Sunday, October 02, 2005

emergency animal control

Bill Quick posted a video clip (link from Xrlq) of dogs being shot by police in New Orleans (or so he says, one commenter makes me doubt this, but I didn't want to see video of a dog being shot so I haven't looked). He wants us to call the mayor. Presumably to save all the poor doggies.

Now look. I like dogs. I had two pet dogs as a kid and I spent more time with them than any of my siblings did. Heck, they were two of my best friends. But Bill and his commenters are going off the deep end. One commenter is just terribly disturbed at
the thought that someone can cold-bloodedly kill something as innocent as a dog
Good grief, people. Get a grip. Thousands of animals just as innocent as your pet dog are killed everyday to make your hamburgers and chicken sandwiches and leather shoes.

These are animals. If animals are as important as people, then people are no more important than animals.

And this isn't gratuitous killing. Dogs running around wild and hungry are extremely dangerous, especially to children. They quickly form into packs, and very quickly, any dog or human that isn't in the pack becomes the enemy. Yes, even your wonderful pet dog would quickly become a vicious predator and man-eater under the right circumstances. Dogs have no moral inhibitions.

Shooting those dogs may very well save lives. Considering what those dogs are eating and drinking, even one bite could kill someone from infection or disease.

UPDATE: Xrlq thinks I'm a heartless Republican. In his comment he says:
I always thought the bit about heartless Republicans being against cute puppies - or even against the people who own them - was some silly Democrat cliché. Apparently not.
First, I'm not a Republican and I don't know what the official Republican platform says about cute puppies. Second, I'm not heartless and I think Xrlq is actually smart enough to recognize the difference between a simple lack of empathy and an empathy tempered by reason.

So when he says
Maybe you think cops snatching a dog from a little boy and making him cry “Snowball! Snowball!” until he vomited was N.O.P.D’s finest hour
then I'd have to say, yes, it was a pretty fine moment for the NOPD. I assume it was as hard for those cops to do that as it would have been for me. I don't know if I could have done it at all.

But someone did have the guts to do it so I give him credit for that, just like I give credit to the rescue workers who can grab a little kid with severe acrophobia and carry him screaming his lungs out up to the helicopter in a sling. That can't be easy either, but you have to do hard things sometimes.

Bad things happen during a disaster. That's why it's called a "disaster".

Every seat taken by a pet on a rescue vehicle is a seat that is not avaialable for a person. All the vehicles and personel and equipment being used to rescue animals is not available to rescue people. I'm not willing to make that trade. I think every single rescue worker should be 100% dedicated to saving people as long as there are people whose lives are in danger.

Once the immediate emergency is over, then by all means, let animal rescue workers have a go along with jewelry store owners who want to save some of their merchandise and everyone else who wants to save property with special value. But it's always people first.

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