A pit bull isn’t a breed, they’ll point out (often in ALL CAPS). Mistaken identity is one line of defence. Blame the owner, not the breed, is another. And, as a seeming last resort, blame the victim.
True, a pit bull is no purebred, but this is a weak argument in the face of tragedy. The crossbreed was first dreamt up by man 100 years ago, an unnatural selection that created a strong-jawed, muscular canine. And mistaken identity, frankly, seems a bit of wishful thinking from afar.
As for the final two defenses, I suggest there’s more than enough blame to go around. And to those who blame the child – or parents – I only hope you never have to turn that finger back on your loved ones.
Whether pit bulls by design are volatile beasts or misunderstood beings, I leave to you. I only know that when an animal does as much damage as was suffered by Emma, I will endeavour to accurately report what happened, as attributed to witnesses and officials, including breed and circumstances.
There’s your ‘media conspiracy.’
In this particular case, however, the arguments haven’t stopped with the usual vitriol. They branch out to personal attacks and vendettas, all based on misinformation. Ironically, one of the reasons Biniaz was so grateful for being named Miss Universe Canada last May was so she could draw attention to not only aggressive dogs but bullying.
It looks like, in one fell swoop, she’s managed both.
Still, there’s nothing fair about it. It’s unfair to Biniaz, unfair to the dog’s owner, unfair to Emma and, ultimately, unfair to the pit bull itself, who paid the ultimate price.
As for her canine campaign, Biniaz notes – politely but emphatically – that breed bans do more harm than good. Instead, she calls for mandatory muzzles on dogs that are considered dangerous – including rottweilers, pit bulls, dobermans and German shepherds – when out in public or near children.
And for that strong stance, her critics are no doubt ready to pounce again.
But also for that – quoted accurately – she’s willing to live with those battle scars.