Editor’s note: First of all, “pit bull” is not a breed, so referring to them as “the most vicious breed” is a misnomer. The conglomeration of dogs that make up the slang term “pit bull” are limitless and therefore statistics on “pit bulls” are skewed and meaningless. Second, the urban myth that dogs called “pit bulls” have locking jaws has looong been debunked, but I’ll post affirmed court testimony debunking this fiction yet again for folks who haven’t heard it yet. The following is court testimony from Dr. I. Lehr Brisbin, Ph.D., who is a Senior Research Scientist at the University of Georgia Savannah River Ecology Laboratory and an expert in training, handling, behavior and the anatomy of bulldog breeds:
“The few studies which have been conducted of the structure of the skulls, mandibles and teeth of [American Pit Bull Terriers] show that, in proportion to their size, their jaw structure and thus its inferred functional morphology, is no different than that of any [other] breed of dog. There is absolutely no evidence for the existence of any kind of locking mechanism unique to the structure of the jaw and/or teeth of the American Pit Bull Terrier” (Source: American Dog Breeders Association, “Discover the American Pit Bull Terrier”).
A more proactive and certainly more progressive approach for Yazoo would be to pass a dangerous dog (owner) law and to enforce Yazoo’s existing leash law.
Please contact the Yazoo Mayor and City Council and politely inform them that breed-specific legislation in any form is ineffective, unenforceable, and unconstitutional. (Please note that the only e-mail address on the Yazoo city site seems to be the Mayor’s. I simply politely requested that the Mayor forward my e-mail letter to the rest of the City Council.)
Two Yazoo City aldermen are at odds on a ordinance that would ban pit bulls.
Ward 4 Alderman Aubrey Brent says he wants to be proactive before someone gets hurt.
He says pit bulls seem to be the most vicious breed.
That’s why he would like a ban on them.
But Ward 2 Alderman Jack Varner says a ban doesn’t make sense.
That’s because all dogs can bite.
He recommends enforcing an ordinance already in place.
“Everyone knows that when a pit bites down on you, his jaws are made in such a way as to they lock,” said Brent.
“We do have a good set of leash laws and if they were followed to the letter, I think we would be okay,” said Varner.
…No word yet on when — or even if — aldermen will pass a ban.