Wednesday, April 18, 2018
Letters To The Editor

Emails to tbt*: Visit Florida and a lonely orca make a very odd pair

As a Florida resident, I am disturbed by the appointment of Andrew Hertz as the chair of Visit Florida, our state-funded tourism marketing agency. Hertz is the president and general manager of the Miami Seaquarium, which holds the dishonor of keeping an orca in the smallest orca tank in North America, a tank so tiny that it is illegal under the Animal Welfare Act.

Seaquarium's lone orca, Lolita, was cruelly captured from her family pod as a baby. She has been held captive and forced to perform tricks for food for more than 40 years. And since Lolita's tankmate died 34 years ago, after ramming his head into the side of the tank, she has had no opportunity to interact with members of her own species. That is excruciating for this social, intelligent animal. 

I am deeply concerned that Hertz's vested interest in promoting cruel marine mammal captivity will affect his decisions at Visit Florida. I enjoy sharing our state's beauty and attractions with visitors and I've happily shared many posts using Visit Florida's slogan, #LoveFL. But I don't love cruelty to animals and I won't support any organization that does.

Michelle Kretzer, Dunedin

Thanks for the laugh

Re: Tbt* is a socialist propaganda rag (email to the editor, June 23)

Where to begin! I started to get angry with the email from Douglas Coggeshall, but then realized you published it to give us all a good laugh. "Jug-eared Kenyan"! Obama sending Christmas cards to Muslims! You just can't write this stuff, it has to be over the transom.

As for tbt* encountering financial bankruptcy, that's not going to happen. And the bit about Neville Chamberlain and "hell's finest champagne"? Great stuff. Kudos to Coggeshall!

Jason Bean, Land O' Lakes

Guns and closed minds

Re: Gun mania (email to the editor, June 23)

I don't deny email writer Laura Self's right to be an overprotective mother to her children. I only hope her biased, outright disdain dies before it poisons her kids to think like her. It's not okay to disagree with mommy, or you're a dumbass, apparently.

I think the danger to your kids, Laura, is your closed mind.

Ken Ringeisen, Zephyrhills

A real Rays fan

Re: Rays for sale! Everyone must go (Gary Shelton column, tbt* June 19)

Every day I pick up a tbt* and read some sports columnist's opinion on how the Rays are such a train wreck. Well, I read Shelton's conclusion that we should discard the team that gave Tampa Bay a pennant and four playoff appearances! The team that has given us a lot fun baseball.

I love the Rays for who they are: A bunch of players to be proud of. Players who deserve our support even in bad times. A baseball team is more than a logo and stadium. The Rays are the best in baseball in my book — for more than just wining games, I like 'em, and nothing changes that. Real fans will understand where I am coming from.

Boyd Burchfield, Tampa

Email [email protected] Please include your full name and city.


Thursday’s letters: Gun research can save lives

Gun ownershipCommon ground: Find the factsThere are many areas in the current debate about guns and gun ownership where both sides must agree to disagree. But there is one area where common ground ought to exist. That concerns the need for continuing...
Updated: 8 hours ago

Wednesday’s letters:

Poverty and plenty in bay area | April 7, editorialStruggling poor are not a priorityI commend your newspaper for continuing to produce real and relevant news, particularly the recent editorial pointing out that a prospering Tampa Bay should not ...
Published: 04/16/18
Updated: 04/17/18

Hernando Letters to the Editor for April 20

Bar Association celebrates Law WeekPresident Dwight D. Eisenhower proclaimed May 1, 1958, as the first Law Day to mark the nation’s commitment to the rule of law. Every year on this day, we reflect on the significance of the rule of law and rededicat...
Published: 04/16/18
Updated: 04/17/18

Tuesday’s letters: Stop cooperating with ICE

Sheriff’s ICE policy blasted | April 10Pinellas should end partnership with ICEPinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri recently participated in a community conversation on his controversial agreement with ICE to voluntarily detain immigrants in the...
Published: 04/16/18

Sunday’s letters: The future of oyster production

Shell game | April 15Future of oyster productionThanks to Laura Reiley for an excellent synopsis of the current state of oyster production in Florida. The collapse of the Apalachicola oyster fishery is merely the latest example of the demise of a...
Published: 04/14/18

Monday’s letters: Public education is foundation of the nation

Voters beware of ballot deceptionApril 13, commentarySchools’ role underminedIt was with great pain that I read (not for the first time) that we must be aware of "ballot deception." Public schools were founded to make sure that future generations of ...
Published: 04/13/18

Saturday’s letters: Health Department should butt out

Judge: Grow pot, Mr. Redner | April 12Health officials should butt outThe Times reports that the Florida Department of Health filed an appeal to the decision allowing a man who is a Stage 4 lung cancer survivor to grow pot in his backyard for his ...
Published: 04/11/18
Updated: 04/13/18

Friday’s letters: Open and shut: Enforce the law

Sheriff’s ICE aid policy blasted | April 10Open and shut: Enforce the lawPeople and institutions that insist on the using the euphemism "undocumented immigrant" do nothing but affirm their lack of objectivity by using such a phrase to support an ...
Published: 04/11/18
Updated: 04/12/18

Thursday’s letters: Focus on offender, not weapon

Use data to curb gun deaths | April 8, commentaryFocus on offenders, not weaponsThis article tiptoes around the issue: human violence. The authors point out that automobile manufactures were pressured by regulation and law to make automobile coll...
Published: 04/11/18

Wednesday’s letters: One county’s water affects us all

Sprawl seems a concern until Tampa land use lawyer appears | April 9Water impactsspan county linesThough I live in Pinellas County, I have followed the discussion on land use decisions made by Hillsborough County. Hillsborough’s decisions, perhap...
Published: 04/10/18