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 October 2008 - Nr. 10

Talking Politics with my Dog

Hunny by David McKagueME: We often hear that we get the government we deserve. With federal elections coming up in both Canada and the United States in a few weeks, perhaps we should talk politics.

HUNNY: As a dog, I don’t normally pay too much attention to the subject. What I do know, however, is that "poly" is a Latin root for "many" – and ticks, like fleas, are blood-sucking creatures that can certainly leave you scratching your head. Isn’t that the derivation of the word "politics"?

ME: Very funny. But many people would say that you might have hit bit of truth with that old joke. Certainly many of our politicians seem intent on sucking us dry of our money.

HUNNY: There you go talking about those pieces of paper again. I have never been able to figure out why humans are so preoccupied with the stuff. Most humans think that the more of it they have in their wallets, the happier they will be. Yet they can’t eat it or play with it.

ME: That’s true, but it does allow us a bit of freedom. Perhaps that’s one reason our governments seem so eager to take it away from us.

HUNNY: It seems silly to us dogs that not having certain bits of paper should reduce freedom. But I have noticed that politicians have also used paper to try to restrict what we can do. They write things down on them and the next thing you know, "pit bulls" are banned or dogs can’t run around freely without a leash. Some have even tried to force people to contain their cats! Can you imagine that! I wouldn’t want to get anywhere near a cat on a leash – they can go really berserk when they don’t want to be restrained; those claws can do a lot of damage.

ME: I understand your point about cats; they definitely do not like to be restricted. By the way, those things written down on pieces of paper are called "laws". Like you, I have noticed that they tend to restrict our freedoms. Ban this. Ban that. The trouble with bans, and in fact with most laws, is that they are usually brought in to restrict criminals or control irresponsible behavior.

HUNNY: So, for example, the responsible dog owner is placed under more and more restrictions. And a lot of good dogs like me are banned or even killed. Even I can see that it is the criminal or irresponsible person who doesn’t obey the laws, causing more and more laws to be passed.

ME: You’re right there. It seems to me sometimes that politicians are trying to take responsibility away from the individual so that the government can control everything. Perhaps it would work better if responsibility for the individual’s actions were to be placed back where it belongs – on the individual.

HUNNY: Like: "Make you as my human owner responsible for my actions as a dog." Of course, you would still be responsible for your own actions, just as I would have to face the consequences if I did something bad.

ME: Exactly … that’s the only thing that makes sense to me. That way we could simplify and reduce the number of laws we have and governments wouldn’t have to micro-manage every last detail in our lives.

HUNNY: What I can’t understand is how you humans choose a politician? And why do some humans vote for the same political party time after time no matter what? In our packs, if a better dog comes along, we just pick that dog to become our new alpha-leader.

ME: That’s a tough question. I would have to say that some politicians count on us to keep voting the same way so that we won’t examine their policies too closely. I would tend to vote for the man or woman I felt had our best interests at heart and who understood that he or she worked for us and not the other way around. I would look for the most decent, honest and ethical person I could find.

HUNNY: And if I had a vote, I would certainly go for any politician who would try to simplify our laws to give us some responsibility and freedom back.

ME: You know there will be some people who won’t agree with us. Many of them think that it is better not to rock the boat and that "you can’t change City Hall". And that we should accept whatever our politicians pass without objection or protest.

HUNNY: Well, for those people, I guess they really do get the government they deserve. But if they don’t pay attention, they may end up with a government fit not even for dogs.

Previous "Petitorial" articles by David McKague:

Editor’s note: I would like to encourage dog lovers everywhere to start a PETITION to have this law thrown out or revised to such a form where justice prevails. SFR.

Email to David McKague
David McKague talks about the pit-bull or pit bulls, pets, dogs, the duress put upon dog and the owners, especially through laws in Ontario, Canada, that affect and encroach on rights and freedoms of the individual, human rights, reputation of individuals and owners. David stresses the importance of being responsible and understanding when dealing with pets.

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