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Friday, August 6, 2010

Casual Police Shooting of Pets

Warning:  Rant follows...

I assure you I am not against policemen in general.  They are important members of our society.  I wouldn't want there to NOT be policemen.

I generally try to understand when policemen feel they have to shoot or taser violent people  Or violent dogs that truly threaten them.  It isn't easy sometimes, but I try.

And I don't care as much about dogs as many people do.  I'm a cat person.  I had to build a high fence around my yard to keep the cats safe from large dogs that roamed free.  So I don't love dogs...

But things seems to be getting out of hand when policemen can can shoot dogs as a matter of convenience when entering a house.  When improperly invading the house of innocent people, for example. In that case, police conducted a full SWAT-quality house assault on a family who were unknowingly delivered a package of drugs as part of a drug pickup trick.  The police casually and routinely immediately shot the dogs who barked at the intruders.

What good dog wouldn't bark at intruders?  They even shot one dog who was trying to run away!  That is wrong.  And I don't even like dogs.

And now, a new example of gun-madness by police.  Washington, DC has named Keith Shephard as the officer who shot Bear-Bear on Monday night. Bear-Bear was a Siberian Husky who was playing in a community dog park when Shephard, allegedly fearing for his life, shot the husky in defense.  Dog Park, get it?  A place where dogs get to run around together and be a temporary pack.  That involves a rare chance for the dogs to see who is the Alpha Dog!

Maybe it is true that the shot dog was aggressive.  But it was a dog park.  They are supposed to run around.  If you don't like it, you leave.   I once grabbed a large neighborhood dog by the spike collar and led him home.  He was scared, I was scared. But it didn't require a gun.

This is going beyond dogs.  I'm getting REAL pissed about too many policemen using lethal force on people and animals who don't really deserve it!  Tasers are killing too many people.  Policemen are shooting people too casually.

Do people have to start carrying guns to protect themselves from POLICEMEN?

It starts with shooting dogs casually.  Then Tasering people.  Then shooting people.  I don't like the way this is progressing.

I understand that police work CAN be dangerous, and that too often, policemen become used to dealing with criminals.  

But when they start to assume that everyone and even every dog they meet is a criminal or lethal threat deserving to be killed on sight, that has to stop...


Jan's Funny Farm said...

This is a subject too upsetting for us. We saw your link on Alasandra's blog. Thanks for writing it, even though you don't like dogs. Animals don't deserve to be shot or declared dangerous and "euthanized" for the slightest supposed provocation. There is just too much of that going on!

Cavebear said...

I want to add that when policemen break into a house, an innocent house, the wrong house, a guilty house, or whatever, they don't have the right to just start shooting any possible threats of inconvenience.

Any innocent person whose house is suddenly broken into has a right to start shooting back in self-defence. And they should not be killed in return.

If anyone kicks in my door without prior warning and identification, I am going to try to kill them.

If I can't tell the difference between a gang break in and an unannunced police break in, I will treat them the same.

When the results may be both identical, I will defend my life as useless as the attempt may be. But I will try.

I have reached the point where I am nearly as afraid of the police as the criminals.

Jacqueline said...

A great post, I totally agree with you...Maybe if the Police thought there were real consequences to their actions, especially regarding animals, they would not use lethal force so casually...Take care, Mark and enjoy the weekend.

AFSS said...

Awhile back there was a story in my local paper about police going to the WRONG house to arrest someone. One officer went to the front and one went around back and jumped a wood fence he couldn't see over. When the family dog came at him he shot and killed it.

I don't think the family ever got justice. We need some sort of law to prevent police from shooting pets that are in there own yards/homes.

Anonymous said...

Our dog is a giant black lab. He is old and arthritic from all his years as a perfectly trained duck hunting dog, but still thinks he's a puppy. He cuddles with the cats. He believes that my 90 lb mother's lap is the best place to sleep, even though he outweighs her by at least 20 lbs.

One day, he found his way out of our back gate. He was sleeping on the front porch with a couple cats curled up against him. There was a disturbance in the neighborhood and several police officers were around.

The dog saw us come home and sat up to greet us, tongue lolling. One of the police officers drew his gun and aimed at him. He said he was going to shoot if we didn't the dog in the house. My tiny mother merely said "Come" and the dog followed her happily into the house.

The officer could have told our dog to Sit, Stay, Lay, or anything similar, and the dog would have listened. The dog wasn't even looking in the officer's direction or the direction of the neighborhood disturbance. If our dog had gone towards the officers, I could have understood.

The fact that police officers can use deadly force against family pets, with NO consequence, is frightening. The fact that families aren't compensated for their loss when they were clearly in the wrong, is disgusting.