No wave of ‘lib outrage’ on this one
A prescription beyond Dr. Seuss | March 6
There’s much whining on social media about how “libs” are responsible for Dr. Seuss Enterprises striking six of the Seuss books from their sales. Donald Trump Jr. is super miffed that the only books on his nightstand have been “disavowed” by their publisher for their racist imagery. But it is the very profitable Dr. Seuss Enterprises itself that made the decision to strike these books for its own reasons. It sought opinions from teachers and experts, and acted on its own. No wave of “lib outrage” forced its hand. Seuss died childless but had stepchildren through his wife, who set the company up in 1993, and now is dead. It’s unknown if her children hold any equity in the company. Whiners about this decision to end sales of books with insulting racial imagery to kids are themselves the most prolific banners of books treating subjects they find uncomfortable for religious or ideological reasons, “to protect kids.” Great. Let’s protect all kids, then.
Steve Douglas, St. Petersburg
Florida shouldn’t protect this flag
Florida law should quit coddling the Confederacy | Editorial, Feb. 28
One hundred, fifty-six years ago, the Confederate flag ceased to represent a nation. The laws and currency created to support such a renegade state were rendered null and void. The only intrinsic items to remain was the “Stars & Bars” and the Confederate battle flag to signify a failed ideology of racial superiority and misguided interpretation regarding the constitution. For a century and a half, false patriots have gathered under this flag to promote what the U.S. Constitution did not. Yet, would even banning this symbol eradicate the prejudice invoked by such? No. Misguided, misinformed and ignorant people still exist. But for Florida to protect a flag which offered no defense for those enslaved under it remains unbelievably backward.
Mack Besser, St. Petersburg
Use the money
County to refund sales tax money | March 3
I just read the article about the county refunding the transportation tax that, we, as citizens of Hillsborough County, voted into law because we felt it was needed. Now, because the process was declared illegal, they are going to refund the money collected? That money is gone, as far as the consumer is concerned. Let it be used in another area. There are plenty of areas throughout the county that could use this money in a good way. To determine how to refund the money, how much to refund and to whom to refund would cost way more than it would be worth to the citizens of Hillsborough County. Please try to find a way to put the money to good use to benefit the county.
Kay Stocker, Seffner
Who really saved their receipts?
County to refund sales tax money | March 3
Exactly how will Hillsborough County commissioners ensure that transportation tax refunds go to the people who actually paid the tax? Getting money to businesses that collected the tax should be simple enough. The county knows what business collectors paid in, but in most cases those businesses have no idea who paid except perhaps for large items like automobiles, boats, etc.
How many citizens saved all their receipts for the last two years? How many who did will take the time to pursue small refunds from multiple businesses? How will the county ensure that businesses make a good faith effort to return the tax? What will happen to money that can’t be returned to individual payers? Will this simply become a half-billion dollar gift to local business?
Let’s do what voters approved and spend the money to improve transportation.
Mike Pheneger, Tampa
Gratitude for a hero
Funeral today for fallen deputy | Feb. 23
Two weeks ago, tragedy struck the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office when, for the first time in its 109-year history, an officer was killed in the line of duty. Without hesitation, Deputy Michael Magli literally put his own body in harm’s way to stop what authorities say was a reckless and dangerous drunk driver. He will be forever remembered as a hero who made the ultimate sacrifice in order to protect the people of his community. Our deepest condolences to the family and friends of Deputy Magli, Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri and all of Deputy Magli’s colleagues at the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office for this tragic loss. We know your pain is immense.While the hour is dark right now, we wanted to take this moment to also express our appreciation to the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office and all law enforcement officers across the state like Deputy Magli for your dedication to justice and protecting victims or potential victims, no matter the price.
Kim McGlynn, Tallahassee
The writer is state director for Marsy’s Law for Florida.
Too much is too much
New 24-story tower about to break ground | March 2
When will the overdevelopment stop? Until St. Petersburg becomes Miami? Until it takes an hour to drive down Fourth Street? When does the city plan to update the sewer system before issuing yet another high-rise condo building permit? We have an archaic sewer system, yet the city continues to allow more buildings and more toilets. We can’t handle the current number of toilets we already have. What’s next? The Tropicana site? How about we turn that site (when the Rays leave) into a wastewater treatment facility. It already looks like one with the dome shape. Now that is something the city really needs. Our Tampa Bay water will thank us. Don’t be so blinded by tax revenue. Halt all building permits until the sewers are fixed and up to date. Let’s get the infrastructure in order first. Enough already.
Gina Chapman, St. Petersburg