Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Shalimar, and Rep. Jared Moskowitz, D-Coral Springs, said it is time for the Legislature to sign off on “decoupling” and allow kennel clubs, like the one in Orange Park, to decide whether to continue racing dogs. “This is about businesses being able to make a decision for themselves,” Moskowitz said. “Florida, for all the talk about free enterprise, for all the talk about liberty, for all the talk about not having government in the way of over-regulating, Florida actually mandates that a business runs its business like it’s 1997.”"Oh if only we could go back to 1997," Jack Cory, a lobbyist representing greyhound breeders and dog trainers said. "I mean, that was a lousy year too, but since then the bottom has fallen out. Revenues down more then 66%. It's like people don't come to the track anymore, you know?"
Oh we know overlord Cory, we know. Why, to the casual observer it might seem the people with souls have taken a look at the wholesale exploitation and commodification of innocent living creatures for (no) profit and said "You guys need to get a life, we're out of here." Of course since we aren't versed in the ins and outs of the exciting world of greyhound racing (Fun for the whole family--until we kill another dog in front of your kids) we're sure we are misreading the situation. Perhaps since tracks are closing all over the country at a rapidly increasing rate, people just don't know where to go from one week to the next.
Gaetz and Moskowitz were adamant that they aren’t pushing to end greyhound racing all together, but they believe the state should not tell tracks how much racing they have to do."We believe the number of races a track does should be determined by the customers, not the state," Gaetz said. "Of course, since the tracks don't have any customers that sort of tells you what the demand is."
Both lawmakers also argued that recent reports about greyhound deaths and injuries make the case that it is an outdated sport that does more harm than good. Collectively, 13 racing tracks in Florida reported 192 deaths between June 2013 and December 2014. Orange Park Kennel Club had the second highest number of deaths at 23 during that period."Oh, sure. Shut us down because we kill and injure dogs in a fruitless attempt to stay out of the labor pool," Cory said. "Is that the kind of America you want you children to grow up in?"
Cory said the state regulates dog tracks and most greyhounds don’t run more than twice a week. He said the “decoupling” issue is simply about whether the Legislature will allow dog tracks to convert to casinos without nearby residents’ approval via referendum, as other types of gambling expansion have required. “All of them want to become casinos; they want to do away with pari-mutuels and they want to become casinos,” Cory said.When asked why track owner were so eager to drop greyhound racing and convert to casinos Cory replied, "Because that's where the money is. These guys are in business to make a profit. You think they want this giant leech of greyhound racing on their necks sucking money away like Dracula on steroids? Wait, did I just say that out loud?"
Umm..we're afraid you did there Mr. Cory sir, but on the bright side it's the most honest comment you've made all week. You agree with that Jett?
Jett is a two year old male who can live with cats and small dogs, and will need a canine companion. For more information about this dog, and other rescued racing greyhounds looking for homes, go here. If you don't know about the plight of racing greyhounds go here and here.