Cowardly dogs and cowardly manners
WHAT is Britain’s rarest dog? A dog on a leash.
This joke is only nominally about dogs. It cuts to the decline of manners, responsibility, security, the countryside, our natural environment and our society.
Just a few decades ago, most Britons had the good manners of putting dogs on a leash when strangers approached. It’s an old-fashioned standard that’s gone, like not mowing the lawn when your neighbors are enjoying their garden and carrying a tissue to catch your cough or sneeze. An ill-behaved society calls for laws requiring the wearing of face masks and court orders specifying anti-social behavior. The British don’t have the social skills they once had, so they don’t have the freedoms they once had.
Perversely, with less freedom, you get more irresponsibility. Societal symptoms have political causes. Progressives claim that their irresponsibilities are our freedoms, but the right to be irresponsible is a moral hazard for the rest of society.
When a company can’t take care of the little niceties, soon it can’t take care of anything. Where people see uncollected feces, more people are not cleaning up after their dogs. People who don’t clean up after their dogs are also more likely to leave their litter box behind. When local authorities don’t care about enforcing petty laws, they quickly let more serious crimes pass.
Letting things slide is a partisan issue. You can elect Conservatives to your board, but progressives are hired as bureaucrats. Progressives are drawn to bureaucracy – less to democratically elected positions. Democracy is a form of responsibility. Progressives prefer to change society without accountability.
Lazy, selfish and under-responsible local authorities find progressivism more practical than conservatism. Conservatism means keeping things. What heaviness! Much easier to let things slide.
Social justice exacerbated the fall. For social justice warriors, manners and responsibility are symptoms of privilege. And why care about the country when the BBC Countryfile declares the the campaign as a racist?
You might think that roaming dogs are only dangerous for people who don’t like dogs. Think again. Uncontrolled dogs share diseases, which is why dogs suffer from an outbreak of parvovirus, and why dog walkers have a higher risk of Covid infection. Attacks by dogs on livestock have increased in each of the most recent years. Dog attacks on humans put more Britons in hospital in 2019 than any previous year.
Dorset embodies the problem. Dorset, or “dogtoilet” as the locals now call it, is a county where the police are passive. Its Victorian seaside resorts, such as Swanage, Weymouth and Bournemouth, have beaches where dogs are theoretically prohibited, but the urban beaches are no different from other Dorset beaches: busy with roaming dogs from start to finish. day in the summer, it doesn’t matter whether the kids are building sandcastles or eating picnics.
Studland Beach is a National Trust Wildlife Preserve, where dogs are supposed to be on a leash from May through September to avoid disturbing nesting birds, reptiles and mammals. The National Trust rules allow a fine of £ 5, but the Trust’s operations manager in Studland, Emma Wright, told me that the £ 5 settlement is “not economical to issue”. The Dorset Council Public Spaces Protection Order allows a fixed fine of £ 100, but the council is not enforcing it.
Likewise, the RSPB does not enforce restrictions on dogs roaming free inside its Dorset Bird Sanctuary in Arne. Why? It has no authority of its own, and the county does not send law enforcement officers.
The Department of Defense is the largest landowner in Dorset and has their own police and guard service, but they will not enforce Department of Defense regulations against roaming dogs in training areas, knowing that the civil authorities will not support them.
Most members of the public naturally think the civilian police are law enforcement officers, but a police officer admitted to me that Dorset Police are not interested in dogs until a human is is not bitten – and badly bitten. The same policeman confirmed unattended what the farmers told me: the police no longer care about attacks on cattle. In parts of Dorset, desperate farmers are printing their own signs, reminding the public of the law. One sign I saw last week included a reminder that farmers can shoot dogs that worry livestock.
Laine is one of those parishes in Dorset that has been radically transformed in recent years by an influx of residents and tourists, and an influx of law enforcement. Once a quiet farming village, its unique playground is now an exercise area for roaming dogs, which, theoretically, is illegal. The Wool Parish Council explained to me that it colluded with this change a few years ago, recognizing that the elderly residents had difficulty reaching the back roads leading out of the village. Now he regrets that residents have standardized free-range dogs in recreation areas, streets, pubs and breeding fields. In recent years, he has posted huge signs warning of fines for uncollected droppings and roaming dogs. The signs are ignored. The execution is absent. The parish council blames Dorset Council, the authority responsible for most of the area of the former Dorset County Council. I have heard the same story in other parishes.
The excuse of the Dorset Council is the lack of resources. Dorset has three dog guards. But resources reflect priorities, and Dorset does not send its dog sitters where requested. Why are parish councils, the National Trust, RSPB, and the Ministry of Defense all complaining that the council will not send law enforcement officers?
Well, here’s a revelation: one of three Dorset dog guards told me that they only patrol the ‘urban moors’. Why? Because that’s where the favorite voters go. The rural conservatives can go for it.
Dorset is nominally conservative at the elected level, but progressive at the bureaucratic level. One of Dorset’s environmental scientists epitomizes the progressive bureaucrat – quick to condemn critics as ignorant, oblivious to their own bias. In June, she and I were together on a construction site, where she was responsible for assessing the risks to the environment. She denied that the dog droppings on her feet were damaging wetlands and agriculture. No, she preferred to imagine industrial pollution, even if no industrial pollution appeared in the river, because industrial pollution can be attributed to capitalism.
As we watched a man stroll through the restricted area with a free range dog urinating quickly on the equipment the contractors had just unloaded, she brilliantly stated that what the area needed was not the app. of the law, but education.
Progressives think that all good things come from education, that all bad things come from lack of education. People are naturally good, say progressives. People only get bad when they are misled by conservative ignorance, insecurities and selfishness. Once progressives enlighten the victims of conservatism, then people become virtuous. People don’t cheat on rules if they understand them, say progressives. Therefore, progressives do not need to apply the law. Fund the police. Spend the dog guards.
Free-range dogs are not just a local problem for a scared sheep or child. Free-range dogs are symptoms of progressive consensus. Free-range dogs are symptomatic of irresponsible owners, and irresponsible owners are symptomatic of permissive society, and permissive society is symptomatic of progressive bureaucracy – and progressive bureaucracy is the end of liberal democracy.