About ten years ago, I met a local politician on the Springfield Greenway. His name is James Hubbard, a big, jovial man that over the years has seen me walk anywhere from one to five dogs. When I’m with three or more people, he’s seen us walking a total of ten dogs at one time, all well-mannered, controlled, leashed dogs, thirty percent of which are Robertson County homeless animals. Every time Hubbard greets Mason and I, he makes a big deal about our pack, pointing us out to passing strangers and friends, telling them and us what a great job we are doing for animals in our community.
Last weekend, Donna, ICHBA’s head honcho, called me. She pays attention to local politics. She said Hubbard spoke at a town council meeting in Springfield. He wants to limit the number of dogs one person can walk to two per household, meaning we’d essentially be unwelcome on the Springfield Greenway.
On Tuesday, I saw Hubbard for the first time since hearing he wanted my pack banned from the park. He started greeting Mason and I (and seven dogs) in his normal loud showboating way, only now I know he’s not jovial. Now, I know he’s nothing but a hypocrite.
As I age, my Italian temper rarely flares, but when someone screws with my dog’s health and happiness, I turn into a bear protecting her cubs. I gave it to Hubbard for five straight minutes, telling him to stop pretending to be my friend at the same time he wanted us off the greenway. He explained that our dogs were well behaved, but that there were a few other bad apples. I told him he should worry about the city enforcing the already existing leash laws before he tries instituting new ones.
I’m writing about this for two reasons. One, James Hubbard might be running for mayor of Springfield one day, and I want people to know how little he can be trusted. And lastly, if his proposal gets any steam, I’ll be fighting against it. Like an Italian mama bear.