I know white privilege
It wasn’t luck that allowed me to become a judge after my meth addiction. It was white privilege. | Column, Nov. 30
This is a brave and thought-provoking column. I have people in my life who don’t really believe there is such a thing as “white privilege.” I hear, “Well, if they would just work harder,” or “Well, they got themselves arrested, or “They have a juvie record, so they must be trouble,” and so on. Only once in more than 50 years of driving did I even get a ticket. No security guards follow me in stores, like they do my dark-skinned niece. None of my white friends or family has ever encountered a justice system that was hostile and unforgiving. That is white pr.ivilege. It is a real thing and we must acknowledge it. Until we do, we will never have equal justice and opportunity for all.
Anne Conklin, Bradenton
How to put out a gaslight
‘Gaslighting’ is word of the year | Nov. 30
As Ethics Officer for the Tampa Bay Chapter, Public Relations Society of America, I’m both heartened and disheartened to see that the term “gaslighting” has made its way into popular terminology as Merriam-Webster’s word of the year. The nation and the world have been subjected to more than enough hyperbole and downright lies by government and business leaders at all levels. The downside to all this is that unsuspecting, otherwise rationally thinking citizens the world over are reacting to and acting on potentially harmful misinformation (known on the streets as “outright lies”). As a part-time member of the communication faculty at the University of Tampa, I now have yet another challenge to throw in front of my eager-to-learn future communication professionals: ”Caveat lector” — ”Let the reader beware.”
Kirk Hazlett, Riverview
Will they criticize others?
Trump criticized for dining with rapper Ye and far-right activist Nick Fuentes | Nov. 27
It’s interesting to see several members in the Republican Party condemning former President Donald Trump for dining with antisemites. I’m wondering if Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and some of those same Republicans will condemn Gov. Ron DeSantis for his refusal to disavow Nazi demonstrators in Florida. He has refused on more than one occasion.
Karen Lieberman, St. Petersburg