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Letters to the Editors

Residents have a duty to reduce number of stray animals in county

© St. Petersburg Times
published February 10, 2002

Re: Unwanted, unloved and facing a death sentence, Jan. 13

Editor: Many people have written letters expressing individual opinions of the realistic pictures of animals being euthanized at Pasco County Animal Control. Some people feel it was not necessary to use such graphic photographs as it was too upsetting. That's the point: We need to be upset. How do they think the animal felt?

I opened the paper that Sunday morning and immediately started to cry. Just one look at the picture, and I have not forgotten the look in that precious dog's eyes. As a volunteer of Pet Aid Service Society Inc. (PASS), I spend my time raising funds to prevent this from happening.

The article prompted many people to open their eyes to the overpopulation of dogs and cats in Pasco County. The sad fact is that the majority of the people who needed to read the article and look at the pictures that day don't read the newspaper. They are the ones who treat dogs and cats like disposable objects. These people think nothing of moving and leaving their animals to fend for themselves. They let them have litter after litter of unwanted kittens and puppies, starting the cycle all over.

Everyone must help these animals. If you have a stray dog or cat in your neighborhood you can advertise that you have found the animal for free in local newspapers. Please, feed the animal and call Animal Control at (727) 834-3216, the SPCA at (727) 849-1048, the Humane Society at (727) 857-0021 or PASS at (727) 817-1812 to see if anyone has reported the animal lost.

PASS now has a spay and neuter voucher program. Several area veterinarians participate, offering low-cost vaccines, testing, spaying and neutering. If you know of someone who has a dog or cat that needs to be spayed or neutered, tell them to call our spay and neuter line at (727) 264-7729.

PASS has an adoption network, The Kit Cat and Puppy Hotline, and has had great success in finding homes for hundreds of animals. Sadly, there are not homes for all of them, but with spaying and neutering, the number of unwanted animals will decrease. You can put the animal on the Hotline by calling (727) 869-8139.

Education is the answer to responsible pet ownership, and spaying and neutering is the answer to ending the overpopulation. Please, do your share in helping these helpless creatures.
-- Marj McConkey, President, PASS

Opponent of Harry Potter books in school to continue push for ban

Editor: I am the one who has protested witchcraft in our public schools. The so-called School Board committee that met with me is a joke.

First of all, one member shows up late after I give my concerns and never heard my side. Yet this person was allowed to vote, and he voted against me. Is this how the School Board does business? Also, the people of this committee are made up of parents and teachers. They are not qualified to make such decisions.

Why do the elected board members hide behind them and not face this concern personally? I know how I am voting this year! Since the government has deemed no religion can be promoted in school, how is it that the witchcraft religion can? Should not people of all faiths be enraged that their faith is censored while witchcraft is not? I can tell you this, if Harry Potter was a boy talking about Jesus and Christian symbols, everyone would have a fit and ban it based on the promoting of Christianity. Where are the equal rights here?

Everyone needs to wake up! The generations that are embracing things now, always grow up in excess of it. This Harry Potter issue is far from over. I and many in the community will prevail to see that Harry Potter is gone from being used in the schools for education and promoting.
-- Bill Niland, Tarpon Springs

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