Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Politics, Again

Even if you were only a brief visitor to this blog, I think you could easily figure out which candidate I support for president. So that is all I am going to say about the debate this evening. Instead, I am going to discuss dogs.

After the debate, Roxie and I were out walking around the apartment when a door opened. Out ran two chihuahuas, one of whom broke away from its leash and ran up and bit Roxie, who had simply stopped to look. Of course she snarled back and I held her as firmly as I could until the little dog's owner came up and was able to pull her dog away. Roxie wasn't hurt, though she did have some slobber on her leg.

Here is my problem with little dogs: they are handled by people who are blind to their bad qualities. They naturally mistrust big dogs, but they like to bark a lot from a distance. And the handlers seem to think that the big dogs are at fault, even as their little thing is yapping in the back.

Also, little dogs are always lap dogs. They may not be very smart, but they are very small and can be carried around. They have sat on the laps of royalty for years. I think innately they absorb this sense of importance, and carry that attitude with them everywhere, whether they are still in royal families or not.

The big dogs have, for centuries, been the worker dogs. They have toiled hard to earn their sometimes meager food. They are able to retrieve dinner, to guard homes, to herd sheep, to pull through snow and ice. Many have to sleep outside. They must learn to respect their people and follow rules because they cannot simply be picked up. The control their handlers have over them is built through mutual understanding and cooperative effort, not through muscling.

And here's the truth: we all know that the big dog could kill the little one if it wanted to. But it doesn't. And that's what makes the big dog better. And really, would you rather have a little dog who talks a lot and lacks substance? Or a big dog who acts with restraint and understanding?

Well, I guess I wasn't really done talking about the debate.


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