Saturday, November 25, 2017
Letters To The Editor

Monday's letters: Teach all types of food production


Field trip | May 29

Teach all types of food production

The University of Tampa should be commended for its course "Food Fights" on how food is grown, marketed, sold and eaten. But it appears the students were only given a one-sided view — the organic view — to raising food.

Organic methods may produce a healthy, pesticide-free product, but on a very limited yield basis. Chicken at $10 a pound is not for everyone. Commercially raised chicken currently sells for less than $2 a pound. Other organic food is also very expensive — not because of its greater nutrient value, but because of its yield.

Students should have also been taken on field trips to commercial farms to learn more about methods of mass production, USDA inspection and marketing.

The University of Florida is a great source of university-based research information.

Cooperative extension agents and master gardeners are always available to answer questions about the latest information on organic and nonorganic food production for the backyard gardener and the farmer alike.

Knowledge of organics and commercial food production would have given the impressionable students a basis to make wise and healthy choices in the future.

John B. Weber, Spring Hill

Discrimination law

Protect Florida's women

The state of Florida, through Florida Statute 760, provides vital protection against discrimination for individuals on the basis of several categories including sex, color and religion. One category of individuals noticeably missing from such beneficial protection is pregnant mothers. In contrast, federal law has afforded them protection since 1978. Over the last decade there have been multiple attempts to amend Statute 760 to include pregnant women as a protected class. To date, including this past legislative session, all such attempts have failed.

The main issue that appears to prevent the amending of the statute is the apparent ambiguity within Florida's Civil Rights Act. Legal opinions from throughout the state are far from conclusive in their interpretation of this act, and in many instances, contradictory. While some courts afford pregnant women remedies for being victims of discrimination, such as job reinstatement or promotions, other courts completely deny pregnant women any protection under the act.

The Florida Commission on Human Relations fully supported this year's proposed legislation entitled the Protect Our Women Act. The priority within this legislation was to clarify state law by expressly including pregnancy as a protected class in the instance of discrimination. This legislation would ensure women who are pregnant or have children are given protection and remedies should they face discrimination. In the final days of the 2013 session, requests were made to have the legislation withdrawn from a final committee of reference and instead heard on chamber floors. These requests were denied.

The Florida Commission on Human Relations feels strongly on the subject of this proposed amendment to Florida Statute 760, and intends to file similar legislation for the next session. It is essential that all persons vulnerable or at risk of being discriminated against as a result of being members of a specific class are guaranteed protection not only on a federal level, but by Florida as well.

Gilbert Singer, chair, Florida Commission on Human Relations, Tampa

Key to tourism seen in logo | May 31

Skull and crossbones?

Maybe it's just me, but glancing through the paper, I read the article because I was wondering what the skull and crossbones was about.

I don't know anything about marketing, but I doubt I am the only one who is going to look at this quickly and come up with the same thought.

S. Slechta, Spring Hill

Undermining U.S. policy | May 31, letter

Blowback from aid

The letter writer faults Sen. John McCain for sticking his nose into the Syrian mess. I agree. However, fortunately there are just a small number of Republicans who are misguided on the Syrian rebel issue.

The administration was all for throwing out the Syrian president and have provided training and money to the rebels. It would appear that the administration has come to its senses regarding these "democratic rebels."

I wish they had come to their senses before supporting the "rebels" in Egypt and Libya. I cannot understand the policy where we are for throwing out a dictator and having him replaced with a bunch of radicals who are eager to do their own dictating. This policy will come back to haunt us.

Dan Mas, Tampa

New Yorker reigns as top speller | May 31

Spread the word on spelling

I enjoyed reading the article about the spelling bee and the amazing words that these students are required to learn in order to win. I wonder if these words will ever come up in a conversation. I appreciated the writer calling the words "doozies."

It is striking that many Indian-American students do so well in the spelling bee. It would be nice if they became teachers and educated their students on how to be successful in spelling.

Brenda Bell, New Port Richey

Bay ferry an idea worth floating May 27, editorial

Back to the future

This editorial caused me to smile. I remember a 1920 photograph of my mother with friends riding the ferry from St. Petersburg to Tampa to shop.

Verna Daniel, Clearwater


Monday’s letters: Don’t forget pain sufferers

Fighting opioids on many fronts Nov. 22, editorialDon’t forget pain sufferersSufferers of debilitating, chronic pain seem to be largely forgotten in the public and corporate hysteria about opioid abuse. There are millions of people whose chronic pain...
Published: 11/22/17
Updated: 11/24/17

Sunday’s letters: Tax bill will benefit all businesses

Nelson warns of tax bill’s effects | Nov. 21Proposal is win for all concernedHas Sen. Bill Nelson even read the new proposed tax bill?If he knew anything about it he should be embarrassed by his rhetoric as stated in the Times article. The corpor...
Published: 11/22/17
Updated: 11/24/17

Saturday’s letters: Value and respect our teachers

Crowd backs raises | Nov. 15Respect and value our teachersTeachers are the "engine" that drives the "train" of our Hillsborough County school district. Teachers and support personnel affect every aspect of a child’s life. They are the students’ "...
Published: 11/22/17
Updated: 11/24/17

Friday’s letters: Find private investors for a new stadium

Opening offer from Rays on stadium sounds too low | Nov. 17, editorialFind private investors for stadiumThe Rays "offered" to pay 18.75 percent of the costs? How outrageously presumptuous to say that they offered! Put another way, they demanded t...
Published: 11/21/17
Updated: 11/22/17

Thursday’s letters: Tax plan won’t help wages

Tax billThis won’t help stagnant wagesThe unfair tax proposal that cuts taxes for the rich and most powerful and cuts the ability of working people to claim any comparable deductions is no more than another greedy power grab by the rich and powerful....
Published: 11/20/17
Updated: 11/22/17

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 ...
Published: 11/20/17
Updated: 11/21/17

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