PROVIDING INFORMATION AND ANALYSES OF ANIMAL ISSUES IN LOS ANGELES
When Talking to Dr. Fielding and the Supervisors...
When anyone talks to Dr. Fielding, they should remember this is not about the suspected and alleged outbreak of Typhus in Hawthorne, but about Joe Ramirez and his boss, Gail Vangordon's alleged plan to begin county wide roundups of feral cats as a planned extermination throughout the County.
If this is just about Typhus, why are they planning to round up cats at Harbor and Peck Park in the future? If there is suspected Typhus, why are they not there now? What evidence is there that there is Typhus in Hawthorne wildlife and ferals?
Joe has expressed in public meeting after public meeting dozens of different reasons for rounding up and killing feral cats from the very remote possibility of being a vector for pneumonic vs. Bubonic Plague (1998), or as the potential to being used by terrorists for biological attack. The latest reason is suspected Typhus. Two weeks ago or less he told someone they (Ramirez and Vector Control) are going to go from park to park to round ferals up because they are a national security risk.
In this instance, an allegation of Typhus is the excuse. But, is there a plan they are not enunciating? Is it that Joe in his increasing insanity, has gone off the deep end and just wants to kill ferals without evidence of anything but the most remote of threats?
I know there has been six cases of human Typhus, and one of a cat having Typhus carrying fleas Typhus in Orange County in 2006 and 2007, hardly an outbreak. Even then, Orange County Vector Control there did not suggest trapping and killing cats, only that owners of outdoor cats give their cats flea treatments, because fles are the disease vectors, not the cats.
Fielding has written many articles on Health Dept. policy where he repeats over and over the need for evidence-based interventions that take into consideration the community's involvement and acceptance. Everything appears to have been done in secret here, and the trapping signs put up by Ramirez only say cats will be trapped and adopted out at the Carson shelter. This is pure deception contrary to Fielding's espoused principals.
I think this whole thing is Joe Ramirez and Gail Vangordon's busywork to give their office more to do and fulfill Ramirez's mission of ridding the County of feral cats. Fielding has gone along with him in the past and provided cover. I think Joe and his boss Vangordon are loose cannons who Fielding has supported post facto in the past. Vangordon thinks of scientists as pompous blow hards that can be swept away because she has the power. I have emails from her to that effect.