Tuesday, November 21, 2017
Letters To The Editor

Thursday's letters: It pays to invest in children


Early education

It pays to invest in children

Amid the partisanship in Washington, there is something a majority of people of all political stripes care about: high-quality early childhood education. Three national polls conducted this summer show that Americans strongly support public investment in young children. Yes, it's a tough fiscal climate, but the polls, along with the work of noted economists, show this should not be a tough decision for policymakers.

Florida has made progress in early childhood education, but too many children lack access to high-quality early learning experiences. Families have difficulties finding and affording quality early childhood programs, and many children came to kindergarten this year behind their peers who did have access to programs that support their developmental and learning readiness.

Sens. Bill Nelson and Marco Rubio should vote to end the flawed sequestration and support the economically sound expansion of access to quality programs for children in their first five years. We can make smart investments now, or pay much more later because we didn't seize an opportunity to come together for the sake of our children and our economy.

On an issue where so many people agree, and where we know how to provide high-quality early childhood education, this should be a no-brainer and an opportunity for bipartisan congressional action.

Suzanne Gellens, executive director, Florida Association for the Education of Young Children, Tampa

Amazon center on way | Oct. 11

Jobs for whom?

It is a wonderful thing to see a company the size of Amazon coming to the area and providing 1,000 much-needed jobs.

My hope is that someone will oversee the hiring so that qualified American citizens get these jobs and not so much as one single illegal or undocumented person is employed.

A couple of times in past American history when our unemployment rates were so high our president sent visiting foreigners home — legal or not.

We have 11 million illegals. What are we waiting for?

Chuck Fuller, Riverview

Debt ceiling

Damage has been done

At this point it really won't matter if Congress and the White House agree on a plan to extend the debt ceiling. Already the European Union, International Monetary Fund and major creditors, represented by China, have stated that U.S. leadership in the world economy has been dealt a serious blow.

We have criticized the European Union, Russia and China as having unstable economic systems. Now these economies are sneering at the United States because our democratic system has failed us and brought us to the brink of financial ruin.

Ron Frankel, St. Petersburg

Young to retire | Oct. 9

Spending us into crisis

Your newspaper is making a hero out of Congressman C.W. Bill Young, simply because he delivered quite a sum of money to his home district. Those were taxpayer dollars.

This is precisely the reason our country is in a financial bind today. Wake up and tell your readers the truth.

Edward Leonard Flom, Tampa

Government shutdown

Insult to those who served

How awful that our veterans who gave so much for our freedom were not allowed, by this administration, to view the memorial honoring their service and valor fighting to protect our freedom in World War II.

I applaud the many Americans who came to their assistance by taking down the barricades and allowing the veterans, many in wheelchairs and well into their 90s, to gain access to the outdoor memorial.

Many veterans came from all across our country and were stopped just outside the memorial. How disgusting to do this to those who gave so much.

Lt. Col. Carmen LaBianca, USMC (Ret.), Largo

Pay for play

This might sound obvious, but if the government can pay employees to keep our parks and monuments closed, why can't it pay them to keep the parks and monuments open?

Kenneth R. Gilder, St. Petersburg

Florida backs flood lawsuit | Oct. 11

Human toll of flood rates

I have seen the face of this flood insurance debacle, and it is frightening. Our St. Pete Beach neighborhood association held a meeting last week that included a Q&A with local officials about the Biggert-Waters impact.

Over 60 percent of the attendees were retirees, nearly all of whom bought their modest, non-waterfront houses in our neighborhood in the late 1950s. When told that not only will their flood insurance rates be raised by 25 percent per year but that they will be unable to sell their homes because of the immediate $15,000 per year insurance rates the new homebuyer will inherit, we all heard a collective gasp from the entire audience.

As the meeting was breaking up, a 90-year-old widow who bought her little 1,200-square-foot bungalow in 1956 was on the verge of tears. She told me she has been wanting to sell her house and can't afford the insurance increase and asked me what she should do.

It darn near broke my heart to tell her there was nothing that could be done. Hers is the real face of this terrible bill, not the 5 percent of the wealthier waterfront homeowners.

Gregory Premer, St. Pete Beach

Hallmarks of decline | Oct. 14, letter

A wealth of problems

This letter asks whether the United States is heading in the direction of becoming a Third World country, giving an excellent listing of the hallmarks.

However, there was one missing: A major part of the nation's wealth is held by a small number of its citizens.

Donald W. Chandler, Clearwater


Tuesday’s letters: Disgraceful tax proposals

Tax billDisgraceful, harmful proposalsThe very fact that the Congress of the people of the United States would propose, not to mention pass, the current tax bill is nothing short of disgraceful. What sort of representatives of the people support cutt...
Published: 11/20/17

Monday’s letters: Doctors should speak up on harassment

Sexual harassmentDoctors need to speak upThe recent widespread recognition, followed by disapproval, of sexual harassment across many workplaces signals a paradigm shift in social attitudes toward abuse of power that is long overdue.The male-dominate...
Published: 11/17/17

Saturday’s letters: Reservoir project off to a good start

Lake OkeechobeeReservoir project off to good startThis year, more than 70,000 Floridians contacted their legislators to support expediting a reservoir project south of Lake Okeechobee. Another 150 business people, anglers, health care professionals a...
Published: 11/15/17
Updated: 11/17/17

Sunday’s letters: Roundabout way to help the rich

Senate GOP’s tax plan to kill ACA mandate | Nov. 15Devious way to hurt middle classSo, let’s see if we have this straight. The proposed amendment to the Senate tax plan, to kill the individual mandate, will cause young people to not buy health in...
Published: 11/15/17
Updated: 11/17/17

Friday’s letters: Stop laying blame on teachers

Hillsborough teachers are set to protest | Nov. 14Stop laying blame on teachersI am a veteran teacher, coming up on 30 years of service to public education. My mother was also an educator, clocking over 40 years of service in public education. Sh...
Published: 11/15/17
Updated: 11/16/17

Pasco Letters to the Editor for Nov. 17

Questioning fees draws snarky responseYou are probably aware of the new Pasco utility fees that became effective last month.Under the dubious title of "convenience fee" for making utility payments by credit card or e-check, Pasco Utilities adds $2.75...
Published: 11/15/17

Dollars need to stay at home if south Brooksville is to survive

As a member of the Moton High School Class of 1967, I grew up a poor but very happy child because of the love given to me by all. So all I had to do was be a child and not rush to be an adult.There were many black businesses along a four-block area o...
Published: 11/14/17
Updated: 11/18/17

Wednesday’s letters: Generosity makes all the difference

National Adoption MonthThe difference generosity makesAs a football coach, I always had to be ready to overcome unexpected challenges. With injuries, crowd noise and especially weather, the game plan is always adjusting to overcome adversity.Our stat...
Published: 11/13/17
Updated: 11/14/17

Monday’s letters: Moore is not fit for public office

Woman: Candidate pursued her as a teen | Nov. 10Moore is not fit for public officeIt is sad that Roy Moore, a self-professed religious man, is running for a Senate seat when he is clearly unfit for any job involving the public for so many reasons...
Published: 11/10/17
Updated: 11/13/17

Monday’s letters: Don’t fall for the tax cut ruse

Tax billDon’t take your eye off the ballThe rush is on. The Republican Congress is rushing to pass a modest tax cut for the middle class while giving corporations a massive tax cut. While taking away some of the tax deductions from ordinary taxpayers...
Published: 11/10/17