Minions are trying to censor me from talking about their schemes

Posted May 17th, 2016 in Community, Rescue, Shelters by Josh

So the reaction to my latest article has been predictable and tyrannically swift. I’ll continue to point out what is being done and you can continue making up your own mind.

Lisa Cowan immediately dropped in on my Facebook page to fill up the thread with her personal drama regarding Desiree Golembieski. You can see that here. She told me that was not her IP address. She threatened to sue me. She sent me countless private messages with attachment after attachment and then threatened to sue me there as well. When I responded to her on my SwayLove Facebook wall she actually reported me to Facebook and they have since barred me from using the website.

Here’s the messages that have apparently gotten me barred from Facebook:


As you can see, I broke no Facebook guidelines.

Moving on, Jer Edelman has sent me 34 Facebook messages since this morning. I’d had not a single solitary interaction with her before this. She also posted on my website that she is in Colorado and that my IP mapping was bullshit. Little does she know, her telling me that she is in Colorado further explains something that I couldn’t link anybody back to up to that point. The alias “Chen Ling Chen,” which uses the email address, was randomly responding from (you guessed it) Colorado. Here you can see a response from this alias on 5/12 and then another response from Jer Edelman this morning.

Peep just a sampling of what Jer wrote me in private message:


Who speaks like that? She’s admittedly on vacation with her family and yet she’s been trolling my website for days while using fake aliases and blowing up my email box this morning. Also, she was silly enough to include a screenshot of a text message that she received from someone talking about my past relationship with my girlfriend. I’d be willing to bet $1,000 this was written by Kyle Schwab, and as always, he is giving Jer what he believes to be inside information on me because he’s continuing to hide behind women. They do his dirty work for him, it’s patently obvious. Kyle is also more gossipy than any female and is certainly arrogant enough to proclaim to know how my personal bills shook out. The fact that he’s never met me or my ex-girlfriend? Those are minor details. In regards to my job, I certainly have one. I feel no need to prove it on here so that these deranged people can then start attempting to get me fired. I’m at least somewhat hip to their games.

Within the last 24 hours I’ve also learned that Sharisse Wright is sharing in the trolling, as her and Jer Edelman share faux email accounts as well as login information. Sharisse is also in San Diego and was probably behind a few of the comments that I originally attributed to Jer.


Above is just a minor example as to how cliques roll. I included JJ Nielson in this screen because I actually know her in real life and we were friends for years. She now refers to me as “the blogger.” Just thought that that was cute. Notice how her post completely ignores the pretty basic original point that I was trying to make when it came to any shared involvement by LAAS. Much like this communication, the point that I was making has purposefully been bastardized and ignored.

Regarding the IPs, anyone that feels compelled can certainly look into static IPs, VPNs, etc. Those with a technical background will know what I am talking about and what is possible when using those tools. These people were busted and now they are using every trick in the book to pivot or straight up shut me down.

That brings me to Kyle. He put out a few posts passive-aggressively talking tough. See below. In a separate post he stated that he’s never had anything to do with animal control (city or county), yet in reality he has bragged over the last many years online that he’s been an unofficial animal control officer forever. I vividly remember another post where Schwab and then cohort Nicole McCurry bragged that they’d soon be “cleaning up the valley” of animal hoarders and abusers. Apparently this is all unrelated to his now newfound perception of himself.


Breaking down a web of harassment and how it may give insight into other things

Posted May 17th, 2016 in Community, Rescue, Shelters by Josh

This past week I wrote on my website about Rachel Kennedy and the raid by LAAS on her Lucky Puppy Rescue. Just a day earlier Rachel had reached out to me to thank me for merely asking on Facebook what seemed to me to be a fairly obvious question.


When we did speak on the phone we talked about what happened with the raid itself as well as what went on leading up to this situation. I had a lot of questions and I asked them and she answered them. But with or without speaking to Rachel, some obvious questions should jump off the page.

I proceeded to write what I wrote. Within what I wrote there’s a lot of questions being asked. I asked these questions from the standpoint of seeing Los Angeles Animal Services’ proportional culpability. They played a role here. Rachel is to blame for having as many dogs as she had. For sure. But she also got the majority of those dogs (and countless other dogs that have since been adopted) from the city shelter system. There is a process that they follow. There is absolutely no way that someone in some position somewhere with the city did not equally have a hand in creating this situation. That’s the crux of my article. That’s the crux of what I wrote.

I did not write what I wrote to unequivocally defend Rachel Kennedy as a human being outside of this incident. I do not know Rachel. Was I criticizing LAAS within what I wrote? Hell yes. The criticism was specific.

But see, some people will hear you criticize anything and then just immediately jump to brand you as being anti-that. Am I anti-LAAS, anti-Best Friends/NKLA or anti-city in general? No, no and no. Yet it seems far easier for some if we just put people onto teams. From my observations, a good number of people in rescue seem to operate on all-or-nothing mentalities. You disagree with them on something like mandatory S/N or TNR or low-income pet ownership and you’re all of a sudden branded an “idiot” who gets tuned out on all other issues going forward. Further, hypocrisy will sometimes creep in (and principle out) because some people would rather defend their friends and remain in cliques as opposed to having a little friction on something and remaining friendly anyways.

I say these things because there is a lot of this going on all of the time. This goes on in general and it’s certainly going on with this situation. This situation is complicated and it is layered. It is not Rachel/good, city/bad; or Rachel/bad, city/good.

Within the last 6 days I’ve come to learn much more. I apologize in advance but this is where everything gets convoluted. I’ve taken lots of time to document what follows as thoroughly as I can.

Everything leads me to the response to my article.

The same day that I published, some in the comment section and elsewhere online began to speculate who was behind what happened to Rachel. Kyle Schwab’s name came up. Kyle Schwab is allegedly Rachel’s ex-boyfriend and has been involved with other individuals prior to them too being raided by LAAS. Kyle’s name was coming up so much even before me writing what I did that I just outright asked him if he was involved. He told me to call him and so I did. We had at least an hour long phone conversation which happened before I published what I wrote. He did 90% of the talking, which was mostly cordial, but also felt the need to threaten me twice. Near the end of our conversation he got very agitated when it was clear that I wasn’t swallowing his perspective on all the things we were discussing. Still, nowhere in what I actually wrote do you see Kyle Schwab’s name.

Fast forward about a day and a portion of the comment section began to fill up with what were clearly anonymously created troll accounts. They were all countering the notion from others that Kyle was involved and then personally going after me for allowing an open comment section on my website. They got nastier and nastier as they kept posting. Very little of what they ever said was about the specifics of what I had written. Instead it was deflective and aggressive commentary meant to make sure that everyone knew that I was a moron with poor investigative skills who couldn’t write.

One of the first anonymous accounts that showed up was created to impersonate a woman named “Desiree Golembieski.” About 5 hours later I was actually contacted by the real Desiree Golembieski asking that I take down the impersonator posts. I verified she was who she said she was and then took them down. This fake account continued to repeatedly post and I’d delete each new entry. The next fake account to show up was “Derla Golemshauer,” followed by an impersonator account for “Kim Keswick” (another real person), followed by “Chen Ling Chen.”

What they didn’t initially know was that my website automatically tracks IP addresses. I eventually told them it did and that they should knock it off. They continued. Well, I’ve since taken their IP addresses and mapped out exactly where each account was posting from. Some of the accounts were being shared by different people. It’s quite elaborate but also quite pathetic. At the end of the day, these are grown adults hell bent on personally spinning and degrading what I wrote as well as insulting me for simply daring to defend Rachel Kennedy.

But why? That’s always the question, right? Sometimes there isn’t an answer that makes sense in the moment but with the help of others it’s sure to get clearer and clearer as we go along.


Through IP mapping I’ve been able to pretty clearly decipher that the people repeatedly posting on my website under fake aliases were Jer Edelman, Marcy Janes and Lisa Cowan. The IP geography of each closely resembles where each woman lives (which I’ve confirmed from others while not posting further zoomed images for their own privacy). Not coincidentally, these ladies are each known to harass people online and off at the behest of, you guessed it, Kyle Schwab.

Equally non-coincidental, Desiree provided me with the IP address of Jer Edelman, who used to have access to Desiree’s Facebook account back when they were actually friends. They then had a falling out, Jer tried locking Desiree out of her own Facebook account and has been (along with others) harassing her ever since. The IP address that Desiree gave me points to the same exact location as 3 of the troll accounts posting anonymously on my website. Imagine that. Equally non-coincidental, Rachel told me that Kyle considers Jer Edelman to be one of his best friends. Rachel’s never met her. Equally non-coincidental, Desiree told me that Jer Edelman has had it out for Rachel Kennedy for a while now. Equally non-coincidental, Jer Edelman apparently put up a very cryptic Facebook message just a week or two prior to the raid on Rachel Kennedy, claiming that someone was going to be getting theirs or something to that effect. And equally non-coincidental, I’ve actually heard voicemails that were sent to me that cement Kyle and Jer’s tumultuous alliance. I won’t get into it further, but they exist.

For the record, I personally had no idea who any of these women were until this past week. I’ve admittedly been away from SwayLove and not doing nearly as much as I used to. Yet as they posted anonymously they continued to speak about me in ways that were definitely childish but also highly insightful. Insightful because it sounded like Kyle Schwab, they were talking about me as if (to them) they knew who I was. Again, I don’t know any of these women. However, Kyle has been my “friend” on Facebook for years and we spoke on the phone just days ago about this very situation.

Here’s all the evidence from my first post:

The back end comment section (ordered from earliest to latest).
The back end comment section with IP mapping linking different comments to the different women (ordered from earliest to latest).
The comment thread prior to me deleting it (conversation format).
The comment thread with IP mapping linking different comments to the different women (conversation format).

My initial reach out to Kyle, 5/9.
Kyle’s text message to me, 5/12.
My response to Kyle’s text message, 5/12.

^As you can see, Lisa Cowan makes a brief appearance to call people “idiots” and wants everyone to know that the landlord called animal control. Whether he ultimately did or didn’t, it’s far more complicated than that.

Jer Edelman wants you to know that Rachel is crazy and she seems to have a pretty unhealthy obsession with Desiree Golembieski. She doesn’t like Marla Tauscher (neither does Kyle) and keeps bringing her up. Jer’s the one directly defending Kyle even though I hadn’t ever said his name. She constantly talks about me as if she knows me, but yet she doesn’t. She keeps sarcastically talking about my “personas” and my outlooks on life (reeks of Kyle). She constantly calls me a hypocrite and in no way understands how I use the term “selective enforcement.” She repeatedly overlooks my simple point about LAAS to instead praise them and let them off any hook that they may be snagged on. She thinks that she knows everything there is to know about Rachel’s situation (reeks of Kyle).

Marcy Janes is the longer-winded one who writes up comparative examples that are nothing more than red herrings. She doesn’t quite understand the concept of selective enforcement (neither does Kyle) and likes to take personal shots at me (my appearance, my age, my writing style, my lack of investigative skill). She wants you to know that I’m a conspiracy theorist (Kyle’s big on referring to this as that also), and she wants you to know that I hate the shelter system and have a personal vendetta against everyone who’s trying to make it better. She also wants you to know that I’m purposefully harming the entire rescue community by what I’ve written (even though I’m simply defending an actual rescuer). She wants you to know that I don’t rescue or foster (even though I’ve fostered many), and that I do nothing to help homeless pets. She’s equally condescending and arrogantly dismissive (so is Kyle). At one point she tells me to “stick to selfies” and “be quiet and look pretty.” Again, I don’t even know this woman! She is by far the nastiest one. She also keeps embedding YouTube rap videos from the mid-nineties (Um, Kyle?).

Jer and Marcy heavily speak in Orwellian inversions (so does Kyle) and they are both big on guilt by association (so is Kyle).

Whewwwww. I’ll once again apologize for the craziness of this post. But I needed to move this muddled nightmare off of my Rachel article and give them their own spot to further condemn me.

My take: By using conduits in the form of other females or fake profiles that he can hide behind, Kyle Schwab can then say whatever he wants and not have it visually come back on him directly. This allows Kyle to have plausible deniability while he savages other people from behind the scenes. That’s what I’ve gathered, and this is based on afar observation over a long period of time, my own conversations with Kyle, and the similar content regarding what these aliases say when compared with how Kyle expresses himself.

It’s my opinion that Kyle Schwab and his named minions most definitely had something to do with why Rachel Kennedy was raided by LAAS. I can’t prove the level of their involvement but I can certainly prove that they’ve been attempting to harass me through anonymous means simply for attempting to tell Rachel’s side of the raid (which had absolutely nothing to do with them from Rachel’s perspective). I’m also learning that they’ve done this to many other people. They harass and they intimidate and they threaten in order to keep people silent. Why these women specifically? Hell if I know. Based on something that I heard with my own ears, Jer Edelman seems to be blackmailed by Kyle. I do know that people are legitimately scared of Kyle Schwab because he seems to have some kind of an unofficial link with animal control and has shown that he, for whatever reason, remains above their enforcement of law.

What is actual selective enforcement? Giving someone a verbal heads up and a week or two to get your proverbial house in order prior to animal control dropping by on a complaint vs. animal control showing up unannounced and proceeding to raid you outside of due process. That’s selective enforcement. Knowingly allowing one person to have 20+ dogs while another person cannot. That’s selective enforcement. Knowingly looking the other way on sterilization requirements while enforcing it upon others. That’s selective enforcement. Not citing holier-than-thou rescuers for breeding or selling puppies while using the department to cite others. That’s selective enforcement, as well as deeply hypocritical.

I’ll end stating that people should sincerely learn how to be themselves and dare to stand on their own feet while taking accountability for their own situations. These kinds of callous actions (detailed above) by petty, emotionally irrational grown adults are what in actuality give everyone else involved in “animal welfare” work a bad reputation with at least a portion of the general public. It’s no fairer than any other negative stereotype that exists but it does exist because there are people in existence that surely act unstable, crazy and/or cruelly. I can’t explain why some people behave this way. To me this is not how human beings should behave. All I can do is attempt to coalesce what I’ve gathered into a readable presentation for you to then make up your own mind. Be better to each other and find a level of empathy because we all could benefit.

Los Angeles Animal Services has totally screwed over Rachel Kennedy and here’s why

Posted May 10th, 2016 in Community, Rescue, Shelters by Josh

As many of you well know, Lucky Puppy Rescue in Studio City as well as the home of its owner was raided on Friday, May 6th. This was reported on numerous television stations after Los Angeles Animal Services confiscated over 60 of her dogs from both locations. On the surface it sounds bad, it sounds neglectful, it sounds irresponsibly insane. Not so fast.

I had immediately taken interest in this story because after watching the different news packages it didn’t make any sense whatsoever. Even the television anchors were kind of perplexed when attempting to explain the justification behind such a move. There was no neglect or abuse claims, this was simply a permitting issue. Add to that, animal control departments are oftentimes known for their selective enforcement of laws, meaning they’ll take down one person for something that they’ll let 20 others slide on. It stunk of either retaliation or being a manufactured show raid. For what reason? I have no idea.

The media coverage, which has only given you a glimpse into this story, has been pretty fair thus far. However Los Angeles Animal Services is going to use this quick and vague coverage to their full advantage while they craft a public narrative that makes them look good and Rachel bad. I’m going to cut them off at the path and try to break this down a little further before LAAS can pollute people’s minds with half-truths.

Make no mistake, what happened here is a total travesty. Rachel was used by the department and then burned in a blindsided manner that I would never wish upon my worst enemy. As someone who actually cares about both people and dogs, I’m highly offended that this happened and I want answers to the obvious questions. I’ve never personally met Rachel but I spoke with her today and I will certainly defend her against what is being done to her by this department and certain members of the animal “welfare” community. Someone needs held accountable for this completely immoral and disgraceful decision by the department and Los Angeles as a community should not tolerate such a thing being swept under the rug.

This is what you should know before anything else:

Rachel Kennedy has spent upwards of $186,000 on shelter fees alone in the last calendar year. Her non-profit Lucky Puppy Rescue was trying to get New Hope rescue pull rights with the city, which allows you a greatly reduced rescue rate when pulling an animal, for years but was never given this allocation until roughly 2 months ago. In the meantime, she had simply been publicly adopting each animal at full price and with her own money as they needed rescued. The staff at the East Valley city shelter was fully aware of this. They even encouraged it and would suggest to her that she take countless other animals as their need grew greater.

For example, 2 ½ weeks ago Rachel rescued 10 dogs from the East Valley shelter. One mother and her 4 babies, and then 5 other little dogs. Days before that she rescued a dog named Dalton that had been hit by a car and was missing an eye from the accident. Again, this dog came from East Valley.

Rachel told me that there were many instances (more than 5 times) within the last calendar year where she would outright adopt between 10-20 dogs from East Valley in a single visit. This was done while working with Veronica Perry, the rescue coordinator at the shelter.

Now I’d note that unless you have a kennel permit, you can only have 3 dogs and 3 cats within the city of Los Angeles. This is the law for everyone. The Los Angeles Animal Services department raided Rachel Kennedy by complete surprise on Friday, May 6th, 2016. It was due to this exact permitting reason.

Take a step back. Any dog that leaves any shelter goes out with paperwork. This is rescue or adoption paperwork, this is medical history paperwork, this is licensing and spay/neuter and microchipping paperwork. As a New Hope partnered rescue or an off-the-books rescue you are further required to show paperwork back to the city when those rescued animals are eventually adopted out from your organization. Rachel Kennedy had been doing this for years. She was providing the city with the appropriate paperwork back, but more importantly they were providing her with individualized paperwork every single time that she saved a dog from a city facility. They cannot claim ignorance. They cannot claim uninvolvement. They knew and they allowed this to go on, even encouraged its going on. This is an indisputable fact.

So let’s look at Friday specifically. Animal control officer Tamralyn Shepphird along with others came to Rachel’s residence at around noon and let themselves onto her property by opening and advancing through the gate that is at the front of her yard. This is trespassing, especially knowing what followed. This visit came by complete surprise to Rachel which is why she let them in her home to begin with. She knew that she was far over the legal limit and she knew that they knew that she was far over the legal limit. This wasn’t initially threatening. She viewed these officers as friendly extensions of the very shelter that she had been working hand-in-hand with for years.

There was no warrant written or served.

At the same time they were advancing onto Rachel’s home, they timed it so that others would be showing up at her retail facility in Studio City.

Just for further context, Rachel generally keeps around 25 dogs at her rescue facility/retail store at any given time. They are watched by a staff that is there 24 hours a day. The rest of the dogs, who were either serious medical cases or hospice dogs, stayed within her 5 bedroom house. Why did they stay at her home? Because staff with LAAS (including animal control officer Tamralyn Shepphird and rescue coordinator Veronica Perry) have told her that she cannot publicly display dogs who have ongoing medical issues or are sick. To that same point, the hospice cases were being lovingly normalized to her home environment because that is what Rachel wanted to give them in the end. The staff and thus the department clearly knew this. This was not a secret. This was a well-known fact.

Pissed yet? Or just confused?

That morning Rachel had brought 10 of the dogs from the rescue facility to her home to give them bubble baths. The floor was a little wet and she had towels placed down in different spots to counter the water trails. Her house is separated by 5 rooms that are setup to accommodate different groups of dogs, mostly smaller dogs. None of these dogs are crated and they go outside to play and relieve themselves in her huge backyard that is fenced.

Once animal control entered the property it soon became apparent that they weren’t there for a friendly visit. As imagined, many of the dogs were scared. Just try to envision it. Rachel put the few dogs that she knew to be more dominant towards strangers outside in her backyard so they’d avoid the officers.

For the next nearly 6 hours animal control were in her home and the majority of the dogs were locked inside as they did their “investigation.” As the animals peed and defecated it was photographed for evidence. This will likely be used against Rachel if the department dares to publicly suggest the dogs were being neglected. One dog, a blind and deaf cocker spaniel named Magic Mike, wore a diaper which fell off amidst this chaos. Officer Shepphird immediately took photographs of the poop that fell out of Mike’s diaper. She snapped pictures of him stepping in it and then of his paws with poop on them.

Do you see where this is going?

Along with the 60+ dogs that were taken, Rachel’s 3 personal dogs were also taken as well as her roommate’s 3 elderly cats. As you can imagine, Rachel is totally devastated and feeling equally confused and betrayed.

Over the weekend she attempted to go to the East Valley shelter to visit the impounded dogs, not to mention her own personal dogs. She brought them food and their medication. Officer Shepphird told her that she could not see them, wouldn’t even tell her which shelter they were at (they’ve been spread out), and wouldn’t confirm or deny that the dogs were receiving their proper individualized care. Some of the dogs needed insulin shots, some of the dogs are dying from cancer, etc. Rachel’s food was also refused. Veronica Perry and other staff members who had worked hand and hand with Rachel for years would no longer even speak to her. This is the same Veronica Perry that would send Rachel emails about dogs in need and sign off on the adoptions of dogs in bunches.

Rachel estimated that from the hundreds of dogs that she has rescued within the last few years alone, that 80% of them have come from the East Valley city shelter in Van Nuys.

And here’s a little legal note. You cannot seize someone’s dogs if there is no clear abuse going on. If so it would allow for an emergency seizure. Otherwise, there needs to be a pre-seizure hearing that takes place first. This is all part of that tricky little thing called due process. Something that both the city and county of Los Angeles routinely avoids in numerous differing forms.

So that is what you need to know before you look at this through whatever prism you choose.

Was Rachel Kennedy technically over the city limit? Hell yes, way over. Did the city department, certain shelter employees and their animal control officers know about this for years? Hell yes. Did LAAS continue giving her dogs while knowing this fact? Hell yes. Does the paper trail prove this fact? Hell yes.

It seems like a total setup. Why? I don’t know! Don’t ask me to justify the cruelty behind these actions that were taken against Rachel. The irony in all of this is that they’re likely to blame Rachel for cruelty, while her dogs sit in concrete cells away from any sense of normalcy that they had prior. Dogs that were majority hospice cases and battling medical issues, pulled from the very same shelter/department that raided her. Included in the raid was a brand new mother with 20-day-old puppies. Included in the raid were Rachel’s 3 personal dogs and Rachel’s friend’s 3 personal cats. The level of unbelievable here cannot be described properly.

So it begs the questions… Why was Rachel Kennedy raided? Why would any city shelter give her more than 3 dogs if they knew that she was already at her limit and not properly permitted to add more? Why did staff look the other way when certainly having to file all of the appropriate paperwork that is involved in these transactions? Why is the same staff now ignoring Rachel, acting as if they are void of empathy or decency? Why is the department dead set on demonizing Rachel while ignoring all accountability and responsibility in regards to helping create this situation? Who is calling the shots on this weaponized selective enforcement? Finally, why does the city continue to ignore due process of law?

I’m well aware that I’m likely to be disparaged by people who may need to blindly defend a system, shelter or person from what they feel like is a personal attack. I don’t know how it could be framed that way, especially after what you just read, but it’s inevitably going to end up that way coming from the perspective of some. That is fine. I simply can’t watch this happen and not say something. Silence perpetuates the ills that we all can recognize in our own heart of hearts. Rachel clearly got in over her head. That is apparent. She is a bleeding heart. That is apparent. But they burned the fuck out of her and that is an absolute fact. This cannot be defended. Please try. Critics of what I wrote here likely won’t respond to anything that actually happened and instead seek to character-defend. That’s one of the problems within the animal “welfare” community, too much focus on personalities and not enough on consistency or principle, but I don’t want to get sidetracked here.

For the record, I actually like many of the people at East Valley. They have a hardworking base that is dedicated to trying to save lives. I know this because I know some of them, including Veronica! I don’t know why this happened. But what can’t be justified, even a shred, is the aftermath and the attempt to dismiss accountability that is very likely to come. No way, no how will that happen.

I’ll end responding to the notion that Rachel abused or neglected these dogs. Look at any amount of evidence already in the public domain. It seems like a lie and people in the know shouldn’t be able to espouse such a concept on the fly and after the fact.

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