March 7th, 2007

wicked

I want to save the world

Today we were at the park in Malibu, and we saw a woman with her dog and someone who appeared to be a professional dog trainer. This "trainer" was teaching the woman to use a remote control to shock the dog any time it tried to sit up. The dog also had a choke collar with spikes on the inside, so that any time the leash was tugged, the dog had hard pieces of metal digging into his neck. At one point, another dog was coming their way. The trainer reached over and hit the button on the remote. The woman protested, "He didn't even do anything!" and the trainer assured her that it was necessary to be preemptive if she senses the dog might react to a stimulus like another dog.

I was so angry. I wanted to storm over there and inform both owner and trainer that this was veritable abuse. Dogs, like children, have insticts. They need to be allowed to play, to make mistakes, and to not live in fear. These women were systematically instilling this dog with a sense of learned helplesness, and I was really, really livid. These are the kinds of wretched people that have babies and consider them fashion accessories instead of beautiful blossoming little people.

It made me want to do something... something big - Not just for animals but to live up to my own assertion that life is more than putting up appearances and making big money. If I don't get into my top choice graduate program, I'm seriously considering joining the peace corps. At least then I'd have a chance to selflessly help people who are really, truly in need.