1. Opinion

On Trump, a tipping point for conservatives

Here’s what readers had to say in Monday’s letters to the editor.
President Donald Trump greets supporters after arriving at Ocala International Airport, Oct. 3, 2019, in Ocala, Fla. [EVAN VUCCI | AP]
Published Oct. 6

A tipping point for conservatives

Donald Trump’s Civil War | Column, Oct. 4

Leonard Pitts is a voice crying in the wilderness. I agree that reality seems far from the conservative mentality. However, there seems to be hope on the horizon. I’m a liberal, who has more conservative friends than liberal friends. I’m learning a lot from them about how they look at things and how their brains work. They seem to live their lives fueled by fear: fear of not getting something they want or fear of losing something they have. Trump is an expert at fueling those fears. Recently three of my conservative friends confided to me that they’re not going to vote for him again. I asked one of them why? The response was: He’s a loose cannon and a threat to our national security. Those were my thoughts exactly. Perhaps conservatives are finally realizing, that this president does not represent their true conservative values.

Michael Harris, Safety Harbor

Exoneration as a Biden boost

Former Vice President and Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden speaks during a gun safety forum Wednesday, Oct. 2, 2019, in Las Vegas. [JOHN LOCHER | AP]

Donald Trump’s Civil War | Column, Oct. 4

Here are three points to consider in connection with the impeachment inquiry: (1) an individual should not be exempt from investigation of potentially illegal activity merely because he is a political candidate (opponent of the president); (2) it is the president’s duty to investigate and prosecute any illegal activity; (3) if Joe Biden should be cleared of any illegal activity, it would remove any cloud and help him with the voters in a future election.

F. William Meservey, Palm Harbor

A program that helps kids

Helping at-risk youth

When Bradley was 12 years old, his parents were drug addicts. His mother would hallucinate and act erratically. His father would offer him drugs and beat him. Bradley was full of anger and getting into trouble himself, until he found hope. Through the AMIkids program, he had the right guidance to rise above. Bradley earned his GED, began college and focused on his dream of working in healthcare. Bradley’s success story is one of many. Since 1969, AMIkids has helped nearly 140,000 at-risk youth in Florida and numerous states across the U.S. and Caribbean. AMIkids uses a nationally recognized “Personal Growth Model,” which stresses individualized education accredited by AdvanceEd, research-driven treatment and behavior modification.

The results are impressive. On average, 73 percent of youth do not reoffend after they leave AMIkids, increasing their chance of becoming contributing members of their communities. More impressively, AMIkids recently partnered with the U.S. Department of Labor to offer vocational certifications, placing 1,300 teens into jobs. As a proud supporter of AMIkids for more than a decade, and a former volunteer board member, I hope you will join me in celebrating the 50-years of great work this non-profit has done in our community to better the lives of so many people like Bradley.

Ronald Christaldi, Tampa

The writer is a partner at Shumaker, Loop & Kendrick LLP.

In Florida, not of Florida

Trump feels the love at visit to the Villages | Oct. 4

I attended a party at the Villages two years ago. I was appalled at how most of the people I met had moved here from northern states and couldn’t care less about most of the issues that concerned the people of Florida. They were wealthy and smug.

Tina Koufas-Eisbacher, Largo


  1.  Bill Day --
  2. Jomari DeLeon, is pictured at at Gadsden Correctional Facility in Quincy, Florida August 7, 2019. Jomari is three years into a 15-year sentence for drug trafficking. She sold 48 tablets of prescription tablets over two days to an undercover officer. JOHN PENDYGRAFT   |  Times
    Even Oklahoma, a state not famous for progressive reform, has done more than Florida to fix sentencing inequities, Carl Hiaasen writes.
  3. In this photo from June 28, 2019, a Coalition for Life St. Louis member waves to a Planned Parenthood staff member. ROBERT COHEN  |  AP
    Florida law already requires that parents be notified prior to an abortion, writes senior policy counsel at the ACLU of Florida.
  4. Students say the Pledge of Allegiance as thousands gather at a candlelight vigil for several students killed in the Saugus High School shooting in Central Park, Sunday, Nov. 17, 2019, in Santa Clarita, Calif. CAROLYN COLE  |  AP
    We doctors treat diseases, but what of the epidemic of gun violence, writes a St. Petersburg doctor.
  5. Hillsborough Classroom Teachers Association members protest outside of the school board building in Tampa in December 2017. MONICA HERNDON  |  Tampa Bay Times
    Here’s what readers had to say in Tuesday’s letters to the editor.
  6. Muhammad Abdur-Rahim points out the location of what is believed to be a former African-American cemetery next to the parking lot of Frank Crum Staffing located at 100 S. Missouri Ave. in Clearwater.  The empty lot is part of the former Clearwater Heights neighborhood which featured Bethany CME church and Williams Elementary School.   Photo taken Wednesday, Nov. 13, 2019.  JAMES BORCHUCK  |  Times
    Tampa Bay’s lost cemeteries are part of our collective history.
  7. A business man and woman holding a sign depicting their political party preference. SHARON DOMINICK  |
    Here’s what readers had to say in Monday’s letters to the editor.
  8. Leonard Pitts undefined
    Don’t wall ourselves off from contradictory opinions, writes Leonard Pitts.
  9. President Donald Trump, right, and former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani pose for photographs as Giuliani arrives at the Trump National Golf Club Bedminster clubhouse in Nov. 2016 in Bedminster, N.J.
    Here’s some interesting commentary from the opposite poles of the political spectrum.
  10. (left to right) Nupar Godbole, medical student at USF, and Tiffany Damm, medical student at UCF, take part in a papaya workshop at the University of South Florida Medical Students for Choice Second Annual Florida Regional Conference held in the Morsani College of Medicine on February 24, 2019 in Tampa, Florida. Some of the instruments used in abortions, like the manual vacuum aspirator, are used in an exercise with a papaya, to simulate an abortion. MONICA HERNDON  |  Times
    Here’s what readers had to say in Sunday’s letters to the editor.