Animals deserve better
Animal cruelty emerged again this week and last.
First up, David Littleproud said "the world wants live sheep and anyone who says they don't is ignorant or naive." This is hyperbole at the extreme. Indonesia and the Middle East want live animals for religious festivals. China want live animals to improve their genetics and to get the work, skins and offals - they are outsmarting us.
In the mounting yard and at the barrier prior to the running of Tuesday’s Melbourne Cup, the commentator mentioned "Cliffs of Moher is sweating profusely" and its tongue was hanging out (if the trainer had noticed that before the race they would have put a cruel "tongue-tie" to prevent that happening.) The vet at the barrier should have scratched the horse. These were warning signs the horse was upset and stressed, but the owners would have lost $50,000 and potential prize money. Even today, Darren Weir, Victoria's leading trainer, said he would have scratched the hapless animal and that is perhaps why he is the leader, he cares for his horses. Also a paradox exists where a jockey cannot hit their horse more than five times before the final 100m but can then flog them as much as they like to the finish post. How cruel and anomalous is that?
Alan East, Cootamundra
We’re running out of time
I am sure readers have noticed the high temperatures in the last week. How many have noticed how early in the season temperatures have risen?
The Bureau of Meteorology confirms the unusual heat in spring.
The effect of the rain giving hope to farmers in recent weeks has been wiped out.
We are still feeling the effect of the drought dying trees, starving stock and failed crops and though droughts have always been with us, climate change is increasing their frequency and intensity.
Yet the federal government, apart from lip service, is keeping its head buried in the sand.
It is not talking about implementing the findings of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
It is still not too late to do so, but the window for action on climate change will be closing soon.
If we are going to have a future for our planet, a future for our farmers and food on our table, we need to transition from coal-fired power stations to renewable energy and there is no time to waste on starting the transition.
After all, coal technology is dinosaur technology.
Michael Bayles, Wagga
I can remember when all businesses used to close their doors on public holidays and everyone spent quality time with their family and friends. If we ever ran out of anything we would go to the corner stores or service station to pick up some bread and milk. Nowadays it seems to be the opposite, especially for those who work in the retail industry, where stores are now open almost every day of the calendar year, including Boxing Day, Australia Day and Anzac Day.
Anzac Day is an important day on the Australian calendar where we commemorate people who went to war and fought for our country’s freedom. In the late 90s, the Howard government allowed retail stores to trade on this important day provided that no business was allowed to open until 1pm on Anzac Day. It is an utter disgrace why any business should be allowed to trade at all on this very important day of the year and I think that all people who served in these wars would be turning over in their graves.
Both governments state and federal need to review public holiday trading days and for those who work in retail give them the well-earned rest they deserve and the quality time to spend with family and friends.