The Slayer Of The Dog That Bit You

After two weeks of whizzin’ around Southern Ontario (and bits of the US) visiting friends and family, I’ve finally returned to the poolside of my mother’s house. Though I’ve little plans to do much but smother myself in UV rays and chlorinated water for the rest of my time in Canada – I’ve been doing my best to keep up with China news while away.

Sometimes I read Chinese news and I’m enlightened, sometimes I’m enraged and sometimes I just shake my head and think, “Honestly, WTF are you guys thinking…” Such has been the case in reading (via the Hao Hao Report) about the massive clubbing of dogs in Yunnan province.

For anyone not privy, 50,000 dogs were brutally clubbed (caned?) to death in hopes that this might prevent more human rabies deaths. You’ve really gotta give it to the Chinese for mass movements of utter stupidity. Now I don’t mean for that to sound quite as generalized as it does… but c’mon.

“Dogs being walked were seized from their owners and beaten to death on the spot, the Shanghai Daily newspaper reported. Led by the county police chief, killing teams entered villages at night creating noise to get dogs barking, then beat the animals to death, the reports said.” – MSNBC.

This is pretty much on par with when Mao ordered all the sparrows killed because they were at fault for eating all the grain (ingrates). Although a crop-eating plague of insects and mass starvation are not likely to be the result of the clubbing of these pooches, it does go a long way in illustrating that short-sightedness is still alive and well in the Middle Kingdom even after half a century and countless examples to learn from. I mean, the thing is just a PR nightmare.

There are a lot of jokes passed around about the eating of dog meat in China, and I think this gives a false sense that Chinese people lack compassion when it comes to their canines. I’ve been to few countries where pet dogs are babied as much as they are here. Though the West made pet pampering popular (nice illiteration eh?), China made it a way of life. I can’t imagine that offering someone a few yuan to kill their pup before forcibly doing it for them is going to win the local government much support.

Of all the rather logical ways this problem could have been handled (preventative vaccinations, rabies checks, strict protocols for shots, etc.), leave it to the powers that be to perform the one that’s just going to perpetuate the world’s generalization that China is an archaic country with no right to call itself “developing”.

The funny part is, I’m CERTAIN when this was run by the county government they were likely sold on the idea by people saying ‘it’s like the whole bird flu thing… we gotta nip it in the bud before it nips us! KILL ‘EM ALL!!’

3 Responses

  1. The scariest part of this story, to me, is that there are still so many idiots willing to go along with senseless and cruel government orders like this. I mean, can you imagine if a government official tried to order something like this in a western country? The culture of dissent is completely absent here.

  2. I’m trying to do my bit to educate them. Last week, during my C9 class, we had cause to discuss the expression ‘I protest’. They all listened politely, and I really thought it had fallen on deaf ears. However, at the end of class I said, “Right, for your homework …” when one bright girl jumped up and said, “We protest!” I was so happy I said, “Okay, no homework”, and got a mighty cheer.

  3. @Chris: Yeah… it would just never be suggested. Idealogically it’s not that much different than the whole mass killings of birds to stem the bird flu thing… but in practice… it’s just off. I mean, it’s a rough sort of world to live in that some government hired thug can walk up and beat your dog to death for their lack of forsight.

    @Phoebe: You’re my hero man. Honestly, my inspiration. One C9 class at a time… 😉

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