South Dakota’s war on wildlife

South Dakota has declared war on wildlife. Rotting carcasses, live dismembered animals, and children posing beside dead ones for a photo contest are the stark realities of Gov. Noem's Nest Predator Bounty Program.

With all the mass shootings in the news and the link between cruelty to animals and violence, the governor's concerns about our culture in South Dakota are sadly misguided. Killing for recreation and promoting it as a way to enjoy the great outdoors is not culture, it is greed, cruelty of the worst kind and has no part in South Dakota's second century.

There is no justification for this program. Period.

Julie Anderson

Rapid City

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Distracted driving pervasive

It’s time for a more public conversation about the pervasive problem of distracted driving. We know that motorists care about this issue, and AAA in South Dakota and other states is launching a far-reaching safety campaign to advocate for vehicle drivers and passengers.

Our campaign targets drivers who would never consider getting behind the wheel after drinking a beer or any other alcoholic beverage and, yet, will regularly use mobile devices while driving that dangerously take their eyes and minds off the road. The campaign “Don’t Drive Intoxicated — Don’t Drive Intexticated” was created with the goal of making distracted driving socially unacceptable — just as socially unacceptable as drinking and driving.

And why not? The two are comparably dangerous and deadly. AAA’s sobering “intexticated” message makes clear that the consequences of both alcohol-impaired driving and texting while driving are often the same: deaths and injuries among drivers, passengers and pedestrians. Every day, distracted driving kills an average of nine people and injures 1,000, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. It is the third-leading driver-related cause of crash fatalities, only surpassed by speeding and driving under the influence.

Marilyn Buskohl

Sioux Falls

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