Government cheese: Rescue groups are going broke trying to save hundreds of dogs abandoned near the Everglades ("Abandonment Issues," Gus Garcia-Roberts, December 22), but why can't or why won't the government fund these types of organizations? We pay for every idiot out there and for the most ridiculous things, but then we do not take care of our own here in Miami-Dade? It's absolutely unacceptable! Pet owners also need to be held responsible for their actions. These animals are not garbage.
Cash questions: I'd like to know much more about where the money raised by this group is going. I have been following this group online, and as of now it appears they have raised over $60,000, and a large number of items have been donated. Those are both wonderful things. To see people step up and donate like that is amazing, especially in such a short period of time. What concerns me is that they appear to be part of a larger group called No Kill Nation. They are an animal rights organization that revolves around a man who wrote a book about achieving no-kill shelters. Too many times when that group is asked about their beliefs and how to encourage no-kill shelters, people are simply told to read his book. Often times I have wondered if the group is simply a way to get his book sold.
Why is there no coordination with shelters, which have the ability to work with law enforcement to stop dogs from being dumped in the Glades? Why is there massive marketing going on to raise money yet little marketing to actually adopt out dogs? I'm amazed at the people stepping up to save the poor dogs. But I'm just worried that the dogs are being used. I hope for each and every dog that they find a loving home. As far as the humans involved, I wish for them to step up and answer a few questions.
No friend to dogs: What a piece of nasty fluff this article is. Why not print the truth about this situation? They are failing these dogs by not calling in animal control or major humane groups, and leaving the poor dogs to die until they can raise money to pay for veterinary services. This is no rescue, not when they are leaving dogs there to die and endure horrible suffering until they fill their coffers. This is a disgrace to those of us who are true rescuers.
Screw PETA: I guarantee you that the Humane Society and PETA have not given one dime to this rescue group. Their money is apparently better spent upgrading their own pension accounts or buying controversial billboards around the country than actually caring about rescuing and helping abandoned animals. I have given a bit of money and will give more today to put pressure on those groups to donate some of the millions they take in every year and never seem to donate to the actual animals in need.
Money wasters: I think it is so nice that people are helping the poor dogs, but I am worried about a group like this asking for money all the time. I wonder if they are a nonprofit group and if all of the money they raise actually goes to help the abandoned dogs. What are they doing with these dogs they find? Are they in boarding kennels or in people's homes? Boarding kennels are very expensive. It would be cheaper if they had Miami-Dade's animal control experts pick them up and then adopt them out at a shelter. I got a dog from the shelter, and he was only $50. If they just let animal control get them and had an arrangement to adopt each and every one, they could save a bunch of money.
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Liberty City saint: Coach Sam Johnson, the Liberty City Optimist Club cofounder eulogized in Uncle Luke's column ("Luke's Gospel: Coach Sam Johnson Was a Hero. Now He's Gone," Luther Campbell, December 22) was an inspiration to my family and me — especially my brothers who were coached by him. Back in the late '80s, my younger brother Ralph's surgery was on the brink of being canceled because my mom did not have enough money to cover the surgical expenses. My mother, who was a single parent of five, called Coach Sam, and within an hour he was there to help. The surgery was a success. I know that Coach Sam is one of the reasons why my brothers turned out to be successful young men. He was like a father to everyone who was a part of the Liberty City Optimist Club. Thanks for giving back to our community, Coach Sam. You will be missed.