Circus confidential

Hooray for the Orlando Weekly and their front-page coverage of Ringling Bros. and their dirty secrets `"Dirty secrets under the big top," Sept. 4`. This was a story that needed to be told, since much of the public may be unaware of what goes on behind the glitz and glamour of the circus.

I encourage your readers who found themselves disturbed by the article to join the Animal Rights Foundation of Florida in protesting Ringling statewide, including their stop in Orlando. ARFF is always at every performance educating circus-goers. The animals are counting on us to speak for them as they cannot speak for themselves.

Carla Wilson, Winter Springs

Go animal-free

I am from the United Kingdom and read your article on the abuse of these poor animals `"Dirty secrets under the big top," Sept. 4`. I hope with all my heart the abuse is stopped once and for all. In the United Kingdom, we have circus people come and perform with the big top, but they now do not have animals at all. Most people in this country feel it is just as good to take little ones to see this kind of show without any animal acts, and the children love the clowns.

Margaret Drew, via the Internet

People who care

For almost 20 years I managed the Army Veterinary Services at the old Naval training center. The Army provided care for the military working dogs and vaccinations for animals owned by military personnel. All of this `was` done to protect active duty military members and the community.

One of my duties was to call animal services to report bite incidents treated at the Navy hospital `"Toothless," Aug. 28`. Through years of talking with people at animal services I got to know them really well. The people I dealt with cared deeply about animals. The frustration they felt because their hands had been tied by our glorious legislature was obvious, and when I spoke to them in person, some of them cried. I don't know if anyone can get through our Florida politicos.

I also know Dr. `Randall` Cannon personally and take my pets to him. He is one of the most knowledgeable vets I have met, and I've met many. He is also truly compassionate. Bravo to him for picketing!

Joy MacLaren, Winter Park

The view from Mississippi

On a recent visit to Orlando from Mississippi, I took the opportunity to read your July 24 issue. After reading the paper and returning home, I felt compelled to write a letter with several observations regarding the Orlando Weekly's content.

First, I would like to comment on the Happytown™ section. The article was highly critical of Samantha Brown's Travel Channel show, which was termed "lobotomized," and she was called an "annoying twig." From my perspective, if you do not like the show then say so with specific examples. I could do without the mean-spirited comments and personal attacks just because you do not like the way Samantha Brown looks and you are jealous of her show and sorry that you did not come up with the idea first.

The next article (and I use that term loosely) I read was "The incredible shrinking Sentinel" `Aug. 7`. The author of this article is clearly angry, biased and uninformed, and from the tone of the piece he probably has an ax to grind for some of his buddies at the Sentinel. The article is poorly written and does not even address the fact that the pay for a newspaper media business model is in a state of flux as the free, paperless Internet gains a larger share of the market. With less newspapers in the market we may save a few trees from dying so the authors can subject the public to trashy writings.

Upon gazing at the astrology section, I thought there would be some insightful wisdom for a Gemini. I could not believe the stupidity of what was written by Rob Brezsny.

I hope that on my next visit to Orlando your paper will improve the quality of the writing.

Dan Gaw, Mississippi

Dan Gaw, Mississippi

Dan Gaw, Mississippi

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