Letters [May 2009]
From ANIMAL PEOPLE, May 2009:
Your April 2009 editorial “Trust funds lost when most needed”
points out some issues vitally important to any non-profit, and for
that matter, for any individual hoping to provide sustenance for a
Animal Rescue League
of Southern Rhode Island
P.O. Box 458
Wakefield, RI 02880
God bless you for helping those poor ponies in Jakarta, and
for helping so many animals in Third World countries. I would never
know about their suffering if not for ANIMAL PEOPLE. Pain is pain
and suffering is suffering, no matter whether it is animal or human,
and no matter whether it is here or on the other side of the world.
San Lorenzo, Calif.
Reluctance to travel
I very much appreciated your appeal on behalf of the Jakarta
ponies. It reminded me of my mother’s reluctance to travel– because
inevitably one encounters cruelty and indifferent cultural attitudes.
Then the traveler feels helpless and dismayed. You and your allies,
however, have not stood helpless. You are working out solutions for
animals and the people, who are also in desperate situations and
I feel compelled to respond to your appeal on behalf of the
Jakarta ponies. It talked about desensitizing. This is a subject
that has occupied my thoughts for a very long time. Although it may
be commonly the case that people become desensitized after repeatedly
hearing horror stories, this certainly does not apply to me. The
more I hear about the atrocities occurring in this world, the sicker
and more emotionally drained I become. I am one of your subscribers
who asked to stop receiving ANIMAL PEOPLE because it has increasingly
caused me physical pain and general unwellness. I truly believe my
case is not isolated, especially among older people. The onslaught
of mail I receive describing horrific cruelties to animals is making
me very, very sick. I am not closing my eyes to the cruelties. I
am fully aware of them, but to read about them in gory detail is
just beyond my emotional tolerance.
I am very grateful that you were able to ensure some care and
compassion for the ponies that you encountered while traveling. I am
enclosing a donation so that you can continue your work.
Your observations regarding the cruelties visited on all the
other innocent animals, sparrows, frogs, turtles, etc. are
equally disturbing, leaving me speechless and truly sad.
–Margot C. Palma
In recognition that our readers are already thoroughly
sensitized to animal suffering and committed to ending it, ANIMAL
PEOPLE policy is to avoid using photographs and descriptive details
that go beyond what is minimally necessary to explain the issues we
cover. Thus ANIMAL PEOPLE accounts of cruelty are typically less
vivid than appear in mainstream news media, and magnitudes less
stark than often appears in protest literature and fundraising
Though ANIMAL PEOPLE spares readers unnecessary detail about
animal abuse and neglect, this does not exempt us from investigating
each situation we report about–and many more–in full depth and
detail, often in person at the scene.