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Letters to the Editor

July 10, 2009

Support needed for Great Ape Protection Act



To the editor:

As a primatologist, I often consider the ethical implications of our expanding knowledge of nonhuman primates' awareness and sensitivity.

Recent studies found macaque monkeys teach their babies to floss, bonobos use vocalizations similar to human language and chimpanzees sense even subtle unfairness.

We're constantly amazed by our similarities to other primates, but we continue to use these remarkable animals in invasive experiments.

The United States is the only country that still uses chimpanzees, our species' closest living relatives, in large-scale, invasive research.

Laboratories are permitted to keep chimpanzees in cages about the size of a kitchen table, sometimes for decades. More than 1,000 chimpanzees remain in labs, where they endure untold pain and suffering.

I support the Great Ape Protection Act, legislation before Congress that would phase out experiments on chimpanzees and release federally owned chimpanzees to sanctuaries.

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You can ask your representative to co-sponsor this legislation at www.PCRM.org/GAPA.

Debra Durham, Ph.D
senior research scientist
Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine
Washington, D.C.




Boonsboro trolley station finally is restored



To the editor:

It's happened! After five years of preparation, the trolley station in Boonsboro has been restored.

Plans are under way by the Boonsboro Historical Society Inc. and the National Road Heritage Foundation Inc. - both 501(c)(3) organizations - to establish a museum depicting the era between 1902 and 1938, when Trolley No. 150 ran 10 miles from Boonsboro to Boonsboro Junction (Wagner's Crossroads) to meet the Hagerstown-Frederick county line near Beaver Creek.

The trolley cars carried mail and freight, and gave passengers the mobility to go to work or travel for entertainment. The station is believed to be the last remaining trolley building in Washington County.

We are asking the community to become involved by relating their memories, and donating pictures, newspaper clippings and other related articles about the Boonsboro area, the trolley and Potomac Edison, which operated the electric line carrying the cars.

Monetary contributions are acceptable and checks can be mailed to Boonsboro Historical Society Inc., P.O. Box 213, Boonsboro, MD 21713. Contributions are tax-deductible.

For more information, call Wanda Heuer at 301-432-7030.

Wanda Heuer, president
Boonsboro Historical Society Inc.
George Messner, president
National Road Heritage Foundation Inc.

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