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Let’s identify the problem | Letters
Here’s what readers are saying in Friday’s letters to the editor.
Gov. Ron DeSantis speaks at a Monoclonal Antibody Treatment center at the Barnstorm Theater in The Villages on Wednesday, August 25, 2021. The center is one of many for treatment of COVID-19. DeSantis answered several media questions about school mask mandates following the news conference.
Gov. Ron DeSantis speaks at a Monoclonal Antibody Treatment center at the Barnstorm Theater in The Villages on Wednesday, August 25, 2021. The center is one of many for treatment of COVID-19. DeSantis answered several media questions about school mask mandates following the news conference.
Published Sep. 3

Let’s ID the problem

State: Require a shot? Pay up | Sept. 2

Okay. First, Gov. Ron DeSantis opposed mask mandates in the schools, endangering school children who are becoming likelier to contract COVID. Then he tried to dock the pay of school board members who opposed his restrictions. Then he ignored the ruling of a judge who determined his ban on mask mandates to be unlawful. Then he delayed a request for $820 million in federal funds for meals for deserving school kids. Oh, and he banned cruise ships from requiring vaccinations for travelers aboard their ships. Now he is fining businesses — businesses? — $5,000 every time they require members of the public or customers to show proof of vaccination before they are provided service. Proof of shirts and shoes continues to be okay legally. DeSantis favors ID for all Florida voters who need to vote at the polling place on Election Day. If they show proof of vaccination, will that disqualify them?

Bruce LeBaron, St. Petersburg

The writer is right

Joe Biden bets on cynicism | Column, Sept. 2

Thanks to Wall Street Journal columnist William McGurn for his informative column and for his right-on accuracy in telling it like it is.

Colleen Paglen, Treasure Island

What pro-life means

Supreme Court silent on Texas’ new abortion ban | Sept. 2

This is for those of you who claim to be pro-life yet want to block mask and vaccine mandates — or are personally refusing to wear masks or get the vaccine. I can hear you all cheering about the anti-abortion law in Texas while you spread the delta variant to your neighbors. I am so upset with all of you. I am pro-life — in all ways. But until you care enough about nurturing and protecting life after birth, don’t tell me you are pro-life. Adapting to and mitigating climate change is pro-life. Ending war is pro-life. Living wages are pro-life. Equal rights and protections are pro-life. Affordable, quality health care is pro-life. Humane criminal justice is pro-life. Abolishing capital punishment is pro-life. I could go on and on. When the reasons for abortion are dealt with, abortions will significantly decrease. Let’s support policies and practices that deal with the reasons so many girls and women feel that abortion is their only real option. Please stop claiming the moral high ground because you think you are pro-life by advocating the end of legal abortion.

A. O’Brien, Pinellas Park

Hungry kids

Why aren’t we signing up for federal food aid? | Editorial, Sept. 2

The Times editorial asks our governor, “Why aren’t we signing up for federal food aid?” While the question is rhetorical, the answer is not. As with its lack of concern with distributing federal rent relief and unemployment aid, Florida’s Republican leadership doesn’t believe our working poor deserve any aid. The wealthy deserve their tax giveaways, but those not so blessed do not.

Brian Walkowiak, St. Petersburg

Feed our young

Why aren’t we signing up for federal food aid? | Editorial, Sept. 2

I was truly stunned and dismayed to learn that Gov. Ron DeSantis is leaving up to $820 million in federal food assistance on the table for the underprivileged in Florida. I am president of the Beth Dillinger Foundation, and we have provided more than 300,000 food trays to chronically hungry elementary students in Pinellas County alone so they will have nourishment on the weekends when not in school. As their teachers have repeatedly said, a hungry child cannot learn. The children who receive the food are truly grateful someone cares about their hunger needs. These children are the future of our country. There is a wait list for children to be fed. The governor needs to address this growing need — not ignore it.

Kay Dillinger, St. Petersburg