I believe in second chances. I believe that people can be rehabilitated. I do not, however, believe that people who feed deer meat laced with antifreeze to dogs should be elected to their local school boards, especially when they show very little remorse. I feel the same way about wife-beaters. Especially when they´re the same person.
Mike Grissom won a spot in the runoff for the Republican nomination for the Jefferson County, Alabama Board of Education. He poisoned the dogs in 2000 because he was tired of stepping in poop and `just snapped.´ Two of the three dogs died horrible deaths while the third was critically injured. Grissom claims he´s not an animal hater and cites as evidence the fact that he has a cat.
Grissom would probably tell you that he is not a woman hater either — despite a subsequent domestic violence conviction (in 2003) for slamming his wife´s arm in the door of a church and not releasing it until an employee responded to her cries for help. Grissom´s response: “This domestic violence charge was all about nothing . . . . I never hit her, but her hand did get caught between two doors. … The next time a woman calls the police on me, I’m gonna claw my face, beat myself up and pull what little hair I have left out of my head, and when the popo gets there, I’m gonna say, ‘Please help me.'”
So tonight, when you go to bed, you may want to say a few words of thanks. First, you should be thankful that you´re not Mike Grissom´s cat or his wife (assuming you´re neither). Second, if you do not have school-age children who live in Jefferson County, Alabama, you should be grateful for that too. Interspersed with those prayers of thanks, however, should be an awareness of the reality that Grissom might very well win and that his values and approach apparently resonate with at least a portion of the electorate.
The franchise is a wonderful thing. But vigilance is its price.
Filed under: animal law, animal ethics, animal advocacy, animal welfare, animal cruelty Tagged: | animal law, animal abuse, animal welfare, animal cruelty, animal advocacy, domestic violence, Jefferson County Alabama, Mike Grissom, Jefferson County Board of Education, poisoning dogs