While reading the ‘Pit bull ban misguided’ letter, I was reminded of an experience from years ago, teaching civics at Guadalupe School. This was in their old school; space constraints forced our class onto the landing of a stairwell where, during the first hour, we encountered a young woman attached by leash to a pit bull, attired in — of all things — a pink tutu! The combination of scary dog and fun ballet costume encouraged all of us into the yard at break time, to learn whatever lesson was planned. We were either teaching or learning ESL or how to prepare for the U.S. citizenship test and represented a broad assortment of nationalities. First, we were asked whether we had ever experienced being judged by what we looked like. We got it. Immediately. And it stayed with most of us.

Our second lesson was from the Humane Society volunteer who advised on spaying and other services they offer. But what stuck with all of us was what we’ve all experienced in our lives: being judged by others based on our looks. I was already looking at immigrants with acceptance and support, but now I also look positively at pit bulls, too.

Mary Young, Sandy