NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

October 22, 2013

Where are our priorities?


Newburyport Daily News

---- — To the editor:

We were struck by the make-up of the front page of Oct. 17’s Daily News: The top story, with a photo above the fold, is “Purr-fectly fun time – Fur Ball fundraiser to support feline rescue group.” Well below the fold, its headline set in smaller type, we saw: “Homeless, hungry find local agency straining to keep up.” Pictures of pretty cats are heart-warming. Pictures of the homeless, hungry would be depressing.

Reading both articles, we learn that with a budget of some $1.5 million, the Merrimack River Feline Rescue Society runs its excellent programs, including helping local residents with emergency vet bills. With a budget of only a third of the MVFRS’s, Pettengill House aids over 700 local homeless people, of whom about a third are children — and in addition to the homeless, Pettengill House aids the hungry, the sick who are not homeless.

Where are our priorities? Your priorities, as the major local newspaper? Our priorities, as your readers and as citizens? The placement and presentation of the two articles sends a depressing message about what we, as a community, value and are willing to invest in.

Margaret and Peter Albrecht

Newbury