- The Washington Times - Tuesday, January 15, 2002

Lynx far from extinct

Michael Senatore shouldn't practice zoology without a license ("Save the lynx," Letters, Jan. 11). His assertion that "the lynx continues to be threatened with extinction" is biological hooey and is typical of how environmentalists will say anything for the cause of land control through abuse of the Endangered Species Act (ESA).

The fact is that the lynx is not and never has been threatened with extinction. Far from it. The lynx has the largest range of any wild cat in the world, and more than 18,000 lynx skins were traded from 1995 to 1999, not including trophies. Even the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has never claimed that the species was threatened with extinction. It only said lynx in the lower 48 states constitute a "distinct population segment under the Act" and that listing was warranted under the bizarre provisions of the ESA as it is currently articulated.

Let's be clear: The ESA quit being about saving endangered species two decades ago. The listing of the lynx was a political, not a biological, action taken in response to years of lynx litigation by Birkenstock lawyers such as Mr. Senatore, who is the litigation director for Defenders of Wildlife. Listing of species that aren't in danger of extinction is one reason why the ESA has fallen into such disrepute. Crackpot remarks such as Mr. Senatore's are a good example of why environmental organizations such as Defenders of Wildlife don't have any technical credibility.


JEFF GOODSON

Alexandria


Jeff Goodson is president of JW Goodson Associates Inc., a Texas property consulting company.

Find another name, Poolesville

The Washington Times and opponents of changing the mascot at Poolesville High School take the position that the Poolesville High School Indians mascot should not be changed because it will cost too much ("Rockville's credibility gap," Editorials, Jan. 13). This despite the fact that the Montgomery County School Board ruled several months ago that the mascot must be changed because it is derogatory and insulting.

Opponents of the name change often complain that such an action would cost about $80,000. That amount, however, includes the cost of replacing every athletic uniform for every sport and changing anything else referring to the mascot's name all at once.

In reality, the sports uniforms don't have to be replaced. All that needs to be done is to place a new logo over the Indians logo. When the current uniforms wear out, the school system will need to buy new uniforms anyway.

The same is true for the gym floor and everything else on which the Indians name appears. All that needs to be done is to cover the old logo and paint the new one when the floor comes up for regular refinishing. The cost of replacing the sign hanging from the wall outside the school is, I'm sure, inexpensive.

Finally, concerning the "Go Indians" sign that Jerry J. Klobukowski and other town commissioners seem determine to keep on the town's water tower, I suggest they do just that. It can be like other historic sites and artifacts in Maryland, such as slave cabins and "colored" restrooms.


GERALD PRESSMAN

Director

Find Another Name

Falls Church

Unbalanced Enron coverage

I used to trust The Washington Times to report the news. However, your refusal to deal fairly with the Enron scandal is too political for a news outlet.

By constantly acting as a mouthpiece for the Republican and conservative loyalists, you do a serious disservice to your readers.

As an independent voter, I want the facts about the Bush administration's involvement and/or special knowledge of Enron's demise, just as I wanted information during that awful Clinton mess.

It is not, nor should it become, the place of news outlets to defend their personal political favorites.

I feel cheated. Please don't make me read your competitor just because you refuse to play fair with both parties.


PAT CANNON

Newark, N.J.

Dewey's lesson

Eric Christensen's Jan. 8 Op-Ed column, "Remember the Medal of Honor winners," reminded me of the exciting time in 1958 in my hometown of South Haven, Mich., when I discovered that one of my school bus drivers, Duane Dewey, had received the Medal of Honor for heroism in the Korean War.

I remember recounting to my grandfather how Mr. Dewey had won the nation's highest military award by throwing himself on a Chinese hand grenade, saving the lives of several of his comrades while receiving horrific, nearly fatal wounds.

My grandfather listened to me recount what I had heard from my friends and quietly replied, "Mr. Dewey did not win the Medal of Honor."

I couldn't believe my ears. Everyone in town knew that President Eisenhower personally had pinned the medal on him. There even had been pictures in the paper. I started to argue with my grandfather, but he held up his hand to silence me.

"I know Mr. Dewey," he said, "and I know what he did in the war. That's why I want you to know that Mr. Dewey didn't 'win' anything. He did, however, 'earn' his nation's highest award for bravery. You need to understand the difference in order to show respect for his courage and his sacrifice."

Mr. Christensen's article was wonderful. However, he obviously didn't receive the same lesson I did that one 'earns' rather than 'wins' a medal for bravery.

By the way, Mr. Dewey is alive and well and still raising hell in Hawthorne, Fla. A Veterans of Foreign Wars post was renamed in his honor by the veterans of Irons, Mich., where he has a hunting cabin.


DOUGLAS C. TILL

Tequesta, Fla.


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