x Abu Dhabi, UAE Friday 21 July 2017

Show some respect for twins

A reader objects to some aspects of our story about twins and triplets. Other letters touch on a Florida shooting, a homeless cheetah, some hungry cats, and more.

A reader argues that a recent article on twins was an insensitive take on the subject. Charles Crowell for The National
A reader argues that a recent article on twins was an insensitive take on the subject. Charles Crowell for The National

The story Stand your ground law scrutinised after killing (March 25), about a teenager's shooting by a crime-watch volunteer makes me think that while it is acceptable to meet force with force if a person fears death, it is entirely insane to give an armed person the right of shooting an unarmed but suspicious looking person in the absence of any eyewitnesses.

I think that the issue has sparked a national debate in the US as the killer is a mature man and the victim is a 17-year-old African American, and as the US has long suffered racial stereotyping.

I believe that the law has nothing to do with self-defence, and this sort of fatal consequence can be prevented with major modifications to it; such as both sides have to be armed or there should be eyewitnesses or proofs of a perceived death threat and of criminal record.

Otherwise, anyone can be assaulted with deadly force under questionable circumstances. The shoot-first-or-be-shot mentality is not one to be promoted

Ali Sedat Budak, Abu Dhabi

Twins article 'was disrespectful'

I was disappointed to read the article Double take: twins and triplets fill Safa Park (March 24). Two things I thought were in poor taste.

The first was the headline that said what was unique about them being twins was that they were not unique. That really was not very funny or clever. Everyone is different including twins. Different fingerprints, different souls. This is actually very insulting to twins in general and not compassionate.

The second thing that was most appalling was the end of the article where grown twins mentioned that they used the fact that they were twins to "trick" their teachers and to take exams for each other. This was not close to acceptable. Why would a person ruin a good fun story with such negativity? I would go as far as saying those people risked having their degrees taken from them by bragging about such dishonesty.

The last thing I am sure you are trying to convey is the type of negativity that was expressed in this article.

Name withheld by request

Punish owner of homeless cheetah

The owner of the cheetah should be given a heavy punishment as a deterrent to others (Cheetah found roaming Al Ain streets, March 22).

It is amazing that such wild animals are allowed to be kept as pets and more so if there is evidence that the animal's well being was not maintained.

JB, UK

All wounded deserve attention

In reference to Two killed by tear gas in Bahrain (March 25), it is awful that the "disproportionate use of force" by Bahraini security forces, as the UN called it, continues to take place.

Take the case of the medics who have been detained and sentenced to jail. Bahraini officials accuse the doctors of stealing medicine, stockpiling weapons and helping anti-government protesters "beyond medical profession". On the other hand the medical staff maintain that they were simply treating patients whether they were for or against police.

Gaye Caglayan, Dubai

Cat lovers actually help municipality

As a long-time feeder and lover of neglected, abandoned or really just any animals, Rym Ghazal's article (A starvation policy for stray cats and a fine for compassion, March 22) struck a note with me.

Ever since our arrival in the UAE eight years ago, my wife and I have amassed a pride of cats - yes, I use the term pride because they are like children, they fill our hearts with a sense of gratitude and achievement - who would not otherwise have made it in this earth.

One is blind and deaf, one blind only, one half blind and injured from beatings children gave her with cricket bats, one that constantly shakes, a couple whose trust of humans has been eroded and many more.

The ones who have suffered too much we keep or find a home for; the others we return to where we found them. Basically, we are assisting the Dubai Municipality with keeping the cat population healthy and under control. But after having released them, I cannot just turn my back on them.

Please understand that to fine people for feeding in these circumstances is not right. I stretch out my hand to Dubai Municipality to work with people like us, not fine us.

Marwan Awad, Abu Dhabi

I was happy to read Rym Ghazal's column about the new regulation in Dubai that mandates a fine for feeding stray cats.

People of all religions know that it is wrong to hurt animals. Reducing the number of strays is necessary for urban cleanliness, but that is easily achieved by neutering them.

Once they were neutered, strays could be fed.

Alma Kadragic, Abu Dhabi