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Letters to the editor

July 05, 2004

Smirk is not so bad


To the editor:

George W. Bush's critics point to his almost signature smirk as an indignant, elitist, "I am putting the screws to you" and "I don't care" point of view. I disagree. I do not believe he thinks those things when he smirks. He is a good, courageous man.

He has a history of that in addition to being rich, aloof and powerful. I look at the smirk and see this: Uneasiness and a battle with self-esteem coupled with a certain amount of righteousness and determination. I know he doesn't always know what's best, and I think that kills the liberals.

They always know what's best for the rest of us. They are so much smarter than we are. Well, he's not and that just wears on them. I think President Bush operates by the principle: "I may not always be right, but I am never in doubt."

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He understands his huge responsibility at this time in this world. George Bush may not have made a good peacetime president, but he is one great wartime president. We needed a man to rise to the call and he has done that. And it is all of these things that come into my mind when I see the smirk.

Darrell Fowler
Hagerstown




Stop being cruel to cats


To the editor:

Down here on Battletown Road and Strite Road, someone is being very cruel to cats. Every winter someone dumps cats on me, and I love animals so I take care of them. But for the last three years the cats came to me with torn-up left front legs as if they had been caught in traps or something.

I am pretty sure I know who is doing this and when I find out it's true, someone will be in big trouble for cruelty to animals.

I have lived here for eight years and wouldn't hurt anyone's animals. Why do they hurt mine? I just lost a tan one we had for six years - his left leg was torn up - and an orange purebred Persian, and in the past three years have lost six to torn-up left legs.

Some cars do at least 45 or 50 and hit them when the speed limit is 25. Why can't they be caught? If I did this I would have been caught a long time ago. This has to stop, for I will stop it, when I am sure who it is. This is animal cruelty.

Betty Saunders
Hagerstown




Gar struck; a fish only Hitchcock could love


To the editor:

In reference to recent reports about people "fishing" with guns: Back in Arkansas they have (or had - it is near extinct due to habitat destruction) the biggest freshwater fish in the U.S., the Arkansas alligator gar.

These long skinny fish, which once grew to 15 to 20 feet or longer, are pure muscle.

No fishing boat is big enough for fishermen and a gar. If not totally dead, once in the boat the fish will thrash about, destroying gear, breaking arms and legs and eventually smashing out the boat sides.

Unlike the currently publicized practice, alligator gars were hooked with hook and line (but the leader had better be piano wire), brought to the side of the boat, then finished off with a bullet before being brought on board. I believe handguns and .22 rifles were preferred.

It is sad that despite its size the Arkansas Alligator Gar does not get the respect it deserves. It is the Rodney Dangerfield of sport fishing. I left Arkansas 40 years ago, at which time it was endangered.

Their current status is unknown - they need rapidly flowing rivers and damming has reduced this. A pity. Think of the possibilities if Alfred Hitchcock had discovered the gars. Give the alligator gar some overdue respect - as the only fish that required fishermen to use guns.

W. Bernard Randolph
Hagerstown




A fortunate escape


To the editor:

In addressing Mr. Rickard's letter appearing June 9, I would normally decline a response to such a misguided view. This is the exception.

As for my safety: Mr. Rickard I put it on the line when the need arises and in many cases that is to aid an injured animal. As for your views, I can only assume they were fostered and molded by those who shared the same dismal attitude. If this is the case, I then feel most fortunate to have escaped such a fate.

In closing, I leave you with the words of Harry Levin: "If tragedy elicits our compassion, comedy appeals to our self-interest. The former confronts life's failures with noble fortitude, the latter seeks to circumvent them with shrewd nonchalance. The one leaves us momentarily in a mood of resignation, the other a condition of euphoria."

Randy A. Breeden
Williamsport

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