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Concerns about dog breeders

Let me answer the dog breeder’s question in the Dec. 29 World-Herald article when she asked, “Why are we promoting mutts?” Breeders should have to work for four weeks every year at a public shelter, and then she would understand why we are “promoting mutts.”

Many of the dogs that breeders sell end up in a shelter. They are surrendered, or picked up as strays, for a variety of reasons including vet bills that owners cannot afford (they might have purchased her puppy at a pet store where it became very ill or began to show signs of congenital problems later on), they are moving to a place where they cannot have a dog, or the dogs got pregnant and the owners cannot (or will not) take on all the responsibilities associated with whelping puppies.

Additionally, many mixed breed dogs (or “mutts”) are healthier than their purebred counterparts — purebreds are bred to have certain traits that are considered desirable by people, traits that are not always compatible with health (such as pushed-in faces or smaller head sizes).

In the end, “mutts” are promoted because at this moment in time, they need to be. A puppy from a breeder may not end up having the personality traits of that breed — and a “mutt” might have those exact traits, but they are overlooked.

I know I live in a mostly rural state, but dogs and cats are companion animals, not livestock.

Julie Kuntze, Omaha

Climate action is imperative

I am writing to take issue with Mike Dworak’s Dec. 27 letter regarding climate change. I agree that climate change efforts must be global, but if we do nothing and declare that climate change is a Chinese hoax, that just encourages laggard countries to do nothing too. Our standing in the world is a key to getting everyone on board. We count.

Let’s say that the year is 2100. All of our port cities are flooded, the national government has collapsed, and Omaha is a city of starving refugees. Mike’s great-grandchildren find his letter to the Public Pulse encouraging inaction. How will they feel about their ancestor? It’s time to realize that this is not a partisan issue, but something that affects us all. It’s a crisis, people!

Robert Davis, Omaha

Tax relief need

I recently received my real estate tax statement for the upcoming year. My valuation went up 14.3%. My taxes went up 14.1%.

What happened to the promise to reduce mill levies so the various entities did not receive huge increases as a result of the valuation adjustments?

Oh my, not another promise broken. What a shock.

Alan Oltman, Omaha

Murante deserves praise

The clamor over a new office for the state treasurer is much ado about nothing. How else would the state establish a contact point for citizens to claim their property? An office in the city with the most claimants seems logical to me.

The Treasurer’s Office has a duty to publicize the property it has in its coffers, and making it easier for the taxpayers is a no-brainer. Whining about the use of funds by a constitutional officer seems a bit disingenuous. Mr. Murante has done nothing illegal or unethical.

Kudos to the treasurer for thinking outside the box!

Roy Neneman, Omaha

GOP politicians get a pass

So State Treasurer John Murante used college savings account fees to buy expensive TV ads to promote himself for future higher office. Not to worry, John. As long as you keep the “R” for Republican next to your name on the ballot, you have nothing to worry about in Nebraska.

Did you forget that our state auditor got caught drinking beer at a local bar during office hours? He kept the “R” by his name on the ballot and he came out OK!

I suggest you deny over and over again on Twitter that your scandal ever happened, that it is a hoax and you are being treated unfairly! For good measure, bully a few people and call them names! That seems to play well for the current face of the Republican Party!

Jim Kubik, Omaha

Let’s improve political debate

My wife and I were Nebraskans for nearly a decade and we read The World-Herald. I have been reading it online recently, and have been impressed by its political equanimity.

Publications like The World-Herald and its readers need to step in and begin the process of helping ourselves, our associates and loved ones take this new decade’s beginning as a starting line to defuse the national conflicts.

We must catch ourselves saying or thinking that people of our point of view are invariably right, that those we disagree with are evil. We must each remember that inflammatory sound bites and speeches do not define us, just the speakers and reporters and tweeters.

We must expose and decry falsity and hate-mongering by looking for reputable sources — even when they don’t tickle our prejudices.

It’s corny, but hate is not cool, and in a country as large and rich as ours, life and politics should not be a “zero sum game.”

Roger Delight, Elk Grove, Calif.

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