The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

February 21, 2013

Readers' Forum 2-21 | Many variables factor into hunting

Submitted by Readers

— In response to “Camera better way to shoot God’s creatures” on Feb. 17 by David Petersen:

As a hunter, I understand that there are people who disapprove of hunting. To some, it seems cruel to shoot Bambi and other adorable creatures of God.

Usually, these people are not vegetarian, but choose to buy their meats in styrofoam containers wrapped in plastic. In doing so, they avoid the guilt they would feel if they  killed for their supper.

Is the harvesting of cows, pigs, fish and chickens by a slaughterhouse or a fishery any less cruel than that of a hunter willing to hunt for and gather his own lean, fresh and naturally hormone-free meat?

The Department of Fish and Game uses a ratio of the number of wildlife per square mile and exactly how much food, water and shelter is needed to support that number. This is habitat management.

This formula determines how many licenses it will issue for each variant of big game each season. This is how the department manages game. When there is an overpopulation of game, hunting and nature find a way to eliminate excess populations by disease, weather or natural predators.

Hunting is a difficult sport. Yes, hunters use high-powered rifles and telescopic scopes. Any hunter knows there are more times than not when he or she has hunted all month and not even seen game.

Hunting is not as simple as shooting fish in a barrel.

Steve Knaze II


Blame perversion on corrupted culture

In response to Anke Turco on Feb. 8, “Homosexual inclinations reason for abuse”:

According to WebMD, pedophilia is described as: “Sustained sexual orientation toward girls or boys generally aged 13 or younger and included in the 1968 American Psychiatric Association, Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders.” DSM 5 proposes it as “pedophilic disorder” grouped with paraphilias, “recurrent, intense sexually arousing fantasies, sexual urges, or behaviors that involve children, nonhuman subjects or nonconsenting adults.”

Some experts think pedophilia is incurable. Those at high risk of sexual offenses need to and should seek treatment and medications to reduce their sex drives. Pedophilic disorder is more common among men than women.

Priests are unmarried men in positions of authority; self-righteous confessors who impart absolution, yet some paradoxically perversely exploit obedient, trusting young acolytes and children.

Churches reportedly sponsor 80 percent of Boy Scout charters. I’ve researched numerous reports, well-documented cases of childhood sexual abuse settlements bankrupting certain dioceses and certain Boy Scout organizations.

Jared Divido, on Feb. 14, correctly noted that pedophilia, not homosexuality, is the cause and effect.

Shame on protectors of repeat offenders once pedophilia was defined as a mental disorder in 1968.

All levels of the Catholic Church and other leadership share decades of guilt by protecting the reputation and credibility of their organization while unlawfully shielding the disordered hedonistic offenders and pedophile clergy at the expense of vulnerable children and naive trusting flocks.

Thus it is decades of an enabled, self-reinforcing, corrupted culture of illegal perverse behavior by those preying upon children.

Terri Schenfeld


Tree in building a neighborhood eyesore

I was raised in Johnstown and visited there last fall. I was especially impressed with the Cambria City section of Johns-town. It is already transitioning into a historic district with theater, art galleries and a bed and breakfast.

Possibly antiques shops, more restaurants and other attractions will locate there, and Cambria City could evolve into quite an economic center.

My question is – why is there a deserted building on Broad Street with a tree growing through it? It is ugly and is unfair to the owners of the many well-kept properties located there.

If Johnstown wants to attract more investment, it should demolish this eyesore.

Virginia W. Sobotkin

Hickory, N.C., formerly of Johnstown


Proposals to increase school bus safety                                                      Here is my five-point plan to reduce the incidences of drivers passing stopped school buses with their hazard lights flashing.

* Increase the fine for passing a stopped school bus to $1,000 from $250.

* Increase the suspension of driver privileges to 90 days.

* All offending drivers must take a mandatory driver’s education program. The driver must pass the test in order to have his/her driving privileges restored after 90 days.

* Require all buses sold in Pennsylvania after Jan. 1, 2014, to have on-board cameras to record the license plate numbers of vehicles that pass a stopped school bus with its hazard lights flashing. Also, these cameras could be used to record traffic accidents in which a school bus and another motor vehicle are involved.

* Installation of street and road signs that read: “Warning: $1,000 fine and 90-day suspension of driving privileges for passing a school bus that is stopped and has its hazard lights flashing.”

Note: Signs to be posted opposite each other at one-half-mile intervals on heavily traveled school bus routes in urban areas. In rural areas, the signs need to be posted every mile.

God bless America and Pennsylvania.

Paul C. Rinker


WACK thankful for community support

The Windber Area Community Kitchen is a nonprofit organization that currently provides a meal twice a month, is open to everyone in the community, and no questions are asked.

This is a free meal, with the option of making a donation.

The mission of WACK is to feed our neighbors, body and soul. We accomplish this by filling a need. For some, it may be financial. But there are other types of needs – social, spiritual, physical and emotional.

Our kitchen is the place where the community can gather in fellowship with each other.

We are looking into the possibility of providing three meals a month, dreaming of doing a community garden and exploring other avenues of reaching out to the community.

WACK recently held its fourth annual Red Rose Ball, which is its major fundraiser. Once again, the love and support was outstanding. What WACK provides is possible due to the generosity of individuals, groups, churches and businesses. For this we are grateful.

There are too many to thank individually, but you know who you are and you know what you did. Thank you.

Sandra A. Pettibone

Treasurer, Windber Area Community Kitchen

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