Commissioners out of touch

Published 8:55 am Wednesday, February 20, 2013

To the editor:

I agree with Deborah O’Donnell in her Feb. 18 letter to the editor, “Trapping not the solution.” It seems there are many humane alternatives to trapping, some of which were mentioned in her letter.

Why weren’t these options discussed before the county commissioners voted to reinstate inhumane trapping to Polk County? The information is readily available.

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A simple Google search such as “humane beaver control” produces pages and pages of websites with suggestions that don’t include barbaric trapping. Why was this crucial step — simply researching the issue — omitted when our commissioners made their hasty and unpopular decision?

Anyone with access to a computer could learn more in five minutes than the commissioners seemed to know about humane wildlife control when they voted unanimously to request a change in the law. Clearly, the commissioners made no effort whatsoever to study an issue that will affect all of us.

In the Feb. 4 meeting, one commissioner commented that when they voted without any input from those opposed to trapping, they were unaware that it would be such a volatile issue. I find that difficult to believe — that anyone in public office could be so out of touch with public opinion on such a hot-button topic. But, now that they are aware, why haven’t they taken steps to remedy their mistake?

Regardless of the actions or lack of action by our county commissioners, let’s work together as a community to educate ourselves on humane alternatives to wildlife control.

– Paula Mullenax, Tryon