Friday, April 20, 2018
Letters To The Editor

Pinellas Letters: Edgewater deserves beauty, not an Eyesore

We need beauty, not an Eyesore

Last week in Dunedin the so-called Edgewater Eyesore sold to a German investor after sitting at the head of scenic Edgewater Drive for four years, angering neighbors and perplexing visitors .

But the new owner has a problem. The building permit expired in 2011, and in a rich irony, the standards for waterfront development have since changed in Dunedin, precisely because of this building. City leaders were so horrified at the excesses of the project, they were inspired to rewrite the rules.

Under the new guidelines, elected officials can either grant a new building permit or deny it. If denied, the proud new owner will be forced to demolish the skeleton and build something smaller. Why the foreign investor didn't do his homework is a mystery, but the city planning director stated (city) commissioners have strong legal grounds to deny the permit.

That may sound unfair to some, but the greater public good issue is this: Edgewater Drive is a true jewel, a spectacular 1.3-mile waterfront drive, one of only five such scenic drives in the entire county. As it lies within Dunedin's city limits, we must take exceptional care of it, which won't happen if a new permit for this monstrosity is issued.

It is truly sad the city let this rare piece of ground slip away, but sadder still if this bizarre structure is allowed to become a permanent fixture at the head of this exceptional scenic corridor.

Instead, the city and the neighborhood, together with the new owner, can produce a more appropriate project, still profitable but more responsive to this special stewardship that has been entrusted in us, rather than settling for some unfortunate, expedient outcome.

Dunedin's leaders, there is a door there, and if you will open it, it may lead to a more creative solution that will satisfy everyone.

Lucy Myers, Walter Allen and Maryellen Tilly, Dunedin

Re: This is a bomb Floridian story, April 8

Don't stereotype the Orthodox

As an Orthodox Christian, I was drawn to comment about the in-depth article published in your newspaper detailing the problem with "traditional bombs" in Tarpon Springs.

Stating it might be "another Greek-bomb Easter" was very offensive to those of us — and that would be the majority — who do not celebrate the holy commemoration of Christ's resurrection with explosives. I have never heard of the rite of passage for teenage boys to "toss bombs and run from cops."

The article is unfortunately strewn with inaccurate statements. I would challenge your reporter to prove that Easter bombs are as much a part of Greek culture as bouzouki music in any other place other than Tarpon Springs. I would also venture to say that those who create such "bombs" in Tarpon are not the devout Orthodox Christians who respect the true meaning of the observance.

Father Michael, the priest of the St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Cathedral, was referred to as a "pastor." Pastor is not a title in the Orthodox Church. Greek Orthodox Christians were referred to as "Catholics" in the article as well. This, too, is inaccurate.

I felt compelled to write, just as I did a few years ago when you printed a picture of a man getting ready to slaughter a lamb for the traditional Paschal feast and inferred that all Greeks raise their Easter lambs in their back yards and kill them for their dinner. I, as well as 99 percent of my fellow Greek Americans, buy my meat from the grocery store.

This is the skewed message that allows stereotypes to continue and it is not right.

Helen Caros, Oldsmar

Re: 'Action steps' for homeless | story, April 8

Keep homeless consulting local

Why go outside the area and hire a consultant?

The Homeless Emergency Project (in Clearwater) does a wonderful job and has a proven record.

Margaret Carter, Clearwater

Volunteers, thank you for clean park

Let's give a "shout out" of appreciation to the volunteers that have offered their service to keep Pinellas County's Philippe Park clean and enjoyable for the many residents in the Safety Harbor area. These good people led by Peggy Johannesen are working hard to fill in for the park rangers that have been laid off due to lack of funds.

Peggy and many others, like myself, have for many years enjoyed spending leisure time in our beautiful county park by Old Tampa Bay. It was sad to see the park grounds begin to deteriorate after the layoffs began, and Peg decided to do something about it.

Despite having her own business downtown, she began to volunteer to help out and gradually was approached by others interested in offering their services as well.

We offer our thanks and appreciation to these fine folks who donate their time and labor to keep our park open and safe and enjoyable for us all!

Charlie Mortensen, Safety Harbor


Friday’s letters: We owe it to our children to teach them history

If we don’t understand past, future looks grim | April 19, Daniel Ruth columnThe history we owe our childrenIt’s not often I agree with Daniel Ruth, but this article was spot-on. I’m not sure when the schools started ignoring Germany’s World War ...
Updated: 11 hours ago

Thursday’s letters: Gun research can save lives

Gun ownershipCommon ground: Find the factsThere are many areas in the current debate about guns and gun ownership where both sides must agree to disagree. But there is one area where common ground ought to exist. That concerns the need for continuing...
Published: 04/18/18

Wednesday’s letters:

Poverty and plenty in bay area | April 7, editorialStruggling poor are not a priorityI commend your newspaper for continuing to produce real and relevant news, particularly the recent editorial pointing out that a prospering Tampa Bay should not ...
Published: 04/16/18
Updated: 04/17/18

Hernando Letters to the Editor for April 20

Bar Association celebrates Law WeekPresident Dwight D. Eisenhower proclaimed May 1, 1958, as the first Law Day to mark the nation’s commitment to the rule of law. Every year on this day, we reflect on the significance of the rule of law and rededicat...
Published: 04/16/18
Updated: 04/17/18

Tuesday’s letters: Stop cooperating with ICE

Sheriff’s ICE policy blasted | April 10Pinellas should end partnership with ICEPinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri recently participated in a community conversation on his controversial agreement with ICE to voluntarily detain immigrants in the...
Published: 04/16/18

Sunday’s letters: The future of oyster production

Shell game | April 15Future of oyster productionThanks to Laura Reiley for an excellent synopsis of the current state of oyster production in Florida. The collapse of the Apalachicola oyster fishery is merely the latest example of the demise of a...
Published: 04/14/18

Monday’s letters: Public education is foundation of the nation

Voters beware of ballot deceptionApril 13, commentarySchools’ role underminedIt was with great pain that I read (not for the first time) that we must be aware of "ballot deception." Public schools were founded to make sure that future generations of ...
Published: 04/13/18

Saturday’s letters: Health Department should butt out

Judge: Grow pot, Mr. Redner | April 12Health officials should butt outThe Times reports that the Florida Department of Health filed an appeal to the decision allowing a man who is a Stage 4 lung cancer survivor to grow pot in his backyard for his ...
Published: 04/11/18
Updated: 04/13/18

Friday’s letters: Open and shut: Enforce the law

Sheriff’s ICE aid policy blasted | April 10Open and shut: Enforce the lawPeople and institutions that insist on the using the euphemism "undocumented immigrant" do nothing but affirm their lack of objectivity by using such a phrase to support an ...
Published: 04/11/18
Updated: 04/12/18

Thursday’s letters: Focus on offender, not weapon

Use data to curb gun deaths | April 8, commentaryFocus on offenders, not weaponsThis article tiptoes around the issue: human violence. The authors point out that automobile manufactures were pressured by regulation and law to make automobile coll...
Published: 04/11/18