I’ve been thinking about labels a lot this week.
You already know my feelings about breed specific legislation (BSL) and the labeling of dogs as ‘dangerous’ simply because of their breed. (In short, the labeling is unfair and unjustified – backed up by actual data.)
We also use labels for people and that is what has happened here recently with a greyhound group on Facebook. From what I can tell, earlier this week one of the moderators of the group didn’t like a person sharing their views against greyhound racing – the moderator is involved in the greyhound racing industry. So the moderator disconnected the person from the group.
This upset others in the group who expected the site to be an open forum for lovers of greyhounds. (We need a lesson in Facebook groups, I think. There are groups all over Facebook and posts get deleted and people disconnected from groups by moderators regularly. There is no such thing as democracy in Facebook groups!)
And so a new group on Facebook has been formed and we have been encouraged to join that group to post about our greyhounds.
So if you are labeled ‘anti-racing’ by the first site, it seems another will gladly accept you.
We humans label all the time. If you read the headline news over the last few years, what does the term ‘immigrant’ mean to you, for example?
So going back to the issue of dogs – which are both my passion and also my profession – what label applies to me?
Yup, if someone is mistreating a dog, hurting them, not taking responsibility for their care, treating them as disposable, using them for fighting…
…then please label me Pro-Dog. I will be disagreeing with you. And I will use this blog and my own company Facebook page for speaking about it.
Kathleen Crisley, Fear-Free certified professional and specialist in dog massage, rehabilitation and nutrition/food therapy, The Balanced Dog, Christchurch, New Zealand