Opinion columns | Aug. 21
Three strikes against balance
I think your editorial staff is starting to get really nervous that their "guy" may not win the next presidential election. Putting Daniel Ruth, Maureen Dowd and Paul Krugman all on the opinion page on Aug. 21 is the epitome of negative campaigning.
Where is the commentary on all the wonderfully positive things their candidate has done in the last four years? It's absent because it doesn't exist. Slamming Paul Ryan is grasping for straws.
Where are the other opinions from the other side on your opinion page? You should put varying views on the page. Isn't that the goal of a unbiased paper? Ah, but the heat is on. Time to step up your campaign for your candidate.
Nancy Dalley, Clearwater
Tampa Bay Water
Money down the drain
Tampa Bay Water lost yet more taxpayer money in its latest loss in the court system. Judge James Whittemore rejected Tampa Bay Water's motion for a new trial, citing weaknesses in evidence against the engineering firm it had sued in court.
The board at Tampa Bay Water and specifically general manager Gerald Seeber should all step down or be removed from their positions. Seeber continues to waste taxpayer money by asking the appellate court to review the case. So far Seeber and the board have cost the taxpayers $30.6 million in legal fees on top of the judgment that the contractor did no wrong. This is typical of our local government.
Bill Alexander, Tampa
Church and capitalism don't mix Aug. 21, letter
Church rejected socialism
The writer's case against Paul Ryan does not stand up to scrutiny.
St. Thomas Aquinas lived in the 13th century. He had no idea what today's economic system would be.
Curiously, the writer also cites Pope Leo XIII's encyclical "Rerum Novarum," which is actually an endorsement of capitalism. Pope Leo affirmed the right of individuals to possess property, and he dismissed socialism. He said, "Hence, it is clear that the main tenet of socialism, community goods, must be utterly rejected."
There is nothing inherently exploitative in a capitalist system. That is why people flock to our shores from countries around the world. It is through the acquisition of wealth that one can practice Christian giving.
R.J. McDarby, Valrico
GOP pressures candidate to quit | Aug. 21
Everyone appears to be upset with congressman Todd Akin's comment about "legitimate" rape. Yet no one seems to notice that Rep. Paul Ryan and Akin co-sponsored the 2011 No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act that attempted to redefine "forcible" rape as the only legitimate form of rape with respect to federal funding for abortion. Although a version of this bill passed the House, the "forcible rape" language was eventually removed due to widespread public outcry. This idea of forcible rape is likely what Akin was talking about during his notorious interview.
This is not the only bill Akin and Ryan co-sponsored. They also co-sponsored the 2009 Sanctity of Human Life Act, a.k.a. the personhood bill, which would basically outlaw all abortion under any circumstances. Ryan may now be part of the Mitt Romney ticket, but that does not change his beliefs or the history of his voting in Congress.
Akin and Ryan are joined at the hip on their beliefs regarding women's health and choice issues.
Al Hunt, Tampa
Grant rejection leaves drug babies in a lurch Aug. 21
Sacrifice on ideology's altar
I am dumbfounded at the way our governor and Legislature play with people's lives to make a point. Lawmakers are "upset" because this year's $4.9 million Healthy Start grant is tied to Affordable Care Act funds. So they rejected it — that will show the federal government who is in charge here.
The result is 217 children in today's program, and future drug-addicted babies born in Pinellas County are left to fend for themselves. So these children, along with the newly unemployed staff, are asked to sacrifice their lives for "political ideology."
State Rep. Denise Grimsley says she doesn't want people to rely on the government to fix their problems. She wants people to take responsibility for themselves. These are newborn babies. They didn't ask for this life and neither they nor their drug-addicted parents can fix it alone. Society has a moral obligation to help these innocent children.
Becky Griffin, Indian Rocks Beach
Where will protesters sleep? | Aug. 20
Sleep at home
I have the solution for all the protesters looking for sleeping arrangements during the Republican National Convention: Sleep in your own beds in your own homes.
If you have something to say, and you have a right to do so, and you have solutions to the problems you are blaming on the Republicans, then organize your own convention at another time at your expense when accommodations are plentiful. Don't crash the RNC.
Be a constructive part of the solution, don't be the problem.
Alice R. Boose, Sun City Center
Republican National Convention
Look what the "land of the free and the home of the brave" has evolved into. A photo of an armored officer on his armored mount looks like something out of Star Wars.
It is sad that for our elected officials to meet in our democracy, they need the protection of hundreds of such officers, deputies and troopers from all corners of the state to protect them. I believe we are reaping the fruits of years of our over-liberal society where individuals' rights trump the rights of the masses.
Soon hordes of the country's great unwashed will converge on our shores, most with no political agenda but to raise hell and possibly burn a car or two. To ensure them of their "rights," taxpayers will provide them with water, cooling areas, medical assistance if needed and places where they can rest or sleep if too tired or stoned to continue the blast.
Let us all pray for peace.
Bill Goggin, St.Petersburg