Breed Bans

“End Breed Bans” – a bumper sticker I saw today with a stylized puppy logo.

There are certain breeds of dogs that have been historically engineered (bred) for aggression and winning-in-a-fight. They’re quick to anger, their jaws lock on when they bite, requiring some real effort to separate them. Kids have been savaged by these dog breeds. Individually, I’m sure every one of these dogs is a fine upstanding puppy, and I certainly have met a few real sweeties.

But I don’t think you can be for breed bans and against gun bans (or vice-versa).

There are certain types of guns that are engineered for winning-in-a-fight. Just like dogs.

It’s not the gun or the dog that’s the problem. It’s the owner. You take certain steps when you have a dangerous thing in the house, whether it’s a dog (solid training, training for people around the dog) or a gun (gun safe, ammo safe, ammo safe not in the gun safe, training for people around the guns, whatever other training you get for guns because I’m not trained for them). You take these steps because you acknowledge that what you have is dangerous and its scope for danger is much higher than other objects in its class (the dog is not necessarily more likely to bite when it gets angry but the bite could do more damage, or maybe it is more likely to bite because this breed is quick to anger. the gun is not more likely to go off, but uses bigger bullets that can really rip up a body). A responsible human recognizes extra dangers and takes steps to mitigate them.

The problem is that we’re not all responsible owners. And I can’t trust each one of you to be a responsible owner, whether of an especially dangerous gun type or of a fight winning dog breed.

I don’t think this is a reductio ad absurdum argument. Both things are subsets of a bigger group, and within that group, each class I’ve listed is engineered to be more dangerous than other items in that group. Each dangerous class requires special caution. I don’t think this is a strawman argument. I think there are people out there who are against puppy-bans and are pro gun-bans.

I’m just saying you should be consistent.

Personally, I’m against breed bans. But I’m more likely to worry if Miss K is over at a friends house and they have a (fighting dog breed) as opposed to a (non fighting dog breed) because I don’t trust the owners. I also think you should have whatever gun makes you happy, as long as you’re being safe with it. However, I’m not arguing for or against dogs or guns. I’m just saying that you should be consistent. Oh, also realistic. I don’t think we’re going to get the guns back into Pandora’s box.

So Proposition Eight Passed

I’m ashamed for “my friends” in California- Proposition eight passing saddens me. I have real friends (as opposed to “my friends” friends) in California (Hi Unka C and Unka N!) who are married and who live in San Francisco.

I want to encourage you, my readers, and my friends, and anyone else who happens to think through this. Even during the push for civil rights for women, civil rights for non-whites, there was a process of two steps forward, one step back. It’s saddening, it’s maddening, but it’s not really surprising when gay marriage is voted down. Keep your faith, remember that we’re in this together.

An interesting anonymous comment on Stop All Monsters, where the author promotes a boycott of Mormon businesses starting with the Marriot hotel chain.

The Prop 8 struggle is not a gay/straight issue, it is an equality issue. It is Brown v Board of Education. Seperate but equal. It is akin to the rich tradition we had of not allowing women to vote in this country. The same arguements [sic] being used to support Prop 8 can find chorus with the voices that denied rights to women or people of color. As with those historic struggles we must understand that this issue is not about the people who’s lives it may affect most but instead about our constitutional identity which we must continue to strive toward.

I think that it’s important to remember that you, Unka C and you, Unka N, weren’t voted against specificially. It’s not really about you, and this author says it isn’t really about straight or gay. It’s about equality across the board. It really shouldn’t matter to the country, to the state– to the government, who wants to get married. That’s between two people who love each other and promise to stand by each other for the rest of their lives. Gay marriage is just a step in this journey of equality before the Constitution (federal or state).

I don’t really think this post is very coherent. I’m trying to show why it doesn’t surprise me but does sadden me, and I’m trying to encourage you and encourage my friends. I believe we’ll “get there eventually” but I hope we get there sooner rather than later.