Thursday, March 22, 2018
Letters To The Editor

Monday's letters: Biden called out inconsistencies

No holding back for Biden, Ryan | Oct. 12

Biden called out inconsistencies

In the first presidential debate, President Barack Obama was concerned with giving clear answers to the questions asked and not appearing too negative toward his opponent. Consequently, he failed to press Mitt Romney about the obvious contradictions in his positions.

On Thursday, Vice President Joe Biden did not fall into those traps. He consistently called our attention to the inconsistencies in his opponent's positions. To start with, it is clear that you cannot reduce tax rates across the board, give tax cuts to small businesses reporting as individuals, refuse any tax cut that will increase the deficit, and not increase taxes on the middle class. It is also apparent that proposing to eliminate deductions without specifying which ones are targeted is just political smoke and mirrors.

Rep. Paul Ryan, in contrast, spent his time accusing the current administration of mishandling domestic, fiscal and foreign policy, without specifying what a Romney administration would do differently. This is characteristic of their "Etch A Sketch" strategy. By trying to hide or change the positions Romney spent the past year defining, they hope to solicit votes without actually committing to any course of policy.

Gregg Niemi, Tampa

No holding back for Biden, Ryan | Oct. 12

Not a draw — a drubbing

I wonder if Times reporter Alex Leary and I were watching the same vice presidential debate. Leary referred to the showdown as a "draw" between Joe Biden and Paul Ryan, but it was clear to me that a masterful Biden soundly secured victory over his arrogant, junior colleague.

Rather than a draw, I think most viewers would agree it was a drubbing.

Jon Paul S. Brooker, Gulfport

Rude and condescending

Joe Biden looked like and more importantly acted like an old man treading water and gasping for air. After four years as vice president and a career in the Senate, he looked nothing like "presidential." His lack of facts was only exceeded by his rudeness and condescending demeanor.

John Osterweil, Tampa

No record to run on

The Times didn't go far enough when it described Vice President Joe Biden as snarky during the debate. He was also arrogant, rude and condescending towards Congressman Ryan. This is no surprise since it's also how his administration treats the American people and, more importantly, the Constitution and Bill of Rights.

To paraphrase President Barack Obama in his 2008 speech, when your record stinks, you attack. If the enemies of the United States were treated with the same vigor we would be much safer today.

Richard Golden, San Antonio

Vote yes on Pinellas school levy Oct. 12, editorial

Music in the schools

As a music educator, I am writing to thank our community for approving the Pinellas County education referendum in 2004 and again in 2008.

This referendum has provided important funds for music education in Pinellas County schools. I can't thank you enough for the music equipment, instruments and technology that have been purchased for students because of this additional funding.

It is exciting to see tangible, positive results every day from the referendum dollars. On Nov. 6, voters will once again get the opportunity to vote on this issue.

Music education is alive and well in Pinellas County schools because of you. Thank you.

Lisa M. Lehmann, president, Pinellas County Music Educators Association, Largo

Campaign 2012

Early voting warning

It will be too bad and too late for the thousands of voters who participate in "early voting," and consequently do not have the benefit of all of the facts needed to make an informed decision. We need to take into consideration the reality that very important information can and does come up during the debates or at the last minute.

MaryJane J. Dodds, St. Petersburg

Bite turned monkey from friend to foe Oct. 12

Leave animals alone

Regarding the woman who was bitten by the roaming monkey and the child recently bitten by a raccoon: What is it going to take to teach people not to encourage and feed a wild animal? People are just looking for trouble in thinking they can befriend a wild animal.

Elizabeth Bridwell, Hudson

Reality, a product of the vast left-wing conspiracy | Oct. 11, commentary

Give us the facts

Leonard Pitts' column brought to mind the dystopian novel 1984, which depicts a totalitarian society bent on total control of thought and facts. One of the most disturbing practices used to accomplish these goals in George Orwell's tale is the "Ministry of Truth," a government agency that alters historical records to fit the needs of the party in power.

The current penchant of our leaders to twist, alter and malign facts is a disturbing trend. Lies are the essence of a totalitarian society. The truth is the bane of a society that controls rather than represents its people.

This "War on Reality" may be one of the most important issues facing us today. Without facts, truth and honest discourse, democracy cannot exist.

Roz Fenton, Hudson


Thursday’s letters: School safety requires funding

Constitution Revision CommissionSchool safety requires fundingThe Constitution Revision Commission should consider amending a proposal (45, 93 or 72) to allocate the necessary recurring funding for the new school safety mandates, separate from the ba...
Published: 03/21/18

Wednesday’s letters: Let the teachers decide on guns

Trump touts arming staff as key in plan for school security | March 12It’s the teacher’s call on weaponsPlease, let’s try an alternate view about guns in the classroom. First, it hasn’t gone unnoticed that the preponderance of letters about guns ...
Published: 03/20/18

Pasco Letters to the Editor for March 23

Re: Residents object to solar farm | March 16, storyLakeland Electric has shown that residential customers can be incentivized to allow placement of utility-owned solar panels on their roofs. Likewise, business owners can be incentivized to allow...
Published: 03/19/18

Tuesday’s letters: It shouldn’t be this hard to fly

Tampa International AirportIt shouldn’t be this hard to flyI’ve given the train two tries now from economy parking at Tampa airport. It’s a lot of work. How silly to go down one bank of elevators, then take a good walk to the next set of elevators to...
Published: 03/19/18

Monday’s letters: Protect Floridians’ right to privacy

People push for changes at Constitution hearing | March 14Protect Florida’s right to privacyI attended the Constitution Revision Commission’s public hearing at USF St. Petersburg last week. I was there because I thought it was important to have m...
Published: 03/18/18

Sunday’s letters: Effort to stem pet cruelty pays off

Puppy millsEffort to stem cruelty pays offThank you to everyone who contacted their legislators, and a huge shout-out to the Tampa Bay Times for letting us know that state legislators were considering a bill to eliminate the hard-achieved gains on lo...
Published: 03/17/18

Saturday’s letters: Insurer focused on repairs, not fees

Citizens hit with $12.7M verdict | March 15Insurer’s focus: repairs, not feesCitizens Property Insurance Corp. has spent the past several years making sure that insurance proceeds for sinkhole repairs are used to restore a home and make it whole....
Published: 03/16/18

Friday’s letters: Put young people to work rebuilding infrastructure

Smart way to pay for infrastructure | March 13, commentaryMake rebuilding a youth project Raising gas taxes to pay for infrastructure may not be the best way to go. I suggest we re-invent the old WPA (Works Progress Administration) and draft high...
Published: 03/13/18
Updated: 03/15/18

Thursday’s letters: An alternative for giving: Breadcoin

Panhandling paradox | March 11Innovation in giving: BreadcoinPanhandling is destructive to the donor, panhandler and our community — a guilt trip that erodes personal dignity, respect and self-worth, making the recipient more beholden and entitle...
Published: 03/13/18
Updated: 03/14/18
Wednesday’s letters: Daylight bill is bad for business

Wednesday’s letters: Daylight bill is bad for business

Daylight saving timeDaylight bill is bad for businessI encourage Gov. Rick Scott to veto the daylight saving time extension bill. It makes no sense. It puts Florida out of sync with the rest of the country. Commerce will be affected. The entire Easte...
Published: 03/13/18