Editor’s Note: Welcome to our letters to the editor page. Here you’ll find reader comments on Advocate articles and other news. We collect readers’ opinions from emails, letters, Facebook comments, and comments to valleyadvocate.com. Want to get in on this? Email email@example.com and put “BackTalk” or “letter to the editor” in the subject.
Help for Puerto Rico (via email)
The devastation from Maria and lack of response in Puerto Rico is heart breaking. First the U.S. is squeezing the island economically with denial of debt relief. At the same time they’re pulling a King George III with the Jones Act imposing a U.S. monopoly on shipping to the island making prices there sky-high. What’s the end game? The Hawaiization of the island where a rich few turn it into their own Club Med and drive the natives out? Native Hawaiians make up only 6 percent of their population.
Is Puerto Rico going to be another New Orleans where the poor were flooded out and forced to flee? According to Greg Palast, the Army Corp of Engineers knew 24 hours in advance, and the White House 12 hours in advance that the levees were going to breach, but they stood silent and let the people drown.
I’m not proud to be an American lately. U.S. behavior is shameful. The Cubans may not have all our toys and are driving around in grandpa’s old Hudsons, but they have their independence and their dignity. Maybe the average Jose there doesn’t live as well as we do, but they don’t live in the grinding poverty of the Haitians and Jamaicans, or like the St. Lucians and Antiguans who work as maids and bellhops for the few rich whites as author Jamaica Kincaid describes in her books. They don’t live in abject misery like all the other victims of U.S. and European militarism and imperialism. America needs to grow a heart.
— Charlotte Burns, Palmer
Thomas Jefferson Sucks (via Facebook)
Commented on Monte Belmonte Wines: Don’t Blame the Cat: Sauvignon Blanc without that funky flavor, Sept. 21-27, 2017
Corey J Silva: Every time I hear someone who actually has read history speak of Thomas Jefferson, a little wave of happiness washes over me. The truth is right there in the historical records. You need not dig too deep before only the most severe mental illnesses could keep you from realizing what a maggot that man was and how hard he conspired to undermine The American Experiment.
If I am wrong about Gods and whatnot … and there is an afterlife … I hope Alexander Hamilton gets the Advocate!
No one could blame Hamilton, one of the two most influential and consequential men in Western Civilization — and a poor Caribbean bastard-child who earned his way to the very top strata of society on his own damn hustle, earned the position of trusted right hand man to George Washington (Hamilton did not transcribe Washington’s letters, he wrote them) and designed or co-designed almost the entire original American Government and economic system — if he bore a grudge against Jefferson, an off-brand, spoiled-rich-kid Slaver who wrote a few snappy lines, deserted his troops before they were even close to their first battle against the Redcoats, unsuccessfully conspired to undermine the Washington Administration in an effort to sabotage our fledgling nation and set in motion a domino effect that led to his patsy Aaron Burr shooting Hamilton with no just cause.
Puppy Scam (via email)
Reports of an online scam in which consumers who are shopping for puppies are being duped out of their payments are a reminder that we should never purchase our animal companions — online or from a pet store or breeder.
It’s not about the money. Shelters take in more than 6 million animals every year, and because there aren’t enough good homes for all of them, about half must be euthanized. Every time we purchase a puppy from a breeder or pet store, it denies a home to a dog in a shelter whose life may depend on being adopted.
Purchasing puppies not only exacerbates the homeless-animal overpopulation crisis, it supports the cruel puppy mill industry. Puppies raised at these mass-breeding factories are denied companionship, exercise, and adequate veterinary care. It’s why dogs sold at pet stores, typically from mills, are often sickly and difficult to socialize.
There’s no need to shop around. Shelters offer all the love and companionship we need.
— Craig Shapiro, PETA Foundation, Norfolk, Virginia