Saturday, February 17, 2018
Letters To The Editor

Vote for January's letter of the month

Editor's note: Letters to the editor offer a significant contribution to the discussion of public policy and life in Tampa Bay. To recognize some of that work by our most engaged readers, the Times will select a letter of the month and the writers will be recognized at the end of the year. We will choose the finalists each month based on relevance on topical issues, persuasiveness and writing style. The writer's opinion does not need to match the editorial board's opinion on the issue to be nominated. But clarity of thinking, brevity and a sense of humor certainly helps.

Help us choose the letter of the month for January by reading through the three nominated letters and voting on the ballot at the bottom of the web page.


Inaugural address

Insults to schools not helpful

I have read the inaugural address and I'm trying to digest the words and the promises and come to grips with the next four years. However, as a teacher, I'm indignant at this phrase: "an education system flush with cash, but which leaves our young and beautiful students deprived of knowledge." "Flush with cash"? Really? That's not any public school in Florida that I know of. And the teachers who work so hard under adverse conditions of generational poverty, lack of parental involvement, low pay and little respect are accused of depriving their charges of knowledge? They teach their hearts out every day while acting as parent, counselor, nurse, social worker and friend at the same time.

The public school system needs a lot of things, but insults are not one of them. I hope the new administration will address school issues from a better perspective than this one.

Joan Smith, Hudson


Trump's missed opportunity | Jan. 21, editorial

American restoration

Donald Trump didn't miss an opportunity; he hit the nail on the head. The changes in this country over the course of his lifetime are stark. Aside from racial discrimination, the America of yesteryear was productive (percentage of able-bodied in the work force), safe (people left their doors unlocked) and our place in the world was pre-eminent.

We can no longer afford to subsidize everyone else's industry and/or security. We have been through far too much and our forefathers have spilled too much blood fighting extremist ideologies abroad and freeing people from bondage at home. We do all bleed the same red, and it is time for America to come together and stop those who would pull at the threads of our national fabric.

We are long overdue for a restoration — economic, social, spiritual and constitutional. I have my misgivings about Trump personally and I know many of my fellow Americans have been conditioned by the leftist press to see an orange-haired Hitler instead of the prep-schooled Ivy Leaguer Manhattanite businessman with a long history of supporting Democrats and social justice causes.

I believe he wants to make America great again for all Americans of every race, gender and creed. I pray he succeeds. To do so, he'll need God's help as the radical leftists and their media lackeys, the establishment types in both major parties, our foreign adversaries and competitors (and even our supposed allies) will be working against him. Everyone who has been feeding from the trough of the taxpayer (a long list indeed) will have the knives out. What a daunting job. Godspeed, Mr. President.

Dwayne Keith, Valrico


Affordable Care Act

A public responsibility

In an equitable society, four functions need to remain not for profit: schools, the postal service, prisons and most of all health care. Republican members of Congress are setting out to shred the Affordable Care Act and make it even more of a private entity. Medicare and Medicaid are on their list to drag into the private sector. Insurance companies pull one-third of the money out of health care, and that money could certainly be put to better use.

Tom Reid, Seminole


Monday’s letters: Call it by its name: terrorism

Deadly toll: 17 | Feb. 15Call it whatit is: terrorismLet’s just call it what it is. It’s terrorism. No school in the country is immune. They all have procedures for sheltering in place or emergency evacuation from a shooter. It’s prudent to be pr...
Published: 02/16/18

Saturday’s letters: Payoff to porn star not front-page news?

Lawyer: I personally paid porn star | Feb. 14Where we’re at: This is 4A newsOnly under the Trump presidency does a story about the president’s lawyer paying off a porn star to cover up an affair with the president show up on page 4A. Never mind t...
Published: 02/16/18

Friday’s letters: Water quality too important to gamble on

State to update water rules | Feb. 10Don’t gamble with water safetyI wondered whether this front-page article was an early April Fool’s joke. The Florida Department of Environmental Protection "updated" its pollution regulations in 2016, with str...
Published: 02/15/18

Thursday’s letters: Bill protects pharmacy customers

House Bill 351Bill protects pharmacy customersWe all need the protections provided in Florida House Bill 351 to ensure pharmacy benefit managers, or PBMs, are transparently operating with patients. Currently, PBMs are not regulated by the state and o...
Published: 02/14/18

Wednesday’s letters: The ocean is no place for amateurs

Youthful dream sinks in two days | Feb. 12Ocean is no place for amateursFirst of all, let me say I am sorry this couple lost their boat and I do applaud their adventurous spirit. However, I have spent over 20 years at sea and would like to commen...
Published: 02/13/18

Pasco Letters to the Editor for Feb. 16

A vote against Pasco’s jail bond issueThere are two stories on the front page of the Feb. 9 Pasco Times that drew my attention.The top headline reports that the Pasco County commissioners are discussing submitting a $185 million bond issue to the vot...
Published: 02/13/18

Tuesday’s letters: Challenges in Hillsborough foster care

Foster failures under scrutiny | Feb. 10Challenges in foster care systemNo young person deserves to be treated as shown in the Ch. 8 segment on Youth and Family Alternatives Inc., an Eckerd Connects subcontractor. It is difficult to fathom how th...
Published: 02/12/18

Saturday’s letters: We’re all just trying to get home, one zip tie at a time

I detest Trump, but a ‘redneck’ fixed my Prius with zip ties | Feb. 3, Ruth Mayer columnWe’re all just trying to get homeLike columnist Ruth Mayer, I too am trying to find my level ground, my level-set. I too have held a tremendously deep resentm...
Published: 02/07/18
Updated: 02/09/18

Sunday’s letters: Let’s make America good again

Everyone loves a parade | Feb. 9, editorialI’ll sit on the sidelinesAs a 30-year veteran I was appalled at the president’s plan for a military parade. Having marched in numerous parades in my career I can say without hesitation that members of th...
Published: 02/07/18
Updated: 02/09/18

Monday’s letters: Gun safety is a proper public health issue

The question Trump failedto answer | Feb. 8, Leonard Pitts columnGun safety isa public health issuePublic health agencies address events that might harm people. Public health doctors, like myself, develop rules to protect individuals for the comm...
Published: 02/07/18
Updated: 02/09/18