I like dogs, but c’mon, this is ridiculous

You know the press is hard up for news when stories about police dogs make the cut.

This week, Channel 30 decided that a West Hartford family’s inexplicable decision to sell fudge to raise money for a bulletprof vest for Reign, a police dog, was worth telling all of Connecticut about. The Hartford Courant, proving once again that its standards are slipping by the hour, opted to follow up the story with one of its own.

Now I have nothing against Reign, nothing against police dogs, and certainly nothing against the family that sold the fudge.

But why are professional reporters, who are paid to tell us what we need to know, squandering their time on idiocy like this? There’s so much we never hear about in this town — sometimes I feel like there’s a news blackout on West Hartford — that it’s frustrating when getting a dog a bulletproof vest is on tv and in the paper.

I’m at a loss, really, to understand how come my country has soldiers in the field who don’t have bulletproof vests but Reign does. There’s a monstrously warped sense of priorities when a dog is protected in West Hartford, but our soldiers in Iraq lack the same protection.

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3 Comments

Filed under News, Public safety, Town government

3 responses to “I like dogs, but c’mon, this is ridiculous

  1. Peter G

    You’ve missed the point of this type of news coverage. This is the age of voluntarism and individualism and the media message is: Don’t expect that government will provide even the minimum that is necessary for society to function, “we” all have to provide for “our own.”

    If we accept that police equipment won’t be paid for by the police department, that military equipment won’t be paid for by the military, then plainly we’ll accept that health care, education, and a decent retirement won’t be provided by the government either!

    At the same time, this kind of news coverage also promotes the perspective that we as individuals all have to make decisions about competing interests. We have to decide whether to raise money for dogs or soldiers, and whether to give to find a cure for breast cancer or autism.

    Most importantly, we have to decide whether to help “our own” – the social construct for whatever side “we” are supposed to be on at any particular time – and “those people.” So a kid who has lived in Connecticut all his or her life shouldn’t qualify for in-state tuition because of his or her immigration status, because changing the law would help “those people” and doesn’t help “our own.” And a 20 year old soldier from West Hartford deserves our support because he is one of “our own,” but the 20 year old Iraqi who he is aiming at is only one of “those people.”

  2. You mean a kid who has lived “ILLEGALLY” in CT all his life , benefiting from free public education, will pay less for his college education (with your tax dollar subsidy) than a LEGAL citizen coming from Massachusetts or Utah. How is THAT fair?
    Give me a break.
    After 18 years of living here you’d think the kid would have the decency to become a citizen?
    When he gets his citizenship he can then come to me, the taxpayer, and ask for assistance paying his college bill… until then, I’d prefer to help those who are not breaking the law. I don’t wish to give my tax dollar to someone who thinks they are above the law.
    That in-state tuition bill is an insult to every person who came here legally, as well as taxpayers who are struggling to send their own kids to college, as well as legal citizens from other states who want to come to school here.

    As for volunteerism and helping to raise money for worthy causes… why not .. we ought to be teaching all of our kids that helping others is not merely a function of the government.

  3. Peter G

    Judy Aron sez: “After 18 years of living here you’d think the kid would have the decency to become a citizen?”

    Gee, Judy, at what age do you think he or she should have started the process of applying for citizenship? Age 3? How about 10? Or maybe you figure that a 13 year old is sufficiently well-equipped to understand the intricacies of the naturalization process?

    I give you credit that at least you don’t make the mistake of actually blaming the kid because he didn’t tell mommy and daddy “No, don’t take me over that border because I want to be a good boy and not violate US immigration laws.” Some of the low-lifes in the anti-immigrant movement actually describe these kids as “criminals” because their parents brought them here, like the kid had a say in the matter.

    As for “we” citizens being insulted by “those people” (exactly the point of my post — that it becomes so easy to divide the world into the people that are “like me” and those others who don’t belong), it certainly can’t be on the basis that we pay more taxes than they do! How could a Connecticut resident who is “legal” be insulted by undocumented immigrants who pay sales taxes, property taxes, payroll taxes, and social security taxes with NO possibility of getting the refund for which they would likely qualify based on their incomes if they were documented?

    “Those people” who you are so quick to dismiss as undeserving live in “our” communities (yes, even *horrors* here in West Hartford), and they work hard, pay taxes, raise their kids and generally try to make a way for themselves just like you and I do. You see them every day, or even if you don’t you still benefit from their labor. You patronize the restaurants where they cook, wash dishes or wait on tables. You use the restrooms that they clean and the offices that they vaccuum and dust and empty the trashcans in. You walk across the sidewalks that they lay and the lawns that they landscape. In other words they are your neighbors.

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