Richard Turner (Readers' Forum, Sept. 4) makes wild claims regarding the nature of the opposition to Proposition 5, an amendment to the Utah State Constitution requiring a two-thirds majority on any ballot initiatives concerning wildlife management only.
Of course, Mr. Turner never mentions what Proposition 5 is but rather describes it benignly as "the wildlife amendment." Mr. Turner states that the citizens trying to protect our ballot initiative process "don't want you to fish or hunt, enjoy a rodeo or circus, eat a hot dog or Thanksgiving turkey, benefit from animal research or even own a pet or drink milk."Mr. Turner, don't you think a proposed amendment to our state constitution, the first one in the country designed to limit the voice of the voting public through the ballot initiative process for a single group or issue, deserves more serious discussion than theorizing on people's dietary habits or pet ownership?
Growing numbers of concerned Utahns are speaking out against Proposition 5, and I'm sure they don't appreciate your generalizations. Are you that sure Merrill Cook doesn't eat turkey, that the League of Women Voters does not drink milk, that none of the many law, ecology and biology professors from our colleges and universities own pets, and that the state representatives and senators speaking out against this proposition detest rodeos?
Mr. Turner, are you quite certain that the members of the Utah Constitutional Revision Commission, a panel of state constitutional advisers to whom this proposed amendment should have been submitted rather than being snuck through the Legislature at the last minute, are anti-hot dog activists?
Mr. Turner also theorizes on threats of funding from "wild-eyed Eastern-based animal rights extremists" swaying ballot initiatives, while currently tens of thousands of dollars roll in from hunting, trapping and guiding organizations, and arms manufacturers attempting to purchase our state constitution through Proposition 5.
Apparently, you're prepared to turn to your fellow Utahns and say, "I want to limit your voting rights because I don't trust how you might vote."
Martin and Anne Steitz