> SOUTHERN INDIANA — Haven House leader gives thanks
Haven House Services has been very blessed this past year. Much of that has to do with Wall Street United Methodist Church and indeed the cluster of Methodist churches. On April 1, Wall St. UMC hosted an old fashioned hymn sing to benefit Haven House Services Inc.
The turnout was wonderful.
Four great groups donated their time, talent and money to provide us with an evening’s entertainment: Singers of the Son (Ohio Falls UMC); Thankful Hearts (Hanover); The Shannon’s (Muncie); and The Samaritans (Louisville). I would like to say a special thank you to the groups who performed and gave time. Even though they are not from our community they have become brothers and sisters to us.
To Lem Trevillian as the chairperson of the event, Pastor Gil and Jan Hubbard; Tracy Taylor and scores of volunteers from Wall Street UMC thank you, thank you, thank you. The food was wonderful, the event was great and you raised $1,620 in one evening to benefit this community’s most vulnerable people.
The Methodist cluster has provided much support this year to renovating the kitchen, having a birthday party once a month for the residents, one on one mentoring and the suppers provided by Park Memorial. Your stewardship, support and love is well received and much appreciated.
— Barbara Anderson, executive director, Haven House Services Inc.
Reader supports neuter and release of feral cats
If the J.B. Ogle Animal Shelter Advisory Board spay and Neuter committee was staffed with members such as Garland Grant Oakes III [Opinions Mailbag, April 17, 2012 edition], I believe the animal-loving members of our community should be grateful that he and the other board members have resigned.
I wholeheartedly support Shelter Director Sarah Green in her opinion on the trap-neuter-release method for feral cats. The whole purpose of TNR is to prevent the reproduction of cats. There simply are not enough homes for all of the cats [and dogs] that reproduce at will. A single pair of cats and their kittens can produce as many as 420,000 kittens in just seven years.
Most feral cats who end up in shelters are considered unadoptable and killed. This is a waste of shelter employees’ time and taxpayers’ money. By using the proven TNR method the feral cats are released back into their colonies and will live out their natural lives. The lifespan of feral cats compares favorably with the lifespan of pet cats. A long-term study (published in the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association in 2003) of a Trap-Neuter-Release program noted that 83 percent of the cats present at the end of the observation period had been there for more than six years, meaning the cats’ lifespans were comparable to the median lifespan of 7.1 years for pet cats.
Mr. Oakes is wrong on several points in his letter. For instance, veterinary studies show that stray cats’ incidences of trauma and disease are low, and their infection rate — 4 percent — is the same or lower than in house cats. His opinion that feral cats kill songbirds is also wrong. Decades of studies prove that when cats do hunt, which is not nearly as often as they scavenge — they much prefer a diet of rodents.
By removing them from the ecosystem, it upsets the delicate balance of nature. On Amsterdam Island in the Indian Ocean, an attempt to eliminate feral cats to protect endangered birds caused a spike in the rat and mouse population. The rats and mice then preyed on the birds.
I am the caregiver of a feral cat colony behind my workplace in Louisville. I have been taking care of this colony for two years. With the help of Alley Cat Advocates, my cats have been spayed and neutered. They each received a three year rabies shot a penicillin injection, flea treatment, clean ears, a nice brushing and had one ear tipped to show animal control they are fixed and cannot reproduce.
The answer to the feral cat population is simple. Trap-Neuter-Release. I look forward to the fresh approach Green and Mayor Mike Moore will bring. The old system obviously wasn’t working. For more information on the studies I quoted please go to www.alleycat.org
— Amy Bockhorst, Clarksville
Reader offers up a political poem
Politicians still selling their services as symbolic whores, taking monetary deals behind locked, closed doors.
Silently, there disappears the American way of living, via their regulations, constantly our taxes giving.
Freedoms of speech and press being taken away, leaving us to fight, to survive day to day.
“Love it or leave it,” the slogan we see, yet, all each of us yearn to be, truly free.
An artist, the most dangerous vocation of man, these quixotic dreamers yet do the best they can.
The “system’ definitely set in stone, with all its might, but alterations must, today, be set right.
So, with love, help your follow man along his path, and with prayer, and action, don’t risk eventually God’s wrath.
— H. James Janson Jr., Marysville
Make cancer research a priority
The health benefits of the National Institutes of Health research support are clear: Investment in NIH directly leads to better medicines, procedures, treatments, equipment and delivery systems to prevent and cure diseases like cancer. Additionally NIH plays a notable role as an economic engine, helping maintain the U.S. economy.
NIH supports nearly half a million jobs all across the country and remains the largest funder of research in the United States. More than 80 percent of the NIH budget directly funds research performed by 325,000 scientists at more than 3,000 institutions in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
This funding supports jobs here in our backyard. In fiscal 2011, 5,028 jobs in Indiana were supported by $216 million in NIH funding.
Federal support of cancer research has put us on the verge of some incredible breakthroughs, and this work is going on here at cancer centers in Indiana. We need to bring these potential discoveries to fruition because they will lead to treatments for some of the most deadly cancers.
I hope that Congress will make funding for cancer research a top priority when they understand this research is benefiting their own constituents, and is being conducted right in our own backyard.
— Mary Kost, New Albany, volunteer, American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network
Resident asks for support of George
The 2010 elections were horrible for Democrats across the country, and Southern Indiana was no exception.
A wave of Republicans swept into offices often long held by Democrats. Republican Todd Young unseated Democratic incumbent Baron Hill. The now Republican-controlled legislature redrew his congressional district in a way that heavily favored the Republican Party. The district, that has been competitive in elections since I was born, was no longer considered so.
Slowly, most potential names of candidates to take Young on dropped their candidacy. I honestly thought Democrats might not even field a candidate. But then something happened. Out of nowhere, Hoosier native Gen. Jonathan George announced he would make the plunge and run. Though he knew it was a long shot, he wanted to continue serving his nation the same way he did for 30 years in the Air Force. He wanted to prove you don’t have to be Republican to be a patriot.
His resume is really amazing: 30 years in the U.S. Air Force, flying classified U-2 spy planes, working his way up to the rank of brigadier general. In the military he won many awards such as the Distinguished Flying Cross for heroism and the Koren Kolligian Trophy for acts of bravery. As he worked his way up, he was given the responsibility of commanding a B-2 Stealth Bomber squadron and two Air Force wings. In this role he lead 12,000 air force personnel. He was also chosen by President Barack Obama to serve on his national security council. Even though he was a Democrat, he also served as a White House Fellow for President Ronald Reagan and shortly after he earned his masters from Harvard University.
George once told me, a lot of congressional candidates think that when they get to Washington, all they will do is give important speeches and enjoy the glamour that goes along with public service. But the reality is that is not the case. The most important issue they will deal with will be constituent issues. Our district deserves a representative who will assist their constituents to get around the red tape that often comes with government. George understands this more than any candidate in the race.
Though the competitors in the primary are all superb candidates, George deserves our support. He got in this race when no one else had done so. He has always served his country honorably and will continue to do so as our congressman. I am proud to vote for him in my first election, and I sincerely hope my fellow Hoosiers from the 9th District will do the same.
— Mitch Hadley, Corydon