I rise to the defense of chickens. Last week, in The Huntsinghamobile News, William Singleton reported the tragic story of one Virginia Murdoch, persecuted by the city of Homewood for sequestering seven American Dominique hens in her back yard. The chickens, a gift from her husband, apparently violated a city law that mandates birds produce no noise, no odor, no pollution and be kept 300 feet from another residence. Mrs. Murdoch might have skated on the environmental issues, but Homewood is a squished-in community where it’s often hard to find thirty feet between residences, let alone 300. Therefore, the chickens have been obliged to fly the coop.