Letters: 9/15/16

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Dyer’s a needed Muckraker
I shudder to think where we’ll be if journalists like Joel Dyer disappear. Amid massive layoffs at newspapers going “digital first,” Dyer’s contributions are impossible to overstate. Muckrakers are needed to expose the venality of our bloated political class. Dyer is first class.
Adam Babbs/Boulder

Armory prairie dog relocation
As a wildlife supporter who advocated for relocating the Armory prairie dogs to city open space, I’m very concerned about the company that has been hired by the developer to perform the actual relocation. This Kansas based contractor claims, on their website, that they live trap 94 plus percent of the prairie dogs within five days. However, all reputable prairie dog relocation specialists based in Colorado have indicated this is implausible. It is a fact that live trapping prairie dogs takes weeks, not days, and even then there will be many prairie dogs who elude trapping and must be captured using an alternate method. The traps used by both the Kansas and the Colorado relocators are identical, and everyone uses the same food to bait them. There is no magical bait that prairie dogs find irresistible and which will temp most of them into the traps in so few days.
What then can account for the difference? Perhaps it lies in the one glaring distinction between the Colorado relocators and the Kansas relocator: The Kansas-based relocator is also a prairie dog exterminator. It wouldn’t be hard to imagine this “relocator” trapping for five days and then quietly killing most of the remaining prairie dogs and claiming that they trapped 94 percent of them.
It would be difficult to contest or disprove any claims, and most of the public would assume the job has been done correctly and humanely. But considering that their willingness to kill prairie dogs is the one thing which completely differentiates them from the relocators who don’t double as exterminators, this would seem to be a very plausible scenario to explain their suspiciously high “capture” rate.
The local advocates who fought so hard to save the Armory prairie dogs want a successful relocation that includes capturing as many of the prairie dogs as possible. It is very clear that hiring a mindful relocator who doesn’t double as an exterminator is the only way to ensure that the highest number of Armory prairie dogs are relocated to their new home.
Anna Rivas/Longmont

Outraged at Nibbles
Regarding the article “Facing the Flesh” [Nibbles, Sept. 8] More and more I read about carnivores who want to “feel good” about where their meat comes from. The usual writer’s cliché is that people who slaughter animals “know where their meat comes from,” as if slaughtering your own meat is some lofty virtue.
The vegan ideology has huge merit: It does not require the horrible cruelty of slaughtering animals, or destroying rainforests to raise yet more cattle, or dumping vast amounts of toxic waste into the water supply.
In my opinion, people who raise and slaughter animals for food have a huge conscience deficit. No matter how humanely an animal is raised, they will not be painlessly euthanized. These beings will be killed using a cost-effective method.
And pork is not a health food. You can eat fruits and veggies all day long and only get healthier, but try eating pork all day long and see what happens. People have reversed heart disease and cancer using strict vegan diets.
Try doing that with pork. Newspaper and magazine writers want to feel good about where their meat comes from, when they should feel good about not supporting the meat industry.
Scott Lane/Prescott, Az

Campaign flashback
A disconcerting aspect of the upcoming presidential election is its similarity to the Humphrey/Nixon race of 1968. With the backdrop of the turmoil of the Civil Rights and anti-Vietnam War Movements, the Gene McCarthy campaign, and the assassinations of Martin Luther King and Robert Kennedy, the election pitted an Establishment Democrat against a Law-and Order Republican appealing to a “Silent Majority” of older white voters. The disillusionment of young voters (equivalent to today’s “Millenials”) with the Democratic Party was a major factor in the election of Richard Nixon and all its future ramifications.
Also of historical concern is the 2000 contest between Al Gore and George W. Bush in which the third-party candidacy of Ralph Nader (and a curious spate of votes for Pat Buchanan in Florida) led to Bush winning in the Electoral College despite Gore winning the overall popular vote. Here again there were future ramifications. Similarly, Ross Perot’s campaign helped Bill Clinton be elected.
The current Clinton/Trump contest, with the overwhelming focus of both parties on how catastrophic will be the outcome if the opponent wins, is discouraging enough without these gloomy historical precedents, but, as the Buddhists say, we shall indeed see what the future brings.
Robert Porath/Boulder

  • Kelly

    Remember that time Anna Rivas claimed it was impossible to trap 95+% of the Armory prairie dogs in five days of active trapping? Well, Roe Ecological Services just trapped 95+% in two days. 🙂