Re: RARA-AVIS: Pelecanos on dogfighting in the New Republic

From: Terrill Lankford (
Date: 31 Aug 2007

-----Original Message-----
>From: Michael Robison <>
>Sent: Aug 31, 2007 1:08 PM
>Subject: Re: RARA-AVIS: Pelecanos on dogfighting in the New Republic
>Interesting. He's got a dog named Buster.
>If it's wrong to murder dogs, I wonder if it's wrong
>to murder cows, too.

In 2001 I wrote and directed a documentary about dog fighting for a syndicated tv show called SAVING THE ENDANGERED SPECIES. Researching this show was one of the most disturbing things I've ever had to do. The actual dog fighting is merely the tip of the iceberg when it comes to this crime. The American Pit Bull is not born vicious. It can be one of the most gentle and loving animals. Loyal and trustworthy. The scumbags who put on these fights put the pit bulls through an extremely cruel and grueling training process that turns them murderous. This training often includes the abduction of local animals used as baiting material to give the dog the taste for killing. If your cat or small dog ever goes missing, never to return, it is a good possibilty that it has been used as a bait animal. In other words, it was torn to shreds for the amusement of some very bad people.

The matches themselves are almost always a meeting ground for criminal elements, a networking platform where other crimes are planned or actually take place, drug deals, gun deals, etc.

Then there is the cruelty of the matches themselves and the brutal aftermath which has been covered in the media as of late, so there is no need for me to go into that. The only winners in these matches are people none of us would want to spend time with. The victorious dogs themselves are almost always mauled badly. Some live to fight another day, others die before the sun sets on their "victory." The losers rarely last even that long.

After I finished the documentary I started a novel about dog fighting. It did not take long for me to realize that I had seen enough of that world and I no longer wanted to go there. That is a book I doubt I will ever finish.


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