Short-Handed Yakima Council Delays Pit Bull Ban Repeal Vote
No vote on the Yakima pit bull ban. That's not a "NO" vote on the ban, its just that there wasn't a vote at all. Council member Holly Cousens was absent and in a semi-rare display of council courtesy, the group voted not to take action until the entire council was present to vote. Half the Council chambers were filled with PRO-pit bull people who took turns asking, requesting and begging the council to lift the ban.
Some referred to the dogs as their "kids", while others demanded "fairness and justice" for the breed - which may be a comforting emotional argument but is there a even a legal basis for applying the concept of civilized humanity to animals? What exactly is justice for animals when the reason for the ban in the first place is violence and death against humans?
But the most dramatic move of the night was played by Kelly Murray, the President of the Board of Directors of the Yakima Humane Society. She said the Human Society has made a decision to end the contract with the city for animal control services if the ban isn't lifted by August 10th. And now, with the vote delayed, it won't be by then, so that means as of August 10th, no more picking up and housing animals within city limits. What do you call that? Standing for principle? Shrewd negotiating? Extortion? I'll leave that for you to determine.
Murray says the ban is contrary to the mission of responsible pet ownership and supporting animal welfare. What about the community welfare?
The Humane Society's Mission Statement does mention community with the words - "educating the public regarding responsible pet ownership while promoting community kindness and commitment to their welfare" But I fail to see how lifting a successful 30 year old ban does that. How is the community safer? But then I guess as Murray put it, we don't want to be seen by the rest of the dog world as being a backwards city or behind the times. Now do we???
Murray and others says the pit bull ban is discriminatory and has only made matters worse for pit bulls and their owners. So I have to ask, do you think dogs have legal rights, do people have a right to own a dog and live where they want? (ever see the sign - no kids, no pets...anyone?) Does society have a right and a responsibility to set rules and regulations to protect the greater good from potential danger?
It looks pretty clear that the anti-ban people care more, turned out more, lobbied more and will be rewarded with a full repeal of the ban at the next meeting. I hope all they say about the loyal, lovable, family & pet friendly pit bull turns out to be true. The Good Lord help the victims if they are wrong.