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The coronavirus is just that, a virus; it has no brain, and it doesn’t plan a strategy | Letters
Here’s what readers are saying in Friday’s letters to the editor.
This electron microscope image made available by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows SARS-CoV-2 virus particles, which cause COVID-19. The coronavirus mutant that just became dominant in the United States as of May is a member of the omicron family. And no, it doesn't plan to how to evolve. It just does.
This electron microscope image made available by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows SARS-CoV-2 virus particles, which cause COVID-19. The coronavirus mutant that just became dominant in the United States as of May is a member of the omicron family. And no, it doesn't plan to how to evolve. It just does. [ HANNAH A. BULLOCK, AZAIBI TAMIN | AP ]
Published Jun. 3

Viruses don’t think

Why new COVID-19 variants are driving a surprise surge | June 2

I cringe when I see articles that explain some evolutionary event as though the entity is somehow planning consciously to evolve for a particular reason. Evolution and natural selection do not work that way. Organisms do not plan their evolution. Organisms from viruses to people undergo random small mutations over time as they reproduce. That is true for viruses and animals. Most of these mutations make little or no effect on the organism or its descendants but sometimes major changes occur that are helpful for survival, and those descendants are more likely to survive and reproduce. For microscopic organisms, such as viruses the time frame is weeks or months. There is no planning. Evolution is random, and natural selection is the mechanism that lets one mutation prosper while others die out.

Ian MacFarlane, St. Petersburg

Law-biding, until he wasn’t

Texas town buries children | May 31

Until he killed his first 10-year-old last week, the shooter was a law-abiding citizen when he bought his assault rifles. We have multiple mass shootings every week while in the United Kingdom, which has serious gun control, there are none. This should not be a partisan issue.

Scott Cochran, Tampa

The right to live

Americans have other rights, too. Among them: life and liberty | Letter, June 1

Yes, all citizens have the right to bear arms. But all citizens have the right to expect our government will also keep us safe. We should not vote for anyone who does not take action for significant change. We need a better process for obtaining authorization to own weapons. We need to limit the availability of assault style weapons and products. There is another gun show this weekend, and it makes me worry. I’m not against owning a gun. I just wish that having enough money was not the only criterion for getting one.

Steven Em, Palm Harbor

Better elsewhere

Valedictorians and salutatorians

The Tampa Bay Times has been publishing names and photos of the top two students in the high school graduation classes in surrounding counties. In the last class I checked, 75% of the top two students were female. I don’t have an exact count of the previous classes, but I suspect that the ratios were similar. I think it is highly unlikely that these intelligent young women will be interested in living someplace that is ruled by a Taliban-like theocracy that seems to be taking over in many of our states.

Joe Crites, Clearwater

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