LETTERS

Opinion
Nov 6, 2009
by WLJ
LETTERS

Dear Pete, That was a great article you wrote in the (Western Livestock) Journal on Oct. 5, 2009. Pollan certainly does not know hardly anything about the cattle business and the food everybody eats. How does he know that organic is the type of food everybody should eat? You are right when you say he is trying to influence people to eat organic foods.

I am glad that Dave Wood was there to confront him with the issue of what people should eat and shouldn’t eat. Pollan does not even understand what people have to eat is what makes them healthy. He does not understand that the San Joaquin County land that has no water this year is land that produces many other types of vegetables that people do eat to stay healthy.

You are right when you say we can’t make food a political issue. They won’t be able to feed the people in our country, let alone half the world also.

People like Michael Pollan should not be allowed to speak to the students of Cal Poly about what he thinks his organic agriculture could do for the country.

Respectfully, Jerry Forster Medford, OR

P.S. I also have farmland that produces vegetables that are raised by a production farmer friend of mine by the name of Willie Maupin, from Williams, CA, one of the best farmers in the Sacramento Valley. All 400 acres are under the drip system, which uses only about 25 percent of the water to produce the crops and keeps the costs for water at about 75 percent below normal water costs for farming.

Dear Mr. Crow, The word is that we have a mustang “problem.” We don’t have a mustang problem. We have a Wild Horse and Burro Act problem. Repeal the 1971 Wild Horse and Burro Act and the mustang problem is solved. The problem with mustangs has always been controlling their numbers to keep them from overgrazing fragile rangeland and both destroying the range and running out of feed for themselves. Repeal of the 1971 act would allow the local communities to once again regulate their mustang population with rational management practices, and at no cost to the taxpayer.

Every county in the West has ordinances against animal cruelty and neglect vigorously enforced, except where the 1971 act places wild horses outside of their jurisdiction. Repeal of the 1971 act would again allow sanctions against those causing overgrazing and water problems through interfering with gathers, and their own neglect and mismanagement.

We are told that the 1971 act is saving our “heritage.” No place in our heritage of mustanging, horse trading, ranching, etc., have we had social workers inspecting the “home environment” and moral character of the prospective “adoptive parents” of a horse or burro.

The boiler plate repeated for 38 years to justify the 1971 act is that it protects mustangs from “unscrupulous ranchers and mustangers gathering horses for commercial purposes.” Those unscrupulous ranchers and leftover mustangers are your subscribers, and commercial purposes is a legitimate motivation in the United States. With that overused quote we know the mental state of the people causing this mess. The 1971 act has put them in control and they are making policy for the BLM.

The government shadow cast on the mustang business falls onto the private ownership of horses. If the government can declare people whose entire lives have been spent in the livestock industry incompetent to handle wild horses without supervision, then when are they going to mount a campaign against unsupervised ownership of ranch horses, race horses, recreational horses, etc.? They are there already with their agitation for laws against horse slaughter. Old horses are joining mustangs in looking for a home. Will ownership change to guardianship? It has already been suggested. Nobody had an inkling 50 years ago that Velma Johnson’s campaign to demonize fixed wind Piper Cub spotter planes would lead to this. Repeal the 1971 Horse and Burro Act.

Yours truly, Ralph Crawford Edison, CA

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