Mary Blakeslee

Letters to the Editor—April 22, 2010

April 22, 2010 // 0 Comments

Reader disagrees with Farmer’s Market dog decision Dear Mr. Young, I am writing this letter to express my strong disappointment in the City Council’s irresponsibility by deciding to allow dogs to be present at the weekly Farmer’s Market. In making their decision, City Council has potentially sacrificed the safety of many citizens, as well as their enjoyment and patronage of the market, for the short-term convenience of others. I admire Mayor Rogers for stating, “I wouldn’t want to take the chance of a child being bitten,” and supporting that with her vote. Council members who voted against a dog ban are clearly saying that they DON’T mind taking the chance because they surely CAN’T deny that the CHANCE of dog bites or other problems exists. My reason for opposing the presence of dogs at the market is not because I oppose dog ownership. I think that anyone who owns and loves a dog has every right to enjoy their pet, but I do not believe that right extends to crowded areas such as the farm market where the potential for problems definitely exists. I am also sensitive to the issue because I have knee and back problems that sometimes make balance difficult. I have witnessed dogs at the market (on leashes) jump up at passersby, causing them to move out of the way quickly. Council seems to feel that those situations don’t matter because they weren’t reported as “incidents,” even though if that were to happen to me or anyone else who may be unable to react quickly enough, it could easily result in a fall and injury (possibly permanent). I also take issue with the fact that City Council interpreted six responses by market vendors as sufficient reason to allow dogs. In fact, the three favorable responses reflect the views of ONLY 14 percent of the vendors. That is hardly a mandate that should cause a council member to disregard public safety. Frankly, I am surprised that vendors didn’t speak out more strongly in favor of banning dogs. When we go to the market, it is in my car, which often has the trunk and back seat filled with produce and flats of vegetables when we leave. It makes no sense to risk having […]