Pinellas officials object to plan’s wording | June 22
These two Tarpon Springs City Commissioners Michael Eisner and Craig Lunt are perfect examples of a species that gets itself elected with an absolutely wrong notion of an elected representative’s duty to voters. We vote for people to represent the best interests of all the people, not just their own camp, or their own ridiculous prejudices and wants. You didn’t win a contest putting your weird stew of personal preferences and personality quirks and prejudices alone at the top of some heap. The fact that you bridle at and resist the reality of a preponderance of death and injury to pedestrians in disadvantaged areas is proof you don’t understand the limits of your ambit in office. Face facts, and put aside your actual obvious prejudices and insecurities that have nothing to do with, and are in fact now obviously contrary to, the public’s best interests. Do your job as it’s supposed to be done. You weren’t elected for your personal charm or good looks. Review the oath you swore, and do your job.
Steve Douglas, Saint Petersburg
Trump voters need a new direction | June 20
I could not disagree more with Peggy Noonan’s opening statement in her column on Monday. She states that “I never meet Americans who love America more than Trump people do.” In actuality they only love Donald Trump, not America and its democratic processes. Trump people do not love America at all. If they did, they would not have attempted to disrupt the democratic transfer of power on Jan. 6. Trump people are merely the loudest people voicing their love for America. I have never found a Trumper who loves this country more than I do. I just don’t have stickers all over my car or shout it from the rafters at every opportunity.
Barry Kreiling, Brooksville
Longing for civility
Trump voters need a new direction | June 20
Columnist Peggy Noonan is a lifelong Republican apologist. Monday’s column was no different with her stating, “I start with the obvious. I never meet Americans who love America more than Trump people do.”
I think she needs to get out more and meet the multitudes of Americans who deeply love this country, its promises of freedom to pursue happiness, liberty and justice for all, and equal justice under the law. Many of us want that America back, not the one Republicans wish to force upon us.
Larry W. Scruggs, Tampa
More conservative content
Peggy Noonan again? | Letters, June 22
Seriously? The letter writer has a problem with an occasional column by a very moderate conservative like Peggy Noonan? Right next to the letter is a column by one of the most left leaning columnists around, Jennifer Rubin, who’s almost as left as Leonard Pitts, Jr., published by the Times twice a week, and Daniel Ruth, published once a month. The letter writer needs to remember that at least 50% of the country is not liberal. The Times needs more balance, not less.
Doug Hardin, Dade City
Learning about Juneteenth
Juneteenth holiday gains wider acceptance in Tampa Bay | June 19
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I grew up in Pinellas County and went to public schools here and four years of college. I do not recall ever learning about Juneteenth, Black Wall Street, the Tulsa Massacre or any other Black history other than Harriet Tubman and Sojourner Truth. I feel cheated that I was not introduced to the rich and diverse culture. Young families must begin to teach their children about these different cultures and that our country is not perfect, but what makes us strive for a more perfect union is our unending thirst to learn from our mistakes despite certain politicians wanting to stifle our quest for the truth.
Beverly G. Isaacs, Seminole
I moved to Tampa in 2015. A question on the USF Health new patient form — “Do you feel safe in your current relationship?” — informed my new doctor that I was a victim of domestic violence. Explaining that his responsibility included my personal safety, he insisted I make plan to end the relationship safely.
Taking action was terrifying. Without my doctor’s guidance, I don’t know when, or if, I would have taken action. With help from The Spring of Tampa Bay, however, I escaped that relationship and moved to a safe environment.
Based on my experience, I want to share two suggestions.
• To medical professionals: Make it a habit to ask your patients if they feel safe in their relationships. Be prepared for uncomfortable responses. It matters.
• To those who do not feel safe in their home or relationship: Tell someone who can help. That might be a doctor, a family member, friend, coworker, boss. Let them help you take action. I know from experience the shame you feel at first, but you are a victim, no less so than someone attacked by a stranger on the street. With time and help, the shame can go away. If you don’t take action, the danger and fear will not go away.
Thank you to anyone who understands the dangers and difficulties of persons in an abusive relationship. When you help them form a plan of action you can save a life.
Julia West, Largo
Now let’s get Florida’s children vaccinated against COVID-19 | Editorial, June 22
COVID-19 is a serious, risky disease in children. In Florida, over 700,000 children have caught the disease. More than 180,000 of the cases have been in children under 5. While COVID-19 tends to be less severe, four percent of the children have been hospitalized, and 45 have died.
All medical societies whose members treat children recommend the COVID-19 vaccine for all eligible children, including the American Academy of Pediatricians and the American Academy of Family Physicians.
The common symptoms of fever, cough, chest pain, sore throat, and nausea and vomiting, commonly last for up to 4 weeks. Children can also develop long COVID.
Children who receive the vaccine are less likely to get COVID-19, have milder symptoms if they do catch it, and are less likely to spread the disease.
All parents should be wary of information from non-medical sources, especially politicians. Parents with questions or concerns should discuss the vaccine with their child’s doctor.
Our children are not at zero risk of severe symptoms and complications from the disease.
Richard L. Hutchison, MD, Bradenton, Florida