It has been a good year | Aug 10, Robert Trigaux column
Give this plan the green light
Robert Trigaux is right: Woe to the Pinellas economy if this (Greenlight Pinellas) plan fails.
The Tampa Bay area is the only major U.S. metropolitan area without a coordinated transportation network. When industry seeks a new location, one of the key considerations is how workers will get to their jobs. PSTA in its current, underfunded state is unable to provide the frequent, high quality transportation needed to attract top notch employers. We need an adequate bus system to allow workers to get to work, students to get to school, and allow seniors, tourists, and others to get to shopping, the beach, and the airport.
Anyone who has been to other cities on business or vacation has ridden the quality bus and or rail systems those cities already have in place. Boston, Manhattan, Washington, D.C., Chicago, Denver, San Francisco, etc., have systems in which cars are rarely needed. We cannot get to that level of sophisticated transportation overnight, but we need to take the first steps toward that goal. Mayor Bob Buckhorn in Tampa emphatically agrees, and he wants a Greenlight Pinellas-type referendum in Hillsborough County in 2016.
The naysayers all dwell on the costs of implementation of Greenlight Pinellas, but they refuse to see the costs of inaction. Simply put, without an integrated transportation network the Tampa Bay region will become an irrelevant economic backwater, relying primarily on tourism and retirees for revenues and growth. These industries, however, have low-paying wages, and ultimately, we will see continued economic stagnation in Pinellas. People making $10 per hour cannot buy houses or new cars. Without high caliber industry, our college educated students will go elsewhere after graduation in search of high paying jobs with better career opportunities. The result will be a downward economic spiral.
Mary Louise Ambrose, Belleair Bluffs
Knowing Charlie | Aug. 10
Thanks for nothing
It appears that one of the Times' most respected "political journalists" has now sunk to the level of a cheap gossip columnist. At a time when Floridians are suffering under Rick Scott's disastrous policies, no one needs to hear unfounded rumors about Charlie Crist's family or personal life. This is an election that will decide Florida's future, not an episode of the Real Housewives of St. Petersburg.
As a Florida voter, I'm not worried about these non-issues. I'm worried about how many students won't be able to go to college since Rick Scott cut Bright Futures scholarships in half. I'm worried about whether the natural beauty of our state will be here for future generations since Rick Scott put Big Sugar and other special interests over protecting the environment. I'm worried about my fellow Floridians who can't get health care because Rick Scott failed to expand Medicaid. Instead of insulting voters' intelligence with this ridiculous story, why don't Adam Smith and Michael Kruse write about those issues?
Charlie Tucker, Clearwater
More liberal propaganda
If anyone doubted that the Times was a liberal newspaper, trying to advance all liberal causes, the Sunday edition removed any doubt.
Your paper started out with a Charlie Christ "campaign" piece that consumed half the front page, followed by five full pages in the A section.
Then moving on to the "B" section, the Buzz finds fault with everything Republican and gives Charlie Crist "Winner of the Week." Then moving on to the Perspective section, we see Leonard Pitts writing a negative column on the Republican Party. But that's to be expected from Pitts.
This brings us to that "lovable" liberal Daniel Ruth, whose column castigated Gov. Scott's wife, Ann. Again, what were we to expect?
I know the Times' editors are all liberals, but for a major Tampa Bay newspaper, this is over the line.
Daniel Pennisi, Palm Harbor
Scott profile now needed
Interesting profile article on Charlie Crist. Now, how about a similar one on Rick Scott? That way you can't be accused of being in Scott's back pocket. Otherwise, how can your publication have any credibility?
Bonnie McLean, Pensacola
Church cancels service for gay man | Aug. 9
A shameful decision
One of the main reasons this incident is so appalling is that even in death Julion Evans got discriminated against.
Churches are supposed to be places of compassion and empathy, yet this particular pastor chose to deny them to a dead man because he was gay. In this day and age it seems almost outlandish that something like that could occur. And to add insult to injury, the pastor does not even have the courage to openly explain his decision. Was it not the current pope, Francis, who said: "If a person is gay and seeks God and has goodwill, who am I to judge?"
Patrick Bauer, Wesley Chapel
At least be consistent
I am imagining that the Rev. T.W. Jenkins, who canceled the funeral service for Julion Evans because he was gay, must have a very, very tiny congregation if he is consistent in his "biblically based" position on homosexuality. If one factored out all the women, who according to Leviticus 15:19 must be isolated as unclean for seven days when they experience their menstrual cycle, all those who have been or should be put to death for working on the Sabbath (Exodus 35:2), anyone who eats shellfish or pork (Leviticus 11:7-13), which are also "abominations" in precisely the same degree as homosexuality, and those that are or should be stoned for cursing (Leviticus 24:10-14), that would probably leave very few congregants listening to the good reverend preach.
Joseph J. Ferrandino, Land O'Lakes
Candidate flips on creationism | Aug. 9
Ken Peluso makes a statement of favoring teaching creationism with evolution in public schools one day and flips to not being in favor of having creationism taught the next day and he wants to attribute it to being caught off guard and gave a "quick response without thinking"?
Did he fail to grasp the question when asked? Or is this "damage control" in realizing that making a "shoot from the hip" response has political consequences?
I am somewhat curious as to what other "quick responses without thinking" Peluso will make should he be elected to the Pinellas County School Board.
Patrick Kroeger, Palm Harbor