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LETTERS: BP exec, Obama and Brookhaven monkey project

Obama was off, too; give BP exec a break

Let's be fair . Why didn't you also say that President Barack Obama was off for a golfing weekend? The media have made Tony Hayward their whipping boy. The man looked exhausted and hadn't seen his family.

Jennifer Zahn


We don't want rage, we want action

In "Why the rage over president's lack of rage?" , Jonathan Capehart seems to be attempting to design a clever defense for President Barack Obama's inaction over the BP leak. There is no rage over Obama's lack of rage; any criticisms of Obama are of his lack of action. Capehart seems to be promoting racism himself when he asks if it is acceptable for black men to be judged by a different standard of behavior, or whether it is fair to define Obama's presidency in terms of his being a black man. It seems as if he wants any criticism of Obama to be considered racism.

Capehart would have us believe Americans are calling for rage. No. We do want action, however. I agree with his final quote: "I don't need my president to feel my pain. I need my president to take on problems and solve them."

Dale Kingsley


Brookhaven should cancel monkey tests

"Monkey Business" omitted crucial facts about Brookhaven National Laboratory's plan to blast squirrel monkeys with a harmful dose of radiation for an experiment funded by NASA.

In violation of NASA guidelines and federal regulations, NASA announced it would fund this cruel, misguided project before Brookhaven had even seen a copy of the proposal. When Brookhaven's animal experimentation oversight committee finally reviewed the project, the panel granted it preliminary approval without any of the fundamental - and legally required - information about how the experiment is relevant to human space travel, how the monkeys will be harmed or the modern alternatives available that are being used by other space agencies.

With NASA's prior announcement about funding the project, it was impossible for Brookhaven to conduct an unbiased assessment of its ethical and scientific merits. Even some members of Brookhaven's Community Advisory Committee refused to vote because they were concerned about how opposing it would affect Brookhaven's relationship with NASA.

Politics, not ethics or science, are dictating the fate of this project. Fortunately, it is not too late for Brookhaven to cancel this cruel and pointless experiment.

Kathy Guillermo

Norfolk, Va.

Editor's note: The writer is vice president of laboratory investigations for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals.


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