Letters to the Editor

Voice of the People - June 29, 2007

Geese killers take the civil out of civilized

The Coalition to Prevent the Destruction of Canada Geese is troubled by the recent letter penned by David C. Ball Jr. of Fort Mill in which he refers to the geese as "stinking" but would have them fed to the needy, possibly placing the peoples' health at risk in the future when maladies surface without evident cause.

Apparently, Mr. Ball is not aware of the toxins the geese ingest, i.e., fertilizers, pesticides, algaecides and PBCs, to name just a few.

Apparently, Mr. Ball is not aware the USDA does not inspect each and every bird slaughtered for human consumption.

Apparently, Mr. Ball is not aware that feeding the geese to the less fortunate is nothing more than a wildlife management public relations ploy, designed to gain public acceptance for lethal Canada goose management practices.

Equally troubling is Mr. Ball's pro-kill position, which reflects that of the homeowners association board members of Four Seasons, Fort Mill, who recently carried out a needless, cruel and spiteful lethal Canada goose roundup in a misguided effort to resolve the community's human-goose conflicts. When the lack of respect for an animal's life, whose only crime is doing what comes naturally, results in a death warrant, then it is time to take civil out of civilized.

Sharon Pawlak

National coordinator

Coalition to Prevent the Destruction of Canada Geese

Medford, N.J.

Herald shouldn't take stance in police case

I hope this letter reaches the wrong-headed editor who wrote the editorial praising Winthrop University for asking state authorities to investigate whether a campus police officer used excessive force in arresting a Rock Hill man in May ("Winthrop did right thing," published May 26).

This is not to say the university was wrong in asking for the investigation; in fact, they are to be praised for taking this action. But such praise should not come from a newspaper editorial, and, clearly, The Herald editorial staff was in the wrong in taking an editorial stance which will have as its direct result the calling into question the legality of a police officer performing his lawful duties.

Consider: It is not unusual for witnesses to take the part of a criminal against the word of a police officer. That may or may not have happened in this particular case, though the case of accepting the word of the police officer in question is made much stronger by the fact that the accused person, Alston, has previously been charged with resisting arrest. Witnesses also may not know the full story of the total police action, but possibly -- having listened in the past to sob stories of alleged police brutality such as is suggested by this editorial -- it is becoming more popular for the public to be convinced police officers are in the wrong whenever they encounter an accused criminal who decides to attack a police officer. Perhaps that happened in this instance.

Also, the fact that there allegedly have or have not been recent high-profile cases of police brutality nationally has absolutely no bearing on this local case, so that should not have entered into the editorial discussion at all. What the Herald has accomplished by writing this unnecessary editorial is the calling into question the police officer's veracity in this case and to damage the ongoing ability of police officers everywhere to perform their jobs without being subject to prejudiced second guessing by do-gooder editorial writers.

It is not the responsibility of The Herald's editors to take sides in a dispute where a police officer is performing his legal duties. By praising Winthrop in this case, The Herald has injured the reputation of police officers everywhere.

Charles Seng