Monday, July 9, 2012

I wish we could save Lennox from BSL

Pretty pink flowers on a summer day
I previously wrote about Lennox, an Irish dog that has been held in captivity for years because of breed-specific legislation. At the time, I was fairly hopeful that activism could save this dog, and perhaps his story could spur other people to act against breed-specific legislation in their own countries. I envisioned him functioning as a sort of mascot, and I felt sure that all who saw him would be inspired by his story and by the fight his family put up to save him.

I am far from hopeful today.

The saga of poor Lennox has just gone on and on, and recently, the family came to the difficult decision that they couldn't fight the legislation any longer. They faced roadblock after roadblock, and Lennox also developed skin disorders as well as some sort of neck injury, and it was thought that these issues were causing him pain and would make his rehabilitation from captivity all the more difficult.

So the family chose to let him go.

Celebrity dog trainers, and several dignitaries from other countries, offered to rehome the dog at no expense at all to the government (see more information here), and yet, the authorities refused to even meet with these people or listen to any of their offers. Their pat response, which you can see here, is pretty disgusting, if you ask me.

So I feel sure that when I wake up in the morning tomorrow, this dog will be dead. I can only hope that this story demonstrates why breed-specific legislation is so truly horrible. When a dog can be condemned due to the measurement of his head (as he is not even of the breed that's been banned in Ireland), something has really gone wrong with the laws. And when a city council refuses to listen to the thousands of people who have protested all around the world, and they instead hide behind these misguided laws, it's shameful, to say the least.

At one point, I had considered visiting Belfast. I had heard it was a beautiful city, and I have a friend who visited the city for work and who showed me some enticing photos of the views he had from his hotel room. I had even been pricing plane tickets. But now? You couldn't pay me to go to Belfast. In fact, I signed this petition (link is now broken), vowing never to set foot in the city limits.

I feel for Lennox, and I feel for his family. Let us all remember him, and all of those innocents like him, who lose their lives due to unfeeling policies. Let us stop supporting breed-specific legislation.