A foolish trap

You hit my personal hot button with a recent column on predatory cats. If there are 30 to 80 million unowned cats out there already, why do the two major players in our local animal advocacy industry have trap, neuter and release programs?

Domestic cats in the wild are no less an invasive species than the Burmese python. Their impact on the wild bird population has been well-documented.

People might see one or two, but not the millions of birds these cats kill.

And no one wants to deal with euthanizing a cat.

But to abandon common sense?

I’m all for animal welfare, but I don’t understand the justification for trap, neuter and release.

Be certain you know exactly what you’re supporting before you support it.

Tom Doyle

President

Palmetto Carriage Works

Guignard Street

Charleston

To tree or not ...

Shakespeare has nothing to say about the dangers of trees in the median attacking passing motorists, but he does observe in “Hamlet” that if a man goes to the water and drowns himself, he is guilty of his own death.

But if the water comes to him and drowns him, “he is not guilty of his own death.”

G. W. Williams

Tradd Street

Charleston

True All-Stars

Snub?

The headline on Gene Sapakoff’s column on June 3 — “1955 snub still echoes in S.C. baseball” — was infinitely worse than a mere snub.

In 1955, the Cannon Street All-Stars decided to enter Charleston’s Little League tournament. The city quickly canceled the tournament.

According to some official, “blacks end whites simply don’t play together.” The players on the Cannon Street team were all African-Americans.

The All-Stars’ coach entered the team in the state tournament in Greenville. All 61 white teams promptly withdrew.

So the All-Stars headed for Rome, Ga., where the winners of eight Southern state tournaments would compete to see which would go to the Little League World Series in Williamsport, Pa.

The men running things at Rome ruled that the Cannon Street team could not compete because it had advanced by forfeit. But the national Little League organization then decided that it was not the fault of the Cannon Street All- Stars that no one wanted to play them. So it invited them to Williamsport as “honored guests.”

They reportedly enjoyed the trip although they didn’t get to take the field.

One of the members of that 1955 team was Leroy Major, now probably about 70 years old. He was the pitcher and occasional center fielder. First a Marine, he retired as a school teacher.

In his newspaper column (2012) about the 1955 events, George Will described Mr. Major as “a mountain of Christian serenity who works with his church.” Will quoted Major as saying: “Children don’t mess up things. Adults do.”

Leroy Major was (and perhaps still is) a tremendous athlete. I remember that around 1980, he won just about every senior tennis tournament in the city. Year after year. I played him once at Farmfield Tennis Center. Needless to say, I never had a chance. He covered the court like a rug from corner to corner. I lost 6-0, 6-0.

Not too long ago I met Mr. Major in the Savannah Highway Kmart, He didn’t remember me, somehow seemed apologetic when I mentioned that he had wiped the court with me a couple of decades earlier. I thought about bringing up the 1955 events but decided not to.

H.J. Beaujon, Ph.D.

Cessna Avenue

Charleston

Religious tolerance

Re a June 9 Faith & Values story titled “Rice University center looks at faith, tolerance”: Rice University should have told philanthropists Milton and Laurie Boniuk to save the money ($28.5 million) they are spending to search for ways devoutly religious people can learn to exist peacefully in the world, especially if it is going to be used to find common ground between God and the devil (purposefully non-capitalized). According to biblical Scripture there is none.

One or the other has to go, and it isn’t going to be God, as the book of Revelations in the Bible will show.

If they are intent on continuing the study they might start with the last chapter of the book of Revelations where it says God wins, therefore shortening their study and saving millions for a more profitable study.

I don’t know of, nor have I heard of, any religion that states there is common ground to be found between these two.

Don Hendricks

Winter Drive

Summerville

Backyard chickens

I beg your pardon, Mayor Cronin! Backyard hen keeping is not likely to lead to “backyard swine keeping” (“Backyard chickens get no vote on IOP” June 5).

I implore the Isle of Palms City Council Public Safety Committee to reconsider this issue.

One of the main reasons people want to keep chickens is for food security. In the month of June alone, there have been food recalls of cheese (Listeria contamination), breakfast cereal (Salmonella contamination) and the most recent, a national recall of organic frozen berries, because of a Hepatitis A contamination.

Americans want safe food sources, and many desire to be more sustainable. They get both of those by keeping backyard chickens.

I might also add (for the sake of Councilman Bettelli’s concerns) that you can maintain “residential character” and have backyard hens.

Most backyard hen keepers I’ve encountered are terrific stewards of their environment and keep clean coops with happy hens.

I’ve been keeping track of the “chicken fights” (from a national perspective) since early 2009. It’s not a fad.

I get daily online alerts about Americans fighting their municipalities in order to legally keep chickens. Those alerts haven’t slowed down since I started researching, and subsequently published a book on the topic, “The Backyard Chicken Fight.”

When many of us moved to the suburbs decades ago, we didn’t have the food security issues we have now as a result of neglectful factory farming.

Americans are serious about knowing from where their food comes. They are gardening and raising their own food as well as keeping chickens for eggs.

I hope the Isle of Palms reconsiders its chicken decision.

Gretchen Anderson

E. Bancroft Court

Eagle, Idaho

Sexual assaults

Talk about setting wild fires and blaming the trees. It was the powers that be who allowed women in the military to serve roles different from the support roles they served in the past.

Some men are always going to disrespect women. It would be great to be able to catch them before the act.

Look at rape in colleges and all across this country and other countries every day. Nobody anticipated problems in the military?

Besides the despicable men who carry out these acts, the blame should rest on the people who pushed for women’s military roles to change in the first place.

If I had a daughter and she wanted to be in the military, I would first try to talk her out of it. If that did not work, I would try to talk her into taking a job where she would not be in danger of being assaulted.

Those on Capitol Hill are putting the blame on the military when they are responsible for putting women in these risky situations. They set the fire, and they should put it out.

The solution to keeping the assaults from ever happening again is simple.

And by the way, sexual assault has no place anywhere.

Stan Barney

Gregg Drive

James Island