A week has passed without word from nary an editor or editorial assistant that the New York Times would deign to publish the within–the-prescribed-word limit letter to the editor we had submitted in response to an editorial that surprised even us for its mistaken assumptions and ridiculous headline. Nonetheless, we feel it is important that you know that we do try to correct these egregious errors when they appear, even if the Times’ readers will not ever learn the facts. Here it is:
To the Editor:
In “Poison Shot from Guns” (July 13), the New York Times demonstrates it need not be encumbered by any actual research or fact-checking before opining.
In fact, the Environmental Protection Administration has no jurisdiction over lead ammunition or fishing sinkers and does not seek this authority, going to federal court twice to reaffirm its position. An agency cannot be “stripped” of authority it does not have.
Despite the over-the-top headline and misleading commentary, traditional lead ammunition has been used extensively over the very decades that wildlife populations, including raptors such as the bald eagle, have been enjoying dramatic population recoveries. It is illogical to assert they are “increasingly threatened.” There is no documented health threat to humans from traditional ammunition.
The federal excise tax on firearms, ammunition and fishing equipment sales has been instrumental in conservation efforts and American wildlife populations’ recoveries. So, concern over reduced revenue collection due to the much higher cost of non-lead ammunition is hardly “ridiculous”.