Bill 132 is a proposal to ban pitbulls in Ontario. It's leading advocate, Attorney General Michael Bryant, supplied the the quote, fear supplies the fuel and a bunch of angry pitbull owners, breeders and fans supply the opposition. I'm here to add my two cents.
I never knew a pitbull personally till I started my (fabulous!) job in July. One of my co-workers has an American Staffordshire Terrier, one of the breeds commonly referred to as a pitbull. I had no idea what breed she was, just thought she was very handsome and well-mannered and was impressed by how well she listened to her owner. (My own dog, Rega, a Belgian Tervuren, has rather selective hearing even at 12 and a half.) Through my co-worker, I met several other AmStaff's and continued to be delighted by their personalities. Through work, I met a few English Staffordshires as well, smaller than the American version but with the same temperment.
Then I met Angel, the coffee-drinking Bull Terrier. That was the breed of dog I had always known as a 'pitbull'. She was manic, hilarious, sharp as a tack, playful and eager to learn and please her people. After a couple more visits by Angel to the store, I was smitten and went out and did my homework on her breed (and the Staffie and AmStaff since they all come from common ancestors).
I learned that they were bred originally for bull-baiting, then dog-fighting. After that was outlawed, breeders turned to breeding for a temperment that would make them into good companion dogs without losing their courage and loyalty. I learned that they are NOT the dog for everyone since they do require extensive training and socialization as puppies (well, all dogs do but for them it's imperative). I talked to owners whose bully breed dogs lived peacefully with other dogs of all sizes, cats, toddlers, birds and even rabbits. They told me about earning Canine Good Citizen Awards, therapy pet status and temperment testing.
Then I read this SHIT in the Edmonton Journal last week about banning 'pitbulls' in Ontario. I researched it. This meant banning the American Pit Bull Terrier (which from what I gather isn't an actual breed), AmStaffs and Staffordshire Terriers. Michael Bryant is quoted as saying, "Don Cherry's dog is safe!" Now, Don Cherry has typically owned Bull Terriers, which aren't included in the ban. Currently, Mr Cherry owns an AmStaff. His daughter owns Staffordshires.
I drew the Bull Terrier there before learning it wasn't included in the ban.
So, anyway, the following is my letter to our hysterical Attorney General stating my opinion. It took a couple re-writes to remove the snark and harsher comments on Mr Bryant's intelligence.