South Dakota 4-H in Good Hands

Posted: 5/3/2010

Posted By:  Kelly Wubben

The following is a letter written to the South Dakota Cooperative Extension Service about HSUS' involvement in the National 4-H Confrence.   

Dear Dr. Lighari,

As a past 4-H member I have many great memories.  I was a member of the McCook County Rough Riders.  I looked forward to every weekly practice with my horse and the opportunity to go to state and earn a purple ribbon.  I also saw 4-H as a great way to make friends with those who shared the same interests as I did.  

Being involved in 4-H took many hours of hard work and dedication.  I learned many things from 4-H that I have carried with me in college and now onto a professional career.  Some of those values include: setting goals and being willing to work at them; responsibility for something other than myself; patience is definitely a virtue as a 1,000 pound animal doesn't always want to do what you want him to do and sportsmanship is universal, when you don't get that purple ribbon you thought you deserved you need to celebrate with those who did.           

I am writing to you in regards to something I am sure you have heard much about over the past few weeks, the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) offering a program to students attending the National 4-H Conference in March.

When I first heard this I was very concerned that a program which is devoted to students interested in agriculture would allow an organization, such as HSUS, with its anti-meat agenda talk to our youth.  4-H after all was founded on agriculture, as a way for farm kids to show their livestock.  Agriculture production is what HSUS is trying to end along with a long list of other things including:  hunting, fishing, animal laboratories in which medical research is done and eventually pet ownership.  

While myself, along with MANY others were maybe starting to wonder what happened to 4-H, why the sudden change in direction?  I quickly became assured that while people involved in setting up the National 4-H Conference may not get it, South Dakota does.

I was very please to read the letter to the National 4-H Headquarters expressing your concern about this incident.   Agriculture is important to South Dakota as it has a $21.3 billion economic impact and employs over 101,000 people.  The majority of the 4-Hers come from a family farm, where they are dedicated to caring for their livestock and proving a safe and affordable product for their families as well as other consumers.  

Again, thank you for speaking out and continue the good work!

Kelly Wubben
Outreach Director
Agriculture United for South Dakota



blog comments powered by Disqus