by Joanie Caldwell-Kenoshmeg
Advocates, volunteers and victims of dog attacks volunteered time and energy to bring the “Out of the Blue” sidewalk art exhibit to Columbus, Ohio on May 30, 2015 to educate the public on the growing problems of serious life-changing and life ending attacks on humans and pets by dangerous dogs––primarily pit bulls.
The exhibit was first shown in Grand Rapids, Michigan on September 24, 2014 in Grand Rapids, Michigan by Wyoming, Michigan resident Joan Kowal as an entry in ArtPrize, an annual outdoor art contest attracting upward of 1,500 entrants and more than 400,000 votes from viewers who select the award-winning entries.
In original form, “Out of the Blue” honored 30 victims of recent dog attacks. Concerned citizens added new crosses and memorial information for a dozen new victims of pit bulls to keep the memorial up to date. Forty-two crosses lined the street in Columbus to show the public how pit bulls are impacting families “out of the blue.” The victims were killed in most cases by family-loved, un-abused pit bulls, some of them neutered, who had never shown prior aggression before attacking and killing grandmothers, adult female and male pit bull owners, infants and toddlers.
The presenters vow to take “Out of the Blue” to other cities around the country. We demand change to protect people from pit bull attacks.
Plastic surgeons and physicans report that pit bulls cause injuries so much more severe than other dogs that they often cannot repair the victims with any amount of medical intervention. Such injuries are not mere bites, and warrant preventive regulations, as all Americans pay for national heath insurance.
Civil lawsuits after attacks occur provide ineffective recourse. Less than 2% of dog attack victims recover damages from the owners of pit bulls when the dogs attack because the owners are uninsured or delay settling lawsuits for many years. Many pit bull attack victims are now begging for help online to pay for plastic surgeries and other medical bills.
Also exhibited in Columbus were posters denouncing national news media inlcuding Fox, MSNBC, and CNN, for failing to disclose the dog breeds involved after recent pit bull fatalities, helping to keep this public safety threat hidden.
A memorial for American veterans killed by pit bulls is also being planned.
(See also http://www.animals24-7.org/2014/09/30/dont-bully-my-breed-but-we-will-bully-the-victims/, by Beth Clifton, and http://www.animals24-7.org/2014/10/07/three-pit-bull-stories-to-chew-on/, by Barbara Kay.)