Thursday, April 26, 2018
Letters To The Editor

Wednesday's letters: Courageous, amazing story of life

Never let go | Dec. 9

Courageous, amazing story of life

Thanks to Kelley Benham for the courage to share her amazing story of life. As a practicing neurosurgeon, I routinely help families with these agonizing life and death decisions. I have gone through the career evolution of wondering what was right and now knowing that life deserves every chance we can give it. I am heartened that a woman chose to give her baby the chance at life so many never get.

I am saddened by the question implied about whether the cost "is worth it." I am now more commonly seeing families giving up far too early in difficult medical situations. Sadly, they are often goaded into bad decisions by doctors and nurses who believe they have a primary responsibility to serve some broader collective's financial and social goals. They are abandoning their duty to the serve their patient first and misleading the family about the likelihood of recovery. This is happening now in ways I have never seen before.

Many patient care memories are burned in my mind: the lives lost after valiant fights to save them; the lives saved and those who recovered from paralysis and comas; and those who battled through disabilities and thrived.

But the medical memories seared in my mind most — the ones that haunt me — are the lives abandoned that I knew I had a good chance to save. They were abandoned by confused families or doctors and nurses who simply give up or cared more about something other than their patient.

David McKalip, M.D., St. Petersburg

No one relents in spending and tax standoff Dec. 11

Both sides should give

I am a registered Republican, but why don't they yield to the president and give him his tax increase? Then the president should give the Republicans massive budget cuts. If the two sides can do that, they might just find they can balance the budget.

Charles Farrell, St. Petersburg

Full-time jobs hard to come by | Dec. 9

Postelection gloom

I find it interesting and unusual that the liberal-leaning Times would publish a story concerning the very miserable reality of the underemployed and their continuing bleak outlook in this bad Obama economy. Oh, silly me, the election is over.

Leslie M. Gomillion, Hudson

Unemployment claims fall | Dec. 7

Few prospects

The reason for the decline in unemployment claims is because many claimants such as myself lose eligibility. Therefore, you're dropped off the list. I've received my notice telling me I will no longer be getting any unemployment funds. I'm 62 with very few prospects. I've put out at least a thousand resumes in person or by the Web. So, when they talk about improvement, it's not happening for a good part of the population.

John Cody, Tampa

Learning, not fads | Dec. 9, commentary

Online instruction

I normally side with the traditional view, but I reacted differently to this column.

The president of Eckerd College's suspicions on Web learning remind me of John D. Rockefeller and J.P. Morgan lore. The former foresaw a threat to his kerosene lamp monopoly in the latter's upstart investment in Edison's electric bulb. The analogy is not perfect, but I'm betting silicon ideas will replace the fossil fuels of 19th century teaching methods and union monopolists.

I've enjoyed 24/7 Web instruction for two years at a pittance cost learning music theory and technique, to recognize notes across a fret board, play some blues, a classical piece or two, and harmonize the melody. That's not faddish. It's the new normal of lifelong learning opportunity for any pocketbook.

Gary Harrington, St. Petersburg

Pier project stays on track | Dec. 7

Let elected officials decide

I'd like to thank St. Petersburg officials for their vision in moving this very worthwhile project forward. They have shown the leadership needed in making tough decisions. This is why we elected them.

While I agree we as concerned citizens should have the right to vote, I feel I voted for these individuals to represent us and therefore should not vote every time we do not agree with them. There have been two petitions against this pier project. Some who started the second petition did not agree with or sign the first. If it should go to a vote and people don't agree with the next concept, will another group of concerned citizens gather signatures and force another vote?

This could go on for years, costing us a fortune. How many concerned citizens does it take to make a decision? I say it takes a strong mayor and City Council. I feel we have both.

Shirley O'Sullivan, St. Petersburg

Uphold marriage equality | Dec. 11, editorial

Glacial progress

I am amazed at how differences between ourselves take centuries to reconcile. I am approaching a man's life expectancy age and won't be around to see it, but soon gays will be fully accepted, accorded the fundamental rights yearned for in a free society. After all, they didn't choose their preferences, but they are still human.

Drug use will be legally available. After all, like alcohol use, seeking pleasure is human. Prohibition has taught us that responsibility should be the norm, not wishful thinking about changing human nature.

Skin color prejudices will fade. That will take a long time, but as we mingle together we will be forced to recognize that in the end we are all human.

Religion will be acknowledged as superstition. Whatever our egos want to believe about the afterlife, getting along in this lifetime should be our goal.

Don Derkach, Seminole

Fire exposes apparel industry's gaps | Dec. 9

Markets need regulation

Capitalism is the best economic system, according to the tea party, conservatives and libertarians. Less government and less regulation allows the marketplace to solve most, or all, problems of the economy.

The recent terrible death toll in Bangladesh certainly rebuts this premise. The clothing manufacturing industry generates 80 percent of Bangladesh's exports. Since this industry is critical to the economy of the country, any hope of regulation or control is nonexistent. Can we really believe a totally free marketplace will ever be self-regulating?

Jay Hall, Tampa


Thursday’s letters: A surgeon responds to story about a needle being left in a baby’s heart

All Children’s surgeon left a needle in a baby’s heart | April 22My view as one of the surgeonsI am one of the physicians discussed (but not interviewed) in this article. Whatever the motive for such an article, I disagree with many of the claims...
Published: 04/23/18
Updated: 04/26/18

Wednesday’s letters: How we plan to improve foster care in Hillsborough

Improving foster care inHillsborough | April 19, editorialOur plans for helping kidsThis editorial poses many good questions. The Department of Children and Families’ peer review report is expected to be released soon. And while we welcome the an...
Published: 04/23/18
Updated: 04/25/18

Pasco Letters to the Editor for April 27

Stop Ridge Road extension, reader saysWhen I spoke at the Dade City meeting of the Pasco County Commissioners on my opposition to the Ridge Road Extension, three of them responded, but only when my three minutes of free speech expired, and I could sa...
Published: 04/23/18

Monday’s letters: Term limits don’t work

U.S. Senate campaignTerm limitsdon’t workGov. Rick Scott has begun his run for the U.S. Senate with TV ads promoting term limits for representatives and senators. Aside from the probability that this would require a constitutional amendment, I think ...
Published: 04/22/18
Updated: 04/23/18

Sunday’s letters: Problems with high-speed rail

Thanks, Gov. Scott, for ghastly I-4 drives | April 18, Sue Carlton columnProblems with high-speed railIn her Wednesday column, the writer bemoaned the traffic on I-4 and blasted Gov. Rick Scott for turning down free government money for a high-sp...
Published: 04/21/18

Tuesday’s letters: Student journalists push to save their newsrooms and independence

Save student newsroomsAs professional newsrooms shrink, student newsrooms have become an increasingly important source of local coverage, holding not only our universities accountable but also local government. We write these articles, attending meet...
Published: 04/20/18
Updated: 04/24/18

Saturday’s letters: Don’t weaken rules on fisheries

Florida fisheriesDon’t weaken rules on fish stocksMembers of Congress are proposing changes to an important ocean law, the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, that would adversely affect coastal states including Florida.Since it...
Published: 04/19/18
Updated: 04/20/18

Friday’s letters: We owe it to our children to teach them history

If we don’t understand past, future looks grim | April 19, Daniel Ruth columnThe history we owe our childrenIt’s not often I agree with Daniel Ruth, but this article was spot-on. I’m not sure when the schools started ignoring Germany’s World War ...
Published: 04/19/18

Thursday’s letters: Gun research can save lives

Gun ownershipCommon ground: Find the factsThere are many areas in the current debate about guns and gun ownership where both sides must agree to disagree. But there is one area where common ground ought to exist. That concerns the need for continuing...
Published: 04/18/18

Wednesday’s letters:

Poverty and plenty in bay area | April 7, editorialStruggling poor are not a priorityI commend your newspaper for continuing to produce real and relevant news, particularly the recent editorial pointing out that a prospering Tampa Bay should not ...
Published: 04/16/18
Updated: 04/17/18