Slaughtering 'magnificent creatures'

WINDOW ROCK, September 5, 2013

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A nother night has passed where I was intermittently awakened by the thought of the possible opening of the horse slaughter plant here in Roswell, N.M. It's sad that our country, who once treasured horses during the Roy Rogers-Gene Autry days, and, of course, we can remember past

President Ronald Reagan's love of horses, has come to this place where in some people's mind horses are disposable.

It's our fault that the reproduction got out of hand through un-supervision and backyard breeders. The Bureau of Land Management failed to do their job of regulating breeding on the open range by sterilization so things go tragically out of hand. Now their only solution is to kill these magnificent creatures.

The only consolation I might possibly have over the situation would be if we shut down the slaughter plants in Mexico and Canada where there is no supervision on the part of the United States. Are you aware of what cruelty goes on there?

Horses are lined up to witness what goes on ahead of them where the poor horse is stabbed repeatedly, as that's what the foreign market prefers, and then with a larger knife the spine is severed to paralyze it before hoisting it by one back leg in order to cut its throat to bleed it out. I'm sorry to shock those of you who aren't aware of what's been going on, but in order to get our government to stop this atrocity we need to be informed.

Congress and the Senate need to be bombarded with letters and phone calls. The phone number is 202-224-3121. Our politicians are making decisions that 80 percent of our people are not in agreement with. How could they have voted initially to allow the long, cruel transport of our treasured horses to places far away where such cruelty exists?

They need to witness it for themselves. I think most United States citizens would vote to shut down these two foreign slaughterhouses. The government should be acting on the will of the people. They're not acting on the many protests of horse lovers and sanctuaries. Is it about money?

I'm speaking on the issue of the cruelty aspects when other issues have surfaced in opposition of killing our horses for foreign dinner plates. There are two more arguments to consider. No. 1: Horses have been given drugs, which could make their meat undesirable to eat. No. 2: All the blood and guts from the massive slaughter of thousands of horses will become an environmental issue that people in surrounding areas don't need to seep into their grounds.

I don't like the knowledge that horses are starving on the reservation and elsewhere, as was the case of the 17 that died in Arizona mentioned in the Navajo Times several weeks ago. No horse should die from lack of food and water. How can people stand by and allow it to happen?

I think the United Kingdom and other countries abroad might have more compassion than us, unfortunately. It's sad, very sad!

Barbara Kelly
Ramah, N.M.

Money can be better spent

Hello my people. My name is Howard Kayaani. I am from the Bitter Water Clan, born for the Near the Water Clan. My maternal grandpa is from the Cliff Dwellers People Clan. My paternal grandpa is from the Salt Water Clan. I am writing a response to the Gaming Enterprise giving $159,000 to the Navajo Nation Fair. That's a lot of money!

I figure the money would be better spent going toward college scholarships, veterans or elderly care. What can $159,000 buy from the Navajo Nation Fair?

For starters, free admission to the fairgrounds and all events for the general public, especially the elders and children. If the money was intended for the people then why charge an admission fee?

The Navajo fairground needs a lot of improvement - upgrade facilities such as paved parking lots, handicap accessibility, parking lot lighting, adequate restrooms, and improved arenas for special events. The list could go on.

The entire Navajo Nation needs a lot of improvement. Start using the casino royalties on centralized agency offices and services so individuals don't run around the entire neighborhood. After all, we hear on KTNN and public messages "The Great Navajo Nation".

We need to bring the greatness back to the Navajo Nation by expending our (our own people are the majority of the patrons of these casinos) resources responsibly and to gain greater dividends for our people.

Howard Kayaani
Chinle, Ariz.

Alcoholism in our communities

As Navajos, we forget about where we come from and how many lives that were taken due to alcohol tragedies. We forget about our grandparent's teachings and the ones before them, and the destructive effect of an alcoholic family and the burden that each community has to suffer in the hands of an alcoholic.

The lives that we shared with one another, now overcome by the desire of alcohol fueled by anger, frustration, bitterness, depression, despair, abandonment, emotional reaction, loneliness, being unaccepted, sadness, crying, typical grief, and physical damage, all put in every bottle sold to an out-of-control alcoholic.

We are, or we say, we come from proud people that we live with an alcoholic or live in a community with many alcoholics and refuse that the problem is in our home and in our community. Who are we to blame the makes or the sellers? Or should we blame the addict? How do we, as Navajos, diagnose this psychological problem within our home and community that disrupts our everyday lives?

As for myself, being an alcoholic for 19 years of my life, all I can say is it was always the downside of life. There are no ups about it. Writing about it makes me helpful to others that have the desire to quit and pursue a better life with their family.

Just doing your own research about your problem, you can take all the treatment and therapy in the world with countless hours in group meetings, but it's really up to you – how bad you want to quit and what you desire out of life, and most importantly, to surrender to God. One can't work without the other and admit that you have a problem within yourself being shameful and having denial can postpone your willingness to reconstruct your life.

As an alcoholic we take for granted when we look at life with blood-shot eyes. We can't change the past, but we can learn from it. From a sinner to a sinner, I share the utmost situation of my past with an open mind and how I see things differently. We can't change the direction of the wind, but we can adjust our sails to always reach our destination.

God's love is unconditional, no matter what we did in our past. We feel guilty, shameful and judged for all the bad choices that we make. Alcoholism is a preventable and treatable disease. Being an alcoholic can be corrosive and confusion in one's family. I could not get any lower or feel any worse about myself.

Psalms 118:5 says, "When I was in great pain I cried out to the Lord. He answered me and set me free." He will set you free.

Alvin White Jr.
Bloomfield, N.M.

Cedar Bow Restaurant at Northern Edge

In regards to Ms Cunningham's recent response (Aug. 22 edition of the Times) to Ms. Atcitty's letter to editor, I totally disagree with Ms. Cunningham and agree with Mr. Charleston. Why you ask?

First, there is a policy that is in their employee handbook about gossiping. I honestly don't think many of the employees follow this guideline. It's pretty bad if you have to hear it when you're a customer in the restaurant and all you want to do is sit down and eat. What happened to following the rules in the handbook?

Some employees need to go back to their training again and learn NOT to gossip. Customers do have ears and the employees should be well aware there are people listening. We as customer don't want to hear your gossip.

I went to the Cedar Bow restaurant at the Northern Edge Casino not once but twice thinking the restaurant improved I was way wrong. I got the worst treatment from the server, to the cashier, all the way to the management. NO ONE exceeded my expectations. I had my food cold and there were lumps of floating fat on top of my soup and juice. Who would serve this you would ask?

The manager had brought it out to me like that. She told me that the food was hot and she carried it to my table. I mean if you look at the food I don't think you would want to eat that! I asked her to bring another she said it would take a while, so I waited. I saw my order under the heat lamp and when she brought again still cold! I didn't pay for anything because I was very unsatisfied.

We complain, but nothing happens. We write and tell about the experience to let people know that Cedar Bow needs improvement. There is not just one personal experience Ms. Cunningham, there are many experiences right and left. Many people don't talk about it because well some are shy and some think this is how a person or family should be treated. Well I beg to differ. I haven't gone back to the casino due to lack of Improvement and management skills. I know people take time to learn, but come on now, a year and half later and still same problems still occur? You be the judge.

Karen Pierce
Farmington, NM

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