Thursday, April 26, 2018
Letters To The Editor

Friday's letters: Case shines light on evils of abortion

Don't let developer gut Hillsborough land-use planning | May 13, editorial

Challenging a flawed plan

From the start, the Keystone Community Plan has been anything but a rational planning document for guiding the future growth and development of this beautiful part of Hillsborough County. Any attempt to establish homogenous rules for an area with such disparate development forms as Keystone was always going to be folly. But rationality was never the motivation.

The removal of blinders easily reveals the financial and political motivations that underscore the entire "planning" effort. Enacting development standards for newcomers that many of the plan's biggest proponents do not come close to complying with is elitism at its worst. That governmental agencies were complicit in these planning efforts should be the real story here.

Since when is embracing congestion on a major roadway an example of legitimate urban planning? How is it reasonable to deny a property owner the ability to connect to adjacent public utilities at his own expense? How can select properties restricted to development forms at one-tenth the density and intensity of adjoining parcels be considered a valid planning tenet, when the overall county plan calls for gradual transitions in density and intensity?

The familiar complaint about the timing of Stephen Dibbs' land purchase is a red herring. If existing rules lack any basis in sound planning, it is incumbent on a property owner to seek change. His efforts to do so through normal regulatory channels were never given an objective analysis. Hence, legal redress is his next option, and his current lawsuit has revealed the vastly flawed data and analysis upon which the Keystone Plan is based.

As a planner who represented the Carrollwood neighborhood in its recent battle with a proposed Walmart grocery and Wawa convenience store, I can hardly be branded as blindly pro-development. But when flawed public policy or the erroneous interpretation thereof becomes the basis for either the approval or denial of development options, I am not hesitant to enter the fray.

Steve Allison, Temple Terrace

Abortion doctor guilty in murder of 3 babies May 14

Shining a light on abortion

The murder conviction of Kermit Gosnell, the Philadelphia abortionist who exacted his atrocities upon the unborn and the born alike, should raise the curtain of obscurity on these slaughter mills of America.

Cloaked under the clever and seemingly benign phrase of "women's rights," this industry has hoodwinked our civil society into believing that a mass of tissue removed from the host mother was merely an inconvenient intruder in her womb. Those of us unscathed by the scalpel, the suction tubes and the scissored spinal cord, who attained life, should ensure that every fetus deserves the same.

Possibly the gruesome atrocities perpetrated by this "doctor" will enlighten us all about the horrors and evil of abortion.

Gene Seabolt, Palm Harbor

IRS management blamed | May 15

Follow the law, or else

What's the big deal about the IRS making sure that politically oriented organizations do not get tax-exempt status? The law is that any group whose main mission is to get certain people elected does not deserve a tax exemption. Is there anyone out there who doesn't believe that the tea party's major objective was to get conservatives elected to Congress? The only mistake the IRS made was to not also target liberal groups.

I wish the IRS was more selective about granting tax exemptions. There are many cases here in Florida where they were given without proper investigation.

Roger Gambert, Palm Harbor

'Social welfare' dodge

The attention that the IRS focused on tea party groups was well deserved. The tax exemption they claim is for groups specifically dedicated to "social welfare." It has long been obvious that tea party organizations using this exemption have as their only function the promotion of a political agenda and support of political candidates. To use the claim of "social welfare" is absolute fraud, and IRS should revoke their exemption.

Lewis Lederer, Clearwater

For mom, a perfect boy | May 12

Never-ending love

What a wonderful, life-giving mother is Karen Heaton, who displays never-ending love for her son. Most of us can't compare to her as moms and what we've done for our families. Yet we know how much love a mom's heart can hold, and I salute her with admiration and recognition.

Alice Mueller, Weeki Wachee

It's a dog's world | May 13, commentary

Keep them at home

This was a great article. This is the reason I quit going to the Saturday market downtown.

There are dogs on leashes everywhere, walking up and sticking their nose in your crotch and wrapping leashes around your legs.

All dog owners think their dog is the cutest, smartest dog of them all and that everyone should be thankful to bask in all their dog's awesomeness.

Leave him at home.

Steve Walsingham, St. Petersburg

It's a deal | May 14

The smiling villains

Brilliant! Your newspaper has found an excellent way to show the voting public who the smiling villains are in Florida politics. A picture of those responsible for voting down responsible measures to reduce health care costs, plus a graphic comparison of why they do not care, should be enough for the masses to see clearly how to vote during the next elections.

Glen Coleman, Tampa

They get it; we don't

The message from the Florida House of Representatives is loud and clear: We deserve it, they don't. We work hard, they don't. We (who can afford to pay full price) get cheap, subsidized health insurance instead. Those poor working stiffs who can't afford any insurance get no Medicaid expansion.

But, hey, legislating is a much harder job than being a nurse or a roofer or an auto mechanic. Legislators need their insurance — with all the backslapping, handshaking, cesspool wading, and all of that filthy money they have to collect and count, you'd better have a Cadillac insurance plan.

Gary Gibbons, Tampa


Thursday’s letters: A surgeon responds to story about a needle being left in a baby’s heart

All Children’s surgeon left a needle in a baby’s heart | April 22My view as one of the surgeonsI am one of the physicians discussed (but not interviewed) in this article. Whatever the motive for such an article, I disagree with many of the claims...
Published: 04/23/18
Updated: 04/26/18

Wednesday’s letters: How we plan to improve foster care in Hillsborough

Improving foster care inHillsborough | April 19, editorialOur plans for helping kidsThis editorial poses many good questions. The Department of Children and Families’ peer review report is expected to be released soon. And while we welcome the an...
Published: 04/23/18
Updated: 04/25/18

Pasco Letters to the Editor for April 27

Stop Ridge Road extension, reader saysWhen I spoke at the Dade City meeting of the Pasco County Commissioners on my opposition to the Ridge Road Extension, three of them responded, but only when my three minutes of free speech expired, and I could sa...
Published: 04/23/18

Monday’s letters: Term limits don’t work

U.S. Senate campaignTerm limitsdon’t workGov. Rick Scott has begun his run for the U.S. Senate with TV ads promoting term limits for representatives and senators. Aside from the probability that this would require a constitutional amendment, I think ...
Published: 04/22/18
Updated: 04/23/18

Sunday’s letters: Problems with high-speed rail

Thanks, Gov. Scott, for ghastly I-4 drives | April 18, Sue Carlton columnProblems with high-speed railIn her Wednesday column, the writer bemoaned the traffic on I-4 and blasted Gov. Rick Scott for turning down free government money for a high-sp...
Published: 04/21/18

Tuesday’s letters: Student journalists push to save their newsrooms and independence

Save student newsroomsAs professional newsrooms shrink, student newsrooms have become an increasingly important source of local coverage, holding not only our universities accountable but also local government. We write these articles, attending meet...
Published: 04/20/18
Updated: 04/24/18

Saturday’s letters: Don’t weaken rules on fisheries

Florida fisheriesDon’t weaken rules on fish stocksMembers of Congress are proposing changes to an important ocean law, the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, that would adversely affect coastal states including Florida.Since it...
Published: 04/19/18
Updated: 04/20/18

Friday’s letters: We owe it to our children to teach them history

If we don’t understand past, future looks grim | April 19, Daniel Ruth columnThe history we owe our childrenIt’s not often I agree with Daniel Ruth, but this article was spot-on. I’m not sure when the schools started ignoring Germany’s World War ...
Published: 04/19/18

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...
Published: 04/18/18

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