Lynn Continues the "Mythology" of Her Dogbite Story
by Asserting the Dog Broke Free and Attacked
We previously did an in-depth analysis of the mythology of Colleen Lynn's dog bite, which can be read in its entirety here. If you haven't read it yet, do so. It will open your eyes to what we called the evolution of a preventable accident to the myth of a vicious pit bull attack. It will also give you a context in which to understand this article.
After our story was reported, dogsbite.org (DBO) described the attack as follows:
(screen shot from DBO, Nov. 16, 2013; as of the date of this article's publication, this is is still the official account). Note that in this version, the pit bull is leashed. And yet, despite this well thought out description of the "attack" on the DBO website, Ms. Lynn cannot fight the temptation to retreat back to the myth that she created before our report. In an article published November 15, 2013, Ms. Lynn states to a reporter:
I have stopped counting the versions of the attack Ms. Lynn has told since the original incident, and the inconsistencies from one account to another. We should point out that the startled dog in her case did immediately let go. But really, all of these matters are covered in our previous report.
You would think that Ms. Lynn could at least, at this point, keep her story consistent with that reported with calm calculation on her own website. Apparently not. Here, in two screenshots, one can see the stark difference in the story that was carefully crafted for her website, and the emotional discussion with a reporter where she could not resist reverting back to the original "story" she told to create the mythology of the incident.
Such a cavalier attitude towards the truth infects not only Lynn's own dogbite story, but DBO's statistics, legal analysis and reports of the sucess of breed-discriminatory legislation.
Dogsbite.org Quietly Admits Reality of Breed Bans
Colleen Lynn, in an interview you can read in full here, quietly admits what we have known all along: that breed bans don't serve to decrease all dogbites. The relevant part of the article states:
Lynn agrees with arguments that breed-specific laws do not reduce the number of dog bites. But she stresses the need for pit bull bans anyway. "It's not meant to lower all dogbites in a city," Lynn said.
She goes on to say that she wants them anyway. This is the first time I have seen this admission from Lynn. She and her supporters have previously taken the position that breed discriminatory legislation does work to increase public safety, and not just decrease pit bull bites. In an interview with Debra Bresch and again a few weeks ago in a Huffington Post roundtable discussion, Lynn has cited the San Francisco experience to make her point. And she has continued to make the argument despite the fact that there is no real conclusive evidence that breed bans reduce all dog bites. In fact, the data reveals just the opposite. Brent Toellner, who runs KC Dog Blog, has looked at the numbers from almost every place from which he could obtain data. In nearly every case where breed discriminatory legislation has been enacted overall dog bites have not decreased. This includes the UK, Denmark, Omaha, Sioux City, Ohio, and Aurora. We all know about Spain and the Prince George County Task Force. There are other failures too numerous to mention here, but suffice it to say that there is overwhelming authority to support the premise that breed bans do nothing for overall safety with respect to all dog bites.
Lynn's admission then, serves to underscore the fact that she is not out for overall public safety with her breed ban agenda, which is a major part of the dogsbite.org mission statement. In fact, if you listened to her Huffingtonpost interview, you wouldn't even know breed bans were the main thrust of her work. In that interview she stressed mandatory spay neuter of pit bulls as her goal.
It seems that the core breed ban position of dogsbite.org and Lynn's public statements are at odds. But like any politician, it appears Lynn calibrates her message depending on the audience. It may be that this change in position is intended to give her credibility when she preaches outside of the choir. We shall see.