ETHICS - "Do good, Be good" - Esther J
I have been reading, talking, discussing, researching and writing about Black Russian Terriers for quite a while now. Before I ever got a BRT, I could quote all kinds of facts and figures. I could tell you the main stream thoughts, and the offshoot, or off in left field thinkers' opinions. I know the stats on testing, how many do it, how many don't, many times what the percentages are for the results.
Now I am not a brain surgeon, or rocket scientist (I do have a brother in law who is though:-).
But I am lucky...I could have been if I wanted to. Many times, given the kind of person I am and what I am capable of, people have asked me what do I really want to do? For a long time I thought it was to be a biological illustrator. I was accepted to a college with a double major in art and science. Then my parents divorced. No university for me, but I started working, going to the JC, and paying my own way so my sisters could go. That is when I was still shy, and had a lot of opinions but kept them to myself. I wanted a job with quiet and isolation, so my inherant empathy, logic, and sense of right and wrong wouldn't be stepped on all the time.
I learned a lot about me around then, and definitely came out of my shell. Mostly I learned that the part time dispatching job for a security company was right up my alley. I knew emergency dispatch was going to be my life's passion. In my police interview I said wanted to be in the hot seat, "Because they stand on a wall and say, 'Nothing's going to hurt you tonight, not on my watch'." - (A Few Good Men).
I am known to have the highest standards, morals, integrity and ethics. From being that shy quiet girl, I became confident, self-assured and and got the nickname, Ms Encyclopedia. I trained recruits, and was Union Steward, and on the contract negotiation team. I led 200 people and stood up in front of the City Council , and gave them statistics and research. We got the only raises in the department during a year of severe budget cuts!
Inside I am still quiet and reserved. Shy of my feelings being exposed and trod upon. I went into law enforcement because I thought I would be surrounded by like minded people ie. fair, honest, promisses kept, evidence and citing of sources, following the rules, supporting each other through thick and thin. Everyone judged on their own merits, no cliques or black balling. Open communication, no stepping on others to boost themselves. No finger pointing. No spreading gossip and making trouble for each other. No holding back of information, or worse yet...no giving of bad info, or subversive questioning to find answers to hidden agendas.
I thought we were all part of a team, all equals, all able to learn, and able to give of ourselves.
But I guess, I was misguided in thinking that to "Do Good, and Be Good" was all it takes. Everything we spoke or did was recorded. Lot's of people hate that aspect of the job. Didn't bother me. I conciously make decisions to abide by the rules, to tell the truth, to not lie, to not cheat, to not take the easy way out. I live my whole life that way...Do Good and Be Good. Its what I told one of those people years ago who asked me what I really wanted to be.
Now after 25+ years of security and law enforcement...I am too stomped on to continue. I had to hide from the world awhile..sometimes I still have to. Had to get me a big ol' dawg to feel safe and to know if what I hear and see is real.
But enough of that patting my own back stuff...just want you to know where I am coming from...
Through my dog I have learned about dog showing and breeding, and puppies, and health. Relearned some things like scientific method, statistics, true factual research, citing sources, genetics, probability. I am learning a new set of rules too, about showing, grooming, politics, bullying, black balling. That free speech really isn't, because you earn a pay back from it. That rules are established but not followed unless you feel like it and, and the bonus comes when it helps you climb.
Now of course that sounds totally negative and leaves no room for the good and nice and consistant people I have met.
I have been encouraged and mentored all along the way. I so appreciate every one of them. It is hard to be so needy, after being the go to person my whole life. You have all treated me, my dog and my illness with respect. Thank you!!!!!!!!!!
I find myself getting frightened and worried. I see vindictive words, and pointing fingers on the blogs and posts. I feel driven to make a statement not with any particular affiliation or politics. Just the facts about what I have noticed. The need for it to bubble out of me is the scary part. I am not suposed to think so hard yet...LOL
Lately, I have been hearing of secret trainings, and groomings and wanting to change regulations to make problems in breeding choices acceptable. Mistakes and surprises happen, but conciously deciding to make it again...is what? I don't think we can call that ethical. And since when do you need to have experience doing anything to decide if something is ethical? Do Law Judges get degrees in rocket science to decide if a missle aimed at a church is ethical, or moral or right?...or that it might have repercussions, forseeable and not? It appears there is a certain immeasureable degree of breeding experience required to be considered you are knowledgeable about ethics.Yet I hear about breedings that are against the rules, whether it has to do with country borders, or genetic issues, or being sound. Doesn't sound like the hows of breeding are the issue :-). In these, I am sure isolated cases, the concious decision to ignore the rules appears to be the problem. Or to put it more straightforwardly...the ethical breeding decision makers, seem to have a problem with the meaning of ETHICS. Which would also explain why ACCOUNTABILITY and FOLLOW THROUGH are problematic.
I have never helped a puppy exit its mother's womb and then suctioned out the mucous plug, or tie then cut an embilical cord. So I guess I would be prevented from donating my time and energy to the committee. Yet I clearly have a very defined sense of ethics, and can communicate them succinctly, and guide another's actions through the apparently tricky path of right and wrong. I can also look at the facts, and without rancour, make a fair and and logical decision. Surely the same is true for so many of our members.
Why don't I hear or find references along the lines of accountability? Surely, it is possible to have one's reputation damaged by such accusations as unallowed breeding? So logically in this liturgis country, there must be a way to record and review the action and the decision/punishment? If these proceedings are kept private, how are we to make informed choices? If a decision is over turned is there a way to track that process? It seems to be justifiable that if you volunteer, you are also agreeing to full disclosure within the association.
I hear more and more, that the people who are trying to follow the rules, and justifyably believe rules are to be kept intact, are being bullied out of groups, and discussions. I have read actual statements that being on the breeders list, is a joke. Why are there some conspicuous absences? Why do I hear that the only reason to be on the list, is that people doing research will see your kennel before anyone elses?
So what do I decifer from all this..
People believe there are some inherant problems with too few people making decisions.
The association members seem to be demanding a much more direct say in the direction the organization should be going.
There are complaints about transparency, timely reporting, and hidden agendas.
Some members and even non-members feel they are the victim of discrimination, exclusionary tactics, and threats to do violence towards the dogs.
That last item is so abhorrent to me, and so reminiscent of the 25 years of calls I have taken about the attrocities people do to each other, and the evil performed on the innocent and helpless....I cannot now say more than.....I am sickened.