Letters to the Editor

Mr. Disibio's column was clearly an attempt by the author to impose his beliefs on the city without regard to other considerations. He attempts to accomplish this in a number of ways.

First, by appealing – and thereby threatening – to the City Council to have the courage to do what he wants. The City Council should have the courage to do what's right.

Secondly, by misrepresenting many of the circumstances pertaining to the deer population in Woodside. For example, he tries to get you to believe that the development took away all that forest from the deer and therefore all those deer have nothing but landscape shrubs and flowers to eat. Nothing could be further from the truth. Before Woodside was developed, the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources estimation was that there were perhaps 60 deer living on that property. That's because forests have little food for deer and they need large areas to feed. It is also because the deer used to have predators that controlled the population. Now the population is estimated to be as high as 600 deer. That's an unnatural population – very unnatural because of the elimination of predators and the availability of more nutritious food.

Thirdly, by misrepresenting the preferences of the majority of Woodside residents. Using a clever technique, he attempts to lead the reader to believe the vote was close. In actuality, two-thirds of the residents voted to control the deer population. Much was made of an earlier vote with the implication that the voters were only being feckless without regard to the point that the deer population has exploded in just a few years. The situation today is much different than it was just a few years ago.

I, personally, am not a fan of culling as I hope there are more effective and permanent ways of controlling the population. But I do believe we, as the humans who altered the environment, do have an obligation to control the population for the good of that population. And I do believe the city would be taking a responsible step in permitting culling if that is deemed the most appropriate and humane way to control the deer population before it runs out of food and is ravaged by disease.

Stephen Pearcy

Aiken