Monday, March 19, 2018
Letters To The Editor

Saturday's letters: Our obligation to future generations on the environment

Warning on global warming | Sept. 28

Our obligation to the future

Last week, the world's leading climate scientists concluded that global warming is "almost certainly" a result of human activity — chiefly the consumption of fossil fuels. The new report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change makes it crystal clear: If we do not change course, we will commit our children to a future of extreme heat waves, disrupted agriculture, bigger storms, higher seas and ocean acidification.

Action will be required at all levels of government. For starters, the Environmental Protection Agency's recent announcement of new standards to limit carbon pollution from new power plants is a step in the right direction.

The EPA should move forward with regulating carbon pollution from existing power plants. State leaders should support these actions. As a born-and-raised Floridian who has grown up on our coasts, I believe we have an obligation to protect our children and future generations from the consequences of global warming.

Juliana Buonanno, Tampa

Government shutdown

Dedicated public servants

I am a member of the National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association. I would not dispute that government spending is out of hand, that there is waste and fraud, that the government is bloated and too big, and that federal employees make mistakes.

But after hearing all the "broad brush" federal government bashing in recent years, I find it interesting that now that some government services have been curtailed because of the shutdown, suddenly people are realizing the good, important and essential work being done by the overwhelming majority of honest, hardworking and dedicated federal employees.

Edward Fleck, Tampa

Out of order

I contacted Sen. Marco Rubio's office via email to express my dismay at the government shutdown. I got this response: "Thank you for taking the time to contact me. Please be advised that due to the government shutdown, my office is currently closed."

I can only wonder what the senator is doing during this manufactured crisis. I know he is getting paid, but apparently the shutdown has crippled the ability of his office to function. I only wish there was some mechanism for a nationwide recall of the entire Congress so that we could start with a fresh set of faces.

Kenneth Jezek, Tierra Verde

Responsibility abdicated

During the Nixon administration when the politicians were absorbed and deadlocked by the impeachment crisis, the professional federal civil service went to work every day to maintain the peace, deliver the mail, provide health benefits to veterans, inspect the food, provide safety for our travelers, maintain the country's credit standing, etc. The country went on despite the dysfunctional politics.

Today, the politicians bring down everyone with them by stopping the everyday government activities relied upon by all Americans for their safety and well being. Our representatives sent to Washington to govern abdicate their responsibilities to us to our great loss and dismay.

Nicholas E. Karatinos, Tampa

Texting while driving ban starts today | Oct. 2

Keep safe: Don't text, drive

On Tuesday, texting and driving became a violation of Florida law. As the nation's largest wireless carrier, Verizon Wireless has long supported legislation, programs and commonsense practices for safe driving and the responsible use of wireless phones.

This new law will help deter some danger, and we at Verizon congratulate the Florida Legislature and the state's outstanding law enforcement agencies for taking this significant step toward greater public safety.

But the most important Floridians in making our roads truly safe are drivers themselves. With this new law as reinforcement, our plea remains resolute to readers here and residents all across the state: Please don't text and drive.

Chuck Hamby, Florida public relations manager, Verizon Wireless, Tampa

Weatherford: Coaches can lead prayers Oct. 1

Rites and rights

I have never been able to understand why so many people find it necessary to have teachers and coaches in public schools leading their students aloud in prayers. Of course these are almost always Christian prayers. Would they feel the same if Jewish or Islamic prayers were continually recited? I doubt it.

For those parents who want their children to have religious inspiration, that is commendable and for that they are free to turn to their own churches.

If a coach wants to inspire his students before a game, what is wrong with giving them a pep talk and then saying, "Okay, we will now have a moment of silence to allow each of you to pray (or not pray) as you wish"?

And if House Speaker Will Weatherford is concerned about a coach's inability to express his own religion, he can take solace in the fact that the coach is perfectly free to do so outside of the school setting.

Michael Ross, Pinellas Park

Don't look other way as community trashed Sept. 28, letter

For a cleaner community

I have to agree with the letter writer that we are a nation of slobs. Seeing people throw stuff out of their cars as they drive down the road has always been a pet peeve of mine.

My sister and her husband spent two weeks in Japan in June and upon their return were showing us pictures and telling us how clean everything was. I'm sure Japan's population per square mile is much greater than most places in the States. She said you never find trash on the sidewalks or streets, and people take pride in their yards (however small), even in the poorer areas of the cities.

Maybe our schools need to teach our young people how nice our country would look if the citizens worked together to keep it clean.

Jo Ann Sanderson, Temple Terrace


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...
Updated: 1 hour ago

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

Friday’s letters: Put young people to work rebuilding infrastructure

Smart way to pay for infrastructure | March 13, commentaryMake rebuilding a youth project Raising gas taxes to pay for infrastructure may not be the best way to go. I suggest we re-invent the old WPA (Works Progress Administration) and draft high...
Published: 03/13/18
Updated: 03/15/18

Thursday’s letters: An alternative for giving: Breadcoin

Panhandling paradox | March 11Innovation in giving: BreadcoinPanhandling is destructive to the donor, panhandler and our community — a guilt trip that erodes personal dignity, respect and self-worth, making the recipient more beholden and entitle...
Published: 03/13/18
Updated: 03/14/18
Wednesday’s letters: Daylight bill is bad for business

Wednesday’s letters: Daylight bill is bad for business

Daylight saving timeDaylight bill is bad for businessI encourage Gov. Rick Scott to veto the daylight saving time extension bill. It makes no sense. It puts Florida out of sync with the rest of the country. Commerce will be affected. The entire Easte...
Published: 03/13/18

Pasco Letter to the Editor for March 16

Re: Pasco to test roadside recycling | March 9 column Pasco County (and its residents) have financial incentives to recycle, but the participation rate is low. Clearly, Pasco County either needs to make recycling mandatory — by making residents r...
Published: 03/13/18
Tuesday’s letters: Billionaire’s personal agenda

Tuesday’s letters: Billionaire’s personal agenda

Billionaire targeting young voters | March 7Using youths in personal agendaIs anyone surprised that Tom Steyer is using his extreme wealth to support his personal agenda and the liberal agenda of the Democratic Party? His real motive, hidden in h...
Published: 03/12/18
Updated: 03/13/18

Pasco Letters to the Editor for March 16

Re: Pasco to test roadside recycling | March 9 columnOur community, Briar Patch, in New Port Richey has really gotten on board with the recycling program. Many homeowners diligently separate garbage from recycling material and place it curbside f...
Published: 03/12/18