I just finished watching a documentary on pit bull breed bans called Beyond the Myth, and it touched frequently enough on how people see pit bulls as related to drug dealers and “”“thugs!!”“” and that’s part of the reason they’re so vehemently targed by breed discrimination and like
it’s so obviously related to which social classes tend to own what breeds, especially since “pit bull” isn’t actually a breed in the sense of an exact kennel club breed standard but is a term that covers a few breeds plus mixes of them, so hey guess what social class usually winds up with super friendly mixed breed rescues and not $1500+ designer breeds mixed with poodles? AND enacting blanket legislation against the breed is even worse for lower class families who can’t fight in court for their rights even when their dog ISN’T a pit bull, or they don’t have the time and resources to claim and relocate and prove it was relocated within the brief span of time before it’ll be put down. Breed bans are just so convenient for the government to be able to claim they’re solving a dog violence issue while just causing trouble for many innocent citizens without the power to fight back all while not actually statistically speaking helping at all
The documentary also touched on service dogs, and how pit bulls are a good breed because they’re compact and yet quite strong which I’d never thought about, plus generally v friendly and motivated. An interviewed veteran with a pit bull service dog recounted how they refused to register his service dog in the first place when they found out it was a pit bull, and the person told him to his face that he wasn’t disabled if he wasn’t deaf or blind. (I believe he got legal representation and won.)
Obviously I also agree that breed bans are stupid on account of dangerous dogs/poorly trained dogs, not dangerous breeds, but also sociologically speaking it’s clearly related to social class and race and the media’s portrayal of who owns the dogs and the history of linkage with dog fighting rings and who was/is involved with those.
I was actually rather dissatisfied with how the documentary only interviewed pleasant, primarily middle class, suburban, primarily white dog owners. I think sometimes there’s a desire to rebrand negatively viewed breeds, like “Pit bulls aren’t just fighting ring dogs, they’re loving family members of Normal, Civilized families just your Your Neightbors!” And while that might solve some breed ban issues, it doesn’t address the fact that the negative stereotypes came from human-based social inequalities, nor does it fairly address the fact that many inner city, lower class, or just general /people/ that make the nice suburban rebranders uncomfortable should be allowed to own whatever the hell kind of dog breed they want because the percentage of people actually with dangerous dogs and in fighting rings? has got to be tiny.
Anyway, that was just your weekly helping of random thoughts on animal rights and social justice crossover.