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The "Terror on Ballinger Street" Story
Terror on Ballinger StreetPainted in 2011
24" x 20" - Acrylic on Canvas
May 2011
By Dulcy Brightman

What’s Wild About the West?. We’ve all grown up watching our favorite cowboy movies, and seeing the beautiful landscapes serving as a backdrop to highlight each dramatic moment. Yes, Hollywood has provided us years of true and not so true stories. We even have some romantic notions because of what we’ve been spoon fed by Hollywood. Their spin on each story has made us embrace and cherish the environment where thousands of crews work to give us this kind of entertainment.

California has numerous days of sunshine. This is perfect for the professional and not so professional film, video, and candid photographers. Every day we are bombarded by pictures from what has become a daily diet in American life. There is no stone left unturned. Still there remain questions as to what exactly is wild about the west?

The population, for example, of overflowing newcomers to California have flooded the landscape with the mountains now dotted with numerous and same looking homes, and buildings. Mountain after mountain has succumbed to real estate developers. The sometimes rural San Fernando Valley, which once was known for the scent of orange trees, has diminished to almost nothing. Case in point: California State University at Northridge, or CSUN, as they are known, now has a miniscule orange grove on their campus. It’s almost laughable to think this was once orange grove, olive tree farms, and horse country!

The mountains and hills surrounding greater Los Angeles are truly astounding. Despite the overpopulation one has only to look up towards the mountains and find it restful to the eye. The mountains in Los Angeles serve as a type of Central Park, New York City style. There needs to be more relaxing sites, but alas progress is eating away at the ordinary residents options.

In the last couple of years another problem has arisen. I had previously thought there was absolutely nothing so “wild” about The San Fernando Valley, but I was greatly mistaken.

There are numerous Pit Bull Dogs in Los Angeles County. Other cities, knowing the unpredictability of the breed, have banned these dogs from the heavily populated inner cities. Since there is a vast amount of land, particularly in the San Fernando Valley, some of these trained attack/fight Pit Bull Dogs have been abandoned to the streets.

Unsuspecting good neighbors in upscale areas of The San Fernando Valley or “The Valley” as its known, have “street adopted” Pit Bulls. These dogs are dropped from cars of people who use Pit Bulls as money makers via dog fights. These new “owners” not knowing what triggers these Street Adopted Pit Bulls have witnessed attacks on their pet dogs, cats, even wild life such as raccoons (which are notorious for carrying TB).

I personally witnessed one Pit Bull Dog attack in an otherwise quiet Northridge, California, neighborhood. In fact, I even produced a painting on the subject. The Northridge neighborhood has been subjected to numerous attacks on their pets. Small dogs and wild animals have been practically ripped in half by this one particular abandoned, street adopted pit bull without the proper response by Animal Control Agents. There is an uncommonly higher risk to humans; especially small children and toddlers. The owner has played her seizure disorder card up to the hilt with the Animal Control Agents. In any other city in the United States, the policy would have been, as lawyers say, “Every dog gets one free bite!” Certainly not several!

However, this particular pit bull has gotten a green light or passes; despite at least 5 attacks on neighbors pets in this otherwise beautiful Northridge Neighborhood. This dog needs to be taken and put down. It is truly a dangerous situation.

No inner city or vastly populated area should ever be subjected to defending their pets because of one of these “street adopted” pit bulls. In fact, a few months ago I saw a pit bull puppy with a young college student that had no collar or leash on. When I asked, “Oh, is this your dog?” the California State College at Northridge, student, replied, “I “found” this puppy! Some puppy! That pit bull puppy was already as tall as my knee cap. Just after my questioning this young man with this pit bull puppy, he ran across the intersection of Nordoff , and Reseda Blvd., not far from CSUN. The puppy was tagging along as fast as it could go behind his would be owner? There is obviously some place in Northridge, California, where these dogs are being dropped into neighborhoods without the benefit of an owner. It is rather shocking to me.

When you think about it; no one ever hears about a small dog, such as a Chihuahua, attacking a Pit Bull, and terrorizing any city domestic pets! Therefore, my opinion is that no Pit Bulls be allowed within city limits or in heavily residential neighborhoods. You must remember that when a Pit Bull dog is in an attack mode its jaws actually lock into position to slice and rip its victim! Let’s hope the authorities get the message, and do a better job in safeguarding it‘s residents from certain disaster.


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