Letters to the Editor

Organic milk is still cruel

In response to your article “Organic, Alaska-only milk is the future for Mat Maid” (July 2007), I was disappointed that the author ignored the many health risks and cruelty to animals involved with the dairy industry, including organic milk. If students were aware of the ways that these animals are treated in both conventional and organic milk production, they would look for healthier, more humane options. Like all mammals, cows only give milk during or after pregnancy. A cow is forcefully impregnated every nine months in order to constantly produce milk. Her babies are immediately taken away and she is re-impregnated. Many of the males are sold to veal farms, where they endure 14 to17 weeks of torment chained inside a crate so small that they can’t even turn around. As if that isn’t bad enough, according to the industry’s own figures, up to half of dairy cows suffer from mastitis, an extremely painful udder infection caused by drugs and over-milking, which results in higher levels of pus and blood being included in the milk. With so many alternatives to cow’s milk available these days, such as soy and rice milk, there is no excuse for contributing to this cruel and unhealthy industry.

Ryan Huling
Norfolk, Va.
College Campaign Coordinator

People should decide for themselves when to die

I suffer from chronic pain, and I feel that the person who has the pain is the only one who knows what it is like to be in pain every moment of your life (“Doctor released from jail for assisting patients in suicide; was he kind or a killer?” July 2007) When you suffer this kind of pain, even though you still walk around, you are dead, dead to almost all feelings. No one but this person should be allowed to make a decision on whether the person will live or die. Any person who wants to die should be allowed to go to a doctor and request a final shot, and until we come to this point, we are not a compassionate society. Societies are judged by the way they treat their poor and sick. We are not a fair society, but with a little hope, we will become one.

Tim Riley