DeSantis declares governor run | Jan. 6
Beware the billionaires' backing
This line says it all: "The congressman already has the support of the president and several billionaires." If you continue to vote for billionaire-backed candidates, you will get exactly what you voted for: more catering to the wealthy and nothing for the majority of working Floridians. And this should be the final red flag: the fact that the self-centered narcissus president just gave thousands more to the wealthy in the disguise of a new tax plan.
Still optimistic? Then my final advice is to quit reading fake news and do some real research and investigating. Check out how these politicians voted on the issues that matter to Florida and you. You will be voting then as an informed citizen instead of a political puppet.
Tina Koufas-Eisbacher, Largo
Opioid bill opponents line up | Jan. 6
Protect responsible users
I am not a lobbyist or GOP supporter, but count me as an opponent of this ill-advised bill. Last year I underwent total knee replacement of a severely damaged knee and learned what truly excruciating pain feels like. Following surgery, I was on both oxycontin and oxycodone for two weeks and then oxycodone alone for another two weeks. After stopping cold turkey, I felt a little chilly and achy for a couple of days but more importantly I felt human again. I had no desire to resume consumption of narcotics. At some point I will need to replace the other knee and I am concerned that I may have to travel to another state or even country in order to receive adequate pain control.
Will one of the bills proponents please explain to me why I should suffer because some people cannot take their medication responsibly? I am sympathetic to those who become addicted, but wouldn't it be more effective in the long run to develop programs to help these folks recover rather than punish the rest of us?
Alvin Wood, St. Petersburg
Getting to the bottom line
As usual, doctors, drug companies and some Republicans "fear losing control or profits." It's not about health; it's about control or profits, with the emphasis on profits.
G.B. Leatherwood, Spring Hill
Shameful lack of respect | Jan. 6, letter
Criticism is American way
As an American citizen, let me be the first to tell the letter writer that our Constitution allows us to be that proverbial fan who "pays his money" and is free to say what he thinks of a team. My view is that Donald Trump is a disgrace to the office he holds. He is ignorant, with no interest in becoming informed. He is a bigot as regards to both religion and race. He is narcissistic, requiring continual adoration from people around him. He has no moral compass to guide him as to what is right or wrong. He could easily pass any lie detector test since he doesn't seem to know the difference between truth and fiction.
If the letter writer expects us as American citizens to let all that pass without a murmur, then she must really think all of us are fools.
Rene Tamargo, Tampa
Work toward common good
It took one of our good neighbors from the north to point out the shameful lack of respect shown our president. Like it or not, the people picked him, so work with him; united we stand, divided we fall. Remember, no person is perfect. If our Congress would work together, we would see some positive results for our country.
Alton Shedd, Zephyrhills
We'll trade for Trudeau
To the Canadian letter who feels our president has done so many great things for America and has been slandered and disrespected by American citizens, I say let's make a deal. We will trade you Donald Trump for Justin Trudeau and as a pot sweetener we will throw in Trumps' Cabinet appointees and as many of our Republican congressional sycophants who share his political views.
After a year of his hate-filled Twitter rants combined with his dog-and-pony show, we'll see if you still feel so fond of us.
Joseph Fernandez, Land O'Lakes
Trump's plan: to drill | Jan. 5
Applause for Scott, Rubio
I have never been a fan of either Gov. Rick Scott or Sen. Marco Rubio, however I applaud them for taking a stand against oil drilling off Florida's shores. I hope they stick to it.
Dolores Gavaza, St. Petersburg
Good news on jobless front
You probably will not read this in the liberal newspapers or hear it on liberal TV. In December, the unemployment rate for black Americans dropped to 6.8 percent, the lowest ever recorded.
The government has been tracking unemployment by race for 45 years, since 1972.
The Hispanic unemployment rate remains at a near record low of 4.9 percent, up just a bit from the record of 4.7 percent in November. White unemployment sits at 3.7 percent, while only 2.5 percent of Asians are unemployed.
Charles Graham, Pinellas Park
Our inequality problem | Jan. 6, commentary
Economic benefits flowing
I may not be the chair of a university economics department, but I'm aware that the tax bill the writer accuses of exacerbating inequality has, due to the corporate tax drop, already benefited at least a million workers with salary increases and bonuses. The expense of a carbon tax he wants on fossil fuels would be passed on to customers, hurting the poor disproportionately and doing almost nothing for climate change. And if the bill contains policies that even the writer acknowledges will boost growth this year, they will not somehow diminish as he implies but be in place for continued growth next year and the one after.
Eric Greenbaum, Tampa