Editor: Re: Paul Friedhoff's May 30 guest column, Children left to clean up mess parents made of world. I am amazed at what a wonderful world we have developed for our children. The opportunities to develop mentally and spiritually are unlimited, and the possibilities of financial success with its concomitant benefits of luxuries, culture and benevolence for every U.S. citizen speak for themselves.
As an immigrant from Germany via China, as I look around my world I feel good about what I have given and left behind for my children. And I feel particularly good about these United States.
Much of the credit for this feeling goes to the actor and the wimp. They brought us peace, prosperity and respect. I hate to think what would have happened to the United States if we had McGovern, Carter and Dukakis. Thank God, the people of the United States recognized their shallowness.
My children, just as I, are not responsible for the messes that other peoples, nations and cultures get themselves into. The guilt trip that the liberal writer wants us to assume is something that I just won't buy.
Yes, we should help our less fortunate, but that in no way means that I am responsible for it or that I will support governmental bureaucracies to eat up tax money that should go to the poor.
If this country is in such a mess, I wonder why so many people still consider this the country of opportunity. Just ask the Eastern Europeans, Mexicans, et al.
Of course we have problems, but our ingenuity will solve them just as it has in the past if we don't succumb to the one-worlders and weak-kneed pessimists who do not understand the U.S. spirit.
So, Mr. Friedhoff, I suggest that you go back to bed, get up on the other side, go outside and smell the freedom and spirit of the United States. I have great faith in this country and my children to handle anything they will have to face. After all, I prepared them well.
Gary Silvers, Largo
Winner leaves void on commission
Editor: I had the privilege of working with Don Winner on the Clearwater City Commission. Don always showed true class. He demonstrated a great sense of humor while enjoying a good debate. And he never forgot his impeccable manners.
Outside the commission chambers, Don spoke often with great pride and love about his wife, Marla, and their children. They were the most important part of his life.
Don Winner, a man with class, will be missed!
Kathy Kelly, Clearwater
Editor's note: Mrs. Kelly is a former Clearwater mayor.
Column moved reader to tears
Editor: I just wanted to take a minute to let you know how much I enjoyed your guest columnist Joan Rutledge.
The story brought tears to my eyes. Her style of writing is tremendous. I hope we can look forward to seeing her work again soon.
I feel I can really identify with her, and I'm sure many of your readers can also.
Melissa Wike, Palm Harbor
Abandoned cat meets tragic end
Editor: Would you please publish the following letter? We recently went through this experience, and there are so many cases of abandoned pets. Perhaps it will hit home somewhere.
Barbara Freeman, Clearwater
To My Owner:
Just in case you may have had a twinge of guilt when you abandoned me, I wanted you to know the outcome of my story.
I didn't know why you left me at the side of the road that dark night last month. I was frightened and confused by all the traffic on McMullen-Booth Road, and since you left so quickly, I just ran for cover. That was my first night alone and hungry.
Instinctively I tried to stay away from the snakes, raccoons and dangerous traffic. There seemed to be danger for me everywhere as I cowered in fear and loneliness waiting for you to return.
I ate what I could find, but lizards and bugs were not the diet I was used to, and even water was hard to find during those hot days and nights.
After several days of near starvation, insect bites and the storm on April 25, I cautiously approached a house and cried outside all night.
They could see that I needed help, and gave me food and clean water each day. Because I was wearing my green leather collar but no license tag, they ran an ad in the paper to try and find you. They also contacted the Humane Society, Animal Control, Friends of Strays and their mailman trying to find my home, but to no avail.
The kind people who were looking out for me couldn't keep me because they had other cats (also abandoned). And I understood.
Finally, Friends of Strays asked that I be sheltered until they had room to take me. They asked that I be tested for feline leukemia and given my shots. Unfortunately, I tested positive for leukemia and was quietly and gently put to sleep.
If you knew I was sick or even if you had tired of me, could you not have spared me those weeks of suffering by taking me to any vet to be gently put to sleep? It would have been so much more merciful.
Your Abandoned Cat