When local control resides in Tallahassee | Letters
Here’s what readers are saying in Wednesday’s letters to the editor.
Gov. Ron DeSantis
Gov. Ron DeSantis [ CHRIS O'MEARA | AP ]
Published Dec. 29, 2021

The state’s rights

Education power struggle | Dec. 28

This article about the state’s effective takeover of local school boards quoted Citrus County Superintendent Sam Himmel, president of the state superintendents association and also an elected Republican, saying, “...there’s always people above us making rules and laws, and we follow them. I like to trust who’s in charge.” Since she is an elected, partisan official, I do not trust that Himmel would always trust who’s in charge. She has the perceived luxury of complete state control by one political party — her party. This, of course, is not how our system was designed to work. Our forefathers fought monarchical rule (roughly equivalent to single-party rule) with both pen and sword to establish a system of checks and balances. None of those checks and balances are currently working in Republican-dominated Florida. Ruling without compromise can turn against you, and that is what the forebearers of this experiment knew. One only has to ask themselves if Superintendent Himmel’s comments would have been uttered if she were serving a governor from another party that held positions disagreeable to her vision. Himmel’s and others’ acquiescence to single party rule should alarm us all. This will not end well.

Brad Rosenheim, St. Petersburg

Better for kids

Build Back Better is a child health bill in disguise | Dec. 28

Thank you, Dr. Shetal Shah, for listing what the Build Back Better plan will do for women and children. Unfortunately, there is not bipartisan support for this plan — or for increasing funding for low income children. I don’t think the party of pro-life supports care for children once they are born.

Ann Jamieson, St. Petersburg

A man of justice

Desmond Tutu 1931 - 2021 | Dec. 27

Andrew Meldrum of the Associated Press wrote a proper tribute to Archbishop Desmond Tutu. But he omitted two of Tutu’s comments on certain Israeli-Palestinian issues. “When you go to the Holy Land and see what’s being done to the Palestinians at checkpoints, for us, it’s the kind of thing we experienced in South Africa,” he told The Washington Post in 2013. He openly supported the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) program movement for Palestinian rights as a similar movement to what had prompted negotiations between the two major races in South Africa, which eventually led to Nelson Mandela’s government. Those statements make the archbishop, a Nobel Peace Prize laureate, a purveyor of truth and justice for all peoples.

Arthur Hebert, Largo