Contrasts from the US presidency
President Biden has worked to slow the rate of COVID-19 deaths, which had accelerated during Trump’s term. Biden’s speech to mark his first 100 days in office was filled with hope and realistic goals for repairing decay of infrastructure, government institutions, foreign relations and disrespect for the rule of law.
In contrast, Trump had led the chant “Lock her up, lock her up” at his (2016) rallies, stirring his crowd to frenzy.
Trump sued in states to overturn Biden’s win. Judges, even those appointed by Trump, ruled the suits to be without merit.
He demanded of Republicans in Georgia the creation of some 9,000 votes to win and now is having Republicans recount the votes in Arizona.
Through his lies about winning the election, Trump motivated QAnon, Boogaloo Boys, Proud Boys and KKK members to launch the vicious attack on our Capital on Jan. 6 in an attempt to block the final Electoral College count confirming Biden’s win.
Trump chided mask wearing and facilitated most of the more than 500,000 COVID-19 deaths.
Might Trump’s wealthy supporters abandon their insatiable greed and shift support to enable poor and middle-income Americans to once again contribute maximally to our economy, stability and happiness?
William Pettinger, Bonita Springs
More inland homes? Ease traffic first
Here we go again with our Collier County (Planning Commission’s) approval of Bellmar (a proposed rural village). It’s like a rubber stamp with no consideration to road infrastructure.
Immokalee Road is a major artery to the Naples area, and approved developments have continued with limited consideration to road capacity. Immokalee Road at rush hours has gotten significantly worse for over two years. Now in the mornings you have to wait 10 minutes and at times significantly longer to go 2 miles and access Interstate 75 and points west.
Logan Boulevard has done virtually nothing to solve the problem, and extension of Vanderbilt Beach Road will be the same.
We need more access to the Naples area besides Immokalee Road and additional access to I-75 prior to any additional approved developments that would affect Immokalee Road.
Let’s stop all development approvals that will affect Immokalee Road until current traffic problems are solved. (Editor’s note: Bellmar still requires approval by the Collier County Commission to be built.)
Bill Mason, North Naples
Preserve golf course site’s green space
The original intention of the purchase of the Golden Gate Golf Course by Collier County was to preserve green space rather than have developers build houses.
Now consideration is being given to creating an amusement park with multi-level lighted night driving ranges, additional restaurants, alcohol sales and arcades on the green space just to sustain another unprofitable golf course in Naples, which has plenty of other golf courses.
An increase in restaurant activity and alcohol sales would result in an increase in noise and the need for county services.
A golf course should exist on its own merits as a golf course rather than an amusement park to serve the interests of outside profiteers.
Central Park in New York and parks in other cities have tremendous commercial value, but they are not being developed, for obvious reasons. The challenge for Collier County commissioners is to decide how to maintain a golf course without giving us Coney Island, or preserve the green space as a park at minimal cost.
Robert Harrington, Golden Gate
Government aided vaccine companies
“Moderna and Pfizer aren’t federal agencies or public universities; they are places where capitalism is at its best and where they have a great sense of urgency,” the letter states.
The writer ignored the decades of basic discovery research at public and private universities made possible by the federal government, which was fundamental to this rapid vaccine development. Since the early 1990s, synthetic messenger RNA research has been conducted by university scientists. (Source: www.statnews.com/2020/11/10/the-story-of-mrna-how-a-once-dismissed-idea-became-a-leading-technology-in-the-covid-vaccine-race.)
That research was financed largely by federal and state governments because it is too speculative and expensive for private enterprise, which must focus on the next quarter and the bottom line.
The capitalists at Moderna, Pfizer, etc. stood on the shoulders of giants who were financed in part by you and me through our taxes. If the letter writer falsely deems government-financed basic discovery research to be socialism, then it follows the vaccines are the result of socialism.
That’s not what I think. I believe both capitalism and our government had roles to play.
Connie Holzinger, Fort Myers