Letter to the Editor: Reindeer Christmas Display is Cruel

Does a local Christmas display featuring live reindeer disregard the animals' comfort?

Dear Patch,

Two adult reindeer are displayed each year in the parking lot of Chalet Nursery as part of their holiday display. The reindeer live in a cramped pen alongside a busy parking lot, at the intersection of Lake Avenue and Skokie Boulevard, subject to a constant barrage of loud noise, car exhaust and people trying to touch them.

Chalet claims the reindeer display is in the name of "imparting educational values and information", that the reindeer "delight customers", and are well cared for.

Chalet is missing the point that this setting is cruel and distressing to the animals despite the intention or quality of care.  Rather than teaching respect for these majestic creatures, Chalet is teaching that it is acceptable to treat them as holiday decor with disregard for their comfort and their instinctual needs, such as raising young, seeking mates and grazing.  

Imparting values to our children such as compassion, empathy and respect for animals results in more caring and thoughtful behavior towards all beings.

I am confident that Chalet can host a successful festive season without the use of live reindeer.

Maryellen Friedman

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George December 13, 2012 at 06:04 PM
Richard, Once again I agree and I think you can agree with my post......to an extent. There are three topics that I will never debate, abortion, religion and politics. You will never be able to sway someone on these issues so why even try. That's my opinion.
Richard A. December 13, 2012 at 07:17 PM
George, I certainly agree with you on the difficult topics to have a conversation about. No question. Those are very personal to people. The thing that I don't get about not just this topic but others as well is all the mean, abusive talk that goes on when someone is in disagreement with someone else. What does that ever accomplish? Does it make people feel good to tell someone else off via the intenet and then turn off their computer? Nothing can ever get accomplished that way. I will never understand it. Oh well..nice talking to you George.
George December 13, 2012 at 07:52 PM
Nice talking to you as well Richard. I try to keep my relpies civil and laugh at the people who are mean.
Larry December 14, 2012 at 03:17 AM
We all know that to live is to harm. What we can do is vow to harm less.
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