The recent approval of extending bow-hunting to Marsh Island in Old Town and Orono for the upcoming archery season beginning Sept. 10 is disturbing. It is particularly egregious that a previously designated wildlife sanctuary could be undermined in this way.

I do not live in the Marsh Island area, which contains University of Maine land (that remains exempt), and thus do not know the “nuisance” of these deer firsthand. I do know, however, that there are more humane ways to reduce a deer population, and certainly many ways to discourage deer from a garden.

To be clear, I oppose hunting in any form.

That said, a deer hit by gunshot is more likely to die quickly than is a deer struck by an arrow. The latter often undergoes protracted suffering before death. Your article of Aug. 14 acknowledged as much in its statement that “ someone sitting in their backyard will see a deer that is shot coming through their land, and they’ll have an injured deer.”

Bow-hunting is especially cruel. But your article centered solely on the safety and convenience of humans, who have inevitably encroached upon the natural habitat of the deer; it is no wonder that they have become a “nuisance.”

Hunting is undoubtedly a cultural institution in Maine. Many of us citizens nevertheless reject it vehemently. I urge the populace to consider and value the existence of every being, whether human, deer or other creature. We all have the same desire to survive and to avoid pain.

Similarly, I urge this newspaper and other media outlets to afford full and fair coverage to those of us who advocate for animal welfare.

Amy Liston

Portland

Rick Perry’s candidacy is profoundly disturbing

Greg Stillson has just entered the presidential race; where is Johnny Smith?

In Stephen King’s book, “The Dead Zone,” which also was a TV series, a congressman, Greg Stillson, is en route to becoming the president of the United States, but the protagonist, John Smith, who has psychic powers after an accident, keeps having visions about Stillson initiating a nuclear Armageddon.

The TV series ended in 2007 without any clue whether Stillson had become the president of the United States. I think that I might have had a glimpse of Smith’s vision when Rick Perry, the current governor of Texas, announced that he would run for president.

No, I did not see Armageddon, but I did see a man who is intellectually challenged to become president. Under Rick Perry, Texas made the top 10 as one of the poorest states in the country; maybe, it is his definition of “fiscal responsibility.”

He claims that he is a man of faith, but he has given permission to execute more people in Texas than any other states combined. I am a man of faith too, but I don’t believe that it is OK to execute an individual, and then ask God for forgiveness later.

I’ve always been one of President Obama’s toughest critics — besides, I’m an independent, and it is my job — but if it comes to these two men, the choice is very clear!

James W. Edouard

Westbrook

The Rick Perrys of this world frighten me. I lived in the South for three years, where I was taken aback by the patriarchal domination. Thou (woman) shall not question the authority of thy church pastor (male, of course) or thy husband.

It reminded me of my ex-husband, who declared, “A ship can only have one captain.”

“Since when is our marriage a ship?” I responded. “And furthermore, who decided that you are the captain?”

A constitutional amendment banning abortion is supported by Perry. What gives him the right to tell women what they may or may not do? I do not advocate abortion, but I firmly believe that every woman has the right to make her own decision. Not my job, not Perry’s job!

We women have fought so hard for so long for our rights and freedoms. Let us not be duped by misogynistic charlatans who would have us become submissive, cowering Stepford Wives.

Nancy L. Allen

West Bath

Somalia needs aid — but it shouldn’t be military

Two seasons of poor rain, entrenched poverty, and lack of investment have pushed more than 12 million people in Kenya, Ethiopia and Somalia into a fight for survival.

Many face the worst drought in 60 years. With the next harvest projected at only 50 percent of normal, the crisis is going to get worse over the coming months.

We urgently need funds to help reach people with life-saving food and water.

This massive relief effort will be an ongoing priority for us at Oxfam. For more information, please visit oxfamamerica.org/donate.

Miles C. Freeman

Ogunquit

When I read the front page story of the starving Somalians getting kicked in the teeth once again, I thought, oh no, is there another “Black Hawk Down” in our future?

Remember when our special forces went into Mogadishu in 1993 to kill the warlords who were stealing the humanitarian food?

The Somali people need help, but if we are going to be doing humanitarian missions, for God’s sake Washington, be serious about it!

In ’93 special forces were sent into Mogadishu without the heavy- armored vehicles they requested. The request was denied because Secretary of Defense Les Aspin thought a humanitarian mission was not worth the extra cost.

Aspin and President Clinton completely underestimated the firepower our troops were about to encounter. Finally, Clinton aborted the mission because 18 dead Rangers and 73 wounded soldiers would not be good PR. (That reminds me of President Obama’s saying to our troops what a good photo-op they were! )

Couple the Mogadishu tragedy with the recent loss in Afghanistan of 22 Navy SEALs in a war our present leaders have never intended to win.

They have so restricted our men and women with strange rules of combat that it will take a miracle for them to win and leave honorably.

I have always supported our military and still do. But enough is enough. I plead with President Obama and all the other politicians in power: Do not send our soldiers into wars you don’t intend to win, because our soldiers will go with honor and without hesitation. Better yet, bring the troops home now.

Rose Marie Russell

Westbrook