It’s amazing to me that a professional activist like John Stauber is taken seriously on matters of science and agriculture (“Mad deer nightmare,” April 8).

As early as 1997, Stauber was insisting that “there may already be a mad cow type of disease infecting both U.S. pigs and cattle.” He has never offered any proof to back up this reckless claim, and there has never been a documented case of mad cow disease in North America. Now Stauber wants us all to fear “mad deer,” but (again) the real scientists tell us there’s nothing to worry about.

On April 8 the Omaha World-Herald reported that a study “conducted by a Nobel Prize-winning researcher” determined that “those who eat the meat of deer infected with chronic wasting disease (CWD) are in no danger.”

The Nobel laureate in question is Dr. Stanley Prusiner, who won the prize in 1997 for his discovery of prions, the rogue proteins thought to cause maladies like CWD and mad cow disease. Whom should we believe: the Nobel laureate or the professional scaremonger?