Monument to stay, along with division June 22
at next election
Last week the Hillsborough County Commission ensured that Tampa and the county will remain racist by failing to listen to the many people who spoke in favor of removal of the monuments at the public hearing. These folks were better informed, more passionate and understood the history of the 1911 monument in a way that the mostly white speakers who were waving flags and slogans did not.
Thank you to the Tampa Bay Times for the excellent editorials on this issue; some of the speakers quoted your coverage of the original dedication. In my 42 years in Tampa, I have observed firsthand how all of us have been diminished by the dehumanization and denigration of our African-American brothers and sisters.
It shouldn't come as a surprise that the Republicans in the majority voted 4-3 to keep this monument to slavery, but I was hoping Sandra Murman would break with her male counterparts and speak for diversity and inclusion. But alas, she lacked the courage to do so. The only hope now is that the same speakers who wanted change will get it for all of us by enlisting others' help in defeating the oppressive conservative rule in this area.
Lowell Harris, Tampa
Not worthy of an honor
So the Confederate memorial will stay at the old county courthouse in Tampa. That is like a Nazi memorial standing in front of a courthouse in Berlin. Both represent the subjugation of humans. The difference is that the Germans subjugated a white race; the Floridians subjugated a black race. Neither action deserves to be honored.
Larry Bush, Tampa
Museum is the right place
Monuments to the Confederacy belong in museums, where they can be placed in their proper historical context. Such statues need to be preserved as a reminder of the greatest threat to our union: our own citizens, fighting among ourselves, with unforeseen consequences that still resonate today.
Sandra Palmer, Tampa
Senate health care bill | June 23
Back to the drawing board
The Senate health care bill has been released, and once again we see what this Congress is really all about: a reverse Robin Hood move. In order to give huge tax breaks to the wealthiest of Americans (rolling back the taxes that were designed to pay for the Affordable Care Act), they will decimate Medicaid. So the poor, the disabled and the most vulnerable among us will suffer so that the rich can get richer.
Is this the America we want? If it isn't, I urge everyone to call Sen. Marco Rubio and insist that he vote against the Senate health care bill (and call Sen. Bill Nelson and thank him for standing firm with his "no" vote).
Then the next step will be to get the two sides to sit down and work on true health care reform that provides coverage for everyone and works to bring down costs.
Jenni Casale, Palmetto