Friday, May 25, 2018
Letters To The Editor

Sunday's letters: Don't surrender U.S. sovereignty

Republican hubris, then as now | Dec. 17, commentary

Don't surrender U.S. sovereignty

David Lee McMullen states that Senate Republicans voted against the U.N. Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities using the "same argument (used) to block the Treaty of Versailles after World War I … thus keeping the United States out of the League of Nations." Opponents in both cases said ratification would "infringe on American sovereignty, undercutting the nation's freedom and independence." They were correct. Entanglement with the United Nations is usually ill-advised.

For example, this month in Dubai, the International Telecommunications Union, a U.N. agency, passed a supposedly nonbinding draft treaty that gives governments powers to close off access to the Internet in their countries. The majority included such information-friendly nations as China, Russia, Iran and much of Africa.

The Internet works because it is not operated by governments. Its open architecture makes information difficult to restrict. The ITU should be abolished. Both houses of Congress voted against the treaty. We do not need U.N. interference with our care of persons with disabilities or the Internet.

Jim Blanco, Tampa

A slap on the wrist for a wayward bank Dec. 17, editorial

Money manipulators

You quite correctly criticized the slap on the wrist received by HSBC amid allegations of money laundering. You also criticized the "too big to prosecute" concept.

Yet where was your criticism in August when Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner announced that there would be no charges brought against Goldman Sachs (which formerly employed Geithner as well as several other high-ranking administration officials)?

Yes, "too big to fail" justified the enormous amounts of our money put into the financial institutions. But "too big to prosecute" did not start with HSBC.

It seems to me that the all-too-cozy relationship between our government and the money manipulators of the world is a subject richly deserving of journalistic investigation.

Ray Kelly, Spring Hill

Teachers should be armed | Dec. 19, letter

Not the answer

If the shootings in Newtown weren't so horrific, I would have to laugh at the letter writer's suggestion that teachers should be armed.

I am a teacher, and I assure you that I would not be comfortable carrying a firearm, nor would my students want to see me packing. Remember the gunman at the Empire State Building? Police fired numerous rounds at him, only to hit a number of bystanders; thankfully, none were seriously wounded.

Does anyone really think teachers would be better shots than trained officers? Will target practice be a part of teacher planning every year? There is no easy solution to the horror we witnessed, but giving guns to teachers is surely not going to solve anything.

Ronald Medvin, Tampa

Life lessons for children

Does the letter writer not realize that teachers, in addition to curriculum, are also responsible for educating children about social dynamics, personal restraint and nonviolent communication?

If I, as a teacher, am remembered for nothing else by my elementary students, I hope they remember the following life lessons I consider most important to their education:

• " Two wrongs don't make a right."

• "Treat others the way you'd like to be treated."

• "It's okay to be angry, but let someone help you work through your anger safely."

If I were to walk into my classroom with a gun, those lessons would be lost forever. I would practically be endorsing the motto, "It's every man for himself."

That is most certainly not the lesson the teachers who lost their lives in the Newtown tragedy will be remembered by. Violence is not a lesson, or an answer.

More guns are not the solution for unbelievable violence with guns.

Kristin Schmitt, Dunedin

Educators: We don't want to be armed Dec. 20

Guns and schools

This headline makes it sound as if you took a scientific poll of thousands of teachers and administrators. You didn't. You took a few comments and extrapolated them to everyone.

Secondly, the phrase "guns in class" is both misleading and inflammatory. What has been discussed is the availability of a firearm on school campus, locked up, but within access of properly trained school personnel.

Think about this: In another section of the paper was a small article entitled "Orange County to post deputies in 60 schools." It discussed how the county was posting armed deputies at 60 elementary schools. What a crazy idea. Guns at an elementary school. To keep kids safe. Apparently, some educators and administrators are okay with the idea, aren't they?

Ron Keller, New Port Richey

Rate of rear-end crashes up 44% | Dec. 20

A question of injuries

Of course there were more rear-end collisions after the cameras were installed. Everyone knew that would happen. The important questions are: how many accidents in the intersection, how many fatalities, and the extent of injuries.

There are more rear-end collisions because it has been a culture in this area to expect the car in front of you to accelerate, not stop, when the light turns yellow. That will eventually change.

Were it up to me, I would install many more cameras at critical intersections and hundreds of fake cameras at the others. The signs would read, "Cameras MAY be in use."

Leonard C. Silva, St. Petersburg

Tradeoff on crashes

If red-light cameras cause a spike in rear-end crashes but reduce T-bone crashes in intersections, and the result is fewer serious injuries, I'd say that's a major benefit.

Thomas Miller, Clearwater

Crist supports gun controls | Dec. 20

Promotional material

It's pretty obvious that your paper wants Charlie Crist back in the governor's office. You seem to find a way to glamorize him every day.

Crist changes his opinion depending on which way the political winds are blowing. As far as I can see, Gov. Rick Scott seems to be doing a decent job.

Howard Dunn, Wesley Chapel


Friday's letters: Thanks to jurors for fulfilling civic duty

May is Juror Appreciation Month Thanks, jurors, for your service Trial by a jury of one’s peers is among the bedrock guarantees that make our representative democracy exceptional. Without it, the courtroom fates of defendants and civil litiga...
Updated: 1 hour ago

Thursday’s letters: Heated chemotherapy won’t treat most ovarian cancers

Heated chemotherapy has promising results | May 16Cancer treatment not a cure-all While we were pleased to see the story about ovarian cancer treatment, we are concerned that the article could mislead many patients. The treatment described has be...
Published: 05/22/18
Updated: 05/24/18

Wednesday’s letters: A princess gives us a lesson to live by

Royal treatment | May 21Princess offers advice for us allThe radiant and joyful Princess Anna Noela Lokolo of the Democratic Republic of Congo, recent Eckerd College graduate, has given us a huge gift in her parting words. "If people have a negat...
Published: 05/21/18
Updated: 05/23/18

Hernando Letters to the Editor for May 25

Re: Central High School bomb threat suspect to be tried as adult | May 4Angry mob rhetoric not helpfulWe have observed the public discourse surrounding the case of Mizella Robinson with increasing unease. A sampling of the more common sentiment...
Published: 05/21/18
Updated: 05/22/18

Pasco Letters to the Editor for May 25

Re: Proposed TECO Solar Plant Opposed to the TECO solar plantAs a 21-year resident and property owner, I am writing in opposition to the proposed Tampa Electric Company solar plant in rural northeast Pasco County.The solar plant will be .2 miles from...
Published: 05/21/18
Updated: 05/22/18

Tuesday’s letters: If you don’t like the Electoral College, then amend the Constitution

The popular vote | May 20, letterIf you don’t like it, amend ConstitutionA recent letter supports the idea that a state should be able to change its Electoral College vote to match that of the national popular vote winner as opposed to the result...
Published: 05/21/18
Updated: 05/22/18

Monday’s letters: Focusing on the mental state of shooters misses the point

Texas high school shooting | May 18Criminals, angry people kill peopleSchool shootings are a distinctly American phenomenon. But shootings by people with serious mental illness represent less than 1 percent of all yearly gun-related homicides in ...
Published: 05/19/18
Updated: 05/21/18

Friday’s letters: Putnam and Publix, two P’s lose my nod

Publix pours cash to Putnam | May 17A pleasure to shop elsewhereMy family and I moved to Tampa in 1974, and have made Publix our favorite grocery store ever since. Forty-four years! That is why it makes me a little sad to have to say goodbye.Firs...
Published: 05/18/18

Saturday’s letters: For Florida to move forward, focus on a healthy and sustainable environment

Tampa’s future is bright | May 12Protect Florida, boost economyThis past year, Florida set another record-breaking year for tourism, welcoming more than 116 million visitors. While Florida boasts a unique quality of life and more than 1,300 miles...
Published: 05/16/18
Updated: 05/18/18

Sunday’s letters: What conservatives stand for

How can conservatism survive after Trump | May 13, Nickens columnhed#6324 I think it obvious that traditional conservatism was squeezed out of the 2016 campaign narrative and has become a niche thesis owned by a small group of intellectuals. A gr...
Published: 05/16/18
Updated: 05/18/18