Saturday, March 24, 2018
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: Driverless cars on perilous roads

Driverless cautions | March 23, commentaryDriverless carson perilous roadsHaving watched the video of the tragedy in Tempe, Ariz., I believe the police are correct. This accident could not have been avoided as the pedestrian stepped out of the sh...
Updated: 11 hours ago

Friday’s letters: Think through assault weapons ban

Gun controlThink through assault rifle banI recently emailed a Florida state representative who had pledged, among other things, to ban assault rifles in the state. I asked him if he would ban the sale and transfer of these guns or ultimately make th...
Published: 03/22/18

Saturday’s letters: Tax guns to pay for security

Million-dollar questions | March 21Tax firearms to pay for securitySo public officials are wondering where they’ll get the money for stationing an armed guard in every school. How about heavily taxing every gun? It’s the proliferation of the weap...
Published: 03/21/18
Updated: 03/23/18

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