Here's why: In 1974, Patty Hearst was a teenage heiress going to college and living a totally normal life, other than the being the granddaughter of William Randolph Hearst part, when out of nowhere, a loosely organized, mostly incoherent group of homegrown terrorists kidnapped her. Two months later, Patty was filmed holding a semiautomatic gun during a bank holdup, and no one knew what to think about her, especially because she was now calling herself "Tania," and anyone who took two glances at her knew she wasn't a Tania. A "Tammy," maybe, but not a Tania.
You're kidding no one, Patty.
Multiple bank robberies and shootouts later, Pat-Tania was arrested and tried for her crimes, and she gave the very plausible and totally reasonable defense that she was brainwashed by her captors. She was convicted anyway. After almost two years of her multi-decade sentence, her sentence was commuted. A few decades later she was totally pardoned, and here we are: Patty Hearst's shih tzu wins hearts and minds (?) at Westminster. Only in America!
Literally! Only in America could a convicted criminal participate in the country's most elite dog show and have everyone be like, "Huh, OK, I guess." But I don't think Patty's case is totally a one-off news-of-the-weird story. The Patty Hearsts of the American criminal world are often welcomed back into the mainstream if they play by the right rules. Here's why: