Letters to the Editors
Remember Iron Eyes and don't pollute
© St. Petersburg Times, published January 7, 1999
Re: "Iron Eyes" Cody obituary.
Editor: Like many of you, I have made a number of New Year resolutions. Probably the No. 1 resolution on most people's list is to get more exercise and to lose weight. Both are good ideas and will contribute to one's personal health. However, there is an additional health issue we should be interested in; the health of our community.
A recent column by Jeff Webb commented, "Resolve to make a difference in your community." I support this premise 100 percent. I truly believe Margaret Meade's comment, "One person can make a difference." Most of you know that my background was not political.
I was an activist that became involved in government because I was not pleased with what was happening in my small rural community of Gower's Corners.
How does one become involved? First, citizens need to be educated about the community they live in. In order to get this education, one must have abundant, prompt and truthful information on what is going on in the county and the state and interact in a free discussion of the issues. According to David Mathews of the Kettering Foundation, public deliberation is the key to make sound choices on state and local policies.
Forums or town meetings help citizens to make collective decisions. Mathews notes, "Deliberative forums provide a rare opportunity for people to talk and reason together." For a number of years the people of Central Pasco utilized the Central Pasco Coalition to investigate issues, make suggestions, and fight for a resolution to community issues.
Within the next few weeks, a new group will make their debut, "The Publicats." Its mission is to provide a forum to review issues, make suggestions and interact with their public officials.
As an individual, you can become involved in other ways. Attend a county commission meeting. Schedules of times and dates of commission meetings are available in the commission office. You can also utilize Pasco's web page: http://pascocounty.com/gov to get a list of the other weekly meetings and also read the weekly commission agenda.
If you do not have a computer, your local library has access and the friendly librarian will be glad to assist you. Although commissioners are elected countywide, each commissioner represents a district. Do you know who your commissioner is? Again, a call to the commission office will give you the information.
Make an appointment to meet with your commissioner and discuss issues that will be effecting your area. Share your concerns and vision for Pasco's future with your state and local elected representatives.
Ask your commissioner, state representative or School Board member to speak with your civic, church or business group. Many times they can provide additional staff to address a particular issue or concern.
This is your community. You deserve to be listened to, to get answers to your questions and to have a good quality of life. Elected officials may not always give you the answer you want, but they are duty bound to get you the information. Government cannot be all things to all people, but if we work together, we can continue to make Pasco a great place to live.
Editor: During the past holiday shopping season, I had some business to transact at the Gulfview Square Mall.
I had the opportunity to sit and observe the people walking by. I was disturbed at what I witnessed. I saw families walking. Two adults in the front and a child, 3, 4 or 5 years old walking behind. Yes, in the back of them. It was open season for pedophiles, perverts, kidnappers.
Children should walk in front of adults. Better yet, the adult should hold the child's hand.
You read it in the papers and you see it on TV; children are snatched all too often. Watch your children, they are precious.