Target: Denis Coderre, Mayor of Montreal
Goal: Repeal bylaw that prevents new pit bulls from living in Montreal and imposes restrictions on pit bulls already living there.
Dozens of concerned dog owners gathered outside Montreal City Hall to protest a new bylaw that unfairly discriminates against pit bulls. Existing pit bulls will be required to be microchipped and sterilized, and their owners will be required to prove that their dogs have no criminal record. On top of these restrictions, new pit bulls will not be allowed to live in Montreal.
This bylaw was passed in response to a pit bull’s fatal mauling of a woman from Pointe-aux-Trembles earlier this summer. While her death was certainly tragic, that does not justify Montreal’s discrimination against a breed that is already so misunderstood. It is more than likely that, if it had been a different breed of dog that had mauled someone, the incident would be categorized as isolated and would not lead to a city-wide restriction on that breed.
Pit bulls are being singled out because of their reputation. Sadly, they are often depicted as aggressive and violent, and incidents like this recent mauling certainly do not help. However, any dog has the potential to behave in this way, regardless of their breed, through no fault of their own. It is true that pit bulls are among the most commonly used dogs for fighting, but the only ones to blame for that are the humans who train them to fight.
Don’t let all of Montreal’s pit bulls be punished for the actions of a single dog. Demand that Mayor Coderre reverse this ban and end discrimination against these misunderstood dogs.
Dear Mayor Coderre,
The recent mauling of Christiane Vadnais was a deeply unfortunate tragedy, and it seems only logical that the city of Montreal should do something to prevent something like this from happening again. However, I do not believe that imposing restrictions on pit bulls is the answer.
Pit bulls already face severe discrimination because of their reputation as being “vicious” and “aggressive.” This discrimination is evident in the countless animal shelters that are overflowing with these dogs, who are often seen as undesirable pets. It is true that many pit bulls are used as fighting dogs, but that is a result of human greed and cruelty, not the animals’ natural inclinations. Pit bulls are strong, athletic dogs, as are many other breeds, but given the chance, they would much rather use that strength to fetch, run, play, and protect their loved ones than use it to hurt other animals or people.
These dogs are not natural-born killers, and they should not be punished for the terrible actions of a single dog. I must ask that the ban on new pit bulls be reversed. Some of the restrictions on pit bulls currently living in Montreal are not unreasonable, but they should either be applied to all dogs or none of them, not just pit bulls. Microchipping and sterilization are actually very effective ways to keep peoples’ pets safe and to stymie the growing problem of overpopulation, but it is unjust to apply these mandates strictly to one group of dogs.
I ask that you look past the exaggerated and biased depictions of pit bulls and repeal this bylaw. Pit bulls are just as loving, playful, and intelligent as any other breed when given the proper training and love. Do not allow them to be treated unfairly.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: RK Photo Booth