Letter from TOPHER HAMMOND
To the Editor:
I read the article about the new K-9 security dog at Bassett Hospital, and felt the article was deceptive. The article emphasized how friendly this dog supposedly is, and how it could be approached by children as long as they first got an “affirmative response” from the dog’s handler.
Presumably, if they don’t obtain such consent, they might be attacked.
If you read between the lines, it is apparent that this is a potentially aggressive animal, and not a cuddly seeing-eye dog that would not hurt a fly. If you want to see how brutal these dogs can be, look up “when Malinois attack” on YouTube.
Should we expect children to understand that they need to ask permission to go up to a dog and pet it? I hope Bassett is ready to be sued when its K-9 dog attacks and mauls a child who did not read the article warning them that permission from the handler was required to approach this dog.
The wisdom of having one of these animals prowling the hallways of a hospital is questionable at best, especially since many people are afraid of dogs. Some sick person trying to walk down the hall or being pushed on a hospital bed might get a dangerous shock from seeing this potentially vicious dog approaching them.
In the article, there was no mention of the purpose of K-9 dogs, or why they are part of the “security system” at Bassett, or how they “promote safety” at the hospital.
K-9 dogs are usually trained to sniff out drugs or explosives. There was absolutely no mention of this in the misleading article. Another primary purpose of these dogs is to attack people, or to intimidate people with the threat that the handler might let the dog loose on them.
Use of a dog for security purposes is essentially a threat to use excessive force. A security officer or police officer can be convicted for using excessive force, but a dog can’t.
What is the purpose of having a dog trained to attack people or to sniff out drugs at Bassett Hospital? To deter drug addicts from seeking treatment at the hospital? To increase the tragic drug overdoses that afflict Otsego County?
What exactly can a dog do to promote security? How does it “calm a highly charged situation?” By being ready to bite and maul people? None of this was explained in the article.
The article did state that the dog is the hospital’s “liaison with local law enforcement,” suggesting that the purpose of the dog is indeed to arrest people.
Even if this dog was not trained to sniff out drugs, it is going to deter drug addicts from seeking treatment at the hospital, since historically the main purpose of K-9 dogs has been to arrest people for drugs.
I wrote previously about the K-9 search at Milford BOCES in April 2017 that subjected students there to random unconstitutional searches of their knapsacks and other belongings. It is all part of the government’s attempt to abrogate the Bill of Rights and subject us to random searches in violation of the Fourth Amendment, which protects us from “unreasonable searches and seizures.”
We don’t need Russia or “Islamic terrorists” to threaten our freedom, because our own government is doing a much better job of it on its own.
This country is going to the dogs, and random K-9 searches of people seeking treatment for drug overdoses, or students at school, is a good start to turn us into a country that has no more freedom than China, Saudi Arabia, or Russia.