Political ads all talk, no information
Letters to the Editor
Published October 13, 2006
Lord, deliver us from political advertising.
The ads are a joke, and I don't mean the funny kind. I'm not even sure they should be called "advertising." How can you "sell" yourself or your campaign promises in a minute or less?
No names here, but it was no wonder that a candidate's entire recent ad was a slander of her opponent. If you can't tell me, in a minute or less, what you will do in office if elected, then, hey, tell me why I shouldn't vote for your opponent. Go ahead. No holds barred. We love that kind of stuff.
It's come to that. And worse. Perhaps realizing they can't be specific about their plans, some have come up with approaches such as the candidate who has his kids telling us what a great guy he is. He's kidding, right?
Another candidate promises "more money for teachers." But how, pray tell? Do tell.
The worst news is there is nothing we can do about the content of these "blurbs," as I call them (see First Amendment), or their number (the Federal Communications Commission dropped that ball of possible regulation a long time ago).
Adding to the insult to the intelligence of all voters are the signs on lawns and bumper stickers on cars. In this country, we love to say who or what we like, not why. It's all about our limited attention span.
Ah, well, we may not grin, but we'll have to bear them. A little while longer.
I'm Jack Bray, and I approved this letter.
Jack Bray, Dunedin
Removing property tax cap would benefit the affluent
Re: Save Our Homes
The social goal behind the Save Our Homes tax cap has always been to help people afford to stay in their homes. The beneficiaries of this helping hand have always been the elderly and lower-income and middle class families. Those with financial wealth do not face these worries.
Have we forgotten about the disparity of wealth in this country? The removal of the tax cap would likely result in more properties being owned by the financially advantaged. Those families can afford the spiraling taxes, or will meet them by increasing rental costs once the former homes of the less advantaged become their rental properties.
The notion of a "portable" tax cap would offer no relevant help to those within our neighborhoods who only want to hang on to the American dream, rather than lose it. Portability is favored by those who seek financial gain, not social equity.
While envisioning the elderly widow not wanting to lose her home is valid, the danger spreads to more groups than just that one alone. As more properties leave the hands of the elderly, lower-income, and middle class families, the tax rolls may appear to "equalize," but the economic diversity within communities will disappear. It won't be a "fair" tax distribution.
Acquiring homes made unaffordable by increasing taxes and insurance costs will be like shooting ducks on a pond for those with financial resources.
We all benefit by capping taxes near the value of what we initially paid for our homes. The "fair distribution" arises from what we were able to afford when we first bought our homes. This allows for economic diversity within our neighborhoods.
Michael Burke, Crystal Beach
Coyote's release poses a danger to housing area
Re: Not so wily, coyote in Pinellas sends a signal, story, Oct. 11.
I've heard of some dumb things, but returning a wild animal to a housing area makes no sense. If these students are interested in studying the coyotes, then go to the woods and outlying areas where they usually live.
If they need to study the animal, then they don't know its makeup, so how can they say the coyote is not known to carry rabies? They gave it a rabies shot before they released it.
Who pays the hospital bills if and when someone is attacked in the area where they released the animal?
What happens when a hungry pack of coyotes encounters children waiting for the school bus?
I think someone is making a big blunder this time.
Fran Glaros, Clearwater
YOUR VOICE COUNTS
We invite readers to write letters for publication. To send a letter from your computer, go to www.sptimes.com/letters. If you prefer, you may instead fax your letter to us at (727) 445-4119, or mail it to Letter to the Editor, St. Petersburg Times, 710 Court St., Clearwater, FL 33756.
Letters should be brief and must include the writer's name, city of residence, mailing address and phone number. Letters may be edited for clarity, taste and length. We regret that not all letters can be printed.
[Last modified October 13, 2006, 07:07:07]
[an error occurred while processing this directive]