Surry County, Virginia -- Earlier this month, the rescue organization Dogs Deserve Better announced their hope to transform the former Michael Vick property known as Bad Newz Kennels into a rehabilitation center for dogs that were previously chained or penned.
The new facility would be known as the Good Newz Rehab Center.
The majority of people that have heard about this potential endeavor have greeted it with enthusiasm. They have responded with hope that something good can be made out of something that was previously brutal and ugly.
But then there's the church across the street -- the church with some members who are vowing to do whatever they can to stop Dogs Deserve Better from making the vacant property into a place of healing -- into a place of good.
Those individuals that oppose the potential transformation of the property argue that their place of worship will be diminished by "barking and the smell of poop."
Correspondence has already been sent to representatives of Dogs Deserve Better,
To: Tammy Thayne, Monica Severy, et al:
I see in the Virginian-Pilot that it is your intentions to place a dog pound across the road and directly in front of my place of worship. This is notice that I plan to take every action necessary to see that this does not happen. If you want this activity, put it next to or across the street from your house of worship. Our house of worship has a long and historic past and I don't plan to see it diminished by the noise of dog yelps, poop, etc.
I am quite certain you would not have proposed such in front of a house of worship of predominantly White congregants, so don't propose to do so in our front door because we are a church of Black worshipers.
The arguments from these particular church members are troublesome. Primarily, why would they complain about these things now? Previously, when Michael Vick was running the Bad Newz Kennels, there were fighting dogs at the property.
Evil was literally playing out right before the very eyes of these "concerned" chuch members. Undoubtedly, there was barking, screaming, crying -- as brutal fights were held -- as innocent dogs were killed.
Were the members that oppose the rehabilitation sanctuary opposed to the prior dog-fighting activities? If they did not oppose the prior activities, why would they choose to speak up in opposition to the current proposal?
Why has race been pulled into the argument?
How could individuals claiming to be followers of God decide to put up a fight against a group of people attempting to right the wrongs done to abused dogs? Are dogs not one of God's creatures?
Hopefully those church members in opposition to this proposal will see the light and stop protesting a project backed by love and good intentions. Hopefully other members of the church will speak up in support of the project - perhaps even embrace it as a place to volunteer - to become part of the healing.
The formation of Good Newz Kennels is an opportunity to bring something positive to a space formerly filled with violence.
The formation of Good Newz Kennels provides a chance to dogs that may not have a chance otherwise.
Anyone from this church that feels that the outspoken members in opposition to this proposed venture are not representative of the entire congregation, please email me directly at Eims1@live.com. I would be more than happy to share your words of encouragement for Good Newz Kennels. Thank you.
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