Friday, May 25, 2018
Letters To The Editor

Vote for March 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 March 2014 by reading through the three nominated letters and voting on the ballot at the bottom of the web page.

Enforce the law | Feb. 28, letter

A search for fairness

A few questions came to mind when I read this letter on undocumented workers:

• Can you imagine being unable to feed your family? Would you not go where you would have a chance to provide for them? U.S. employers who are most concerned with their bottom line actively seek cheap labor. Are those employers in no way responsible for the immigration situation?

• Can you imagine being deported and having your children separated from you? These immigrants came here in order to provide for their families. Before there were tight border controls, it was common for workers to send earnings back home and return to their families when the seasonal jobs were over; now they are forced to be permanently displaced and raise their families here.

• Can you imagine what it would be like if we didn't have any of these people in our workforce? Who would pick the food to put on our tables? Under the best of circumstances, these workers put in long days in the hot sun doing backbreaking work for poverty wages. We don't see unemployed Americans rushing to apply for these jobs.

We are no different from these immigrants. We all have the same yearnings and wishes for the well-being of our families. We have chosen to benefit from their services, therefore we need to give back to them. For the 11 million undocumented workers currently in our country, a path to citizenship — which would be a long and arduous process for them — provides the only fair resolution to this situation.

Anne Burnham, Tarpon Springs (March 5)

______________________

Trauma payday | March 10

Consumers get gouged

If a hurricane sweeps through our state and causes a major power outage, it's illegal for me to load my truck up with generators and sell them to people in need for a couple hundred more than they actually cost. That's considered price-gouging.

However, if I become injured in an accident and have to go to a trauma center, they can charge me 30 or 40 times what the actual cost should be and that's perfectly legal.

I guess this makes perfect sense to our leadership in Tallahassee.

David Bieniecki, New Port Richey (March 13)

_______________________

Trauma care outcomes should be focus, not fees - March 12, commentary

Higher costs don't improve care

HCA executive Darwin Noel Ang carries on the for-profit hospital Kabuki dance with the public by conflating the outcomes of trauma care with the charges. Trauma systems do save lives and decrease morbidity - this has been well-documented for decades. The public should expect a similarity of quality of care at any Florida hospital that has a trauma center designation from the oversight body, the American College of Surgeons. Quality of care within each hospital is monitored by that institution's specific process, which, for the most part, is legally protected from public inquiry.

I have experience as a neurosurgeon who spent much of my 26 years of private practice in the emergency rooms of various Hillsborough County hospitals caring for such trauma patients. Higher charges for health care have been shown, across the delivery spectrum, not to correlate with better quality of care. In my opinion, the outlier charges and billing practices of HCA are meant for two purposes only: to maximize shareholder return on investment and to highly compensate its executive leadership.

Donald L. Mellman, M.D., Tampa (March 17)

Comments

Sunday’s letters: As Jews, we should not be afraid to criticize Israel

Updated: 2 hours ago

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: 11 hours 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