It will be worthwhile, I promise you.
This week Democratic Rodney Moore, of Mecklenburg County, introduced a bill that would make thousands of innocent North Carolinians criminals. It would most definitely make me a criminal, for two reasons.
First, because I own this dog, and will likely own dogs of similar appearance in the future;
And second, because I would never obey Rodney Moore's command that I submit to a criminal background check and enroll in a four hour course sponsored by the Humane Society on responsible ownership of pit bulls, rottweilers, mastiffs, chows, and similar "aggressive dog breeds."
Three hundred and fifty years ago, King Charles II granted the charter that led to the founding of North Carolina. And for all three hundred and fifty of those years, North Carolinians have enjoyed the fundamental liberty of owning whatever damned breed of dog they please, without submitting to a criminal background check.
During that time, North Carolina has suffered the oppressions of King George III. North Carolina has endured invasion by Sherman, and military rule by occupying federal troops. North Carolina has been terrrorized by the Ku Klux Klan. North Carolina has been attacked by the dreaded U-Boats of Adolf Hitler.
But neither King George III, nor Sherman, nor any military governor, nor even the Ku Klux Klan and Adolf Hitler ever presumed to require a North Carolinian to submit to a criminal background check to own a dog. Without having to sit through a four hour class.
I daresay that if Rodney Moore's bill were to become law, the people of North Carolina would rise up, march to Raleigh, carry Rodney Moore from his seat in the Capitol, and dunk him into the nearest lake.
If Rodney Moore didn't know that at the beginning of this week, when he introduced his monstrous and intolerable act, he knows it now.
Stung by public criticism of his insolence, Moore now claims that he never expected the bill to pass.
Moore claims he just wanted to start a "worthwhile conversation."
Well let's have that conversation, Rodney Moore. I'll start with a few questions.
When you asked the people of Mecklenburg, County, North Carolina to entrust you with legislative power, did you run on a platform that involved outlawing dog breeds you find offensive? Or did you feed them some claptrap about "maximizing the potential of sound policymaking decisions to enhance the opportunities and aspirations of the citizens of the State of North Carolina."
Is filing a bill that has no chance of passing, just because you want to start a "worthwhile conversation," a sound policymaking decision? Do people in Mecklenburg County elect representatives because they want to have conversations, or because they want representatives to propose sound laws that actually have a chance at passage?
As for the bill in question, is giving a Sheriff the power to require criminal background checks of potential dog owners, without specifying what crimes disqualify the applicant, a sound policymaking decision? Does it "enhance the opportunities and aspirations of the citizens" to give the Sheriff such arbitrary discretion with respect to breeds that are disproportionately owned by the poor and minorities? Without defining the term "pit bull"?
And should the people of Mecklenburg County, North Carolina evaluate your answers to these questions in deciding whether to return you to the House in 2014?