Oct. 3, 2011: Our readers write

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Governor without grit?
Thanks to Marilyn Parker of Louisville for her letter to the editor titled “The Absentee Beshear” published in the Sept. 27 edition of The News-Enterprise. She firmly stated what I’m sure many thousands of Kentucky taxpayers are concerned about in regard to the governor and his very poor fiscal management of the state, his shifting of taxpayer money to balance the budget and his failure to address the state’s enormous debt caused by unfunded mandates promised to unions.
Why can’t he pick up the telephone and talk to the governors of Indiana, Ohio and New Jersey to see how they have solved or are solving the same problems?
These men have strength of character and have not been afraid to take on and make difficult and unpopular decisions. Does our governor have the “grit” to do the same? I really don’t think so.
Paul Rose

Choose grain
Crop farmers have the most important job in the world. Without crop farmers our civilization wouldn’t exist. However, many people confuse Confined Animal Feeding Operations — which couldn’t exist without the grain produced by crop farmers — with agriculture. CAFOs, where animals are raised indoors or in feed lots in filthy, overcrowded conditions, are factories that produce meat, milk and eggs. That’s why they are called factory farms. CAFO operators say their inhumane treatment of animals is morally correct because they are “feeding the world” and the average consumer just doesn’t understand that inhumane methods are unavoidable to meet the demand.
However, the truth is they are not feeding the world, they are starving it. The U.S. produces about 90 million metric tons of soybeans every year and according to www.indiana soybean.com, 98 percent, or 88.2 million metric tons, is used to feed CAFO animals. Soy is an excellent source of protein. We are feeding protein to animals to get protein.
Every year, about 10 billion CAFO animals are slaughtered. Their combined weight is about 38.4 million metric tons. Compare that to the amount of soybeans the animals are fed. It’s like putting a $88 in the bank and when you want to withdraw it, they give you $38. And I didn’t even take into account the 60 percent of corn, or 7.5 billion bushels, used to feed these animals.
The last time you saw news coverage of food relief efforts, did you see meat, milk and eggs being handed out to starving people?
We got along without factory farms before they were invented and there weren’t as many obese people. The bottom line is this: We can feed a whole lot more people with the grain we produce than we can with meat. We don’t need CAFOs.
William Wilson
Jeffersonville, Ind.