to feel dominate or fearful – Liz Churchville
Children are Children, Adults are Adults, Dogs are Dogs. Teach them properly and they will Prevail. – Tired of Ding Dong’s
I can’t say the same for my boyfriend who had the unfortunate task of removing the foaming at the mouth 8 pound hellion from our dog’s face. Dogs are dogs and the problem with dogs is they are governed by… – xgirl

“All dogs fight”

To minimize the selectively bred trait of explosive aggression in pit bulls following a serious or deadly attack (or when BSL comes knocking), pit bull owners and apologists will insist that “all dogs fight” or that “you can make any dog fight.” Meaning that such explosive aggression can be taught at will to all dog breeds. Certainly all dogs can fight, but only some dogs will fight and only one breed contains the tenacity to fight to the death: The American pit bull terrier. (See: All dogs bite for additional information.)

You can make any dog fight,” said Teresa Gardner, head of animal control for Hinds County. “But it’s what we do to pit bulls that makes them fight.” – Teresa Gardner
Lab’s are #1 for actual domestic dog fighting. All dogs fight all dogs bite. I am gonna get Pitt Bulls next. No more Labs. – Janessa70
I had a rednosed pit and he loved people. He wouldn’t dream of hurting a human. He turned on one of our dogs but all dogs fight and it isn’t just pitbulls. – Alli Turner
All dogs bite, all dogs lick, all dogs fight, all dogs understand right from wrong and they darn sure know when they are being mistreated in any form! Being a senior citizen does not exclude one from being a bad owner [This is after a 77-year old woman was mauled by her friend’s pet pit bull] – A Staffie Owner

“Dog holocaust”

The term “dog holocaust” brings up over 6,000 results in Google Search. It is most often used by radical pro-pit bull groups after a city or country adopts breed-specific legislation, specifically a pit bull ban. The International Dog Holocaust group, ironically, began in Germany after the whole country adopted breed-specific restrictions. It’s possible that die hard German pit bull zealots coined the term given the responsibility the country played in THE Holocaust, which brings up nearly 7 million Google Search results.

Are You Funding The Dog Holocaust?
Dog lovers – Are you supporting breed-specific legislation?
Are you facilitating the killing of innocent dogs? Are you helping to fund the dog holocaust? – Dog Politics
Germany bans breeds, reactions evoke holocaust memories
In the wake of two deadly attacks by dogs in the last three months, German state governments have banned or restricted more than three dozens breeds of dogs. – Pedigree Database

“You are a racist!”

According to Google News Archive, the phrase began circulating in the mid 1980’s, which is when there was the first surge of U.S. cities adopting pit bull laws. In a 1987 Toledo Blade article, kooky Dr. Ian Dunbar (connected with the ACF) said: “Singling out a breed like the American Staffordshire terrier — commonly called the pit bull — ‘is just like being racist or sexist.'”

Also an anthropomorphic phrase, “You are racist!” is voiced by pit bull advocates to condemn their critics. Today, the phrase is frequently flung at people by pit bull advocates in the comment section of a mauling thread. Interestingly, commenter Doug lashes back at Maul Talkers for pulling the race card:

For you to bring Black People into this leaves me thinking there may be some racist tendencies on your part though.If me HATING these dogs and Rotty’s is what you call RACIST and ignorant so be it.But take a look deep inside and ask yourself why you did bring Black people into this discussion. – Doug

“Hatemonger”

According to YourDictionary.com, a hatemonger is a “propagandist who seeks to provoke hatred and prejudice, esp. against a minority group or groups”. The term is yet another anthropomorphic term employed by pit bull advocates when faced with a person who criticizes pit bulls or makes statements about the pit bull’s true genetic heritage. In the following example, “wrenchinthcogs” says the following about YouTube artist Zupf:

The fact that you have subscribed to an ignorant hatemonger like zupf is making your case a bit unfavorable as well… – wrenchinthecogs

“Are you a biologist?”

As demonstrated by the question, “Are you a geneticist?” the similar question, “Are you a biologist?” comes up at the first mention of the pit bull breed’s genetic heritage. In a lovely YouTube video that depicts a pit bull owner egging his dog to “get it boy” (to continue clamping down on a rope), user “bizzo518” responds to a comment:

where did you pull your info????? are you a vet, dog behaviorist, biologist….or what…..the avg domestic dog bites at around 320psi, a german shepard,pitt, and rotty were tested….guess what the pitt generated the LEAST amount of psi….DONT TALK SHIT AND POST STUFF IF YOU ARE AN UNEDUCATED ASS………. – bizzo518

“Are you a geneticist?”

The term is often used by pit bull advocates to derail or condemn a person who mentions the genetic heritage of the pit bull breed, which was selectively bred for explosive aggression to “rule” the fighting pit. Dogfighters even took selective breeding further for the breed by selecting for the “gamest” dog, a dog that will fight to its death. A recent article published by the Commercial Appeal and authored by Tom Graves (My Thoughts: Pit bull epidemic requires passage of breed-specific ordinance) exemplifies this.

1) Are you a geneticist? Are you a biologist? No, you are a professor of literature. You have no scientific backing for any of your claims about “fighting DNA” or that one breed of dog is genetically unlike any other dog. In fact, you should know all about writing statements with no support. I’m sure you do not let your students get away with such claims. – PitBullOwner

“Dachshunds are more aggressive”

After a study was published in Applied Animal Behaviour Science in 2008, which showed that “sausage” dogs were the most aggressive breed, Maul Talkers took to the streets clamouring victory. The ridiculous study — which in no way measured the severity of the bite — is often used by Maul Talkers to show that dachshunds are more dangerous than pit bulls. It must be noted that the majority of pit bull owners are strongly anti-small dogs and particularly dislike Dachshunds.

I’ve found little dogs are more snappy… My Shih Tzu would bite you a lot quicker than any of the other dogs, and my bully will lick you to death, or knock you over leaning on you for a scratch…. my sister had 2 little ankle biters, and one of them would bite you if you even tried to pet it…. Of course, that means I’m PRO big dog, anti little dogMollie’s Nana

Every dachshund I’ve ever met has been mean. I’m sure there are nice ones out there…but I’ve yet to meet one in my personal experience, and I work with dogs everyday as a kennel assistant! It’s always the little breed dogs that are the meanest IMO. – Anonymous

In the 27-years that Merritt Clifton of Animal People has been tracking serious and fatal dog attacks, pit bulls caused serious bodily harm to 1,451 persons, maimed 777 and killed 153. Dachshunds on the other hand, caused serious bodily harm to 5 persons, maimed 5 and killed 1. The victim killed was an 81-year old invalid woman and the attack involved a pack of six dogs, of which at least two were dachshunds. (See: Attacks by Packs of Dogs Involving Predation on Human Beings).

“Lightning kills more people”

Pit nutter Adam Goldfarb, who heads up the Pets at Risk program at the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), likes to point out to media members as often as possible that one is more likely to be killed by a “bolt of lightning than by a dog“. A Google Search of “lightening kills adam goldfarb” yields numerous results.

Shortly after Goldfarb’s statement was picked up by media sources, a respected member of the human-animal bond community, Dr. Alan M. Beck, wrote a letter that was published in Animal People Sept 09. Beck’s letter addresses many issues including how Goldfarb’s statement minimizes serious and fatal dog attacks.

Dog attack deaths & risk of lightning

In an article in my local newspaper today, a spokesperson for a major humane organization, in an attempt to minimize the risk to the public from dog attacks, is quoted as saying that more people are killed by lightning than dogs.

The National Weather Service said there were 27 lightning deaths as of this date in 2009, 28 in 2008, and 45 in 2007. This reflects the success of efforts to reduce the numbers of deaths from lightning strikes, which have historically killed an average of 73 Americans per year.

The highest number of people ever killed by dogs in one year in the U.S. was 33, in 2007. The average in this decade is more than 20, about double the average of the preceding two decades. Thus the death tolls from lightning and dog attacks are converging.

The humane society spokesperson failed to point out that even though lightning deaths are rare and becoming fewer, we still do whatever we can to minimize the risk, e.g., clearing public swimming pools during electrical storms, suspending golf games, installing lightning rods, and doing public education.

Attention to any public health risk is influenced by severity, the impacted population, and the economic interests of those affected.

Minimizing rabies has a huge veterinary and pharmaceutical establishment supporting it, so we respond to the disease despite its extremely rare occurrence in the U.S.

Minimizing dog attacks has no such economic support, so we minimize their importance by minimizing perception of the occurrence, even though fatal and disfiguring dog attacks are hundreds of times more common in the U.S. than human cases of rabies.

As they say at the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention, it is naïve to think disease is simply the presence of a pathogen.

Alan M. Beck, Sc.D. Professor & Director
Center for the Human-Animal Bond
School of Veterinary Medicine
Purdue University