The Zen of Grey2K (Part 1)

-By Rockingship (Dennis McKeon)

Overlooking the unconscionable damage they have done to greyhound racing professionals and their families by waging a propaganda campaign to destroy their livelihoods that Josef Goebbels would be proud of, Grey2K once again shows their posteriors to the American public, and to everyone who loves racing greyhounds, whether they support racing or not.

Their most recent cause-celebre is the now, thanks to them, “controversial” commercial featuring racing greyhounds, which the Skechers footwear company plans to run during the Super Bowl broadcast on NBC. Never tardy in seizing upon an opportunity to call attention to themselves, or to extract donations from an uninformed or dis-informed public, they have been tom-caterwauling all over the new and old media to the extent that one might infer that Skechers is now a part of some dark, shadowy, national conspiracy to hurt, maim and abuse racing greyhounds.

Grey2K, above and beyond the negative mythology they have created about the lives of racing greyhounds, have also managed to mythologize themselves. The false image they project of themselves is to imply that they are a greyhound welfare organization, when in actuality, they are a Political Action Group/Lobbying concern, who are trying to criminalize pari-mutuel wagering on State sponsored and regulated greyhound racing. They are not involved in any hands on welfare, rescue or adoption of any dogs, and certainly not racing greyhounds. While they receive hundreds of thousands per year in donations, very little, if any of this money is spent on greyhound care or welfare.

They have been as quick to imply that the Skechers folks are greyhound abusers, for simply using racing greyhounds in their commercial, (without ever having seen the offending commercial) as they have been to similarly smear greyhound racing professionals, without ever having been to a professional greyhound racing kennel or to a breeding facility. Were racing greyhound professionals an ethnic or religious minority, Grey2K’s unceasing, ignorant, disingenuous and vitriolic diatribes against greyhound racing professionals could rightly be viewed as hate speech.

With this latest escapade, they have proven once again, that far from being advocates of the racing greyhound, their agenda is patently anti-racing greyhound.

More people are likely to watch this year’s Super Bowl than any other television broadcast. There will probably be in excess of 100-150 million homes tuned in. Most of those people have never seen a racing greyhound. For the 300-plus independent and racetrack-sponsored retired greyhound adoption groups in the United States, who, unlike Grey2K, do the actual hands-on rehoming of the 10,000 or so retiring greyhounds each year, this sort of interest-piquing breed exposure is priceless.

While the retired racing greyhound has become a pet-phenomenon among those “in the know” about their personable, tractable, gentle and loving nature, vastly millions more people are unaware of this best-kept-secret of the dog and pet world. Grey2K chooses to portray the racing greyhound as an object of pity, and thus a source of donations for them, rather than as the well-bred, well-raised and well cared for athlete that he actually is. While reasonable people who own retired racing greyhounds, as well as anyone who understands canine development and disposition, realize that populations of dogs who are the victims of cruelty and abuse don’t seamlessly achieve the universal, loving acclaim the retired racing greyhound has as a desirable pet, the general public is largely unaware, because greyhound racing is conducted in only a few states.

A 30 second spot during the Super Bowl would dramatically increase the visibility of the racing greyhound among those who might someday become his adopters in retirement. The tireless “advocates” at Grey2K, however, would seem to prefer that this positive exposure not be granted to the breed. At least not when censoring it presents a chance for them to rake in untold donations by railing against sharing the visage of the racing greyhound with the rest of the country, to his ultimate benefit.