The Right To Quit -- Bob Herold's Aug. 12th commentary, "Money Over Country," chastens Tom Ridge for resigning from his post as our national security czar. Herold compares Tom Ridge to Leslie Grove, who would not have quit on the Manhattan project during World War II. The analogy is strained a bit by the fact that the Manhattan project had a beginning and an end. Tom Ridge's project has the former but not the latter.
Perhaps Robert Herold is still stuck in the war paradigms of his erstwhile professorial days on campus. The war against terrorism will probably never have the equivalent of V-J Day or V-E Day. Tom Ridge has borne the present program that has at least brought some level of security in our nation since 9/11. Does Bob Herold want Tom Ridge to serve until he drops dead at his desk? This war will go on long after Tom Ridge dies or resigns.
Darin Z. Krogh
Riding Backwards -- I thought The Inlander was a progressive newspaper, since most of your articles have been pro-environment and animal-friendly. What a disappointment, then, to see the article, "Wrangling With Rodeos," (8/12/04), glorifying rodeo and the Omak Stampede. We've heard that story before. A forum that discusses the other side of rodeo, the cruelty to animals that so many of the events involve, would have been so much more fitting for a progressive newspaper like the Inlander.
Kerry Lee Masters
Liberty Lake, Wash.
Stampede Is Torture -- Promotion of two of the most heinous exploitations of animals was featured in the Inlander's cover story, "Wrangling With Rodeos." Ironically it was the first day of the four-day Omak Suicide horse race, which killed three horses.
"During Thursday's race, one horse in the middle of the pack stumbled into another horse at the bottom of the hill, injuring both. The two horses were humanely euthanized. A third horse collapsed in the arena at the end of the race. Stampede officials said a veterinarian determined the horse died of natural causes. No riders were injured," wrote the Seattle Post-Intelligencer on Friday, Aug 13.
The Inlander detailed how the "courageous" celebrities suffered physically from their participation in suicide races and rodeos - without mentioning that it was their choice to get battered. What about the innocent victims? In rodeos, normally gentle animals are physically provoked by painful manipulations into displaying wild behavior. If anyone doubts that animals are tortured, injured and killed in rodeos, go to www.sharkonline.org for graphic documentation.
Dr. C.G. Haber, a veterinarian with thirty years experience as a USDA meat inspector, says, "The rodeo folks send their animals to the packing houses where ... I have seen cattle so extensively bruised that the only areas in which the skin was attached was the head, neck, legs, and belly. I have seen animals with six to eight ribs broken from the spine, at times puncturing the lungs. I have seen two and three gallons of free blood accumulated under the detached skin."
We as a nation are carrying on a war against terrorism. Does it make any sense at all to be promoting the terrorizing of horses, calves, bulls, steers, etc.? Terrorizing and killing of innocents -- whether human or animal -- is wrong.