Torch Voices

Dear Editor,

I feel the need to set the record straight your article in the January 11th issue about the Mecosta County Animal Shelter. I have volunteered at the shelter for two years and am wondering where this notion of a “grim future” is coming from. Granted, the shelter does not have the capacity to accept cats, and that is a definite shortcoming. However, the dogs taken in by the shelter receive food, fresh water, fresh air, someone looking after their health, and a clean blanket to sleep on every day. I applaud Petsavers for taking in animals and caring for them, but there are literally millions of stray pets in the United States. I am also curious about the portion of the article that describes “gas chambers?” I know the shelter and its layout very well and have never seen anything that could possibly fit that description. All of the available space is taken up by the dogs or assorted food, bedding, etc. Another fallacy in the article is that dogs can stay at the shelter for much longer than a week. There have been multiple examples of dogs that have stayed at the shelter for a month or longer. Dogs have been donated, not sold to animal research. However, this is a last resort and has only been used three times in the last two years I have been volunteering there to my knowledge. Instead of attacking the Mecosta County Animal Shelter for doing the best they can with the limited resources, perhaps we should turn this article’s malice to the irresponsible pet owners who supply the unending stream of uncared for animals. The shelter is open Tuesday-Saturday in the mornings for anyone who cares to learn what truly happens there.

Ian Willman

Sophmore, Radiography/ Philosophy

Dear Editor,

I have a few comments regarding the Torch’s recent article, “Clueless Contenders.” Whenever a critic brings up the (now infamous) “Ron Paul newsletter,” the only two accusations that can be made are (1) that Paul is a poor manager (which ignores that Paul has successfully managed his own medical practice for years) or (2) that Paul is a racist. Paul “doesn’t seem to be exactly who he says he is,” says the article. “I’m not too sure he’s telling the truth.” So who is he exactly? What truth is he not telling? I doubt the Torch is questioning his management skills.

An examination of Paul’s policy stances reveals that he is the “anti-racist” in this presidential race. What other candidate (including, Obama) will end the racist War on Drugs (which incarcerates a disproportionate number of blacks for victimless crimes), has acknowledged and condemned the apparent racism in the judicial system, and will legalize gay marriage by taking jurisdiction away from the government to define what is and is not a marriage?

It is fair to criticize Paul for the newsletters. He should have exercised more oversight, and has admitted as much. But it is ludicrous that a few disavowed, 20-year-old, ghost-written letters somehow make Paul “not fit to run this country,” as the article’s tagline reads. Such a statement implies that the newsletters are morally worse than the 137,000 civilians killed in Iraq and Afghanistan, the extrajudicial assassination of U.S. citizens by the Obama administration, the NDAA of 2012 (which authorizes the military to indefinitely detain U.S. citizens without rights to trial or attorney), and the robbery writ large of taxpayers to bail out corrupt financial institutions. Are perpetual wars, corporate welfare, and the effective repeal of the Bill of Rights all better than Ron Paul?

Zak Carter

FSU student