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

From: Brian Thornton (
Date: 03 Sep 2007

I don't know why, but I can stomach a lot more "description of punishment" toward human beings than I can toward animals, especialy dogs. Perhaps it's because people in general do so much more to deserve bad treatment than animals do.

I'll say this to Miker, who I like and respect and with whom I frequently disagree: regarding your dog-fighting vs. steak-eating argument, speaking as someone who grew up on a farm, descended from cattle ranchers, I'm here to tell you that there is a world of difference between training otherwise tame pets to kill for sport and butchering cattle. I've participated in the latter, and I have to tell you, half the time the cattle didn't even know they were dead. There's a reason that a group of mindless people are frequently referred to collectively as "cattle." Smart, they are not. They never know what's coming to them, and they have a pretty good life up to that point. More to the point it's done humanely.

That's more than I can say about any aspect of dog-fighting, and I hope they throw the book at that asshole Michael Vick.

Attached below for your collective amusement is a link to something topical about this subject:

As for discussing dog fighting as it occurs in fiction, I think this list has not only a right to discuss it, but an obligation to do so if it's topical. That said, there are many topics on this list with which many list-members don't bother.

All the Best-


  ----- Original Message -----
  From: Richard Moore
  Sent: Sunday, September 02, 2007 6:02 PM
  Subject: Re: RARA-AVIS: Pelecanos on dogfighting in the New Republic

  --- In, Michael Robison
  <miker_zspider@...> wrote:
> Mark wrote:
> Just for the record, I posted the Pelecanos article
> because it touched on his writing process, not to
> start a debate on dogfighting (which is outside the
> scope of this list).
> Bringing it back to hardboiled/noir lit, are there
> other books than Pelecanos's about dogfighting?
> ****************
> Hmm... So we can talk about books with dogfighting in
> them but not dogfighting itself?

  Dogfighting in crime fiction is fair game and some discussion of
  the practice itself would (given past practice) be acceptable.
  We've discussed cockfighting in the past on this list both in
  fiction and as it exists in the real world. When you looped in the
  morality of killing cows, the specter of a vegan discussion on this
  list seemed a possibility. If you have any interest in the topic I
  highly recommend Michael Pollan's THE OMNIVORE'S DILEMMA, one of the
  best books I've read this year. There's probably a Yahoo group
  devoted to the general topic. This ain't it.

> If I was to touch on Pelecanos's writing style in the
> piece, I'd say he takes an unconvincing leap in logic
> and lands right in his happy place.
> miker

  I've read your last line several times and I recognize it is
  intended to incisive and/or funny but be damn if I can make sense of
  it. But I've been a beat behind everything today.

  Richard Moore
> Fussy? Opinionated? Impossible to please? Perfect. Join Yahoo!'s
  user panel and lay it on us.


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