Flip-flopping can be a good thing
One of the most popular derogatory terms used in today's political campaigns is "flip-flop." It is used to describe any politician who has changed his mind on a particular subject. It doesn't matter if the change is more conservative or liberal.
Many people change their mind over time about many different things. I prefer to think that these people have had time to evaluate something and are speaking from a more educated position, whether I agree with it or not.
Does anybody believe that 25 years ago there was any chance that any state would legalize same-sex marriage or marijuana? It seems that a large number of people in the country have "flip-flopped" on those subjects.
Before we accuse a politician of flip-flopping, perhaps we should consider that he or she has further educated themselves on the issue.
Barry Kreiling, Brooksville
Reject the status quo
It is no secret that most Americans are fed up with politicians. The polls show that the approval rating of the present Congress is at a historic low. Yet, election after election, voters vote for the same career politicians who are responsible for the mess this country is in.
Why? Because the same career politicians raise enough money to buy their way through the primary elections and thereby get their names on the general election ballot. Most of us don't take the time to educate ourselves on the candidates who are not career politicians and who have very little money to finance their campaigns.
I have had enough. This primary, I am not going to vote for a single incumbent. I am not going to vote for one candidate who has raised a large amount of money to finance his or her campaign. I urge all voters to do the same. You can get information on the Internet on how much money has been raised by candidates.
By not voting for incumbents or those candidates who have raised large sums of money to finance their campaigns, we can put an end to these politicians who don't represent us.
Henry Loscher, Palm Harbor
Outlaw libertarian hopes to be governor Aug. 17
I enjoyed the front-page article on Adrian Wyllie, the Libertarian Party candidate for governor.
He wants to eliminate Florida's property tax and cut public school funding by 30 percent. Even Republican pundits know that cannot work. Florida has no income tax, so the only source of income would be sales tax. The state government would see its credit rating drop as it did in Kansas when Gov. Sam Brownback fiddled with state taxes. The state could end in bankruptcy under Wyllie's plans.
Wyllie is hoping for votes from both sides of the political aisle, but it is unlikely he will garner many votes from progressive or liberal Democrats.
Eric Elder, Palm Harbor
Taking a stand
Thank you for giving the Libertarian candidate for governor, Adrian Wyllie, the coverage he deserves. With him at 9 percent in the polls as more voters grow disgusted with our two-party system, you did right by treating him as a serious candidate.
A critical oversight on your part is that while labeling Wyllie as an "outlaw" you neglected to mention an important fact. The reason that Wyllie is driving without a license is solely to challenge the constitutionality of the REAL ID Act, and there has been extensive litigation over this issue. Simply calling him an "outlaw" in your headline was careless without providing all of the surrounding circumstances. Didn't the reporter ask about this issue to the same degree that he inquired as to other aspects of Wyllie's personal life?
One may be called an "outlaw" if one is violating a law that is in effect at the time, but history may be the real judge. What does the responsible patriot do when faced with what he believes is an unjust law? Create legal standing by disobeying the law, and work within the legal system to effectuate change.
Our Founding Fathers might be proud of Adrian Wyllie.
Samantha L. Dammer, Tampa
Dissecting the new maps | Aug. 18
A corrupted process
The voters of Florida sent a strong message to the Legislature that they were fed up with the gerrymandering of districts and wanted a different process. In spite of the very strong result of that election, legislators corrupted the process and allowed outside forces to interfere.
If the judge now allows the current maps to stand, it will be rewarding that corruption and interference. The legislators behind this farce should not be allowed to succeed. The voters who have had their vote and desires ignored should remember on Election Day and hold them accountable. They don't respect the voters as shown by their actions.
If we believe that only these two districts were drawn up illegally, we are gullible beyond belief.
James Johnson, Spring Hill
Charters' backstops: traditional schools Aug. 19, editorial
Priorities out of kilter
Your editorial noted that charter schools serving an estimated 230,000 students will split $75 million in construction funds, while Florida's 67 school districts will share just $50 million.
I think your staff should do an article exposing to the readers the background, the votes and the supporters of charter schools, showing how the Legislature's funding of the few is neglecting the public school system.
My daughter is a first-year teacher in a public elementary in Pinellas County, and I am seeing firsthand the lack of funding of public schools.
Ellen Currey, Clearwater
Disingenuous objection | Aug. 19, letter
The letter writer's opinion, though interesting, would lose his bet regarding Sheldon Adelson's concerns about all forms of addiction. He and his wife have contributed millions to various treatment centers and programs. A Fortune magazine report from 2012 details their philanthropic activities and personal services over the years.
Jim Cramer, Riverview