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Monday, Jul 28, 2014
Letters To The Editor

Letters to the editor: Wrongful associations

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Wrongful associations

Paula Dockery’s blast at Gov. Rick Scott’s apparent deplorable conduct relative to Jennifer Carroll’s resignation seems out of place — that is, unless there is more to the story (“This is certainly no way to treat a lady — or your running mate,” Views, June 1).

Dockery asks why Carroll’s association with Allied didn’t air during her vetting process but neglects to add that Carroll should have examined Allied before associating with that organization. For that matter, why didn’t she divest herself of her public relations firm, or couldn’t she get by on her paltry $124,800 salary as lieutenant governor?

Incidentally, Scott lauded Carroll on her departure, saying, “She was tireless, and she put a lot of effort into ... getting jobs going, and I am grateful for her service.”

Scott has distanced himself from Carroll, as close associations with suspect people can severely affect a candidate’s profile, and even the appearance of impropriety can raise red flags with voters. There are entirely too many instances of wrongful associations in politics in this day and age. With voters vetting possible candidates through social media, they are trying to do the right thing and elect a person they perceive as the “honest candidate.”

Had these tools been available 50 years ago, who knows where our nation would be today?

Roger H. Oddson

Sun City Center

Venezuela and sanctions

The U.S. House of Representatives passed by voice vote H.R. 4587, The Venezuelan Human Rights and Democracy Protection Act. This act authorizes President Obama to choose who to apply sanctions against and who to support. The president may now interfere, at his discretion, in the internal affairs of another sovereign nation. It appears Congress has learned nothing from our actions in Iran, Iraq, Egypt, Syria, etc.

It also states that “It shall be U.S. policy to: (1) support efforts to identify prisoners of conscience and cases of human rights abuses in Venezuela, and (2) offer refugee status or political asylum in the United States to political dissidents in Venezuela or assist in their relocation to other countries.” We cannot secure our borders, but we will provide a base for dissidents to agitate against another nation.

This legislation “authorizes appropriations for assistance to civil society in Venezuela.” It doesn’t specify how much will be spent or where the money will come from. I suspect the treasury’s printing press will be working overtime.

Could this be an effort by Republicans to gain Latino support in the upcoming midterm elections? It was introduced by Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinan and co-sponsored by my representative, Gus Bilirakis, along with other Republican co-sponsors. Sen. Marco Rubio is also pushing for its passage in the Senate. If so, I believe it is a misplaced theory and a waste of taxpayer money, not to mention creating friction with an oil-producing country in our hemisphere.

Venezuela already has ties with Cuba. Is it really in the Unites States’ interest to strengthen this alliance?

Bill Rueck

New Port Richey

Open the gates

For many years, one of my high-priority wishes on my bucket list has been to visit Cuba. For many years, a Cuban minority has held our politicians hostage to its voting block and prevented, through sanctions, the rest of U.S. citizens from visiting their homeland. Unless you had family there or a sports, trade or musical connection, you just couldn’t get a visa. All these hoops to try and jump through made it impossible for a common U.S. citizen to ever see this beautiful country. My question is this: How at the drop of a hat do ex-politicians or politicians like Charlie Crist get to visit and the rest of us are forbidden? It seems all they have to do is announce that they are going there and bam — warm up the engines, captain; here I come.

Sadly, all these years of isolation and hoping that the political climate will change, or the Castros will die off so that our view of normal relations could be reinstated, only prevented the cure. You don’t have to be a genius to realize that if an invasion of American tourists took place tomorrow, they would bring with them capitalistic views and, of course, their American dollars. It would do more to eradicate communism on that island than any sanction would ever do or has done in the last 50 years. It’s time to drop these dumb obstacles to tourism, open the flood gates and let nature take its course.

J.T. Woods

Brooksville

Special place

I am sure it would be extremely difficult to find someone who feels bad Dontae Morris was sentenced to death (“Morris must die for killing officers, judge rules,” front page, May 31). This is one of the occasions where one wishes it could be sooner rather than later.

While he enjoys three meals a day and security, many families are suffering the loss of loved ones at his hands. All we can do is wish the summers are hot and the winters are cold for him. He is a sociopath, so there is no conscience to haunt him. But there is a God, and I am sure if he does not develop a conscience and repent there will be a special place for him. And that is where the ugly demon known as Dontae Morris will get what is fitting for him.

John Mannone

Tampa

Soccer is where it’s at

Regarding “Kriseman recommends $250K for stadium fixes” (St. Petersburg Tribune, May 30): Isn’t anyone thinking long-term?

Why spend all that money on a dilapidated stadium, especially since the extra costs are due to staging a handful of baseball games there? Why not convert the stadium to a soccer-only facility and stage other events during the off-season? Since the Trop is city-owned, couldn’t the occasional baseball games, presently played at Al Lang, be held there?

The era of baseball in St. Pete is waning, soon to be gone when the Rays relocate. Soccer is almost as popular here as the Rays are, so why not look into building a great soccer stadium in place of the Trop? Add a village of stores and restaurants around it, and the attraction may even exceed the Rays in terms of community revenue.

Jeannie Cline

St. Petersburg

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