5 questions for mayor on Rays' future | Aug. 18, editorial
Treat baseball team as community asset
The Rays are a community asset that reflects upon the character of the region and should be appreciated and treated with respect for that role. Parochial interests should not be the sole consideration in finding a balanced solution, and the St. Petersburg City Council and the community should entertain exploring all options toward a solution to what clearly is a regional issue.
St. Petersburg and the region would be well served to undertake a thorough and balanced analysis of alternatives for a viable solution for a new stadium that will benefit not only the Rays but also the region.
Aaron Barman, Odessa
Face up to reality
Mayor Bill Foster says he has a detailed plan to keep the Rays in St. Petersburg. Mr. Mayor, you need to dust off your Funk & Wagnalls dictionary and look up this word: demographics. Once you do that you need to apply the word to the Tampa Bay region and look at the demographics. In doing so you will see that St. Petersburg is in the demographic hinterlands of Tampa Bay for stadium location purposes.
If you believe St. Petersburg is the only place for a new stadium, there's another word you need to look up in your Funk & Wagnalls: delusional.
Jerry Tidwell, Odessa
Dani, in the real world | Aug. 21
Problems from past endure
Dani's heart-wrenching story dramatically brings to light a truth about the formative years: What happens then influences us throughout our lives.
Many adults believe they should "just get over" any problems they had when they were small. The truth is childhood is an important time in everyone's life. Not just Dani's.
There's an inconsistency between what people say about their own childhood and how they feel about tending to the needs of children. There aren't any debates about whether kids need to feel safe and loved. We agree that a nurturing environment helps them become healthy grownups. But then as adults, people often tell themselves that feelings from their own upbringing are irrelevant.
Anger, hurt and fear from the past can lead to unhealthy behaviors, anxiety and depression. The tendency to repeat family of origin patterns in current relationships is what makes accepting the importance of one's own childhood so important.
It's tempting to think that only extreme cases of abuse or neglect impact a child. This misconception causes people to minimize aspects of their own upbringing which are hurtful. It also paves the way to excusing lesser degrees of unhealthy parenting.
Rather than making "The Girl in the Window" simply about Dani, hold her story as a reminder that childhood stays within our children and is within us too.
Loren Buckner, LCSW, Tampa
Gerdes for City Council Aug. 15, Times recommends
Listen to the candidates
The Times endorsed a District 1 St. Petersburg City Council candidate before any major public candidate forum had been held.
It is true that due to mail ballots, the primary vote actually runs from Aug. 1-30 and, therefore, many voters have already cast their ballots.
However, it seems the endorsement could have unfairly influenced what small voting constituency still exists by endorsing so early and before the voters had a chance to meet the candidates or attend a candidate forum.
The League of Women Voters does not endorse candidates. It is a nonpartisan, long-standing promoter of voters' rights and informed voting.
The league moderated a televised District 1 candidate forum on Aug. 16 at City Hall. The forum is being replayed by City TV and is available to download via the city's website, stpete.org. In addition, the League of Women Voters is holding another forum Wednesday at Pilgrim UCC Church at 6315 Central Ave. at 7 p.m.
Be an informed voter by attending the forum, and if you have not voted in the primary by mail ballot, please vote at your polling place on Aug. 30.
Monica Abbott, St. Petersburg
Two ways to go
The spacious and magnificent public square in Siena, Italy, is overlooked by an impressive building housing two great murals depicting bad government and good government.
Our outstanding heritage as a nation is based on government of, by and for the people, not just one class or religious affiliation. It might justly be added that the latter provision has made religions survive and prosper here.
In the good government mural, taxation or religion do not appear as issues. All the people depict happiness. There is no evidence that less government is necessarily good government. There is no sign of special interest groups aimed at profits, not the common good, nor of lobbyists with corporate clout, nor officials enjoying expensive "extras." For that, see the other mural.
Patricia Vigneau, Spring Hill
Big source of revenue
Since the Republican Party refuses to tax the rich, the least it could do is tax the pot smokers. There are millions of Americans who smoke pot and would love to pay taxes but are afraid of going to jail. Americans have been enjoying pot for decades and it's not going away, regardless of the laws.
The rich buy from grow houses; the middle class from Mexico; none of it is taxed. Let's start growing it here. It will create billions in revenue and save millions for law enforcement.
Let's end the war on pot. We all know it's here to stay, so let's tax it and fix our country's roads and bridges.
Michael Halter, Largo
E-mails from Scott transition deleted Aug. 19
Bumbler in charge
How much more on-the-job training, malfeasance and outright legal obfuscation are the people of Florida willing to put up with before we demand a professional executive in the governor's office? All I see is a bumbling novice.
C.J. Gerber, St. Petersburg