Saturday, February 17, 2018
Letters To The Editor

Letters: Why teachers need guns

Re: Armed teachers would be a dangerous lesson (Sue Carlton column, tbt* March 14)

While it is not surprising to read Sue Carlton's antigun article on armed teachers, it is surprising how little research she or the media have done on the subject. The popular beliefs that all guns are bad, and that teachers with guns will have some kind of psychotic meltdown and become the shooter themselves, are just not right.

Florida is one of 33 states proposing allowing schools to designate a teacher or administrator to carry a firearm in the event of an emergency. If a teacher or school official has the background, training and desire to carry a gun, then they should be applauded for their willingness to do so. In 1997, assistant Joel Myrick stopped what could had been another tragic school shooting because he met force with force!

If we trust our educators to teach our children, why would we not trust them to protect our children by all means necessary? Mr. & Mrs. Taxpayer don't want to spend the money for school officers, and yet when a school shooting occurs they cry foul. Get real! Either spend the money or give our teachers and administrators the chance to protect our kids. When seconds matter, the cops are a few minutes away.

Daniel Fritz, Tampa

Editor's note: Joel Myrick was the assistant principal at Pearl High School in Pearl, Miss. On Oct. 1, 1997, after 16-year-old Luke Woodham shot and killed two students and wounded seven others, Myrick chased him down and held him at bay with a pistol he kept in his truck in the school parking lot. He forced Woodham to the ground and put his foot on the youth's neck.

Floodgates open

Re: Florida Supreme Court tosses out a medical malpractice cap on damages (tbt* March 14)

Congratulations to the Florida Supreme Court for their decision to reopen the "Florida Medical Lottery" by doing away with caps on "pain and suffering." No one will argue that trying to define how much that is worth is arbitrary at most. What you failed to mention was that actual medical costs are covered and have never been reduced, and that the plaintiffs' attorneys make a percentage, often 30 to 50 percent of awards, thus reducing what the plaintiff actually receives.

This will again open the floodgates for suits to try to win over juries where there were adverse medical outcomes, based on healing and patients' overall health, rather than true medical malpractice. Look for malpractice premiums to rise and surgeons to stop doing high-risk procedures.

David Lubin, MD, Tampa

Avoiding Georgia

Re: Candid Talk (tbt* March 13)

In Georgia, if you are driving the legal limit on a divided highway (breaking no laws) and another driver (breaking the law by speeding) pulls up behind you, you must change lanes or you could get a ticket. And not just a slap on the wrist — up to $1,000 fine and a year in prison. The speeder goes on his/her merry way.

As a professional driver-chauffeur, I am appalled. This is just wrong on so many levels. Remind me not to drive in Georgia until they elect officials with at least a lick of common sense.

Denis Stephen Malfant, Clearwater

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Sunday’s letters: Congress must act on firearms

Deadly toll: 17 | Feb. 15Congress must act on firearmsIt’s time for Congress to be counted.The failure of Congress to act to: (1) limit access to assault rifles and (2) require meaningful background checks for all gun purchases is appalling.Surel...
Published: 02/17/18

Monday’s letters: Call it by its name: terrorism

Deadly toll: 17 | Feb. 15Call it whatit is: terrorismLet’s just call it what it is. It’s terrorism. No school in the country is immune. They all have procedures for sheltering in place or emergency evacuation from a shooter. It’s prudent to be pr...
Published: 02/16/18

Saturday’s letters: Payoff to porn star not front-page news?

Lawyer: I personally paid porn star | Feb. 14Where we’re at: This is 4A newsOnly under the Trump presidency does a story about the president’s lawyer paying off a porn star to cover up an affair with the president show up on page 4A. Never mind t...
Published: 02/16/18

Friday’s letters: Water quality too important to gamble on

State to update water rules | Feb. 10Don’t gamble with water safetyI wondered whether this front-page article was an early April Fool’s joke. The Florida Department of Environmental Protection "updated" its pollution regulations in 2016, with str...
Published: 02/15/18

Thursday’s letters: Bill protects pharmacy customers

House Bill 351Bill protects pharmacy customersWe all need the protections provided in Florida House Bill 351 to ensure pharmacy benefit managers, or PBMs, are transparently operating with patients. Currently, PBMs are not regulated by the state and o...
Published: 02/14/18

Wednesday’s letters: The ocean is no place for amateurs

Youthful dream sinks in two days | Feb. 12Ocean is no place for amateursFirst of all, let me say I am sorry this couple lost their boat and I do applaud their adventurous spirit. However, I have spent over 20 years at sea and would like to commen...
Published: 02/13/18

Pasco Letters to the Editor for Feb. 16

A vote against Pasco’s jail bond issueThere are two stories on the front page of the Feb. 9 Pasco Times that drew my attention.The top headline reports that the Pasco County commissioners are discussing submitting a $185 million bond issue to the vot...
Published: 02/13/18

Tuesday’s letters: Challenges in Hillsborough foster care

Foster failures under scrutiny | Feb. 10Challenges in foster care systemNo young person deserves to be treated as shown in the Ch. 8 segment on Youth and Family Alternatives Inc., an Eckerd Connects subcontractor. It is difficult to fathom how th...
Published: 02/12/18

Saturday’s letters: We’re all just trying to get home, one zip tie at a time

I detest Trump, but a ‘redneck’ fixed my Prius with zip ties | Feb. 3, Ruth Mayer columnWe’re all just trying to get homeLike columnist Ruth Mayer, I too am trying to find my level ground, my level-set. I too have held a tremendously deep resentm...
Published: 02/07/18
Updated: 02/09/18

Sunday’s letters: Let’s make America good again

Everyone loves a parade | Feb. 9, editorialI’ll sit on the sidelinesAs a 30-year veteran I was appalled at the president’s plan for a military parade. Having marched in numerous parades in my career I can say without hesitation that members of th...
Published: 02/07/18
Updated: 02/09/18