Iran's nuclear program
Use Cold War strategy with Iran
Leadership in the U.S. House and Senate, as well as top Republican presidential candidates, have all expressed the option of employing military force against Iran in order to prevent the Iranian nuclear program from enriching uranium or plutonium to weapons grade. Concerns are justified that fissionable nuclear materials could be transferred from the Iranians to Hezbollah and Hamas terrorists, who could then explode dirty bombs in Israel.
Should the United States or Israel attack the Iranian nuclear sites, the Iranians would most likely retaliate with terrorist acts within the United States via sleeper cells that have come across porous U.S. borders. Further, the price of a barrel of oil will skyrocket, further tanking the U.S. economy.
So how do we prevent the Iranians from developing nuclear weapons and using them against the Israelis? I believe the answer is the same one successfully used during the Cold War with the Soviet Union — mutually assured destruction. I believe that diplomatic channels should be set up between the United States and Iran making it quite clear that, should there be any terrorist attack against Israel using Iranian-made nuclear materials, the United States will retaliate against Iran with nuclear weapons.
John I. Campo, Tampa
Hazardous, yes; Give it up? Nope | Dec. 15
All ideology and no intellect
What Sen. Jack Latvala fails to understand is that all freedoms include a corresponding responsibility.
He clearly has never had to involve himself in the carnage of a fatal accident. I have. He has never had to knock on a door at 4 a.m. and witness the horror spread over a mother's face when informed her son or daughter will never come home. I have.
To paraphrase the Texas homily of "all hat and no cattle," Latvala and others of his ilk are all ideology and no intellect.
How high the body count must go before he gets it is anyone's guess.
Harold Mathews, Riverview
Lesson of seat belts, air bags
Conservatives rant that banning wireless devices is more encroachment on civil liberties. What about seat belts and air bags? Fifty years ago seat belts where not a requirement. It has taken decades for seat belts and air bags to become federally mandated. Hopefully it will not take decades to get a ban enacted on the use of wireless devices in all modes of transportation — motor vehicles, boats, trains and planes — so that those of us sharing the roads, waterways, rails and airspace are safe.
Richard Formica, Tampa
Texting while driving is definitely a problem. Talking is another story. However, this article brings to light that there are more serious distractions for drivers other than talking on a cellphone while driving.
Here are a few examples that are just as bad as texting: the driver who has a dog in his lap hanging out the window while trying to negotiate a left turn; the driver holding a cup of coffee and perhaps eating breakfast while going across the Howard Frankland Bridge (I assume this person is steering with his knees); entering information into a GPS; bending down to pick up something dropped on the floor or looking in the glove compartment; putting on makeup using the sun visor mirror. Or how about the lost tourist with a map spread across the steering wheel?
These are just a few examples that can also cause serious accidents. If they are going to make rules to avoid driver distraction, they certainly should include these as well.
Peter B. Ferrara Sr., Belleair Bluffs
Senator sets poor example
Sen. Jack Latvala sets a pitiful example for drivers by his incautious words and actions while driving and talking on his mobile phone. Even more horrifying is that he is the chair of the Senate Transportation Committee.
There is no phone call or text message worth dying for or causing someone else to die. Last year, nearly 3,100 people died as the result of distracted driving while in possession of a mobile phone.
What the National Transportation Safety Board is doing is notifying state governments that it would like the driver/cellphone ban to be implemented by and at the state level.
Paul R. Koenig, Clearwater
Private faith, political scrutiny | Dec. 15
Faith should be private
It pains me that many are focused on President Barack Obama's faith. Faith is a personal matter; nobody has any business delving into a person's faith or lack of faith.
Obama cannot go into a house of worship as you or I can — security has to be arranged in advance. His concern and appreciation for others whose services might be disrupted is admirable.
We are living in a time of high unemployment, long lines of hungry individuals, and people losing their homes, yet some are concerned about an individual's faith. Does it really matter if Obama is a Christian, Jew, Muslim or Buddhist?
Faith is extremely personal and private. It is reassuring to me to see President Obama not willing to openly discuss his faith; this makes it that much more personal to me.
Mark L. Grantham, Gulfport
Expert: Outpatient centers are safe | Dec. 15
Safety is paramount
I am a certified registered nurse anesthetist, or CNRA, working in St. Petersburg. I have no argument with the body of this article, however in the box labeled "More Questions" the last line seems to imply that CRNAs are not as safe as anesthesiologists.
CRNAs are the most numerous anesthetists and provide, by far, the majority of all anesthesia in the country. There have been numerous studies done in past few years that show no difference in patient outcome based on the provider. The sentence in that box could produce needless anxiety among patients when they learn their provider is a CRNA.
Terry Roy, St. Petersburg