Tuesday, June 19, 2018
Letters To The Editor

Sunday's letters: Time to clean up our act at home

Opening our eyes to shame | June 30, Bill Maxwell column

Time to clean up our act at home

Out of sight, out of mind. Thank you, Bill Maxwell, for reminding me about our history of brutalizing American Indians. I, too, had forgotten our history of shame — or at least had not thought about it in a long time.

I am ashamed that our country continues to engage in doomed-to-fail attempts at nation-building in other parts of the world while ignoring the blight, plight and pain of those we attempted to annihilate. Our nation-building should start here, now. It is a moral obligation.

I don't want to hear that we can't afford it. That is laughable after the billions thrown away in Iraq and Afghanistan. We can afford to send weapons to those we want to support. How about not exporting our "democracy" overseas but creating a model here in the Indian nation for other countries to see and want to emulate?

It is time to clean up our act at home and make appropriate amends in hope of at least some atonement for past sins. Thank you again, our prized Bill Maxwell.

Marilyn Weaver, Tarpon Springs


Elections, consequences

The outcome of the "smaller government is better" crowd is being felt by many and has finally reached MacDill Air Force Base. The rolling furloughs are the result of sequestration and are only the beginning of the slimming down of the federal government.

Voters obviously did not see this coming and are unhappy. Remember you have a voice in government, and it includes your vote.

Robert W. Bucklin, Zephyrhills

Corporate tax trickery | June 17, editorial

Ireland's tax policies

In this recent editorial, reference was made to "small tax-haven countries, including Ireland."

As you will be aware, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development identifies four key indicators of a tax haven: the first is having no taxes or only nominal taxes; the second is a lack of transparency; the third is an unwillingness to exchange information with tax administrations of OECD member countries; and the fourth is absence of a substantial activity requirement. As has been set out by the Irish government on several occasions, none of these criteria applies to Ireland.

Ireland is committed to working closely with the United States through the operation of our Double Taxation Agreement and recently became one of the first countries in the world to sign an agreement with the United States to improve international tax compliance and to implement FATCA, the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act.

In addition, Ireland is fully supportive of international efforts to address aggressive tax planning and we are an active participant, together with the United States, in the OECD project addressing base erosion and profit shifting. We have also been committed to playing a leading role within the European Union and, as outgoing EU president, to securing progress on a number of key issues in the area of tax evasion and tax fraud.

U.S. and other international firms that operate in Ireland have set down significant roots in the Irish economy and engage in substantive activities that employ significant numbers of Irish people. Trade and investment between Ireland and the United States are important drivers of jobs and opportunity for all our peoples.

Ralph Victory, Irish Embassy, Washington, D.C.

Gay nominee causes a stir | July 3

Church's poor example

The Bible quotes Jesus as saying in Matthew 7:12, "So in everything, do to others as you would have them do to you. For this sums up the law and the prophets." Yet Monsignor Pablo Cedano is quoted as saying: "He is going to suffer" due to cultural differences "and he'll have to leave."

How sad and disappointing that a perceived leader of the church is not only throwing his weight around on political issues but also predicting such an outcome. It would seem the monsignor's title and influence would be better suited to promoting the message of the man he professes to be God.

John Wright, Apollo Beach

Photo in poor taste and Keep it light June 25, letters

Open eyes to abuses

Yes, these photos are disgusting, but you cannot just sweep these atrocities under the rug — out of sight, out of mind. Get your heads out of the sand. The only way to stop these obscene acts is to keep showing pictures like this. It just may cause enough of an uproar against these countries in the form of protests and boycott of their products.

Take off your rose-colored glasses.

Mike Devine, St. Petersburg

Church abuse scandal

Cardinal should resign

I was a Catholic priest for 40 years with the Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers. Last year I was expelled from the priesthood because I refused to stop my public support for the ordination of women in the Catholic Church.

How upsetting to learn that Cardinal Timothy Dolan of the Archdiocese of New York, while archbishop of Milwaukee, devised a plan to pay Catholic priests who had sexually abused children to leave the priesthood.

Documents released by the Milwaukee archdiocese also reveal that Dolan transferred $57 million into a trust fund for "improved protection" as the archdiocese prepared for bankruptcy. Attorneys for the sexual abuse victims believe, as I do, that this was designed to keep money from going to the victims.

Cardinal Dolan should do what Pope Benedict did. He should resign immediately.

Roy Bourgeois, Columbus, Ga.

She failed at 'code switching' June 30, Eric Deggans column

Communication gap

Rachel Jeantel, the 19-year-old friend of Trayvon Martin, was put on the world stage in the murder trial of George Zimmerman. This venue would be frightening to anyone. Eric Deggans points out that Jeantel proved bad at "code switching," or communicating with people outside her friends, family and culture.

The truth is, Jeantel did not fail at "code switching." The legal system failed by not using all means available to secure her valuable testimony. All effort should have been given to assist her in her limited ability to communicate in the vernacular in which she is accustomed.

Vince Cocks, St. Petersburg


Tuesday’s letters: Keep programs that fight AIDS

For author Biden, it’s a father’s gift | June 6Keep programs that fight AIDSAfter former Vice President Joe Biden’s recent visit to St. Petersburg, I noticed an article that he co-wrote with former Sen. Bill Frist. It reminded everyone about the ...
Updated: 3 hours ago

Is anyone watching the money?Hernando County’s budget shortfall is ever changing going from $6 million to $11.5 million to $14 million to what is assumed a final number of $12.6 million. Who knows the budget shortfall could change again.Who’s watchi...
Published: 06/14/18
Updated: 06/18/18

Re: County OKs solar zones | June 8Plea ignored at solar plant hearingThe Pasco County Commission on June 5 voted to identify a utility-sized solar electric plant as a "special exception" use on agricultural-zoned land in Pasco County. What thi...
Published: 06/14/18
Updated: 06/18/18

Monday’s letters: Skip those plastic bags and save the environment

To save our seas, overcome congressional apathy | Column, June 16Do your part and skip plastic bagsEvery day we read about the shame of our landfills and oceans filling up with plastic bags, yet most people don’t care. My wife and I always carry ...
Published: 06/14/18
Updated: 06/18/18

White House defends splitting up families as ‘biblical’ | June 15The suffering of the childrenI am a mother and attorney with more than 20 years of practice living in Tampa. For the past three years, I worked as a magistrate in a Unified Family C...
Published: 06/14/18
Updated: 06/15/18

Saturday’s letters: Community-based care requires community involvement

Fix foster care, and do it quickly | Editorial, June 15Involve the community itselfWhile the detailed article about the scathing state review of Hillsborough County’s foster care problems touched on leadership, a critical point was not addressed....
Published: 06/14/18
Updated: 06/15/18

Friday’s letters: Freight trains are infrastructure that works in Tampa Bay

Railroads are infrastructure that worksFreight trains carry the loadCentral Florida is our state’s fastest-growing region. We’re on track to outpace South Florida’s growth 2-to-1 over the next several years. Great news for our local economy, but it n...
Published: 06/12/18
Updated: 06/15/18

Thursday’s letters: Charter schools aren’t the enemy

Don’t plug your ears when schools ask for tax | May 20, columnCharter schools aren’t the enemyAs an educator, I am astounded when I hear claims from school board members that charter schools take away funding from the local public school system. ...
Published: 06/12/18
Updated: 06/14/18

Wednesday’s letters: Trump’s words insult our Canadian visitors

Trade disputes torpedo G-7 summit | June 10Canadian visitors are owed apologyLike many Pinellas County residents, I’m pleased that we receive thousands of Canadian "snow birds" as part-year residents. Not only do they enhance our economy, but by ...
Published: 06/11/18
Updated: 06/13/18

Hernando Letters to the Editor for June 15

Opinion: Commissioners arrogant and incompetentMy wife and I live in Hernando County. As such, we are represented by a Board of County Commissioners where all the members manifest two common traits. Those traits are arrogance and incompetence.The arr...
Published: 06/11/18
Updated: 06/12/18