Let Port Richey stand on its own | Jan. 13 letter
May Port Richey fade into the past
Sure, everyone living on wages earned from the city's payroll, becomes faint at the real possibility that their fiefdom goes away.
On moving to Florida in 1987, I failed to heed a warning from someone who lived just outside the city of Port Richey limits for five years. He said to not buy a house inside the city and if I did so, I'd regret it.
I bought and regret soon became remorse. My mistake was not researching the history of the city.
One can now look through the gallery of past rogues: police officers, police chiefs, city managers, code enforcement officials, sewer installer, etc., and still be revolted. I wised up and moved from the city 10 years ago.
Now, could someone ask the city what is the status of the investigation of our car accident of Sept. 29, 2007, while stopped at the red light at Leo Kidd Avenue and Ridge Road in the city?
We were rear-ended there and the other driver turned and sped off, but we provided city cops with description of the car and driver, including license plate number. After two to three weeks the professionals at City Hall had done nothing, so at our lawyer's suggestion, we went to the offender's house and saw the car that hit us, with fresh paint and new front end. Again, we gave this information to the city professionals.
Fifteen months later, even though we got all the information to the Port Richey Police on the driver who left the scene, except his shoe size, nothing. Our lawyer said that nothing could be done without documented police actions. The ensuing MRIs, medical treatments, etc., were on our dime.
This teeny enclave of suppuration, folly and mismanagement, has a legacy of corruption and is hanging by a self-interested thread. It deserves extinction. The sooner it fades away with a whimper, the better for Pasco and Florida.
Gary Miano, Port Richey
Gun carry law is frightfully lax
When deputies stopped Jeffrey Bish after a road rage incident because someone claimed he was waving a handgun at motorist out his car window, they found electronics capable of jamming police radios, drugs and a handgun. And guess what? Mr. Bish had an expired Florida concealed handgun license.
Since Florida leads the nation in road rage incidents, guns in cars and concealed handgun permits make these kinds of incidents so much more interesting. My advice is don't aggravate other drivers because in the NRA's shoot-first state, you might end up being confronted by someone like Mr. Bish.
Read about Max Wesley Horn? At a festival in Pasco, he got into an argument with an unarmed man and is accused of gunning him down. According to the newspaper, he had a criminal record and a concealed handgun permit.
Mr. Horn's defense will be the NRA self-defense law. I call it the right-to-commit murder law, which allows anyone with a gun to shoot unarmed people they consider frightening. This trial is going to be very instructive about this horrible law, which claimed the lives of over a dozen unarmed people. This law has nothing to do with self defense, it's all about license.
How many of the 850,000 concealed handgun permit holders in Florida are like Mr. Bish and Mr. Horn? Obviously the majority are stable and law-abiding, but evidence is mounting that far too many are not.
How do so many unstable and dangerous personalities obtain this license? The current vetting system approves a permit for anyone who doesn't have a felony conviction. We all know there are lots of dangerous and unstable people who have never been convicted of a felony and are eligible for this permit.
How can we force people to meet a higher standard of personal and legal behavior before they are eligible for this permit? Well, we have been trying since 1985 to create this higher standard, but every piece of legislation to improve this standard has been defeated by the Florida National Rifle Association, which claims the current standard reduces crime. Sure, and I also believe in the tooth fairy.
Arthur C. Hayhoe, director, Florida Coalition to Stop Gun Violence, Inc, Wesley Chapel