The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.
There’s just something about Lakewood. A city where a population of 52,131 is somehow comfortably held on 5.5 square miles of land. And we peacefully co-exist! We have a small-town mentality that feels almost like modern Mayberry. We are a tolerant city, where we don’t merely look past our differences; we celebrate them. We thrive on knowing each other, not merely being “just neighbors”. We truly feel a sense of community that goes beyond what most cities’ capabilities.
That’s why when, on July 21, 2008, we were all so shocked when a law was passed in our city.
No person may keep, harbor or own pit bull dogs or canary dogs in Lakewood, Ohio, with exceptions for dogs in the city on the effective date. A dog may be allowed to stay provided it has a microchip for identification, has been sterilized, the owner has liability insurance of $100,000, and the dog is properly confined or secured. Failure to comply could result in the removal or impoundment of the dog. The owner may also be charged with a misdemeanor. (Source: animalaw.info)
In other words, our tolerant, diverse city passed a law outlawing …diversity. A law passed based upon how an individual looked, rather than what their actions entailed. How did this happen?
Well, that’s hard to say. I truly don’t believe that our council members hate dogs. Perhaps they saw an increase in dog bites in general, or just merely became aware that dog bites happen, and made a reactionary response to the problem, rather than a rational response. I say “reactionary” because the logic utilized in this ban doesn’t make any sense.
Let me explain.
Right before the ban was passed in July 2008, Lakewood Observer published this article on May 25, 2008 by Brian Powers (former Lakewood councilman who pushed the pit bull ban on Lakewood).
The “article” – which reads as if written by a drunk college frat boy cribbing from Wikipedia the night before his 50 page paper is due – would be humorous if it hadn’t been written by an individual with the ability to pass laws based upon the content of said late-night cribbing session. For example, the article states that:
“Every legitimate study conducted in America, including the study by the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta, has demonstrated that pit bull bites are more likely to result in a fatality than bites or attacks by any other breed.” – Brian Powers
No citations of any kind were included with any of Powers’ “facts”. Trust me, I looked. And looked and looked. I then searched and Googled my heart out. All I came up with was this quote:
The CDC strongly recommends against breed-specific laws in its oft-cited study of fatal dog attacks, noting that data collection related to bites by breed is fraught with potential sources of error (Sacks et al., 2000) – ASPCA Policy and Position Statements
“If you have children and a pit in your home, you are a terrible parent. Let Lakewood [City Council] know what it’s like to have children and pits in the same household. Here are the emails for council and the mayor. Please write them now.
Sam.OLeary@lakewoodoh.net, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, Mike.Summers@lakewoodoh.netLet me note that some of the people listed above DO NOT support BSL. But we still need to email all of them.”
Dog Training in Lakewood, Ohio