Senator Dan Lederman says that his Senate Bill 75, to prohibit dog breed-specific local ordinances, will prevent "media hysteria" from driving "feel-good, knee-jerk reactions" against adorable pit bulls.

Medical experts disagree:

Attacks by pit bulls are associated with higher morbidity rates, higher hospital charges, and a higher risk of death than are attacks by other breeds of dogs. Strict regulation of pit bulls may substantially reduce the US mortality rates related to dog bites [J.K. Bini et al., abstract, "Mortality, Mauling, and Maiming by Vicious Dogs," Annals of Surgery, April 2011].

It is not hysteria to note that certain breeds account for higher percentage of dog-bite injuries:

The objective of this study was to characterize the nature of dog bite injuries treated over a 5-year period at a large tertiary pediatric hospital and to identify relevant parameters for public education and injury prevention.

...More than 30 different offending breeds were documented in the medical records. The most common breeds included pit bull terriers (50.9 percent), Rottweilers (8.9 percent), and mixed breeds of the two aforementioned breeds (6 percent).

Pediatric dog bites are preventable injuries, yet they persist as a prevalent public health problem. Evaluation of data from high-volume tertiary pediatric health care institutions identifies predictable patterns of injury with respect to patient age and gender, animal breed, provocation, and seasonality [A.E. Kaye et al., abstract, "Pediatric Dog Bite Injuries: A 5-Year Review of the Experience at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia," Plastic Reconstructive Surgery, August 2009].

Senator Lederman must think the U.S. Army is hysterical. Fort Benning bans pit bulls. U.S. Army Garrison Policy Memorandum 08-10 declares pit bulls, Rottweilers, Dobermans, chows, and wolf hybrids "aggressive or potentially aggressive" and bans those breeds unless they are certified military working dogs boarded by their trainers or handlers.

Senator Lederman is fighting to protect pit bulls from justifiable discrimination even as he advocates a marriage discrimination bill that imperils his own family members' civil rights (just imagine a Christian baker refusing to sell a wedding cake to Lederman's kids because the baker thinks the Bible tells him not to serve Jews). Senator Lederman is also fighting to deny local control to elected officials who would act on scientific evidence to reduce injuries to children from an identifiable risk.

Senator Lederman's ignorance and pandering to a manly-man constituency seems very Republican; Senator Lederman's attack on local control does not.

Update 10:50 CST: An eager reader reminds me that Dan Lederman used to love local control. Recall Lederman's defense of last year's school gunslinger bill:

Allow schools the ability to make their own decisions on how to best keep students safe, and give them the tools to do so at their discretion. Most won’t use it, and that’s up to them. If only one District chooses to exercise local control in this manner, then it was still the right decision [Dan Lederman, "Allow Local Control for School Safety - School Sentinel Bill," blog, 2013.02.22].

I'm also reminded that in December 2012, the Aberdeen City Council rejected a pit bull ban, even though their own study of local violent animal incidents showed pit bulls are responsible for a disproportionate number of serious dog attacks.