Letters to the Editor

Letters to the editor: Feb. 17

Factory farms cruel to animals and to humans

Although cruelty is arguably an issue in industrialized farming, the environmental and health concerns to humans is far more important.

Cattle, chickens and hogs are confined for the sole purpose of forcing them to market far earlier than nature ever intended.

The profit motive dictates that they be inoculated with or fed hormones, antibiotics and substances that nature never intended them to eat.

Cattle are grass eaters, but they have been confined and fed the byproducts of other animals.

In addition, massive amounts of these animals produce massive amounts of urine and manure (containing the antibiotics and hormones), which has to be disposed of in some manner, creating a horrible water and soil pollution nightmare.

And don't forget the smell.

Anyone who has ever driven close to any of these factory farms in the summer knows that it is necessary to roll up the windows and turn off the air conditioning to try to shut out the stench produced by confining too many animals in too small an area.

Neighbors of these operations have lost the use of their yards in the summertime.

Unfortunately, because the corporate interests that bankroll these monstrosities have succeeded in buying the legislative bodies that should have outlawed or restricted them, it may be up to consumers with a conscience to make the humane choice to purchase only meat products that are raised as God intended.

Sally Wasielewski

Lexington

Scrutinize Parole Board

After reading the Jan. 26 story describe the Kentucky Parole Board members being in a physical altercation, I wondered if these people have the maturity and integrity to decide which inmates to release.

Board member Pat Turpin blew the whistle on fellow members, describing a profanity-laced argument that ensued at The Lady and Sons, a Savannah, Ga., restaurant owned by celebrity chef Paula Dean.

Turpin said that during the argument one member picked up a knife. The board was attending an annual conference of paroling authorities.

The citizens of Kentucky deserve better. And they deserve to know Turpin is drawing a state retirement from her deputy warden job and collecting another state salary,

With unemployment what it is, I think there should be an investigation into possible misuse of state funds for fancy restaurants and double-dipping employees.

Lastly, maybe the parole board members should lead by example when it comes to attending some of those anger-management classes.

J. Wayne Burton

Frankfort

Toyota: Look within

I have to commend Lex-Pro for helping the disabled who would like to work. But to put them in a place like Toyota is a disservice. If Lex-Pro had all the information about Toyota, I think they would reconsider.

Toyota wants to grab some headlines by hiring disabled people from Lex-Pro, when in turn they discard their employees like used parts after they maim and disable them with their overloaded and ergonomically poor jobs.

How do I know this? I'm one of their maimed and disabled, and I did those jobs as long as my body would last.

So, Lex-Pro, please reconsider where you send your disabled. And Steve St. Angelo, Toyota chief quality officer for North America, I'm sure you could find 11 disabled employees willing to do those jobs. But that wouldn't get you headlines in the paper.

Brian Preston

Richmond

Civility not priority

There is a call for civility and decorum in the political world.

Particularly offensive are talk show hosts, such as Bill O'Reilly, Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, Sean Hannity, Neal Boortz, Mark Levin, and our own Leland Conway.

The concern about civility will not deter these men, most multi-millionaires or working for multi-millionaires, from their primary line of endeavor: making rich people richer.

Why anyone with an income less than $100,000 or an IQ greater than 90 pays attention to anything these people say surpasses understanding.

For example, some (probably all) promote the fiction that we have the "best health care system in the world." That might be true if you have a lot of money. But overall, the United States is the 46th best country in terms of infant mortality, according to the CIA World Factbook. The U.S. is 49th in life expectancy.

As for me, I don't much care about the hosts' lack of civility. I'd be content if they would just quit lying.

Michael Kennedy

Lexington

Betrayal of dogs

Joel Pett's opinion of dogs being "eternal optimists" was spot on. I imagine the two dogs that were tied outside their owner's home in Louisville and froze to death believed until their dying breath that their owner had enough heart to come and get them.

This was one of the saddest reports I have heard this winter. I hope the poor dogs have gone to a better place than their owner deserves.

Jean-Ann Kerr

Cynthiana

Respect the flag

It was quite astonishing to see a half-page insurance company ad in the Tuesday paper featuring an image of the American flag.

The U.S. Flag Code states: "The flag should never be used for advertising purposes in any manner whatsoever. It should not be ... printed or otherwise impressed on paper napkins or boxes or anything that is designed for temporary use and discard."

It's shameful that a national insurance company would not know of this prohibition and equally deficient of the Herald-Leader to publish ads with the flag image.

Chuck Witt

Winchester

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