Bearing the brunt

Bearing the brunt Ralph Unger had to sell 60 per cent of his cattle because fields typically used to feed the animals have turned to dust. Unger's predicament sums up the plight of us farmers and ranchers who are the worst sufferers of this year's devastating drought.

At a meeting with lawmakers in western Kansas, these victims made a plea for appropriating funds to bail them out of the crisis. They divulged details of how crops and herds of livestock had been decimated by the severe dry spell. Ross Davidson, administrator for the us department of agriculture's risk management agency in Washington, assured the farmers that congress would take up the issue in September itself. The farmers wanted the drought losses to be handled by the federal emergency management agency, which assists individuals injured during floods and other types of disasters. But Davidson ruled this out.

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