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Solutions possible for dog, cat population problem

Dog and cat overpopulation (DCO) is a serious problem in Harrison County and especially in Crawford County, where there is no animal control facility. The primary cause of DCO is unwanted litters belonging to people who either refuse to spay or neuter their pets or can't afford it. At times, Harrison County Animal Control is overwhelmed because of people surrendering their unwanted litters. Crawford County desperately needs an animal control facility.

Those of us in the trenches with mud on our boots see this first-hand when responding to calls for assistance. We see many tied to trees without adequate shelter. Others are allowed to run free and continue breeding. One lady had two cats she couldn't afford to spay or neuter; now she has 31. Another lady said, "Sometimes the puppies just disappear." Kittens have been found in dumpsters.

Citizens of both counties need to accept the facts that: 1. Dog and cat overpopulation is real, 2. DCO is a social injustice and 3. All social injustice is corrected through laws. Women did not get the right to vote by saying "please." Dr. Martin Luther King didn't win civil rights by just wishing for it.

We cannot end DCO through voluntary spay and neuter programs on their own. It must be combined with local ordinances and assistance to those who need it. Introducing county ordinances which regulate/prevent unwanted litters is a necessity. Fewer unwanted litters equal less burden on our animal control facility.

One suggestion to solve the DCO problem is to reinstate the breeders permit requirement, which simply said that, if you let your pets reproduce, you need to have a breeders permit, which was free. It was designed to be more of a way of encouraging people to take advantage of the voucher program provided by the county.

Another suggestion is to bring back the dog tax. If the pet has been spayed or neutered, the tax is waved and any tax collected is used to fund the county voucher program.

Harrison County needs at least two animal control officers. One to take care of the facility and handle adoptions, and the other to respond to complaints and enforce the Harrison County Animal Control Ordinance. This officer should have the authority to confiscate any animal whose owner is not in compliance with the ordinance. Crawford County needs to adopt an ordinance similar to Harrison County.

Meanwhile, some type of agreement or arrangement to allow Crawford County citizens to turn in their unwanted pets to the Harrison County facility should be worked out between the two boards of county commissioners.

And, lastly, it would be nice if the veterinarians of both counties would set aside a monthly pay-in-advance, low-cost spay and neuter day to help relieve this DCO problem or one day each month where spays and neuters are done for the value of the vouchers.

Editor's note: The Crawford County Spay and Neuter program, in its second year, provides low-cost spay and neuter services for Crawford County residents. For more information, including monthly transport dates, visit the Crawford County Spay and Neuter Facebook page. In addition, spay and neuter vouchers, which are accepted by various veterinarians in the area, are available to Crawford County residents through the Auditor's office.

Ray Wilson
New Middletown, Ind.
March 20, 2019

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Questioning report of $20B for wall

Someone called in and said that the president was offered $20 billion to build the wall and turned it down. The president was never offered $20 billion to build the wall.

The president could tax imports and subsidize exports while forcing Mexico to pay for the wall. U.S. trade in goods with Mexico was $60.7 billion in 2015.

Editor's note: The Atlantic reported on Jan. 24, 2018, that Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., had agreed to a significant sum of money for the wall — reportedly $20 billion — in exchange for the president's support of permanent protections for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) immigrants.

Charlie Thompson
Marengo, Ind.
March 06, 2019

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Bipartisan effort needed regarding ballots

The writer of this op-ed was in a baboon mood while writing this op-ed. A baboon mood is when you are mad as hell, don't care and you are going to show your red butt to the world.

What has me in this mood is that an individual in Crawford County (CC) has cost at least four citizens their constitutionally guaranteed right to cast their ballot in a democratic election.

The right to cast your vote ranks right up there with the freedom of speech, freedom of religion, a free press, etc. Americans in uniform have fought and died to ensure that the right to vote cannot be taken away. To deny any citizen, accidentally or purposely, this right is unpatriotic and spits in the face of the veterans who have defended the Constitution to protect our democracy and the American way of life. For any individual, irregardless of their party affiliation, to claim they are patriotic and then deny a person their right to vote is hypocrisy of the tallest order.

In the recount of the November election in CC, it became apparent, as reported in the Clarion News, that at least four citizens of CC were denied this right by Republican (election board member) Carl Draper because of his alleged failure to initial their absentee ballots. The four ballots, which were all thrown out, were Democrat ballots that were cast for Dale Roll (in the District 3 County Council election). For some odd reason, apparently all Republican ballots had initials.

The commissioners have recently been making an issue of patriotism and vets, and they have also fired several county employees. Following are some reasonable suggestions for the commissioners. If the commissioners follow these common-sense suggestions, it will show that their supposed patriotism was real and not just a show to get votes. It will also reassure vets that their sacrifices made while defending the right for democratic elections were not made in vain.

1. If the error was made accidentally, reprimand him and reassign him to other duties to ensure he does not deny any citizen their right to cast their vote in future elections. 2. Request the proper state and federal enforcement agencies to investigate and determine if the missing initials was accidental or deliberate voter fraud and/or a conspiracy. If the act was a conspiracy or deliberate, terminate him. 3. Because of the obvious conflict of interest, local law enforcement should not be involved. 4. Form a bipartisan committee — no elected officials or party officials, just ordinary concerned citizens — to determine how the ballots with the missing initials were mailed out with errors and recommend actions to take to safeguard our ballots. The current election board should NOT be involved because it happened under their watch. If the commissioners take no action, their supported patriotism is just a con job to deceive the public.

CC has had a long and storied history of voter fraud in the past, and, over the past few years, it has seemed that party-condoned voter fraud had almost disappeared. It now seems that it has reared its ugly head again, and, if the commissioners take no action, one has to assume they condone voter fraud.

If you agree with this op-ed, contact Commissioner Larry Ingle or the other ones and let them know your opinion. Tell them TAKE ACTION AND STOP VOTER FRAUD NOW. If you are unable to make contact with the commissioners, you can also contact the Auditor's office at 812-338-2601 and ask them to pass your opinion on to the commissioners.

Thank you for allowing me to exercise my right to free political speech.

Gary Robinson
Marengo, Ind.
March 06, 2019

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Always try to do the right thing

Editor's note: The following letter from Crawford County Councilman Bill Breeding is in response to a letter in the Feb. 13 issue from Gary Robinson, of Marengo, who was displeased that Breeding last fall announced that he was switching from the Democrat party to the Republican party.

I always try to do what is right no matter the circumstances. Whether it is in politics or at home, if someone is watching or if no one is around.

That's why, Gary, I helped out in the tornado relief when you needed a house, or why I offered to take you to the doctor when your air conditioning went out on your car.

It is also why, when I noticed my party (the one I grew up in and the one I backed) had left me, that I decided to make the tough decision. The values I learned growing up in a Democrat home have completely changed, so I decided to follow my values, not my party.

I apologize to you, Gary, and anyone else I have upset by switching parties. That was never my desire. However, I do not apologize for following my values as they are much more important than politics will ever be.

I am truly happy with my decision, Gary, and wish you that same happiness.

Bill Breeding
Milltown, Ind.
February 20, 2019

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Frustrated with Breeding

Charles Totten and I often disagreed but occasionally we agreed on issues. Charles' editorials did make the public think, and, when you get down to it, that is the purpose of an editorial.

A recent op-ed by Mr. T suggested that "Judas" Breeding was brave and courageous for changing political parties. B.S. B.S. B.S.

"Judas" Breeding is the opposite of brave, honorable and courageous. He is a headline hunting egomaniac and his No. 1 priority in life is ME ME ME.

To change parties properly, a person should change at the end of their term and run for re-election under the new party. To claim you are a Democrat in an election year and do things to sabotage other Democrat candidates is deceitful, cowardly and the actions of a traitor. Yes, a traitor. He pretended to be a Democrat, hence the nickname Judas. He betrayed people who trusted him by:

Acting as the DEMOCRAT spokesman of the county council, he proposed a public safety tax, five months before the election. Republicans while campaigning, said it's a Democrat idea, blame them, and that cost Democrats votes. Mr. Totten at the safety tax public hearing did not act like "Judas" was so brave and courageous when he expressed his opposition to "Judas' " tax.

"Judas" was a Democrat officeholder yet had Republican campaign signs in his yard.

As the Democrat president of the county council, "Judas" endorsed Republican candidates in a political ad paid for by the Republicans.

"Judas" has been a closet Republican for years.

In his recent interview, he made many claims that follows:

Parroting his Republican master, he stated that the Democrat party had left him. B.S. The Democrat party is the same party it has always been, which is standing up for and protecting the little man. Republicans stand for increasing wealth and protecting business, and this, in my opinion, appealed to "Judas."

"Judas" Breeding is anything but bold and courageous.

Mr. Totten, I hope St. Peter has an internet terminal up there and he lets you go online to read the Clarion op-eds.

Thank you for allowing me to exercise my right to free political speech.

Gary Robinson
Marengo, Ind.
February 13, 2019

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'Courageous step' by Breeding

What a courageous step for a distinguished politician to take by switching parties.

Mr. William Breeding's announcement on Dec. 5, 2018, that he is switching from the Democratic Party to the Republican Party should get a great number of people in Crawford County to consider his reasons. It is not that he is going to run in 2020, as he is currently not planning on running for re-election. It is much more than that; it is about values, including religious values.

He states the Democratic Party has left him, not that he has left it. It does come down to what values a person holds and how serious is he to show in public how he demonstrates the honest values. Mr. Breeding has many high qualities and does not support the disrespect shown to the office of our elected president by the media and the Democratic Party. A good person respects the position of United States president, not just the person who holds the office. Every person, including the president, has human faults, and that is understood to be the way life is to all of us. In reality, we are always supporting a sinner in this office.

Mr. Timberlake noted his grandparents, while some were Democrats, were not for gun control, open borders, abortion or transgender issues as we see the Democratic Party is today. These are not the Republican values, and if you examine your own values, you may decide they are not yours, as well. If these are not your values, then you may decide it is time for you to make that important logical change.

Consider, how can any religious person can take the view that killing the weakest among us, the unborn, by Planned Parenthood, is an acceptable position? Democrats, whether they want to believe it or not, when voting for a person in this party are supporting this position. Someday, it is my hope, we will look back on this time and wonder how it could happen to good religious people.

Charles A. Totten
Leavenworth, Ind.
January 02, 2019

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Linked! features shout-out

I just wanted to give a shout-out to Robby Kellems of North Harrison for his Linked! article "Satire: The only voting guide you need."

I liked it! Community Refrigerator Inspector? Town Cartwheeler? Deputy of Turning a Light Switch Off and On? Town Executioner? And Walmart Cashier?

Great sense of humor during a divisive voting season. Thanks for the laughs, Robby.

Charles Newton
December 26, 2018

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Two of three deserve praise

Two of the three articles in the Oct. 3 Viewpoints section were excellent. They are "Improving Indiana's technology climate" by Erin Houchin, our District 47 state senator, and "Treatment, rehabilitation are right kinds of prison reform" by Curtis Hill, Indiana's attorney general. Both are efforts to make improvements for all citizens.

This can not be said for the third article, "We live in polarized times" by Lee Hamilton, currently from the Indiana University Center on Representative Government. The author says some good things about "we have to appreciate the roles of cooperation, collaboration and comprise in a representative democracy and deal with opponents not as enemies but from respect, civility and a recognition that they share more in common than divides them."

Many great comments here and high agreement to the open-minded American citizen who does not pay much attention to or actually viewed the live interaction of the Senate proceedings on the interviews with Dr. Ford, the accuser, and Judge Kavanaugh, the accused. From his article, you would think there is equal emphasis to correct both the Democratic and the Republican members of the committee to make improvements. But, if you watched the interaction, you know the truth that this only needs to be referring to one party because they are the extremes who dominated discourse in an irrational manner with no civility and no respect to the accused. It was disturbing to see our elected senators be so ugly at the way they treated the accused.

Thus, this article is just hypocrisy from the author in a manner trying to give him credit as a respected and fair advisor of what both groups should do to be good and proper. He does not acknowledge the imbalance between the two parties in their behavior. Thus, he is making an effort to cover up this vast difference between the way the two political parties conducted themselves. Hypocrisy is hypocrisy.

Charles A. Totten
Leavenworth, Ind.
December 05, 2018

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Linked!Features Shout Out

I just wanted to give a Shout Out to Robby Kellems of North Harrison for his Linked! article "Satire: The only voting guide you need".

I liked it !!! Community Refrigerator Inspector? Town Cartwheeler? Deputy of Turning a Light Switch Off and On? Town Executioner? And Walmart Cashier?

Great sense of humor during a divisive voting season. Thanks for the laughs, Robby.

Charles Newton
English, IN
November 14, 2018

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Crawford should be proud of emergency responders

This accident occurred to me Saturday, Oct. 6, 2018, at American Legion Post 133 in Alton.

I was visiting my twin brother, Garry Kemp, and we were at the American Legion Post 133. There are numerous games of chance at the legion. I was sitting at the bar next to a punch board with knives. A patriot had won one of the knives, and the bartender asked me if I could remove one of the knives from the cardboard which was attached with a plastic tie. I removed the hunting knife from its leather pouch and, with my left hand on top of the cardboard, started to cut the tie. The knife went through the plastic tie and into the base of my thumb.

My brother, who is a volunteer fireman for the Leavenworth Fire Department, immediately applied a towel and pressure to my cut. Looking down on the floor and seeing my blood, I fainted onto the floor. When I came to, other volunteer firemen had arrived on the scene. They asked my brother, who had been applying pressure to my cut, if he wanted someone to take over. He said no and continued until the Crawford County EMS arrived some 20 to 25 minutes later. I was transported to Harrison County Hospital in Corydon, where I received 15 stitches.

I want to thank the Leavenworth Volunteer Fire Department and the Crawford County EMS for their fast response. Most of all, I would like to thank my brother, who, with his training, applied pressure until the EMS team arrived.

The great people of Crawford County should be proud of their volunteer fire departments and the Crawford County EMS. They all were very professional and well-trained to handle any emergency situation. THANK YOU!!!

Larry D. Kemp
Mascoutah, Ill.
October 24, 2018

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