Earlier this week in Senath, Missouri (waaaaay down in the Bootheel), the city council debated a proposed ordinance to ban pit bulls within city limits, or so reports The Daily Dunklin Democrat.
Banning pit-bulls is nothing new (click here for Web page devoted to just this topic). Shrewsbury passed a ban in 2005, for example. Eureka followed suit a couple years later. But in both cases, these ordinances banned new pit bulls. The ones already living in city limits were allowed to stay put.
However, the ordinance proposed down in Senath would've allowed officials to round up all pit bulls and try to find homes for them elsewhere. Failing that, the dogs would've been euthanized.
Concerned residents at the meeting chose a woman named Leslie Brooks to speak on behalf of the pets, according to the local newspaper's story,
What's interesting is Brooks based her argument less on nature/nurture than on animal rights:
"I feel what's happening now is that animal rights is being compared to racist and sexist views of the past...Animals have rights too, and animal law is now being studied in a majority of law schools...Why should our dogs have to suffer because of their breed," Brooks said.(This line of reasoning is doubly interesting after you read Malcom Gladwell's 2006 piece in The New Yorker on how pit bull bans are related to racial profiling).
Ultimately, the city council of Senath decided to postpone the pit bull ban. Senath already has a "dangerous dog" ordinance on the books, and they're going to try to enforce that more vigorously.
Click here for a local newscast on the ban.