LAAS has its fair share of retaliation and silence

Posted May 3rd, 2016 in Shelters by Josh

Here’s me either talking out of my ass or openly discussing the ways in which retaliation comes from Los Angeles Animal Services and the culture of silence that’s built into the NKLA coalition contract agreements.

For those with an interest: Los Angeles Animal Services is holding 7 more Council District Strategic Planning Community meetings meant to seek your input, insight and suggestions on how their department is run.

The next meeting is tonight in Council District 4 at the Hollywood Field Office located at 6501 Fountain Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90028.

Followed by:
5/4 in Council District 2 at the Studio City Recreation Center located at 12621 Rye St., Studio City, CA 91604.
5/10 in Council District 14 at the Field Office Community Room located at 2130 E. 1st St., Suite 241, Los Angeles, CA 90033.
5/11 in Council District 10 at the District Office located at 1819 S. Western Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90006.
5/17 in Council District 8 at the Constituent Service Center located at 8475 S. Vermont Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90044.
5/18 in Council District 11 at the Felicia Mahood Senior Center located at 11338 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90025.
5/31 in Council District 1 at the Ramona Hall Community Center located at 4580 N. Figueroa St., Los Angeles, CA 90065.

All meetings are from 6-8 pm.

PETA aligns with sockpuppet hatemongers to push Orwellian narrative against Pit Bulls (for their own good)

Posted October 18th, 2015 in BSL News, Prejudice by Josh

On October 24th it will be National Pit Bull Awareness Day for dog lovers across the country. True to trollish form, a co-opting of the day from the anti-dog internet hate group is in order. Their energy, while everyone else will be celebrating the amazingness of dogs or just going about their usual business, will be on pushing fear and horrific imagery to conjure up negative and irrational emotion. That irrational emotion will then be used to promote intrusion, promote prejudice, promote bans, promote death; and only on platforms where the promoter cannot be intellectually challenged by people that disagree with them.

Surprisingly (or not), PETA has officially aligned themselves to the effort stunt. Imagine that, the “People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals” being completely unethical.


^What the commenting Brian Christ fails to realize is that PETA also seeks the destruction of Pit Bulls. And look at the response by PETA!! Actually claiming that this “advocacy coalition” wants to “help, not hurt, Pit Bulls.” Um, wow. Yeah, either they have literally no idea in the world who they just aligned themselves with or they are simply lying. I’ll go with lying.

So who are these groups and what is their deal?

Well first, we have the unabashed crowd of anti-Pit Bull deceptive internet aliases, known to follow and parrot the Mount Rushmore of dog hate (Colleen Lynn, Merritt Clifton, “Craven Desires,” Jeff Borchardt). The poisonous ideology they push is dedicated to violence against dogs, really by any means but mainly through collective blame and calling for legislation that mandates multifaceted violence from the state. Many of these folks will go so far as to justify initiated violence against any animal looking (to the perpetrator) like a “Pit Bull.” To these individuals it does not matter what the dog has or has not done. It does not matter that 99.9% of all dogs, no matter the grouping, will forever be innocent of any and all charges made against them. Abhorrent to the extreme but their hate is obvious, which is why they have no support among the general public.

With PETA, their dog ideology centers on sanctioned violence against Pit Bulls (ending their life) in order to save Pit Bulls from potential future violence. They are far more sophisticated about their messaging and will literally lie to your face about their objectives. They’re also helped by their wide-ranging positive work in other animal-related realms, which produces useful idiots that will blindly defend them against their own quotes and commentary on this specific issue.

Now with PETA’s brass in tow, the hate group has come together and created a website for their hijack. And there’s some interesting and telling tactics on full display within the website…

On the page titled “partners and friends” you will see a perfect representation of how repetitive visuals and links aim to give the illusion of unanimous agreement and wide-ranging support for the idea that Pit Bulls are evil and the nation’s bogeyman that should be banned. In reality, these are a handful of blogs and Facebook pages run by the same 10-15 people.

Among these “partners and friends” are 33 Facebook pages, Merritt Clifton’s website, Colleen Lynn’s and her 3 spinoff websites, Craven Desires’ Blogger page and then 11 more Blogger pages run by the same 3 people, Tony Solesky’s e-book website, Jeff Borchardt’s Daxton’s Friends website, Daxton’s Friends Facebook page, Jeff Borchardt’s WordPress page, Jeff Borchardt’s personal Facebook page, and rounding everything out is PETA. For those counting at home, that’s 5 or 6 separate websites, PETA, and then 50 or so shadow pages.

This is the manifestation of a virtual echo chamber.

In reality, damn near every actual dog and human safety expert organization as well as nearly all mainstream animal welfare groups (except PETA) have publicly stated that breed-specific legislation is both ineffective and wrong.

Regarding the victims of individual dog attacks, it’s always a tragedy when someone truly gets hurt. No one wants other people to get hurt, let alone killed. But with that, every unfortunate scenario is its own happening and comes with its own set of circumstances, and the narrative of the one size fits all response is emptier than uninformed empty. Continuing to scapegoat groups that equate to millions upon millions of dogs does nothing for public safety. It does nothing for getting to the root of a problem. It does nothing for making this world a better place. It does nothing for actual justice.

LAAS Directive 15-001 is the most lawless, vague, reactionary thing I’ve seen done in Los Angeles since starting SwayLove in 2010

Posted April 25th, 2015 in Community, Shelters by Josh

I’ve been mainly absent in 2015 because I’ve fell on some hard times and my personal life has been very difficult to maneuver. I wish I had the time to keep my past pace and also accelerate it, but it’s just not in the cards right now. That being said, this is an urgent piece of writing.

Directive 15-001, put into place by Los Angeles Animal Services head Brenda Barnette, is so problematic that every Los Angeles dog owner not only needs to be aware of what it says but also what it could mean if their dog were to get caught up in it.

LAAS General Manager Directive 15-001 by swaylove

You could do everything right on your end and it could still directly affect your dog. Your dog could quite literally do nothing. Your dog could be on a leash, be on its own property, be simply defending itself from an attacking loose dog, or all of those things at the same time! AND STILL. YOUR DOG. COULD BE IMPOUNDED. UNDER THIS DIRECTIVE.

Incidents happen. All it would take is for an owner of an involved dog, or a 3rd party witness of an incident (or even an alleged witness) to complain to the department. Their hearsay then becomes admissible in an eventual hearing, even if they have every reason to lie or fabricate elements of the incident. All the while, your dog will have been impounded and held in confinement, awaiting this bureaucratic process to play out in its favor. If things go in the best direction, you get your dog back after potentially months of separation, legal wrangling and having to pay an accruing daily impound fee to the city. Any other scenario involves your dog being saddled with a number of different labels and then given conditions to live under, plus the payment of the impound fees. And if labeled “dangerous” by the animal control officer appointed to run the eventual hearing and then ultimately Barnette (who has the final say after reviewing the “evidence”), it would likely be euthanized.

This is not a law. This was not passed by elected officials or even voted on. This wasn’t even voted on by unelected officials. This is the sole directive of Brenda Barnette, and somehow the city is treating it as if it’s actually law, as if it’s in alignment with current law, and as if it’s in agreement with due process under law. It’s not on all 3 counts. As bad, not only is the directive unlawful, but then Barnette gets to have ultimate say over the individualized results of her own unlawful directive. So it’s in her best interest to mostly justify those seizures/impounds after the fact or else it would be like admitting that her process is completely flawed, likely ending the directive and embarrassing her for even putting it in place.

Are the upper echelons of many animal control departments fatally flawed? If your answer is yes, take a look at #1, #2d, #2e, #3a, #3b, #4 and #6. Notation #4 is so incredibly offensive that it is beyond shocking that they even had the hubris to put it into text. It reads “the animal is to be impounded immediately and without delay when the ACO and/or supervisor deems the animal should be impounded for any other reason.” Holy shit. That is so brazenly against the law that it makes my head spin.

Due process, which is the constitutional respecting of people’s rights and thus seeing them as innocent until proven guilty instead of guilty until proven innocent, is completely ignored with the typing out of #2a-2e, #3a, #3b, the infamous #4, #5, #6, #7 and #8. In other words, 90% of the document thumbs its nose at actual due process.

Animal law attorney Marla Tauscher, in her letter to the City Council, makes legal Swiss cheese of the directive. She mentions city attorney Dov Lesel as well as the 3 LAAS Commissioners with law degrees (David Zaft, Larry Gross, Roger Wolfson), asking how this could’ve been done on any of their watches. The Commission has had 4 meetings since its issuing on 2/23/2015, and as far as I know none of the 5 members have taken issue with its use. Tauscher also points to Los Angeles Municipal Code 53.34.2, which requires that animal control return any impounded animal to its owner if notice of an administrative hearing is not served on its owner within 7 days of impound. Directive 15-001 conveniently leaves this part out. Tauscher also states that this directive “appears to be motivated, in part, by a need to give the impression that Barnette’s department is proactive in dealing with ‘dangerous’ animals.” This is my conclusion as well.

So where did this directive come from in the first place? If you remember, last year I wrote about a Studio City couple that got the ear of City Councilman Paul Krekorian after their puppy was killed by a loose dog in Venice Beach. Krekorian, along with Paul Koretz, then floated the idea of trying to install BSL in Los Angeles during one of the Council’s end of the year financial meetings with the Animal Services department. State law prohibits this discriminatory move, so this problematic directive seems to be Barnette’s attempt at appeasing Krekorian. This same couple appeared in an NBC4 I-Team report by Joel Grover in February of 2015. 3 weeks later Directive 15-001 was issued.

I was actually able to sit in on one of these administrative hearings this past week. Come to find out, the city has impounded 79 dogs using this directive in the month of March alone! Each of these cases requires its own hearing, as long as the owner stays engaged, and the hearing that I was in lasted about 5 hours. Brenda Barnette was not present, but it was stated by the hearing officer that she would review the audio testimony as well as the “evidence” and come to a conclusion on the case within 30 days. Now multiply that scenario by 79 (and remember, this is just for March, and the days won’t stop for her to catch up). I asked how many people from those 79 cases indicated that they will show for their hearing… I was told “about half.” What happens to the half of dogs whose owners don’t engage the hearing process? Well, they are deemed “dangerous” and then killed because of it, as there is no hearing and so the circumstantial impound has the final say. For the other half? They sit at the shelter, impounded and confined from the general population, without any contact or interaction with their owners (and taking up space while stray and surrendered dogs die), until they receive a hearing date. The hearing dates are currently being pushed because there is so many of them, and they are being done by an already understaffed animal control department. If you remember, in notation #8 it stated that the hearing “should be set within a short but reasonable time.” What constitutes “short but reasonable”? More vague, open-ended language from the department. This is not okay! Then after the hearing happens, Barnette has an additional 30 days to issue a ruling. All the while, the owners are being extorted for impound fees that multiply every day.

What can you do to oppose this? Come to the next Commission meeting that will be held this Tuesday (4/28) at 7pm at the East Valley shelter in Van Nuys, CA. These inaccessible meetings are normally held down at City Hall during the work week at 10am, so the once in a blue moon night meeting is your best bet to attend and be a part of this conversation. Give a public comment in front of the Commission, as they are supposed to oversee the LAAS department. You can also email the Commission your disapproval of this directive, as well as email the City Council your disapproval of this directive. Tell them why it is offensive to you.

Collective blame, police, dogs, objectivity, perspective

Posted March 5th, 2015 in Parallels, Prejudice by Josh

I support the police. They are each human beings. There’s thousands and thousands and thousands of them from all across the country and they are each individuals with their own lives but who also happen to work for a larger department. Some of the policies and tactics that these departments may use I definitely don’t support. But even so, most officers will go their entire career without ever having to fire their weapon on the job. There’s probably a fair amount of cops who actually follow this page. I do support you. I wish you each protection and good health and clear minds. I stand against the collective blame that you will ultimately suffer when a bad apple police officer goes out and abuses his power to whatever degree. We’ve seen egregious examples of this, both the abuse of power and the sad statements that are made against all police in the aftermath. Many people in the public domain will react to such incidents with anger and thus say things that scapegoat all cops. That’s not fair. It damn sure isn’t right. I’d guess it’s mostly emotion-driven and primarily comes from a place of frustration, and from a sense of a lack of justice being served.

This page, being a Pit Bull-centric page, knows all too well how collective blame works. The ideology of collective blame is the enemy to humanity and to the truth and to justice, not all cops or all Pit Bulls or all whatever else that you’d want to add to this list. I’d say to the readers of this page, be consistent with your point of views and with your arguments on issues and with your tones, or else they intellectually cancel each other out.

Now with all that being said, there’s a loony and loud fringe of society (mostly online and mostly repetitively fake) that absolutely hates Pit Bull-type dogs and any dog that looks like what they’ve determined a Pit Bull to look like or any other dog that they may vitriolically fear by appearance or learned bias alone. They devote their entire lives to highlighting the less than 0.1% of dogs that have ever killed or seriously injured a person or another dog. They ignore the 99.9% that prove daily they’ve done nothing of the sort. They shout from rooftops that x-amount in whatever calendar year have killed people! They subjectively categorize these things by breed when on most occasions they are strictly going off of media statements and nothing further.

Did you know that at least 91 people were killed by police in January of this year alone? That’s more than 2x the amount of people that were killed by dogs of all breeds in the entire year of 2014. At least 85 more people were killed by police in February. Looking backwards, there was at least 1,106 people killed by police in 2014. By that figure, that’s almost 27x the amount of people that were killed by dogs. To further crystallize my point, there’s many (many) millions more dogs in the United States than there are police officers.

I say all of these things solely for objectivity. Not to demonize the police as a whole. Just scaling something for perspective. Look at Sgt. Mills from the Tampa PD who just yesterday was photographed saving a Pit Bull who had been shot and tied to the railroad tracks (to link these subjects). These are human efforts. Cops are mostly really good people. And to those that are acting in an opposite way, remind them of their humanity, don’t just vaguely give them more reason to forget that.

Should we be looking at individual officer conduct? Yes. Should we be allowed to call for changes in police policy and take issue with the almost robotic move to always justify use of force after the fact? Yes. Should we be asking for wearable lapel cameras in an effort to get more transparency? Yes. Should dog owners be asked to keep their dogs on leashes and not let them freely roam around neighborhoods? Yes. Should dog owners be asked to treat their dogs like living beings and not lawn ornaments or alarm systems? Yes. Should individual dogs who have proven that they are indeed vicious then ultimately be treated as such? Yes.

None of this should be offensive. What’s offensive is when certain folks move to blame completely uninvolved entities for the actions of an individual anything. That’s offensive, and ignorant, and completely pointless.

Encountering prejudicial hostility and what that says about the hostile person, not your dog

Posted February 6th, 2015 in Community, Prejudice by Josh

So today myself and my mom went over to Eaton Canyon to take a few of the dogs on a hike. While there, we encountered this really angry person who acted as if he was just looking for someone to fight with his free time. All was well for the first hour and then we hit this break in the trail that led us down into a stream and falls area. Almost immediately this dude comes from out of nowhere and starts haranguing me from the top of the cliff. He must have saw our dogs coming and worked his way down the side of the hill, and with the sole intention of insulting us.

Guy: You must be a really big pussy to feel the need to bring 2 Pit Bulls out here with you.
Me: What you talking about, man?
Guy: Are you that big of a pussy to need to have 2 Pit Bulls?
Me: Nope, they’re just my dogs. Why you being a dick?
Guy: I’m not being a dick. You are. Why do you gotta bring your 2 aggressive Pit Bulls into this stream, there’s 2 more right over there. All these Pit Bulls shit everywhere and no one picks anything up. Did you bring your bags with you?
Me: Yeah.
Guy: Sure you did…
Me: You wanna see them? (Pulling the roll out of my pocket) Here they are.
Guy: Take your aggressive dogs and get the hell out of here.
Me: You don’t even know my dogs, why you calling them aggressive?
Guy: (Shouting now) They all are aggressive. It’s in their nature, you fucking idiot!
Me: The only one being aggressive here is you.
Guy: Yeah, you want some? I am aggressive. I’m a Pit Bull like that.

Keep in mind that while this is happening the 2 dogs that are with us (Falcor and Zeus) are happily swimming together and pouncing around splashing water everywhere. There’s a girl and a guy, both probably younger than me, with their 2 dogs (1 senior Pit Bull-type and 1 little English Bulldog) that are less than 10 feet away but up a level on some concrete. This dude refers to their dogs as Pit Bulls as well. They are looking at me like wtf, who is this guy and why is he so unhinged? My mom is standing there trying not to get her shoes wet and telling me to come on, let’s go.

Long story short, he ends up standing still on his perched area until he’s thoroughly alienated everyone and we all 4 leave this little falls section that the dogs were really happy with. It’s like he was praying to come across another loose cannon personality so that he could pick a fight with them. Either that, or he knew that no one could easily reach him from up on his elevated cliff and so desiring to spew hostile foolishness was his preferred outlet for his low self esteem. I mean, who goes out of their way to make their presence known in such a pretentious way and then break the ice by calling someone a pussy twice? For no reason. Other than the fact that he obviously hated my dogs, not because of anything that they actually did but simply because of the way that they looked and their perceived breed. Another thing, he made it seem as though only Pit Bulls were shitting in the canyon. First off, dogs have no ability to pick up their own shit, and secondly, he’s making the random pile of poop on the ground a Pit Bull issue and not a general dog and their owner issue. That’s rational.

I feel bad for this dude. He’s clearly not too bright, but then he’s taken his ignorance and slanted ways of looking at things and soaked them in aggression and anger and a desire to control and this mentality of needless posturing. And while calling my dogs aggressive. I mean, is that just simple hypocrisy or more like being so out of touch with what is actually happening that you become your own cartoon character? He’s literally out in the middle of a canyon trying to provoke other people by being as big of an asshole as he can be to them. Unloading his learned ignorance onto me and my dogs for no reason whatsoever other than that he’s got this quite obvious axe to grind against Pit Bulls. It kind of boggles my mind.

We encountered at least 100 people today. All nice, all smiling, all actively doing something and all minding their own business. This is kind of a nice metaphor for society as a whole in comparison to individual ideologues who have a visceral disdain and hate for entire groups of anything.

The lunging narrative always seems to be the chosen narrative

Posted January 30th, 2015 in Community by Josh

Officer shoots dog. Officer admits after the fact that he/she overreacted and shot at said dog prior to it ever “lunging” or whatever else they always say. Will this ever happen?

Two L.A. County sheriff’s detectives went to a Lawndale home at 9:30pm on 1/26 to discuss “some tickets and a court date” with an individual living at the residence. The person they wanted to speak with lived in the front house. He was allegedly inside but was listening to loud music at the time. The officers then walked around back and ended up entering a closed off gated fence area that surrounded a back house, which was a totally separate residence. Knox, a 1-year-old black Cane Corso, was inside this gated area and was immediately struck down by multiple bullets without warning or a sound.

The department claims the dog “suddenly lunged at the officers, forcing the detective to fire numerous rounds that all struck the dog.” Lt. Ed Alvarez stated: “They were not bit because of their quick action. Basically, that was the end of the story.” Deputy Crystal Hernandez said: “At some point, the dog lunged and was going to attack one of the detectives. Unfortunately, they had to shoot the dog. It’s unfortunate that the dog had to die. No one wants to do that.”

Ronald Padilla, Knox’s owner, says this is just not true. He went outside to confront the officers and start to record the aftermath of the incident. They had begun going through the yard trying to find the bullet casings that they had just unloaded into Knox. Knox lay dying in the grass, lifting his head up and down and gasping for air. The officers did nothing but walk back and forth throughout the yard, ignoring the dog that was still alive. Another officer who arrived later suggested that Padilla file a complaint so that he could potentially get reimbursed to buy a new dog, as if it was an inanimate object or something.

Why were they going out to ask non-urgent questions of someone at 9:30 at night, nearly 4 hours after it was dark in Lawndale? Why did they go back to the second residence at all? Why did they enter the closed fence of a residence that didn’t even house the person that they wanted to talk to? Why did they let loose an array of bullets into an unsuspecting dog? Why did they continue with their investigative business while the dog was left alive and without assistance from them, basically suffering in the yard?

We get no answers to any of those things. But anytime that a dog is shot by a law enforcement officer it is almost universally characterized after the fact as being the dog’s fault. The dog “lunged.” The dog “attacked.” The dog was acting “threatening.” At what point will a department, any department, ever put out anything other than this retreaded explanation? As is standard, Knox is being blamed for his own death. It’s not fair. Conveniently, there was no recording from any body camera because the officers probably weren’t wearing them. Those things would solve a lot. In a case like this and in a lot of other cases, too.

Warning: Mayeda will attempt to spin the Devitt lawsuit

Posted January 12th, 2015 in Prejudice, Shelters by Josh

My biggest fear coming out of this Benjamin Devitt lawsuit is that Marcia Mayeda will attempt to scapegoat Pit Bulls to the Board of Supervisors in an attempt to dismiss the many allegations leveled against her department and to keep her position as ruler of the county pound system intact.

Up to this point, the Board of Supervisors have shown absolutely no interest in holding Marcia Mayeda accountable for anything whatsoever.

To those on the ground and in the know, Marcia Mayeda is quite possibly one of the worst shelter directors in the entire United States. This is not hyperbole. Her reign of incompetence has been long and protected.

The L.A. County Board of Supervisors are the ones that appointed her way back when, and they are the only ones that can get rid of her now. Thankfully we have had 2 new Board members recently elected, Hilda Solis and Sheila Kuehl, but they need to actually engage this issue and see it for themselves, not just accept a trumped up narrative or do a fabricated “walk-through” while everyone is on their best behavior.

At last week’s meeting another animal control-related issue came up

Supervisors Hilda Solis and Michael D. Antonovich called Tuesday for a study of the county’s animal control system, including looking at relocating shelters to make them more central to constituents and coming up with a plan to repair the existing facilities, which range from 38 to 68 years old.

Okay, that’s great and all, and a very legitimate point to be made. But you can’t just “fix” the buildings and keep the top-level tyrants like Mayeda in there to continue running the show. That’s the equivalent of wrapping a turd in a shiny new sheet of paper with a beautiful ribbon tying it all away from view. The turd is Mayeda’s managing style and her desire for control, silence and compliance through retaliation. You cannot get hired unless you carry the flag for this non-transparency. You cannot volunteer if you ever step out of line. This is the county’s biggest problem, because it affects and soils the culture of the shelter system and breeds apathy and vindictiveness.

Hilda Solis is quoted further down the article as saying…

I don’t want to put any blame on the county staff, because I think the folks I met there on the ground are doing as much as they can with the limited resources. But I can tell you that we do need an overhaul.

Trust, you don’t need to blame the county staff as a whole. Most are good people who care or have simply been beaten down by their superior. But you do need to blame those individuals that are breathtakingly terrible at their jobs, and Marcia Mayeda is one of those people. The lack of innovation and creativity is evident. The lack of lifting a finger to try something new is evident. The desire to dismiss ideas out of hand and make excuses instead is evident. Most of the “county staff” that Solis references, their hands are basically tied when it comes to the scope of making legitimate change. Their hands need to become untied and people need to be held responsible for the jobs that they are hired on to do. That’s the bottom line.

New buildings would be great. Many of the buildings are not up to snuff. New locations would be even greater, as many of these shelters are currently placed in the most obscure of places. With Carson, for example, you could drive right by it and not even know it was there. But none of this matters if you still leave a despot in charge of it all. Real change is brought on by courage and ideas and volunteerism and communication and transparency and working together amidst your differences. None of that is possible with control freaks at the helm.

The article references how overcrowded the shelters are, and mentions Carson specifically, as if the “sheer volume of animals” excuses everything else under the sun from being done. It’s also a way to always excuse the killing or the profiling or the discrimination against the impounded dogs. I was at the Carson shelter 10 days before Christmas and over 1/3rd of the shelter was absolutely empty, yet they were still actively killing dogs every day. I know that this is done so that there are less kennels to clean. I went to the Board of Supervisors meeting that next week to further talk about Mayeda and the department. I mentioned this continuation of “killing for space” while kennel after kennel sits empty. This was my 4th time speaking in front of the Board in the last 3 or 4 months.

History shows that the Board of Supervisors are happy to sit idly by while Marcia Mayeda gets to whitewash any situation. This can change. I hope that it does. But if it doesn’t then it will not be surprising. We all have to voice to this Board that Mayeda IS THE PROBLEM. She should’ve been relieved of her position years ago and shouldn’t be able to continue sucking at the teat of the taxpayer by way of her 6-figure pension. She is a blight on this community and on Los Angeles County. Do not let her spin or pivot around this lawsuit’s purpose.

Part 1: L.A. County DACC being sued by Pamela Devitt’s husband

L.A. County DACC being sued by Pamela Devitt’s husband

Posted January 12th, 2015 in Prejudice, Shelters by Josh

Last week the husband of a woman fatally mauled by dogs in 2013 sued the Los Angeles County Department of Animal Care and Control (DACC), alleging officials at the county agency “knew of problems with the animals and failed to do enough to mitigate the danger.”

Benjamin Devitt filed the lawsuit in Los Angeles Superior Court, alleging wrongful death, fraud, intentional infliction of emotional distress, negligence, negligent misrepresentation and public nuisance.

The article announcing the lawsuit prompted many infamous anti-Pit Bull web aliases to flood the comment section in an attempt to narratively blame millions of uninvolved dogs for Mrs. Devitt’s tragic death. I chose to comment and pointed out that even Devitt’s grieving husband, the one who is actually bringing this lawsuit, doesn’t blame “Pit Bulls” as a whole. Hell, he doesn’t even blame the specific individual dogs who killed his wife! He blames the irresponsible person who allowed this situation to manifest itself, who repeatedly allowed these dogs to roam freely. That person’s name is Alex Jackson. Further, he is now suing the animal control department for repeatedly ignoring these situations when they went reported, among other things that he is now learning about said animal control department.

For example:
-Alex Jackson’s dogs were involved in “at least 7 other altercations in the 18 months leading up to the attack on Devitt.”
-9 witnesses, including several horse riders and a postal worker, testified about these 7 previous encounters.
-One of the horse riders “offered to provide free fencing and help Jackson put it up to keep the dogs on his property,” which Jackson refused.
-Jackson purposefully let his dogs roam in order to “ward off people from his property that was also a marijuana grow house.”
-DACC employees “did not adequately follow up on complaints by area residents about the dogs by citing Jackson, requiring enclosure of his animals and warning the public of the danger.
-The complaint alleges that “DACC employees entered updates in internal records to make it appear that they did not know” about Jackson’s dogs before Devitt was killed, and that they “followed up on complaints after they were made by the public.”
-Some DACC employees who worked out of the Lancaster office “were often under the influence of alcohol and ingesting illegal substances while on the job.”
-DACC Director Marcia Mayeda “knew that some employees were under the influence at work and while driving county vehicles, but failed to fire them.”
-The plaintiff claims that Mayeda “was not truthful” when she told the L.A. County Board of Supervisors in May of 2013 that no dogs were ever found on Jackson’s property when her workers responded to complaints.
-Records show that the DACC began receiving complaints about Jackson’s dogs as far back as 2005.

^Is this not enough red flagage? I mean, holy crap. We have dogs that are consistently left to run loose. We have dogs that are used to protect a drug operation, meaning they likely weren’t very socialized, and probably purposefully not. We have numerous reported prior attacks on other animals. We have numerous reported prior instances about the dogs always being left to run loose. We have a very obvious reckless dog owner. We have an animal control department that failed to genuinely follow up on any of the numerous reported incidents of the past. We have an animal control department that is committing fraud by post-altering internal records to reflect untruths. We have an animal control department that is failing to reprimand its employees when they are blatantly violating codes of conduct while on the job. We have an animal control department that is looking the other way to certain employees driving drunk in their county vehicles. And on, and on, and on.

So as I point these things out in my comment, fanboy Dennis Baker (contributor to many anti-Pit Bull Facebook pages and California resident) gets on and calls me the “biggest troll here.” But wow, I was just stating what the Los Angeles Daily News put into their own article, if Baker even bothered to read it. I mean, how dare I point to a few things that are further fleshed out in the above 10 bullet points? According to Baker and other known exploitation artists, none of that matters and it’s simply the fault of every Pit Bull-type dog and its owner, every single one of each in existence. Yeah, that’s rational. Yeah, that’s not being a hyper-troll.

What is an internet troll? As one of my friends recently said, “trolling is the act of making obnoxious and transparently provocative comments on the internet for the express purpose of inciting conflict.”

So yes, me, simply stating obvious facts about the case (all reported in this very article), as well as about Pamela Devitt’s husband’s own video recorded comments regarding him NOT BLAMING PIT BULLS = Troll. Riiiiight. Dennis Baker and select others, ignoring all reckless elements of this case (and the actual victim’s take on the matter) in an effort to solely scapegoat millions of Pit Bulls and Pit Bull owners for the actions of a few dogs and 1 person = Not a troll. Riiiiight. Way to be objective, guys!

Baker goes on to call me a “little man.” Okay, cute. But this little man has been trying to engage anyone with an anti-dog agenda on a platform that is out in the open and recorded, for almost a year now. Not a single fanboy or fangirl has been willing to discuss any element of these numerous issues with me (or anyone else that doesn’t wholly agree with them). Instead, they conversate in an echo chamber and publicly act as though they are so righteously above the fray to anyone with a differing view. These individuals refuse to (or can’t) even communicate with the common man or woman about anything related to dogs or their blame-heavy positions. But again, I am here to facilitate just this very thing. So if Dennis Baker ever wants to have a human conversation with the “little man” on these many issues, I am ready to do that and would be happy to take part in it.

Dennis (or anyone else who wants to criminalize, regulate, ban or kill millions of dogs simply for the way that they look), you can call me at 657-206-7929 or email me at and I’d be happy to set such a communication up. If you are too scared to have a human to human conversation then you can feel free to leave a message on my voicemail and I’d happily attempt to engage your point that way. What isn’t going to continue to happen is having you guys filling comment sections with tired hatred for dogs that you’ve net met, and not have someone reach out to you and then document your failures to engage in an open platform. That is happening now. That will continue to happen.

Part 2: Warning: Mayeda will attempt to spin the Devitt lawsuit

Pit Bulls and dog owners have nothing to do with “Black Swan” events

Posted January 1st, 2015 in BSL News, Prejudice by Josh

So there’s this new piece of writing coming from a South African citizen that the pro-BSL crowd is super into right about now. I swear, they find “logic” in the weirdest of ways. Anyways, it was published a few days ago by someone named Hauke Liefferink and is now being spread around by Pit Bull hatemongers as a retort to anyone who says that dogs are individuals or that 99.9% of whatever the breakdown of dog breed/type is actually innocent. These are both facts, by the way, and they are reality-based facts that will continue to be impossible to retort. Sure, they can be ignored by someone with a crackpot agenda, but they can’t be repudiated at any level.

Liefferink begins by referencing Nassim Nicholas Taleb’s book, The Black Swan, as a way to align this theory written about in the book to Pit Bulls and Pit Bull owners.

So first, to explain what a “Black Swan” event is… The book’s author uses the example of turkeys, and how from their vantage point they live rather happy and content lives for 364 days out of the year. Each day goes by, they know their routine, they have come to trust the person that feeds them, and they have no reason to think that this will ever change. Then comes a day prior to the Thanksgiving holiday where they are all basically slaughtered in mass, turning their world upside down. To the turkey, they never saw this coming nor expected it. To the butcher, he knew that this was always going to be the case eventually. This is an example of what’s been coined by Taleb as a “Black Swan” event. Okay, that makes sense.

Now Hauke Liefferink comes along, grabs this concept, and starts to blatantly bastardize it. Right out of the gate he claims:

It is in this little fraction of time (0.001%), that Pit Bull owners and turkeys get it very, very wrong, with death being the penalty paid.

Okay, first of all, that sentence alone makes no rational sense. In the example of the turkeys being raised for food, they all die. They all die each and every year. Every single one of them. How in God’s name does this in any way apply to Pit Bulls? It doesn’t. Unless this man can show that every single Pit Bull eventually kills someone, his point falls flat on its face. Reality is almost 100% opposite of what he is implying. He obviously cannot show any of this because 99.9999999999% of all dogs at any level deemed to be a “Pit Bull” (or otherwise) have not killed or seriously mauled someone. This is indisputable.

Liefferink goes on to reference the Colombian child-murderer, torture-killer, and rapist known as “La Bestia,” who has apparently confessed to killing at least 140 children and is suspected of murdering over 400 victims. Liefferink says that he is the most successful serial killer of all time. What does this have to do with anything, you say? Hauke Liefferink goes on to say that “in La Bestia’s 42 years of life prior to apprehension, he killed 0.001% of the time (if he spent 1 hour killing each of his 400 victims).” He then compares “most Pit Bull owner’s reactions” to any attack that may happen in the universe with those same Pit Bull owners “being surprised when a man like Luis ‘The Beast’ Garavito kills another victim.” After all, he’s “already proved his tremendous ability and affinity to do so.” Liefferink ends his paragraph by stating that Garavito may have been a nice guy 99.999% of the time.

Holy wowza, what an incredibly ignorant stretch. The fact that anti-dog folks online are holding this guy’s ludicrous perspective up as a proper response to scientific obviousness just shows you what kind of irrational, non-objective individuals we are dealing with.

The Colombian serial killer is 1 man. He is 1 man that has repetitively committed heinous acts of violence and murder, a total criminal, an obvious piece of filth. I don’t care if 99.999% of the time he wasn’t out physically killing people. He still murdered over 400 people. How in the hell that is relatable to 1 dog, let alone millions, is absolutely beyond me. I mean, it’s so absurd. If any dog, no matter the breed, goes out and kills a human being, whether provoked or not, that dog is usually euthanized almost immediately! Again, if a dog kills 1 person then the dog dies. That’s how that story goes. Yet this Liefferink guy, now being cheered on by anonymous dog-haters across the internet, is trying to compare a psychopathic man’s repetitive criminal intent with any dog’s alleged intent after a singular incident. But I thought that dogs don’t have any comparison to human beings, folks? This is what any Pit Bull-hater that I’ve ever come across will say when they need to dodge any direct or philosophical points that are being made, that at any level involve any kind of a human reference. You can’t have it both ways. Now dogs have criminal intent? Lol. Worse, he’s scapegoating every dog (millions) as being like an individual serial killer with 400 notched kills!

This guy continues…

Thus when Pit Bull owners are telling us that their dogs are so loving, timid and haven’t eaten any kids yet, what they are actually saying is that they haven’t experienced their day 1,000 yet.

We haven’t experienced our “day 1,000” yet? Liefferink says that as if millions of people will inevitably face this day 1,000; never acknowledging that almost all people with Pit Bulls (or any dog) never face such a day. Take me, for example. I’ve lived every day since early 2001 with at least 1 dog that we can go ahead and categorize as being a “Pit Bull-type” dog. It’s now 2015. Since 2010, I’ve been living with 3. I lived nearly 3,285 days with Sway. She did nothing negative to anyone, ever. I’ve since lived over 1,825 days and counting with my 3 current dogs. They’ve did nothing negative to anyone, ever. My mom, my girlfriend, a few cousins, my old roommate, numerous close friends of mine and about 200 acquaintances that I could name-drop in about 20 minutes, from just Los Angeles County alone, would have the same kind of testimony to give about their own dogs. Testimony based on actual history. Testimony based on actual reality. Testimony based on fact. Yet we don’t count to anyone with the agenda of exterminating all dogs that look like Pit Bulls. It’s funny how that works.

He then accuses “Pit Bull owners” of denying science. Denying science? Every peer-reviewed publication that I’ve ever seen in my life not only clearly explains that breed is not the issue, but it then breaks down why it isn’t. Further, quite literally every single dog or human safety expert organization in North America as well as all professional animal welfare groups have come out publicly stating that breed-specific legislation is not only ineffective but unjust.

Liefferink sources numerous Wikipedia links referring to dog fighting and bull-baiting, both totally illegal, mind you. He wants you to believe that every single dog mixed at any level with a Pit Bull is a “fighting dog” that comes from an actual dog fighting background and environment. In reality, so few dogs, Pit Bulls or otherwise, even fit that history. Actual dogs coming from a fighting environment are incredibly rare, and those that do, most of them are bait dogs or dogs that don’t show the ability to be the kind of fighters that scumbag dog fighters even desire. This notion that every Pit Bull is a dog fighting dog is completely untrue. It’s fear-mongering. It’s a lie. He then sources a study from 1990 which involved 168 Philadelphia children. Only 12 of those 168 children were hospitalized following their incident with whatever dog they encountered. German Shepherds were identified in this study as being the most common “perpetrator,” yet they go unmentioned in Liefferink’s rant. The study explains in no way how they went about identifying any of the dogs, and the unreliability of Pit Bull identification has been made quite clear by, wait for it, scientific studies. It states that 46% of the dogs were “provoked” prior to biting. It states that over half of the dogs were freely roaming at the time of incident. None of these things are even highlighted by Hauke Liefferink.

Are we noticing the trend of outright ignoring any and everything that overwhelmingly contradicts the Pit Bull-hating narrative?

Upon viewing this trash heap of an article being shared around Facebook by the klan, I couldn’t help but take note of some of the comments rolling in from their echo chamber. One commenter posted a YouTube video link showing Andrew Millard, an investment advisor out of North Carolina, taking a few minutes to explain what a “Black Swan” event is to his subscribers. At around 1:58 in the video he says this… “On the other hand, we should never let fear dictate our actions.” Well said. Apparently they didn’t even watch it.

For BSL-advocates, dog-banners, dog-hating exterminators, collective blame ideologues and prejudicial control freaks, fear is the only thing that dictates their every move.

My take on Laura Schlessinger’s comments about Pit Bulls

Posted December 30th, 2014 in Media, Prejudice by Josh

My take on Laura Schlessinger saying what she said about Pit Bulls is that no matter how much you may not like it, she has a right to say it. We all have a right to say whatever we want to say. I personally found her comments to be spectacularly ignorant, but we all have a right to be ignorant. It’s obviously unfortunate that she chose to flippantly behave in that way on the platform that she’s privileged to have. It’s also unfortunate that she doesn’t seem to grasp or understand the real-life consequences that her words will have, perpetuating unjust cycles, and equally unfortunate that she provided literally zero context to her statements.

Take this one for example, speaking about a shelter she visited…

Well, it was about 95% Pit Bulls, or Pit Bull-mixes. Now, I know this is going to get somebody angry but I think that they should all be put down. First of all, they were taking up space and nobody was going to adopt them. That’s why they were all there. People were getting rid of them.

There is a stunning amount of context missing from such a pompous statement. Pit Bulls, which ultimately is a slang term, are by far and away the most discriminated against dog on the planet. This leads to breed-specific legislation, routine profiling, perpetuated myths, collective blame, generalized fear, housing restrictions, among other things related to existential hardship. So no, that’s not “why they were all there.” Schlessinger clearly has no idea what she is talking about. Just in referencing her own local shelters, she is casting the net and speaking on behalf of people she has never and will never meet. Secondly, people do adopt them, a lot. That’s why they are one of the most popular types of dog in the United States of America. There are millions of them across the country. This is reality.

So as Schlessinger is clearly an idiot on this topic, I support her right to be an idiot. When this becomes a freedom of speech thing, I will stand with those not looking to ban or blacklist speech, no matter what kind of speech it is or who happens to say it. I also support those speaking their minds to her sponsors, and that is a legitimately powerful form of protest. So in closing, she has a right to say whatever she wants, just as we each have a right to criticize her for it, and we also have a right to simply turn her off. Don’t try to disappear someone, rather objectively inject common sense and give a differing public perspective to their nonsense.