Sweet deal, but not for consumers | June 19, editorial
Hunger and malnutrition at home
We have an undeveloped nation living among us in the United States. And we're treating them worse than we treat foreign undeveloped nations.
We know that hunger and malnutrition stunt the growth of children worldwide. If they don't get adequate nutrition in their first 1,000 days, from conception to age 2, people grow up stunted in their bodies and their brains. This leaves them less likely to learn and become self-sustaining. They remain a problem to our community.
The recession has pushed many people into hunger danger, people who once were self-supporting.
With our foreign aid, we know it helps us to assist people in developing nations to become self-sufficient. It permits them to lift themselves from poverty and makes them good world citizens, not terrorists.
But in our own country, we are cutting SNAP (food stamps). This is a mistake. It's bad for the people who are getting their food cut (fetuses, children, adults) and it's bad for the people who are doing the cutting since it contributes to problems in our communities and goes against the high principles we say we live by.
Ken Schatz, Tampa
Deal near on border security | June 20
Reform promises unkept
Promises, promises. In 1986 we were told that we would secure the border and grant amnesty to approximately 1.5 million aliens. Closing the border would solve the problem. Seems to me that today we have the same problem, except we are now dealing with an estimated 11 million people.
In my view, we cannot successfully address the problem until the border is in our absolute control, and no action on illegal immigration be considered until then. Legalizing millions of people who have already broken our laws is no answer.
While I agree that we should demonstrate compassion for those who were brought here by their parents, I fear that if we fail to address the massive costs associated with amnesty in any form, and the competition for job opportunities that are already scarce, we will be inviting the establishment of a welfare community beyond our means. If we do not close the border, the carrot we are waving will serve to bring millions more to our door.
How can Congress promise enforcement when they have been so inept in the recent past? We desperately need to seal our borders and deal only with those illegal immigrants already here until we resume control.
Orfeo Trombetta, Seminole
Fed plans stimulus cuts | June 20
Stop meddling in markets
The Fed's policy of quantitative easing caused the stock market to rise dramatically. Now the Fed has announced its intention to end QE by next year. Result? The market crashes. Won't they ever learn that interfering with the free market brings disastrous results? And who gets hurt? The small investor.
Who is the real culprit in this? Naturally, the government.
Henry Loscher, Palm Harbor
Attorneys select six women for jury | June 21
Jury system is outdated
How can anyone with a brain claim not to be familiar with the George Zimmerman/Trayvon Martin case? I for one would not want to be judged by a group of uninformed, oblivious individuals. These are not my peers.
When the system was conceived, it was a different time. No phones, Internet, TV, or social media. People could live their entire lives and never venture more than 25 miles from their home. You could live in another town and have no idea what was going on somewhere else.
This is the 21st century. Things are different and will continue to change at an ever faster pace. I would prefer to be judged by a tribunal of learned judges who know the law and would not be swayed by emotions or stunted knowledge.
Tony Abbate, Valrico
Lies thrown into battle against women's rights | June 21, commentary
A simple truth
Connie Schultz mischaracterizes the abortion issue. It is indeed unfortunate that Republicans have out of necessity been forced to fight abortion on any front in an attempt to limit it. No doubt these kind of skirmishes lend themselves to much misinformation that leverage the kind of mockery displayed in Schultz's article.
However, at the heart of the abortion issue is this simple truth — life begins at conception. Therefore, abortion is murder.
To willfully mischaracterize abortion as "women's rights" is a violation of truth with far graver consequences than those stemming from the actions of the Republican legislators she is attacking.
Randy Livingston, Clearwater
War in Syria splits G-8 | June 18
Plunging into sectarian war
I would like to know exactly who it is that President Barack Obama would like to assist, and I would also like to know how long he thinks the recipient of that aid will able to keep the weaponry and ammo he receives.
Washington's decision to arm Syria's Sunni Muslim rebels has plunged America into the great Sunni-Shiite conflict of the Islamic Middle East.
In years to come, historians will ask how America — after its defeat in Iraq and its humiliating withdrawal from Afghanistan scheduled for 2014 — could have so blithely aligned itself with one side in a titanic Islamic struggle stretching back to the 7th century death of the Prophet Mohammed.
John Whelan, Dunedin
Getting booted | June 21
What a heartwarming story about a 12-year-old boy shining shoes to make money for a mission trip. I'm sorry Patrick MacGregor had to give up his business at the government center, although I understand the rule.
As someone said, Patrick could be home playing video games. He is trying to make money for a trip to Iowa. I love what he says: "We're going to the cities and knock on doors and have rallies and stuff. I want to show God's love and save people." Praise God for this young person who loves the Lord.
JoAnne Gangel, Weeki Wachee