It was only a matter of time. Sorry, Mr. Quiggly, you are so-o-o-o twenty seconds ago.
Hysterical extremism will always out itself, even at the slightest provocation. Once again, a Board Member of Grey2k has proven that not only is extremism apparently a prerequisite to membership in the cult of Carey Nation, but so is ignorance of the Greyhound as a breed.
I am speaking of the hyperbolic rantings of a member of the Board of Grey2k, which appeared in an opinion piece on VoiceofTucson.com, 03/20/12.
Usually, Grey2k concerns itself with alleged systematic cruelties and abuses allegedly perpetrated upon actual Racing Greyhounds by the uber-evil greyhound racing industry, and the Racing Greyhounds’ depraved, culturally “outmoded” breeders, owners and handlers.
This particular vignette, however, was an overwrought reaction to a commercial for Absolut Vodka, which, unlike the cataclysmic Skechers commercial that included real live racing greyhounds, featured only computer-generated images of greyhounds dressed in Road Warrior attire, racing on a computer-generated salt flat. The article reads as a message–or maybe a threat– to the Complaint Department of Absolut:
“The youtube music video promoting your new vodka Absolut Greyhound promotes animal cruelty in the form of greyhound racing. While slick with a catchy soundtrack by Swedish House Mafia, greyhounds are once again perceived as futuristic exploited racing machines. The video is a deadly cross between Project Runway and Mad Max…This ad is haunting…haunting in the way it promotes greyhound racing as subhuman depravity. Haunting in a way, I feel nauseous and want to vomit….”
Now keep in mind that these are only computer-generated images of greyhound-like dogs, racing on what appears to be a salt flat. And I say “greyhound-like”, because while the video is indeed eye-catching, the most arresting thing about it, to anyone who has even a slight familiarity with Racing Greyhounds, is that the make-believe dogs in the video appear to be galloping, at times, in “single-suspension”.
For those unfamiliar with the bio-mechanics of greyhound stride, when greyhounds are in full galloping mode, they are suspended in the air twice during one complete phase of stride–both when their limbs are completely extended and again when they are flexed and closed-up. Hence the term “double-suspension”.
In the commercial, the computer-generated, greyhound-like images seem, at times, to have the stride characteristics of horses, whose 4 hooves only leave the ground once during a complete stride sequence. This imaginary hitch in the imaginary greyhounds’ git-along, portrays them as bobbing up and down in a highly exaggerated fashion, and makes them look more like Olympic swimmers doing the breaststroke, than actual racing greyhounds galloping at high speeds.
You might suppose that anyone who claims to be expert enough on the subject of Racing Greyhounds and greyhound racing so that they sit on the Board of Grey2k, which in turn works tirelessly for its prohibition, might have noticed that and told Absolut to get on the ball. Or at the very least, realized that the ad is just a fantasy.
But the ignorance only deepens and the hysterics only become more random:
“And just like at the real dog track, an elegant black beauty falls to the ground at 40 mph. While one model looks appalled, the other laughs. The dog gets up and continues to run. At real race tracks, dogs who usually take bad falls like that break their legs, break their hocks, break their toes, pull their butt muscles, or are paralyzed. Laugh models laugh.”
She’s angry at Absolut, she’s angry at the imaginary models, she’s angry at their make-believe apparel, and she’s angry at gravity. She’s angry with you, greyhound exploiters!
Now, I’ve trained thousands of Racing Greyhounds, I’ve watched innumerable greyhound races, and I’ve been associated with the breed for some 40 years. I’ve never seen a dog break a hock from a fall. Never. Never even heard of such a thing. Now lest you think I am trivializing the seriousness of falls, I’m not. Falls are serious. The usual result of a fall, however, is overall soreness and/or localized bruising…and nothing that a short rest spell, massage and/or whirlpool treatments can’t alleviate.
The Blogger-In-Chief at Grey2k had an entirely different take on broken hocks. His recently expressed “expert” opinion was that broken hocks are the result of greyhounds simply running, and having to “turn” when they are racing.
“…training and racing on an oval track actually changes a greyhound’s bone density, and results in microfractures.”…Grey2k blog, 02/10/12
This, of course, differentiates Racing Greyhounds from any other greyhounds, who are, apparently, “gyroscopically programmed” never to turn when they run—and one would presume, never injure their hocks. Either that or they never run at all.
As Grey2k begins its testimony, designed to convince Arizona legislators that Greyhound Racing is cruel, inhumane, brutal and part of an outmoded, barbaric, “throwback” culture, it might be wise for those legislators to consider the source of all those allegations, the veracity of their so-called expertise, and to drink the Absolut Vodka rather than the bitter Grey2k Kool-Aid. And to be appraised of the fact that the authoress of the anti-Absolut diatribe is the very same Grey2k Board Member who added this now infamous remark to their Facebook Wall after the Skechers commercial was aired:
“Middle class educated white people don’t go to bet on the dogs. That is Skechers of the TGPs wet dream.” (TGP is Tucson Greyhound Park)
Aside from any inference one might care to make concerning that ugly remark, which should speak for itself, those who are so painfully oblivious to basic greyhound fundamentals, and who become so emotionally unhinged at the sight of mere computerized images, should not be taken seriously by those with any political power. Especially those who might be in position to dangle Grey2k’s rhetorical Sword of Damocles above the heads of the working class people of greyhound racing, their families, and the Racing Greyhound breed, whose very existence is now threatened by these extremists.