Friday, June 22, 2018
Letters To The Editor

Wednesday's letters: Young's legacy: caring for people

Young to retire | Oct. 9

Young's lasting contribution

U.S. Rep. C.W. Bill Young's announcement that he intends to retire at the end of 2014 has prompted many tributes to his exemplary career in public service. The University of South Florida is part of Young's living legacy. But all along, his support for the institution has really been about supporting people: people suffering from disease; people dependent on a healthy environment; and people who now live in a community with a brighter future.

Because of Young, the Joint Military Leadership Center is preparing a new generation of leaders to collaborate across branches and international lines in a learning center that provides hope for a more peaceful future.

Because of Young, the College of Marine Science was equipped to respond to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill disaster with unique technology and some of the world's best scientific minds.

Because of Young, USF's Center for Biological Defense has the advanced technologies needed to identify potential threats and reduce the impact on public health. And because of Young's support for biomedical science, USF researchers have achieved breakthroughs in understanding and treating diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's as we work toward a cure.

Bill Young will hold a place of honor on our campuses and in our hearts for many generations to come.

Judy Genshaft, president, University of South Florida System, Tampa

Government spending

Cut corporate favors

There have been several letters proclaiming the need for the country to reduce the size of government by scaling back entitlements claimed by the "moochers and takers" within our society. Good idea.

Let's start with the entitlement claimed by businessmen who feel entitled to move their income offshore beyond the reach of the IRS. Then move on to the many corporate entitlements called "incentives" or "subsidies." And don't forget entitlements in the form of income tax loopholes. Billionaire Warren Buffet has pointed out that such loopholes allow his tax rate to be lower than that of his secretary. These are the sort of entitlements that Congress should go after — not Social Security, Medicare and food stamps.

Lewis Lederer, Clearwater

The money behind the governor | Oct. 13

Disappointing spending

As a longtime subscriber to Blue Cross Blue Shield of Florida, I am disappointed that this medical provider gave $637,500 of its subscribers' premiums to a political campaign. That sum would have been much better used to reduce premiums, increase benefits, or provide medical services to the poor among us.

Marvin I. Honig, St. Petersburg

Symphonies played with joy | Oct. 13

Entertaining, informative

The recent articles featuring the Florida Orchestra, St. Petersburg Opera and Tampa Bay Master Chorale have been entertaining and informative. While John Fleming's rich tenure as the Tampa Bay Times music critic shall be missed, it is good to see that this tradition continues in the excellent pieces by Times correspondent Jim Harper.

I find them to be instructive, witty, and very much "spot on." I am delighted to see the Times' ongoing commitment to insightful coverage of our region's cultural resources and events.

Scott Kluksdahl, professor of violoncello, USF, Tampa

A beloved mother's last lesson to her son Oct. 14, commentary

Angels among us

As a now-retired owner of a senior companion service for some 25 years, I had on occasion the need to involve hospice care for my elderly clients. Therefore, I read with interest Suncoast Hospice president and CEO Rafael Sciullo's poignant and touching story concerning his own mother's similar need.

From experience, may I add that hospice is indeed a blessing with a well-deserved reputation for excellence. The compassionate, selfless personnel working in all areas of it can, one and all, best be described as "angels in street clothes."

Connie Paglen, Treasure Island

Government shutdown

Galling closure

We have just returned from a long-planned pilgrimage to the D-day war grounds in Normandy, France. We wanted to honor those brave American servicemen who fought so valiantly for our freedoms. Sadly the Obama administration has chosen to close multiple sites there in their effort to inflict maximum pain on the American people.

The administration continues to spend thousands of unnecessary dollars advertising Obamacare while having the gall to close the sacred cemetery and memorial in Normandy. For many in our group this was a once in a lifetime chance to personally pay homage to fallen family members. This irresponsible selected response to the government shutdown denied them their right. All we got to see were the locked gates and closure signs of a feckless administration.

Pat Jennings, Dunedin

Holder should halt checkbook justice Oct. 14, editorial

Fines and refunds

I am uncertain, as are many other Americans I suspect, as to where these huge fines levied against these corrupt financial firms actually end up. Since most fines are for duping investors and homeowners, why aren't these monies returned to those affected and not to the general fund where our even more corrupt Congress can revel in this windfall?

Roger H. Oddson, Sun City Center

Share your opinions

Letters for publication should be addressed to Letters to the Editor, P.O. Box 1121, St. Petersburg, FL 33731. They can be sent by fax to (727) 893-8675 or through our website at: They should be brief and must include the writer's name, address and phone number.


Monday’s letters: College instructors need classes in active shooter training

Active shooter perceptions disproven | June 21We need active shooter trainingThe only guns that I had seen before coming to the United States of America were in glass cases in museums. When I came to America to get a Ph.D. in English at the Unive...
Updated: 2 hours ago

Friday’s letters: What a new Rays ballpark would mean

Rays exec hints at stadium timeline | June 15What a new ballpark would doThe Tampa Bay Rays 2020 organization is working diligently with local business leaders and civic organizations to rally support for the Rays’ new ballpark in Ybor City. The ...
Published: 06/19/18
Updated: 06/22/18

Thursday’s letters: On immigration there has to be a better way

‘Zero tolerance’ ignites outrage | June 20Find better way on immigrationOver the years I’ve voted for candidates from both parties. My observation of the Trump administration’s policy on immigration is not about politics. It has to do with having...
Published: 06/19/18
Updated: 06/21/18

Wednesday’s letters: Charters and traditional public schools each have their place

Public school as public good | Letter, June 17Both kinds of schools can workAs a mother and grandmother of children raised in both traditional public and charter schools in Pinellas County (and a 25-year supporting-services employee for public sc...
Published: 06/18/18
Updated: 06/20/18

Tuesday’s letters: Keep programs that fight AIDS

For author Biden, it’s a father’s gift | June 6Keep programs that fight AIDSAfter former Vice President Joe Biden’s recent visit to St. Petersburg, I noticed an article that he co-wrote with former Sen. Bill Frist. It reminded everyone about the ...
Published: 06/18/18
Updated: 06/19/18

Is anyone watching the money?Hernando County’s budget shortfall is ever changing going from $6 million to $11.5 million to $14 million to what is assumed a final number of $12.6 million. Who knows the budget shortfall could change again.Who’s watchi...
Published: 06/14/18
Updated: 06/18/18

Re: County OKs solar zones | June 8Plea ignored at solar plant hearingThe Pasco County Commission on June 5 voted to identify a utility-sized solar electric plant as a "special exception" use on agricultural-zoned land in Pasco County. What thi...
Published: 06/14/18
Updated: 06/18/18

Monday’s letters: Skip those plastic bags and save the environment

To save our seas, overcome congressional apathy | Column, June 16Do your part and skip plastic bagsEvery day we read about the shame of our landfills and oceans filling up with plastic bags, yet most people don’t care. My wife and I always carry ...
Published: 06/14/18
Updated: 06/18/18

White House defends splitting up families as ‘biblical’ | June 15The suffering of the childrenI am a mother and attorney with more than 20 years of practice living in Tampa. For the past three years, I worked as a magistrate in a Unified Family C...
Published: 06/14/18
Updated: 06/15/18

Saturday’s letters: Community-based care requires community involvement

Fix foster care, and do it quickly | Editorial, June 15Involve the community itselfWhile the detailed article about the scathing state review of Hillsborough County’s foster care problems touched on leadership, a critical point was not addressed....
Published: 06/14/18
Updated: 06/15/18