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Letters to the Editor

Readers write about fighting biomed's animal testing practices, comparing troop deaths in Iraq each month, and abandoning faith-based initiatives.

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Fighting biomed's animal testing practices

In response to the July 31 article "One city's fight over biomed plans," I applaud the people of Chandler, Ariz., for continuing to voice their concern over the presence in their community of Covance, the animal-testing company. Issues ranging from environmental concerns and biohazard risks to cruelty to animals have motivated hundreds of residents to become active in trying to stop Covance from building in their town.

Covance has worked hard to convince Chandler residents that animal experiments are a necessary part of medical progress. But the truth is that animal experiments are not predictive of how drugs or other treatments will work in humans.

Fortunately, we don't have to choose between protecting animals and advancing medical research. By moving away from animal experiments and creating humane and effective research tools, we can advance medical science and ethical standards for humans and animals.

If hundreds of animal research studies are unable to determine how the information gleaned predicts results in humans, then humans will have to be tested to see if the results are the same. This reveals the animal studies as the nonessential component of the research endeavor.

Animals are used as an ethical alternative to humans but we must not fool ourselves into believing that this is science. This is exploitation and revenue generation at best. Fraud at its worst.

The problem is that there is more money in biomedical research than there are good ideas.

The fact that government officials conspired with Covance to dupe their citizens by helping them purchase and rezone another property at the Chandler Airpark through a "front" company, shows how little regard they have for the opinion of their constituents.

Perhaps the Chandler voters should send their regards to these "representatives" when they go to the polls.

Troop deaths in Iraq compared

In response to the Aug. 1 article, "US troop fatalities in Iraq drop sharply," there is an old saying in the financial world, "Figures lie and liars figure."

To depict US troop deaths plummeting during the month of July tells a dangerous half story. Instead of comparing July 2006 with July 2007, the writer chose to only compare July '07 to June '07. That's the same bad reporting as comparing temperature readings in September (fall) to August (summer) to prove that the world is cooling and disprove global warming.


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