What happened to compassionate action?

I'm writing in response to Rusty Sivils' June 13 Opinion piece, "Dead Wrong,” on the practice of killing dogs and cats. There is nothing to add to his heartfelt words and it would be remiss to not address all animals and populations of people where the same negligence, passivity and lack of regard applies; elders, terminally ill, disabled, all children; even our earth is suffering.

Any entity that relies on another for protection and preservation is at the mercy of those charged with their care. With some exceptions, we are a culture of passivity in that we do not stand for those who cannot or will not speak on their behalf.

My own research reveals that we accept similarly low standards in the care of elders. There are exceptions and many are warehoused not unlike shelter dogs and cats. They suffer a lack of compassionate action on their behalf. Many care about the plight of others. The lack of action is the issue. Edmund Burke said, "The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." Only voices loud enough to be heard will make an impact. We behave as though we are powerless and not responsible. I have long tired of hearing, "That's just the way it is." The way it is isn't OK and while people sit in their hesitancy and fear, millions of animals, people and our earth are screaming silently from lack of care and respect.

I applaud Mr. Sivils for placing responsibility on all of us. It is because we as a people only take responsibility for our own small worlds that so many suffer. We say it isn't our problem. If it isn't our problem, whose problem is it?

— Farrell Sylvest

Asheville

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