While I disagree with your editorial position that feeding poultry litter to cattle should be stopped ("Editor's Roundup," December, page 6), I see your point on the consumer perception of the practice. I also appreciate the respect you showed the opposing viewpoint stated so well by Glenn Smith, my counterpart with the Georgia Cattlemen's Association.
The letters from Mr. Pratt of South Dakota and Mr. Bryant of Kansas that took a similar view, and that you suggest are "refreshing," however, lacked one important ingredient: good manners. The most glaring statements - that cattlemen who feed by-products different than those available to them "put a black eye on the other 98% (of producers)" and "don't give a damn about producing quality beef" - were inappropriate and very impolite.
Cattlemen from South Dakota and Kansas occasionally need support from legislators outside their region on some issues important to their livelihood. We in the East should help producers in the West, and vice versa. Respect and support of your fellow cattlemen, even in the midst of controversy, is a better recipe for success than insults.
Steve McGill South Carolina Cattlemen's Ass'n Amazing Ranch Woman
Amazing Ranch Woman just read "Costly cattle losses" (December, page 16). As a fellow producer, my stomach churned as I read of you following the stock trailer. What a tragedy.
But, that is not the reason I write. I am writing about your daughter Andrea. What an amazing young woman. She had to quit riding because she was six months pregnant, but that didn't stop her from fixing fences or butchering calves on the roadside. I understand that in the country a girl has to do what a girl has to do. I have no doubt that she never complained about the work she did.
For 12 years in Arizona I helped with the spring and fall work on my brother-in-law's ranch. Finally, I bought my own ranch in Mississippi - we call them farms down South. Each month as I do my initial leaf through BEEF to check articles, I am always stopped by your journal. I never come back to it later. It's a must read as soon as I find it.
I would sure like to see a version of your journal reaching a more general audience, possibly a reading on National Public Radio.
A copy of your article is on its way to each of my three urban, liberated daughters. Just thought they would like to know how a real liberated woman spends her day.
Keep up the good work.
Ray West Pheba, MS