Tired of Distortions
Simi Valley, CA - Upon reading this letter to the editor, one might think DogsBite.org wrote it and submitted it to the Simi Valley Acorn. The author, however, is Marc Atkinson. He too has had enough of the distortions voiced by people like Kathy Jenks, the director of Ventura County Department of Animal Regulation. The pit bull attack that lead to the death of Katya Todesco went unreported to the media for 6 days by Jenks' department and the police.
The question is why?
Statements made by Jenks to several news sources paint her as a "pit bull apologist." As Atkinson points out, many of her statements also defy logic. It's unacceptable that the director of a county department -- whose mission is to protect people and animals -- can freely distort the safety record of the pit bull breed. The only addition we'd like to make about Atkinson's letter is that far more than 25 U.S. cities ban pit bulls. There are nearly 20 cities in the state of Kansas alone.
Pit Bull Apologists Always Sing the Same TuneMarc Atkinson, Simi Valley Acorn
October 17, 2008
"I'm deeply saddened by the tragic death of yet another innocent child, Katya Todesco, due to what should be defined as an act of domestic terrorism, perpetrated by the dog's owner. As a father of two children, and a responsible owner of two dogs, I know both sides of this sad story. Yet the story is nearly always the same with a pit bull attack: a child attacked, sometimes killed; a funeral with a small casket is held, and the owners walk free, perplexed at how their "good dog" could have done such a thing.
Then it's the usual defenders like Kathy Jenks employing distorted logic to claim that pit bulls are no more dangerous than any other dog, which anyone with two eyes and one ounce of common sense knows is absurd. She cites Labrador retrievers as one of the "biters" in a dog bite study, which is false logic, since Labs are America's most popular dog. But Labs aren't known for killing people; pit bulls are, and the facts support this. In fact, a University of Minnesota study of 19 years listed human deaths from pit bulls at 66, Rottweilers at 39. Labradors and Chihuahuas somehow escaped the study as killers.
The Clifton study, performed over 24 years, lists pit bulls 5,500 percent more likely to kill a human than a Labrador. Coincidentally, no insurance company will insure a homeowner with either a pit bull or a Rottweiler. Also, the pit bull breed has been banned outright in 25 U.S. cities so far, and six countries and many other major foreign cities, for good reason: The breed is a menace that has no place in our communities and should be banned nationally. But if we refuse to protect our kids from these dangerous animals, at the very least manslaughter charges should be brought against pit bull owners whose dogs kill."
10/10/08: 2008 Fatality: 5-Year Old Girl Killed by Pet Pit Bull in Simi Valley
10/06/08: "Mixed Breed," a Typical Animal Agency Cover Up for a Pit Bull?