Manhattan: It’s time for New York to take a stand against horrific wildlife killing contests. Allowing fringe groups to gratuitously kill foxes, coyotes, bobcats and other animals in competitions for cash and prizes flies in the face of the public trust doctrine, which holds that wildlife is shared by all citizens of the state.
Contest organizers justify these events with claims that they’re eliminating “pests.” But a recent study published in the journal Biological Conservation found that attitudes toward the historically stigmatized coyote — the most common target in killing contests — is substantially more positive today than it was in 1978, with positive attitudes growing by 47% in recent decades. Overall, coyotes are well-liked, and for good reason. They provide urban and rural communities with cost-effective, natural rodent control, among other benefits. My fellow Inwood residents and I have lived in peace with coyotes in our local northern Manhattan forest for years, where they help keep rat populations in check, thus lowering the risk for the spread of inter-species diseases and injury to our pets from excessive rat poison distribution.
According to the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, the best available science does not support misguided belief systems that reducing predators will boost deer or turkey populations or make farm animals safer. Actually, persecution of coyotes disrupts other animals’ social structure, which, ironically, encourages more breeding and migration, and in the end results in more coyotes.
Gov. Hochul, please stop these extreme competitions — sign A.2917/S.4099. Devin Jane Buckley
Shaftsbury, Vt.: An article in The New York Times about the Grateful Dead reminded me of the times we saw them at the Fillmore West in San Francisco and at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center. It took them a full hour to tune their guitars and get going, but it was worth it. Jerry Garcia (Captain Trips) played and sang “(Walk Me Out in the) Morning Dew” and “I Know You Rider.” They jelled after about an hour and sounded great. The Dead would perform for hours and hours and do all their songs. They were a major part of the ‘60s revolution to end the Vietnam War. Thank you, Grateful Dead. Tom King
Bronx: What a disrespect to a classic iconic uniform (“Yanks hit a rough patch,” July 13), the Yankees pinstripes now relegated to an advertising banner. Disgrace. Like they need another $25 million. What’s next, McDonald’s!? Guido Susi
Oak Ridge, N.J.: I was saddened to hear of Elise Finch’s passing. She seemed to be a kind, good person. Jim Heimbuch
Scranton, Pa.: I’ve been to 15 countries but Canada isn’t one of them. I don’t plan on ever going, though a certain wannabe dictator slithering back into the White House in 2025 would make the move quite tempting. But I can say I’ve breathed in the Canadian air this summer. Lots of it. I’ve coughed most of it back up, and blown much of it into countless sheets of tissue, but the wildfire residue wafting down upon us from our neighbors to the north have made for a memorable summer indeed. Maybe a 2024 presidential campaign promise will be to erect a 3,000-mile-long filter along our northern border to keep out future foreign bad air. We have enough of our own, thank you. Stay tuned. Vin Morabito
Bogota, N.J.: Last week, The News announced — front page, no less — its Saratoga handicapping page, to run the whole Saratoga meet. It ran days one through three. Guys, there’s 40 days up at The Spa, ending on Labor Day. You’re making it hard to not move over to The Post. George Kooney
The Daily News Flash
Catch up on the day’s top five stories every weekday afternoon.
Staten Island: I’m certain that the investigation into the bag of cocaine found at the White House ended when the lead pointed to Hunter Biden. And so it goes. Myra B. Goodman
Whitestone: Thank God MAGA minion Voicer Joan Cucurullo has pointed out that the Secret Service has not gotten fingerprints from the cocaine bag found in the White House. I’m comforted to know that she’s not wasting any time wondering if the Secret Service has gotten Donald Trump’s fingerprints off all the top secret, classified documents he stole when he left office. Thank goodness she and I both know such an investigation is not necessary since the Orange Hemorrhoid has confessed to stealing all those documents. In essence, he’s confessed to being guilty of violating the Espionage Act. Hey Joan, let’s drink a toast when his orange prison outfit matches his orange hair and face. Robert LaRosa Sr.
Brooklyn: Three shot on the street in Times Square, an innocent teen shot in crossfire in Bensonhurst, a homeless man hits a loving father in the head with a stick on his first day of work, killing him. Commissioner Eddie Caban, the time is now: Bring back the Anti-Crime Unit. Louie Scarcella
Forest Hills: I applaud your paper for reporting on the growing menace to pedestrians as more innocent people are being struck — and killed — by deliverers on e-bikes, bicycles, and even motorbikes. There has been an increasing number of messengers on e-bikes driving on sidewalks in my neighborhood and it’s extremely exasperating that one has to be so diligent when it comes to walking on a sidewalk or crossing a street. For the last year or more, I’ve seen these drivers turn the wrong way on roads and zip past pedestrians on sidewalks, all with impunity. Whenever I’m outside, I feel I must be ever vigilant, and it’s unsettling. This is not how someone should feel when walking city streets these days. So, I must ask like everyone else, where is law enforcement here and where are the regulations of these vehicles? Ron Gersh
Bronx: Dedicated probation officers go to work every day to keep our city safe and give New Yorkers involved with the criminal justice system a second chance. But over the years, they’ve been asked to do more with less, and for less pay. Since the Mike Bloomberg administration, the number of probation officers in New York City has decreased from 1,550 to 796. They have taken on larger workloads as a result of “Raise the Age” legislation. Pay is significantly less than in neighboring counties and other law enforcement agencies. Our union has gone to court to address the longstanding pay disparities our members (predominantly women and people of color) face. This week is Pretrial Probation Parole Supervision Week, which recognizes their important work. Instead of a pat on the back, how about a fair contract? Continuing to undervalue their work isn’t just an insult to probation officers, it undermines public safety. Dalvanie Powell, president, United Probation Officers Association
Brooklyn: Lucky for me, my SiriusXM Howard 100 radio is on 24/7. On Saturday night, while I reached for a Klondike out of my freezer, I hear Howard announce he’s doing a pop-up show from his home studio. The pop-up includes guests Drew Barrymore, Jimmy Fallon, Robert Downey Jr. and Mary McCormack. A concert in my living room. I felt like I was there at Howard’s home. Thanks, Howard, for lifting up your fans during the sweltering summer. All I need. Mariann Tepedino
Bronx: Nineteen Republican attorneys general are demanding that medical institutions in their states submit the medical records of those who have had gender-affirming surgery. One of those institutions is Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Tennessee. Vanderbilt is giving in. These attorneys general and institutions are violating federal law. When HIPAA rules were put in place with the Affordable Care Act, it was clearly spelled out that medical information was private and not, under any circumstances, to be revealed to anyone not involved with the care of that patient. No discussions in elevators, no responses to phone calls asking about their condition, no discussions in any open areas or you run the risk of losing your job or license to practice. So why are medical institutions knuckling under? And why are these Republicans sticking their noses into the private lives of people who are making their own difficult decisions? Claudette Mobley