After reading Mr. Hestness letter, I feel compelled to reply.

No, people are not "uninformed" in regard to farmers or ag entities. Quite the opposite in today's world, the taxpayers fully understand who feeds and accommodates the world. The taxpayers do! Without the safety net of taxpayer subsidies, entitlements, the many perks... For example, no contributing to road tax, crop insurance that is nothing more than a subsidy, depreciation, and all of the numerous ways to avoid paying income tax (the majority of farmers operate at a loss most of the time....right?)...there would not be farmers! Today, taxpayers are the real backbone of agriculture.

Yes, the farmer has long hours with spring planting and fall harvest. It certainly is not a 52 weeks out-of-the-year job. I wonder, how many farmers would punch a time clock every day, week after week, year after year? This is what the majority of laboring workers are required to do, plus many have required overtime hours, meaning weekends. If you are fortunate enough to not punch a time clock, and happen to be in management, that isn't just a spring or fall position either! If a worker loses his job, nobody is there to bail him out!

Now about animals raised in humane conditions: let them have free range. That is the only truly humane way. Enough of the confinements, before our once pristine state is totally taken away because of greed and power.

When you travel the countryside, I really do not see too many struggling farmers, as there homes and farms pay witness to that, but if you are struggling, then possibly, when you have those "over the top" years, better stick some back for a lean year!

Myrna Marnin, Mason City


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