The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA


April 3, 2014

Readers' Forum 4-3 | Breed's reputation can be blamed on owners

JOHNSTOWN — Should pit bulls be allowed to be kept as pets? Recent articles in The Tribune-Democrat and other news media have suggested that pit bulls are terrible and vicious animals. It’s not the breed’s fault for the owners’ lack of correct training.

Pit bulls are loving family companions when properly trained and thoroughly socialized. They can be good-natured, gentle, amusing, eager to please and very loyal. They are like most breeds – when raised correctly as a puppy, they will remain devoted, trustworthy and friendly until death.

According to an American Temperament Testing Society ( study of 122 dog breeds, pit bulls achieved a passing grade of 83.9 percent. Beagles scored 78.2 percent and golden retrievers scored 83.2 percent. Therefore, pit bulls aren’t the meanest dogs out there.

Pit bulls excel in canine tasks and are strong and athletic. They excel in activities such as: herding, guarding, hunting, policing, cart pulling, agility and competition obedience.

Pit bulls have a bad reputation because you only hear about fighting and how mean they are. That’s only because they have irresponsible owners who don’t know how to raise a dog. When you raise a pit bull as a puppy, you train it like any other breed, and it will turn out to be a wonderful, loyal, gentle companion.

Sara Jones


Losing Gamesa a wake-up call

The sad part about the March 30 news article “Losing power” that was not mentioned is that the Obama administration and the Environmental Protection Agency continue to attack the coal industry, the coal-fired electronic generation plants and even the co-generation plants.

We have three power plants and three co-gen and a few mines, such as PBS Coal,  still operating within the region. These facilities employ hundreds of employees who earn family-sustaining wages.

We cannot afford to lose these facilities as we have the Gamesa plant. Our elected representatives at all levels should be working against such endeavors and begin to draw a line in the sand. Enough is enough.

One lesson to be learned is that corporate welfare programs using tax dollars from state and local governments does not guarantee stability for the region. That’s why we must take a long, hard look at foreign companies wishing to locate here and at free trade zones using tax dollars.

These endeavors must be carefully researched. If we are to make an investment, it should be in America. Rebuild our manufacturing base with established American firms.

Remember Volkswagen and Sony Corp. in neighboring Westmoreland County? Now we have Gamesa, where millions upon millions of tax dollars (corporate welfare) were utilized with very little return on the investment.

How much more federal, state and local taxpayers’ dollars must be spent before the citizenry stop drinking the Kool-Aid dispensed by our elected officials?

The most important election in our history is coming up. Be learned and make it count – vote.

Ronald F. Budash

Upper Yoder Township

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What is the biggest key to reducing gun violence in Johnstown?

Tackling the area's drug problem.
Controlling folks moving into city housing.
Monitoring folks in treatment centers and halfway houses.
Tougher sentencing by the court system.
More police on the streets.

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