Tuesday, November 21, 2017
Letters To The Editor

Monday's letters: Requiring photo ID to vote simply makes sense


Misjudging voter ID laws | Oct. 20, Robyn Blumner column

Requiring photo ID makes sense

In the last month I have visited three different doctors. Upon check-in, each asked for my insurance card and a photo ID.

This column insists requiring a photo ID to vote represents a "real menace to poor and minority voters." The American Civil Liberties Union claims 11 percent of Americans, 21 million people, do not have photo IDs. My question would be: After these 21 million Americans are signed up for Obamacare, which is now the law of the land, would doctors be prohibited from asking for a photo ID to prove identity before these patients are treated? That could certainly be a "distasteful twist" to Obamacare.

Photo IDs are required to cash checks, use a credit card, board an airplane, buy alcohol, rent a car, stay in a motel, and the list goes on and on. Why is it unreasonable in any sense to require that one prove their identity and eligibility before being given the opportunity to vote?

Dave Loeffert, Dunedin

GOP should walk away from destructive fringe | Oct. 25, commentary

Back to the future

John Taft's opinion comparing and contrasting the old Republican Party with the new should be mandatory reading for all Republicans as a reminder of how important these political and social views were to the country.

As a lifelong Republican, his analysis also explains why I no longer support or contribute in any way to the party because of what it has become. I lament the current lack of Republican leadership at all levels of government in displaying decency, civility and responsible behavior.

Thomas W. Klein, Tampa

Delay mandate until after website is fixed Oct. 24, commentary

Senator part of the problem

Sen. Marco Rubio states that while he believes Obamacare needs to be fully repealed and replaced, "common sense dictates that our people have some short-term relief and protection now." His concern for the people, however, stops way short of suggesting the type of health care he enjoys at our expense, coupled with being fully vested and eligible for retirement benefits after five years. He recites the term "Obamacare" 11 times and doesn't even have the class to refer to it as the Affordable Care Act.

As to the erosion of public confidence in the ability of the federal government to deliver basic promises, a shining example of incompetence would be the House-led GOP voting 40-plus times against the Affordable Care Act. Instead of playing political games, Washington should be acting on positive solutions for long-term problems, or offering some positive additions to the health care program.

Claire McCarthy Lutzmann, Dunedin

'This valiant warrior' | Oct. 25

Exceptional service

I was deeply honored to join Congressman C.W. Bill Young's family in the funeral procession to Bay Pines Cemetery. In an emotion-filled day, I was most moved by what I experienced during the drive from the tribute service to the interment. Roadside along the funeral route, hundreds of his constituents stood in honor as the congressman passed by. The mood was reverential among the gathered men in uniform, senior citizens, schoolchildren and families. Many took this chance to wave the American flag with particular pride. Especially stirring were the veterans saluting at attention and the children whose parents had shown them how to place their hands over their hearts. I imagined those moms and dads explaining to their kids, as I have done with mine, who the congressman was and what he meant to all of us in Pinellas County.

In this contentious era in which our elected officials are held in such low esteem, Bill Young was the exception. At his memorial service, in death as in life, the congressman brought together people who normally can't or refuse to relate to one another, such as John Boehner and Nancy Pelosi. Driven by public service and not personal ambition, his legacy thrives in all of the lives he touched for the better.

Jay Epstein, Pinellas Park

As spending soars, fighter jet doesn't Oct. 25, Daniel Ruth column

Wasteful and foolish

The F-35 is a worthless high-tech toy that is inferior in aerial maneuverability and has so far cost taxpayers $400 billion. The F-14 was a superior aircraft with a price tag of about $40 million per copy. It was made famous by the movie Top Gun.

We scrapped the entire fleet because they were "to expensive to maintain." What if we had spent the money on a fleet of F-14's with added stealth capabilities and upgraded avionics? Since the electronics are now cheaper to manufacture, one would expect the cost to actually go down. We could have built 10,000 F-14s for the money we have already wasted on the F-35s.

How can Congress authorize such insanely wasteful and foolish spending on something we absolutely do not, and never did, need, while at the same time cutting Head Start, Meals on Wheels, child nutrition — anything and everything to help the poor and middle class. We are feeding a monstrously hungry defense industry with stuff the Pentagon doesn't even want.

Gary G. Rice, New Port Richey

Health care site lacked rigorous testing Oct. 24, PolitiFact

Put the pros in charge

Does the complete bungling by the administration of the health care website surprise anyone? Even Democrats are outraged about the poor planning and coordination of healthcare.gov.

Here is a fix that could resolve this disaster overnight: Why not ask the National Security Agency to rebuild the website? With an NSA-built site, all a person seeking insurance would have to do is enter his or her name. The rest of the data then would populate automatically, since it appears they have all of our information already.

Mark Mandula, St. Petersburg


Wednesday’s letters: Breaking down health data

Don’t let news on blood pressure raise yours | Nov. 17, commentaryBreaking down health numbersThank you for publishing the timely commentary by Dr. H. Gilbert Welch on blood pressure. The point he makes about relative risks versus absolute risks ...
Updated: 2 hours ago

Tuesday’s letters: Disgraceful tax proposals

Tax billDisgraceful, harmful proposalsThe very fact that the Congress of the people of the United States would propose, not to mention pass, the current tax bill is nothing short of disgraceful. What sort of representatives of the people support cutt...
Published: 11/20/17

Monday’s letters: Doctors should speak up on harassment

Sexual harassmentDoctors need to speak upThe recent widespread recognition, followed by disapproval, of sexual harassment across many workplaces signals a paradigm shift in social attitudes toward abuse of power that is long overdue.The male-dominate...
Published: 11/17/17

Saturday’s letters: Reservoir project off to a good start

Lake OkeechobeeReservoir project off to good startThis year, more than 70,000 Floridians contacted their legislators to support expediting a reservoir project south of Lake Okeechobee. Another 150 business people, anglers, health care professionals a...
Published: 11/15/17
Updated: 11/17/17

Sunday’s letters: Roundabout way to help the rich

Senate GOP’s tax plan to kill ACA mandate | Nov. 15Devious way to hurt middle classSo, let’s see if we have this straight. The proposed amendment to the Senate tax plan, to kill the individual mandate, will cause young people to not buy health in...
Published: 11/15/17
Updated: 11/17/17

Friday’s letters: Stop laying blame on teachers

Hillsborough teachers are set to protest | Nov. 14Stop laying blame on teachersI am a veteran teacher, coming up on 30 years of service to public education. My mother was also an educator, clocking over 40 years of service in public education. Sh...
Published: 11/15/17
Updated: 11/16/17

Pasco Letters to the Editor for Nov. 17

Questioning fees draws snarky responseYou are probably aware of the new Pasco utility fees that became effective last month.Under the dubious title of "convenience fee" for making utility payments by credit card or e-check, Pasco Utilities adds $2.75...
Published: 11/15/17

Dollars need to stay at home if south Brooksville is to survive

As a member of the Moton High School Class of 1967, I grew up a poor but very happy child because of the love given to me by all. So all I had to do was be a child and not rush to be an adult.There were many black businesses along a four-block area o...
Updated: 8 hours ago

Wednesday’s letters: Generosity makes all the difference

National Adoption MonthThe difference generosity makesAs a football coach, I always had to be ready to overcome unexpected challenges. With injuries, crowd noise and especially weather, the game plan is always adjusting to overcome adversity.Our stat...
Published: 11/13/17
Updated: 11/14/17

Monday’s letters: Moore is not fit for public office

Woman: Candidate pursued her as a teen | Nov. 10Moore is not fit for public officeIt is sad that Roy Moore, a self-professed religious man, is running for a Senate seat when he is clearly unfit for any job involving the public for so many reasons...
Published: 11/10/17
Updated: 11/13/17