Opinion » Maxed Out

Maxed Out

Between the mob and the massacre



I can't decide which slice of humanity is more loathsome: the dude who killed the dogs - and yes, even though everybody knows his name, I'll decline to use it - or the Facebook vigilantes, witch hunters and lynchmobbers who have spewed their particular brand of venomous bile over his act.

On second thought, I know. There's nothing more loathsome about humans than their inclination to mob up in times of stress or boredom. Mobs don't have brains; they don't need them because mobs don't think. Mobs don't have humanity; they replace that commodity with anger and ill-aimed vengeance. Mobs don't reason; anger and frustration is reason enough. Mobs don't have a conscience; that's left to individuals once they've shaken themselves away from the hold of the mob and realize what they've done.

What do we know so far? Buddy claims to have killed 70 sled dogs; the upstream owners of the sled dog operation claim it was more like 100. He claims to have killed them in a way everybody, including him, agrees is inhumane. He claims he was "ordered" to do it. The partial owners of the company at the time and full owners now claim they knew the killings were going to take place but they "thought" he'd kill them in a humane way. The act devastated Buddy's humanity and left him a shell of a man. He filed for compensation. WorkSafe BC denied compensation. He appealed, hiring a lawyer somewhere along the way. WorkSafe BC granted compensation on appeal. A Vancouver radio station got hold of the ruling. The shit hit the fan.

Everything else is speculation.

And oh, what speculation. It's the Olympics' fault. It's Joey Houssian's fault. It's the SPCA's fault. It's the entire dogsled industry's fault. It's Whistler's fault. Hell, for all I know, it's my fault.

The RCMP IS investigating. The SPCA is "investigating."

Let us pause for a moment and consider the role the SPCA has played in whipping up the mob. The SPCA is investigating to determine whether there was cruelty involved in the killings. They have not spoken with Buddy. The actual knowledge they have of the incident is contained in WorkSafe BC's findings and interviews they've conducted with other parties, the latter of which being known in legal parlance as hearsay. Yet Marcie Moriarity, general manager for cruelty investigations, her face contorted before the cameras, said, "The sheer terror and agony these dogs must have suffered is horrifying. This is the most disturbing case I have seen in my six years in cruelty investigations." Yeah, baby. You bring the gasoline; I'll bring the matches. Whatever happened to, "It wouldn't be appropriate for me to comment on an ongoing investigation"?

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